Who Knows What Evil Lurks In the Hearts Of Men? Doc Savage!

SFFaudio Online Audio

Website - Mark's PlaceOkay, before you click anything, first note, Mark Butler has placed an important disclaimer on his website, Mark’s Place, about these readings:


For those poor saps who haven’t already got ’em, paperbook or pulpmag copies of both of these out of print beauties can often be found on either eBay or Abebooks.com.

First up is, Doc Savage: Birds Of Death, which was originally published in Doc Savage Magazine‘s October 1941 issue. It follows The Man Of Bronze and his associates as they “battle strange yellow canaries whose mere song can kill a man and then bring him back to life!” This pulpy romp takes you from the streets of New York to the deepest darkest jungles.

Narrator, and Savage enthusiast, Mark Butler sez:

“I read this book into the microphone, trying to give the proper emphasis to the words and convey the feelings being written about. I’m not very good with different voices so the various characters sound a lot alike. But the story shines through my attempts. I’ve also added a lot of sound effects. Its not an ‘audio adaptation’ but I think it really enhances the audio.”

Doc Savage - The Birds Of Death - Pulp AudiobookDoc Savage: The Birds Of Death
By Kenneth Robeson (AKA Lester Dent); Read by Mark Butler
14 MP3 Files – Approx. 3 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Source: Mark’s Place
Posted: 2004
Doc’s musical accomplishments are almost as well known as his scientific genius – but even he can’t match the peculiar talent of the strange yellow canaries whose sweet music is the song of death!

Chapter 01 |MP3| Chapter 02 |MP3| Chapter 03 |MP3|
Chapter 04 |MP3| Chapter 05 |MP3| Chapter 06 |MP3|
Chapter 07 |MP3| Chapter 08 |MP3| Chapter 09 |MP3|
Chapter 10 |MP3| Chapter 11 |MP3| Chapter 12 |MP3|
Chapter 13 |MP3 | Chapter 14 |MP3|

A similar description accompanies, The Living Shadow, this is a single narrator reading that includes sound effects. First published in 1931, in hearing it you’ll be hearing the original Shadow character, in his first ever story! It’s difficult to imagine that this character has spanned more than 75 years of spicy tales that can …”cloud men’s minds”… hmmm, what was I saying?

The Shadow- The Living Shadow - Pulp AudiobookThe Shadow: The Living Shadow
By Maxwell Grant (AKA Walter B. Gibson); Read by Mark Butler
38 MP3 Files – Approx. 6 Hours [UNABRIDGED]
Source: Mark’s Place
Posted: 2006
The Living Shadow is the first Shadow novel. It sets the tone for all of the stories to follow. The Shadow recruits Harry Vincent and we learn with Harry about the Shadow’s remarkable organization and methods. The story is full of mystery as Harry gradually learns the real truth behind the Laidlow murder and the missing diamonds.”


Thanks so much Mark!

Review of Science Fiction: The Literature of the Technological Imagination by Eric S. Rabkin

Audio Lectures Review

Non-fiction - Science Fiction: The Literature of the Technological Imagination by Eric RabkinScience Fiction: The Literature of the Technological Imagination
By Eric S. Rabkin; Read by Eric S. Rabkin
8 cassettes – 4 hours (8 half-hour lectures) [LECTURES]
Publisher: The Teaching Company
Published: 1999
Themes: / Non-Fiction / Science Fiction / Pulp / Hard SF / Cyberpunk / Utopia / Dystopia /

This one is a little different than our usual fiction reviews. Science Fiction: The Literature of the Technological Imagination is a non-fiction series of lectures about the origins, history, and influence of science fiction. Think of it as Science Fiction 101 and you’ll get the idea. As a course it fulfills the promise of its title, breaking down the origins and the meanings within in science fiction literature. Professor Rabkin is a talented lecturer. Though obviously scripted, his naturalistic lectures are thoroughly engaging. The lectures explore the history of science fiction back to its origins in Plato’s Republic, then steadily marches all the way to William Gibson’s Neuromancer. These lectures offer genuinely interesting insight, I learned something interesting in each and every lecture! Rabkin discusses the first science fiction novel, Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, examines the pulp phenomena of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and gives examples of what makes hard SF “hard”. He looks at the social, technological, and literary forces that influenced the genre’s authors, and in doing so tells an entertaining story – the story of science fiction! In short, it’s a fascinating listen. I just wish that Rabkin would offer Science Fiction 201 next semester! Each half hour lecture could have easily been expanded into 2 hours.

The lectures are titled:

Lecture 1: Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and the Emergence of Science Fiction
Lecture 2: Jules Verne and the Popular Passion for Science
Lecture 3: H.G. Wells and Science Fiction Parables of Social Criticism
Lecture 4: Pulp Culture, World War II, and the Ascendancy of American Science Fiction
Lecture 5: And the Winner Is…Robert A. Heinlein
Lecture 6: Ray Bradbury, Ursula K. LeGuin, and the Expansion of Science Fiction
Lecture 7: Stanley Kubrick, Arthur C. Clarke, and the Modern Science Fiction Film
Lecture 8: New Wave, Cyberpunk, and Our Science Fiction World

Review of Double Star by Robert A. Heinlein

SFFaudio Review

Double Star by Robert A. Heinlein; Read by Lloyd James
5 Cassettes – 7.5 hours [UNABRIDGED]
Blackstone Audiobooks
Date Published: 1999
List Price: USD $39.95 – IN PRINT
ISBN: 0786117451
Themes: Science Fiction / Sci-Fi / Fantasy / Mystery / Pulp / Politics / Mars / Spaceships / Acting / Theatre / Shakespeare

One minute, down and out actor Lorenzo Smythe was – as usual – in a bar, drinking away his troubles as he watched his career go down the tubes. Then a space pilot bought him a drink, and the next thing Smythe knew, he was shanghaied to Mars. Suddenly he found himself agreeing to the most difficult role of his career: impersonating an important politician who had been kidnapped. Peace with the Martians was at stake – failure to pull off the act could result in interplanetary war. And Smythe’s own life was on the line – for if he wasn’t assassinated, there was always the possibility that he might be trapped in his new role forever!

Some Heinlein readers believe that the philosophy in Starship Troopers was Heinlein’s personal philosophy. They’re wrong. Heinlein’s primary philosophy was to provoke thought by explicating political consequences of certain philosophies… and to be entertaining doing it. Double Star proves this emphatically, presenting a completely different political system than Starship Troopers. The plot is a well known one. As old as the fairy tale The Prince and The Pauper, The Prisoner of Zenda or The Man In The Iron Mask; As new as the Hollywood movie Dave (1994) starring Kevin Kline.

This unabridged audiobook has so much more: Interplanetary space travel, alien contact and political upheaval. But it also has a fully realized political system, political campaigns, theory of government, theory of acting, kidnapping, murder, dirty tricks and its a mystery! There really is no better science fiction writer than Robert A. Heinlein. There are other great books by other great writers but none is as great as the dean of science fiction RAH. The reason? Simply put, he tells damn fine stories and does so constantly. This novel is a great example of just that. With a wild premise and a somewhat divergent plot (from Heinlein’s various themes) it tells an implausible story plausibly with emotional impact. This book won a Hugo award for 1956 (Heinlein’s first) and deserved it. It’s a fun ride and highly enjoyable. Pop it in your cassette deck and enter a different world.

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