The SFFaudio Podcast #045

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #045 – Jesse and Scott are joined by the ghost of Xmas future as they talk about audiobooks, video games, audio drama and lots more. Jesse even reveals an earth shattering bit of trivia about Vincent Price (you’ll never guess it) and what he thinks is clearly “the greatest joke ever.”

Talked about on today’s show:
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens, Drood by Dan Simmons, The Terror, James Powell, Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, The Black Whatever by James Powell, Richard Stark, NPR, ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas by Clement Clarke Moore (as done in the style of Earnest Hemingway), The Hemingway Hoax by Joe Haldeman |READ OUR REVIEW|, Joe Haldeman to be named a Grand Master of Science Fiction, The Best Cigarette by Billy Collins, iTunes U, The Hilarious House Of Frightenstein, Vincent Price, Paul K. Willis (Jesse’s uncle), Rumors And Boarders, Vancouver is the American Science Fiction TV mecca, Arctic exploration, the Northwest Passage, The Illustrated History Of British Columbia by Terry Reksten, Sir Francis Drake‘s secret mission, Queen Elizabeth I, Juan de Fuca, Captain James Cook, Captain George Vancouver, Patrick O’Brian meets Edgar Allan Poe and J.M.W. Turner, Simon Vance, recent arrivals, audio drama, The H.P. Lovecraft Radio Hour Vol. 1, LovecraftRadio.com, The H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society, Dagon, Blackstone Audio, Barrayar by Lois McMaster Bujold, Falling Free by Lois McMaster Bujold |READ OUR REVIEW|, The Reader’s Chair, Audible.com, Dean Koontz, Hideaway by Dean Koontz, our DEAN KOONTZ AUTHOR PAGE, Dragon Tears by Dean Koontz, Jay O. Sanders, The Day After Tomorrow, Rogue Berzerker by Fred Saberhagen, The Adventure Of The Metal Murderer, time travel, Sherlock Holmes, Wings Out Of Shadow, DH Audio, Manfred von Richthofen, Hermann Göring, Paul Michael Garcia, Berzerker Fury, Empire Of The East by Fred Saberhagen |READ OUR REVIEW|, Willie Wonka!, Penguin Audio, Fire by Kristin Cashore, Full Cast Audio, Graceling by Kristin Cashore, Macmillan Audio, Hidden Empire by Orson Scott Card, Shadow Complex, side-scrolling video games, Peter David, the attempt to boycott Orson Scott Card’s video games, casual gamers vs. hard core gamers, Fallout 3, Medal Of Honor, DRM, copyfight, They’re Made Of Meat by Terry Bisson (adapted by FredOSphere), Seeing Ear Theatre, J. Michael Straczynski’s City Of Dreams (available via ThePirateBay.org), Towing Jehovah by James Morrow, Luke Burrage‘s Science Fiction Book Review Podcast (reviewing Anathem by Neal Stephenson), William Dufris, Sci Fi Song’s The Ballad Of Wilson Cole, Mike Resnick’s Starship series, FREE Ringworld by Larry Niven, Grover Gardner IS Tom Parker, New Releases, Audible Frontiers, William Gibson, Burning Chrome, Mona Lisa Overdrive, Jonathan Davis, All Tomorrow’s Parties, The Telling by Ursula K. Le Guin, The Word For World Is Forest, Book Of The Road, The Unpleasant Profession Of Jonathan Hoag by Robert A. Heinlein , The Day Of The Triffids by John Wyndham, The Chrysalids, David Weber‘s Honor Harrington series, The Plague Of The Dead by Z.A Recht, a zombie plague that makes people: calm, reasonable, rational and peaceful?, Macmillian Audio, A Deepness In the Sky by Vernor Vinge, the Blake’s 7 Audio Adventures series is now on Audible.com!, space opera, social Science Fiction, Robin Hood, Babylon 5, Brave New World, 1984, Memoirs From A Bathtub by Stanislaw Lem, Terry Gilliam, Twelve Monkeys, Philip K. Dick, Franz Kafka, Tantor Media, The Unincorporated Man by Dani Kollin and Eytan Kollin, Stranger In A Strange Land by Robert A. Heinlein, deep exploration of ideas in fiction, Todd McLaren, Altered Carbon by Richard K. Morgan |READ OUR REVIEW|, the Prometheus Award, libertarianism, Collapse by Jared Diamond, Guns, Germs And Steel, Easter Island, Hawaii, Montana, Greenland, ecosystems, The Teaching Company, World War II: A Military and Social History by Thomas Childers, A Military History of WWII by Trevor Nevitt Dupuy Col. U.S. Army, Ret., Italian Frogmen in WWII, Benito Mussolini.

Vincent Price with Paul K. Willis on the set of The Hilarious House Of Frightenstein

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #019

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #019 – Julie Davis (of the Forgotten Classics, StarShipSofa and Happy Catholic blog) joins us for a potassium filled show.

Talked about on today’s show:
Forgotten Classics, The Hidden Adversary, Agatha Christie, Temptation, David Brin, Recorded Books, Sundiver, Different Seasons, Stephen King, Frank Muller, Daemon, Daniel Suarez, Microsoft Zune’s 30gb brick = DRM, Librivox’s The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde, Craftlit, Craftlit podcast, Another Beowulf & Grendel, Iceland, Greenland, The Fall, Encounters At The End Of The World, Antarctica, Chicago, Dreams With Sharp Teeth coming to DVD, Harlan Ellison, Voices From The Edge, City Of Darkness, Ben Bova, A Wizard Of Earthsea, Ursula K. LeGuin, The Martian Chronicles, Ray Bradbury, A good book badly read: IBM And The Holocaust, Edwin Black (have a listen to a sample) |MP3|, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, The Graveyard Book, Neil Gaiman, Tony Smith from StarShipSofa, the worst news of 2008/2009: Donald Westlake is dead. The Hunter, The Sour Lemon Score, Lawrence Block’s Bernie Rhodenbarr Burglar books, Richard Stark’s Parker novels, Spider Robinson, The Hook, The Ax, Humans, Samuel Holt, Grofield, Lemons Never Lie, Hard Case Crime, Somebody Owes Me Money, The Risk Profession, Tomorrow’s Crimes, Anarchaos, Theodore Bikel, Westlake’s “nephew novels”, Smoke, Ross Thomas, Dick Francis, an incomplete but wonderfully annotated bibliography of Westlake novels, My Own Worst Enemy, Money For Nothing, The Cutie, Lord Valentine’s Castle, Robert Silverberg,

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #011 – NEW RELEASES/RECENT ARRIVALS

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #011 – in which our desperate heroes attempt to display the manliness and fortitude, listing all the recent arrivals, and some recent listens.

Talked about on today’s show:
audiobooks, epic fantasy, science fiction, The Runelords, David Farland, Blackstone Audio, Brilliance Audio, Dragonheart, Todd McCaffery, Pern, Penguin Audio, Jim Butcher, Codex Alera, Furies of Calderon, Kate Reading, Random House Audio, The Widows Of Eastwick, John Updike, Peter Straub, Poe’s Children – an anthology, Stephen King, Star Wars – Millennium Falcon, James Luceno, Macmillan Audio, Robert Jordan, Brandon Sanderson, Michael Kramer, Richard Stark, Books On Tape, Frank Herbert, Heretics Of Dune, the Alan Smithee version of Dune (1984), Neal Stephenson, Anathem (28 CDs long!), The Book Of Lies, Brad Meltzer, Ender In Exile, Orson Scott Card, Team America World Police, Sherlock Holmes Theatre, Yuri Rasovsky, audio drama, 2000X, Repent Harlequin Said The Tick-Tock Man, Harlan Ellison, Mercedes Lackey, Foundation, Wizard’s First Rule, Terry Goodkind, Legend Of The Seeker, SFSignal.com, iTunes, Infinivox, Guest Law, John C. Wright, Audio Realms, Shadow Kingdoms, Robert E. Howard, Fallout 3, and Team America: World Police‘s song we’re gonna need a montage!

Posted by Jesse Willis

Aural Noir Review of Dirty Money by Richard Stark

Aural Noir - Review

Back in 2005 SFFaudio spun-off a sister site called AuralNoir.com. But it didn’t take. Those who visited loved it, but too few visited. So, what we’re doing now is posting non-Science Fiction, Fantasy or Horror, reviews, news, etc, under special headers like the one above. So welcome to our first such. Stick around, we’ll see how the string plays itself out.


Crime Fiction - Dirty Money by Richard StarkDirty Money
By Richard Stark; Read by Stephen Thorne
Audible Download – 5 Hours 12 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: BBC Audiobooks America
Provider: Review copy provided by Audible.com
Published: 2008
Themes: / Crime / Heist / Armored Car / Double-cross / Massachusetts /

Master criminal Parker takes another turn for the worse as he tries to recover loot from a heist gone terribly wrong. Parker and two cohorts stole the assets of a bank in transit, but the police heat was so great they could only escape if they left the money behind. Now Parker and his associates plot to reclaim the loot, which they hid in the choir loft of an unused country church. As they implement the plan, people on both sides of the law use the forces at their command to stop Parker and grab the goods for themselves. Though Parker’s new getaway van is an old Ford Econoline with “Holy Redeemer Choir” on its doors, his gang is anything but holy, and Parker will do whatever it takes to redeem his prize, no matter who gets hurt in the process.

Richard Stark is the alternate personality of crime writer Donald E. Westlake. I’m a giant fan of both guys, Westlake seems to write instinctually, sometimes it all comes together sometimes it doesn’t. Dirty Money doesn’t blow my socks off. But, it is the latest installment in Stark’s long running (more than 20) series of novels about the hardened heister known only as “Parker.” What seems to have gone wrong is that Dirty Money is only a small part of the overall-arc of the last three books (the previous being Nobody Runs Forever and Ask The Parrot) – in previous decades all the action would have been crammed into one novel. There is value here, for long time Parker readers, but not enough, and it definitely isn’t the place to start reading the series.

The best place to start with Stark is his first book. In 1962 the world of paperback books was introduced to a novel about a professional thief who could do something all the previous fictional thieves could never seem to do – that is, actually get away with crime. Getting back to Dirty Money though, the plot starts as a continuation of the scene following mere moments after the closing sentence of the previous novel, Ask The Parrot. It seems Parker is still chasing the loot from the armored car heist he pulled off with a few other thugs two novels back (Nobody Runs Forever). In the back-story the crew had had to dump the money in an abandoned church so as to flee the area without carrying incriminating evidence. Now, having escaped the encircling noose, Parker’s putting his neck right back into it, but using his semi-straight common-law wife, Clarie, as his cover. As always, Parker’s not the only man after the swag though – his former partners are on the prowl, as are the cops, both local and federal. Everyone is intent on recovering the dirty money. findin. Like in every Parker tale, nothing goes quite according to plan. The twists and turns in Dirty Money, sadly, are unusually subdued. There are a lot of characters poking their noses into Parker’s business, but none of them seem quite up to the challenge of really making Parker’s life the miserable one we all like to see.

Stephen Thorne, the narrator, doesn’t project the voice of Parker all that well either. Parker seems too sedate, too settled – he’s seems almost comfortable with being a tourist in a Massachusetts autumn. Parker as a “leaf peeper” could almost be comedic, but it doesn’t quite come off that way – it comes off weak. And from what we know of him he aint weak. I still recall the kinetic menace of my favorite Parker narrator – Michael Kramer’s readings of the first dozen or so audiobooks done for Books On Tape projected danger in the most flip of lines – for me he’ll probably always be the voice of Parker. Still, knowing that Stark and Westlake novels are hit and miss affairs, I’ll be back, looking for more adventures should they come.

A note about this edition. Though originally released by BBC Audiobooks America, our review copy of Dirty Money came via Audible.com. Normally we don’t mention prices on SFFaudio, but I’m going to break that code here just for a moment. $10.48 is how much Dirty Money costs from Audible.com. The price for the CD edition on the BBC Audiobooks America website is $64.95. Normally, that wouldn’t be a big issue, I could just borrow a copy from the local library. Unfortunately, there isn’t one CD version of Dirty Money in all of Canada! Audible is definitely the deal here.

Posted by Jesse Willis