Badge Of Infamy by Lester Del Rey

SFFaudio Online Audio

Here’s a terrific audiobook. It’s one I hadn’t thought of for a long while, but now, looking at its plot and themes, it seems fresher than ever before. It’s about healthcare, political lobbies by powerful interest groups, ethics in a time of corruption, and the red planet, Mars.

The complete audiobook is available from LibriVox, but what’s new here is a |PDF| made from a scan of it’s original publication in Satellite Science Fiction, June 1957! And it’s beautiful!

Satellite Science Fiction, June 1957 - cover illustration by Alex Schomburg

LIBRIVOX - Badge Of Infamy by Lester del ReyBadge Of Infamy
By Lester del Rey; Read by Steven H. Wilson
1 |M4B|, 15 Zipped MP3 Files, or Podcast – Approx. 3 Hours 19 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Published: January 17, 2007
Daniel Feldman was a doctor once. He made the mistake of saving a friend’s life in violation of Medical Lobby rules. Now, he’s a pariah, shunned by all, forbidden to touch another patient. But things are more loose on Mars. There, Doc Feldman is welcomed by the colonists, even as he’s hunted by the authorities. But, when he discovers a Martian plague may soon wipe out humanity on two planets, Feldman finds himself a pivotal figure. War erupts. Earth is poised to wipe out the Mars colony utterly. A cure to the plague is the price of peace, and only Feldman can find it.

Podcast feed:

iTunes 1-Click |SUBSCRIBE|

Illustrations from Satellite Science Fiction, June 1957 (artwork uncredited):
Illustration from Badge Of Infamy (artwork uncredited)
Illustration from Badge Of Infamy (artwork uncredited)
Illustration from Badge Of Infamy (artwork uncredited)
Posted by Jesse Willis

Five Free Favourites #11

SFFaudio Online Audio

My name is Gregg Margarite and I make free audio books for As a member of LibriVox I have decided to pick my Five Free Favorites from the LibriVox Catalog, which as of this writing contains about 2,400 free audio books, including over 300 short SF recordings and dozens of novels and novellas.

To me everything is connected to everything else. That may make it easier to understand a quantum field, but it’s a hindrance to defining classifications. So when it comes time to identify Science Fiction and Fantasy I tend to have a wide view. That having been said here are…

Five Free Favourites

LibriVox Science Fiction - Flatland: A Romance Of Many Dimensions by Edwin A. AbbottFlatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions
By Edwin A. Abbott; Read by Ruth Golding
9 Zipped MP3 Files or Podcast – [UNABRIDGED]
Published: October 12th 2008
This story from 1884 is a wonderful satire and a great introduction to dimensional math. A sphere convinces a square of the existence of up. But will the hierarchy of the two dimensional society accept it? The 2D world is an analog of Victorian society but there are plenty of timeless parallels that continue to resonate today. Read by Ruth Golding who’s intimate, warm delivery is as comforting as a nice cup of tea… with a dash of brandy. Ruth has made over 500 recordings for LibriVox.

Podcast feed:

Badge Of Infamy by Lester del ReyBadge Of Infamy
By Lester del Rey; Read by Steven H. Wilson
15 Zipped MP3 files or Podcast – Approx. 3 Hours 19 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Published: January 17, 2007
Political lobbyists band together and take over the world swelling the size of government (a ludicrous idea eh?). Our physician protagonist violates his duties by providing emergency services outside the system and escapes to Mars where he can practice medicine without a license. There he discovers something that threatens not only the lobbyists but all of humanity. Read by Steven H. Wilson with a crisp natural style.

Podcast feed:

LibriVox - Penguin Island by Anatole FrancePenguin Island
By Anatole France; Read by Michael Sirois
62 Zipped MP3 Files or Podcast – Approx. 9 Hours 5 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Published: May 30, 2007
This satirical fantasy from 1908 involves an aged priest with poor eyesight who mistakes a flock of penguins for a congregation. His baptism gives them souls which naturally compel them to form a civilization. Will they handle their problems as we have? Read by Michael Sirois with a robust melodic tone that carries you along with the story.

Podcast feed:

LibriVox - The Green Odyssey by Philip Jose FarmerThe Green Odyssey
By Philip Jose Farmer; Read by Mark Nelson
10 zipped MP3 Files or Podcast – Approx. 6 Hours 7 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Published: December 17, 2006
A slave among barbarians longs to return to Earth. Presently he learns of two Earth astronauts held captive in a far off kingdom and sets off to rescue them so they can rescue him. But first he must reach them and therein hangs a tale. Read quite professionally by Mark Nelson who is responsible for a many of the best Science Fiction novels in the LibriVox catalog.

Podcast feed:

LibiVox - Candide by VoltaireCandide (LibriVox version #2)
By Voltaire; Read by Ted Delorme
31 Zipped MP3 Files or Podcast – Approx. 4 Hours 5 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Published: January 31, 2007
While Voltaire’s “Micromegas” can rightly be referred to as Science Fiction, I believe this story qualifies as fantasy since it deals with the best of all possible worlds. Join Candide and his girlfriend Cunegonde as they learn how to interpret their adventures through the eyes of their sanguine teacher Dr. Pangloss. Read by Ted Delorme a LibriVox veteran who narrates with a smooth, friendly voice that makes modern listeners at ease with a text written 250 years ago.

Podcast feed:

Posted by Gregg Margarite

New Year? New Releases!

Audiobook New Releases

Audio Renaissance starts a bold new series, and at 30 hours long so will you be…

Audio Renaissance - Off Armageddon Reef by David WeberOff Armageddon Reef
By David Weber; Read by Oliver Wyman
25 CDs – 30 hours [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Audio Renaissance
Published: January 2007
ISBN: 1427200653
Humanity pushed its way to the stars—and encountered the Gbaba, a ruthless alien race that nearly wiped us out. Earth and her colonies are now smoldering ruins, and the few survivors have fled to distant, Earth-like Safehold, to try to rebuild. But the Gbaba can detect the emissions of an industrial civilization, so the human rulers of Safehold have taken extraordinary measures: with mind control and hidden high technology, they’ve built a religion in which every Safeholdian believes, a religion designed to keep Safehold society medieval forever.

What’s next for Michael Crichton? Yes…

Harper Audio - Next by Michael CrichtonNext
By Michael Crichton; Read by Dylan Baker
Publisher: Harper Audio
Published: November 2006
ISBN: 006087306X
Is a loved one missing some body parts? Are blondes becoming extinct? Is everyone at your dinner table of the same species? Humans and chimpanzees differ in only 400 genes; is that why an adult human being resembles a chimp fetus? And should that worry us? There’s a new genetic cure for drug addiction—is it worse than the disease?The audiobook also includes an interview with Crichton!

Written by a 15 year old, who sold it to the movies! Now here’s the true test of his success, the audiobook…

Random House Audio - Eragon by Christopher PaoliniEragon
By Christopher Paolini; Read by Gerard Doyle
Publisher: Random House Audio
Published: October 2006
ISBN: 0739330942
Fifteen-year-old Eragon believes that he is merely a poor farm boy—until his destiny as a Dragon Rider is revealed. Gifted with only an ancient sword, a loyal dragon, and sage advice from an old storyteller, Eragon is soon swept into a dangerous tapestry of magic, glory, and power. Now his choices could save—or destroy—the Empire.

Now this sounds very, very interesting…

Tantor Media - The Sky People by S.M. StirlingThe Sky People
By S.M. Stirling; Read by Todd McLaren
12 CDs or 2 MP3-CDs – 15 hours[UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Tantor Media
Published: January 2007
ISBN: 1400103452 (CDs), 1400153458 (MP3-CDs)
The first of a series of alternate-history tales based on a brashly entertaining premise: that in the 1960s, Russian and American space probes to Mars and Venus revealed not the arid worlds of our reality, but the colorful Mars and Venus of old pulp Science Fiction adventure. In The Sky People, it’s 1988, the Cold War is still raging, and Marc Vitrac has been assigned to Jamestown, the US Commonwealth base on Venus, near the great Venusian city of Kartahown. But all is not well. There is also a Russian base on Venus. Outside the bases is a wilderness swarming with sabertooths and dinosaurs—and lost races of people who seem to be human. An even greater mystery than lost races awaits Marc—as well as a danger that may well threaten the entire human race.

It is always a good day when you see a new Infinivox title…

Audiobook - The Chief Designer by Andy DuncanThe Chief Designer
By Andy Duncan; Read by Jared Doreck
2 CDs – 132 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Infinivox
Published: 2006
ISBN: 1884612547
An Alternate history novella that won the Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award. This story, an alternate history masterpiece, as told from the point of view of Korolev, the “Chief” who managed the most crucial years of the secret Soviet space program, and his assistant and eventual successor, Aksyonov. The story spans from World War II, when Korolev was released from a prison camp to design rockets, to 1997 and the Mir space station.

Long promised and now released…

Dandelion Wine by Ray BradburyDandelion Wine
By Ray Bradbury; FULL CAST
MP3-CD, Cassettes or CDs -[RADIO DRAMA]
Publisher: Colonial Radio Theatre / Blackstone Audio
Published: January 2007
ISBN: 9780786173501 (MP3-CD), 978-0786147144 (Cassettes), 9780786165827 (CDs)
Twelve-year-old Douglas Spaulding knows Green Town, Illinois, is as vast and deep as the whole world that lies beyond. It is a pair of new tennis shoes, the first harvest of dandelions for Grandfather’s renowned intoxicant, the distant clang of the trolley bell on a hazy afternoon.

Blackstone continues their release of Heinlein classics! this time with narration by Spider Robinson…

Blackstone Audio - Rocket Ship Galileo Rocket Ship Galileo
By Robert A. Heinlein; Read by Spider Robinson
Cassettes, CDs or MP3-CD – [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: Blackstone Audio
Published: January 2007

Ross Jenkins, Art Mueller, and Morris Abrams are not your average high-schools students. While other kids are cruising around in their cars or playing ball, this trio, known as the Galileo Club, is experimenting with rocket fuels, preparing for their future education at technical colleges. Art’s uncle, the nuclear physicist Dr. Donald Cargraves, offers them the opportunity of a lifetime: to construct and crew a rocket that will take them to the moon. Cargraves believes their combined ingenuity and enthusiasm can actually make this dream come true. But there are those who don’t share their dream and who will stop at nothing to keep their rocket grounded.

Plug plug! I’m reliably informed this novel will be complete very shortly, download the first 2/3rds immediately and for free thanks to…

Badge Of Infamy
By Lester del Rey; Read by Steven H. Wilson
Published: December 2006 – January 2007
Status: In Progress
Daniel Feldman was a doctor once. He made the mistake of saving a friend’s life in violation of Medical Lobby rules. Now, he’s a pariah, shunned by all, forbidden to touch another patient. But things are more loose on Mars. There, Doc Feldman is welcomed by the colonists, even as he’s hunted by the authorities. But, when he discovers a Martian plague may soon wipe out humanity on two planets, the authorities begin hunting him for a different reason altogether.

Already reviewed, but a new release nonetheless – is it the first audiobook created on a dare (?)…

Librivox Audiobook - The Green Odyssey by Philip Jose FarmerThe Green Odyssey
By Philip Jose Farmer; Read by Mark Nelson
10 MP3s or 10 OGG Vorbis files – 6 Hours 6 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Published: December 2006
Alan Green is a space traveler stranded on a barbaric planet. He’s been taken as a slave and made a consort to an insipid and smelly queen. His slave-wife, though beautiful and smart, nags him constantly. He’s given up hope of ever returning to Earth when he hears of two astronauts who have been captured in a kingdom on the other side of the planet, and sets out on an action-packed journey on a ship sailing across vast grasslands on rolling pin-like wheels in a desperate scheme to save them and return home.

posted by Jesse Willis

SFFaudio Challenge meets a challenger who is releasing a Lester del Rey audiobook

SFFaudio News

Meta SFFaudio - SFFaudio Contest - Make audiobook win an audiobookI’ve got big Big BIG news! It appears we may very soon have a winner in the SFFaudio ‘make an audiobook, win an audiobook’ challenge!

I was contacted late last night by Steven H. Wilson, author and narrator of the recently reviewed Taken Liberty – A Tale From The Artiber Chronicles. Steven said:

“I’ve recorded all of [Lester] del Rey’s BADGE OF INFAMY, and the first five chapters have been uploaded to”

Badge Of Infamy by Lester Del Rey |Gutenberg Project| was one of the novels on the challenge!

If you don’t recall, back in mid November I challenged anyone to turn any one of a number of previously unreleased public domain novels into an unabridged single voiced audiobook. As an incentive, I offered a BRAND NEW unabridged audiobook to the first person to complete and release one.

If as I suspect, Steven is the first complete the challenge and meet the requirements of it, he’ll be the winner of his choice of one of three BRAND NEW unabridged audiobooks from Blackstone Audiobooks (For those curious, these audiobooks were purchased by me – and were not given away as a promotion by Blackstone). Basically now that he’s finished recording it, all Steven needs to do is get Badge Of Infamy out there, either on Podiobooks, as he said, as a commercial release or wherever he’d like – just so long as I can verify its completeness he’ll win his choice of one of these:

Galactic Pot Healer by Philip K. Dick

Stranger In A Strange Land by Robert A. Heinlein

Animal Farm by George Orwell

But, if you areCURRENTLY, or were PLANNING, on making your own novel based on the challenge you can still let me know. I’d like to know what you’re doing! And, we might even be able to scrounge up a BRAND NEW commerical audiobook for you too! SFFaudio wants you to make Speculative Fiction audiobooks, and we aren’t above out-and-out bribery to make it happen.

In the meantime, look forward to seeing this logo or one similar up on very soon:

Review of Taken Liberty by Steven H. Wilson

SFFaudio Review

Taken LibertyTaken Liberty – A Tale From The Artiber Chronicles
By Steven H. Wilson; Read by Steven H. Wilson
Podcast Novel – Approx. 8 Hours [ABRIDGED]
Published: September 2006
Themes: / Science Fiction / Drama / Action / Slavery /

“I don’t believe you’ve convinced me of her crime.”
“She posed as a human!”
Atal raised an eyebrow. “Is that a crime?”

So begins the intriguing, sad, yet hopeful and inspiring story of a girl who only wanted her freedom. This is the story of Aer’La, a Varthan Feral raised strictly to be a sexual slave. She escapes, and, dying her blue skin and posing as a human, becomes a high-ranking officer on board one of the most esteemed ships in the Confederate Navy- the Arbiter. Only after a routine medical check-up is the truth of what she is discovered. It is ultimately reported to authorities, and then to the media. Aer’La then has no choice but to tell her story to her Captain, Jan Atal. It then becomes a clash of doing what is right, vs. doing what the law states. Aer’La also learns who her allies and her enemies are, as well as a few life lessons about trust and friendship.

Taken Liberty is a tale of truth, friendship, comradery, love, loss, and above all the right to be free. It covers so many genres, you tend to forget that you’re listening to Science Fiction. This is a very key thing for me to say here, because I am not the biggest Science Fiction fan. I know, I know, yet here I am writing reviews for SFFaudio. Let’s just say I’m… picky.

Steven Wilson also does an excellent job with the reading. He gives each character a unique voice, and thanks to his voice acting background, it pays off. I thoroughly enjoyed listening to Wilson. The well-driven plot causes you to feel yourself being sucked into the tension of the situation, and really questioning how this poor girl will remain free, instead of being returned to a life of slavery.

If you are a fan of Prometheus Radio Theatre and their Arbiter Chronicles, you will enjoy this book because it goes more in-depth into the characters you know all ready. If you have never heard of the Arbiter Chronicles before, you will still enjoy this book. The story remains separate enough that you are still able to connect and follow the characters and the story without feeling lost. As a matter of fact, my bet will be if you listen to this podiobook, you will want to move on to hear more about the Arbiter and its crew- which can be found via podcast at

If a “semi” Science Fiction fan is impressed and enjoyed this podiobook, imagine what a huge science-fiction fan will think!

Review of The Arbiter Chronicles: Series 1

Audio Theater - The Arbiter ChroniclesThe Arbiter Chronicles: Series 1: Episode 1: Mutiny Springs Eternal
Written and Directed by Steven H. Wilson; Performed by a full cast
1 CD – 50 Minutes [Audio Drama]
Publisher: Prometheus Radio Theatre
Published: 2003
Themes: / Science Fiction / Space Opera /

Centuries from now, humankind has colonized hundreds of worlds. Terra, humanity’s home, is a slum in the war zone, its people shunned by the genetically engineered elite whose ancestors were driven from its surface to settle the stars. Against the invasion of the evil Qraitian Empire. , the colonies aligned themselves in a loose, squabbling confederacy of worlds. The strongest weapon in their arsenal is a space navy which has held back the Qraitian threat for decades. Jan Atal, celebrated veteran of the last Qraitian War, found himself a teacher in a time of peace. Now he has assembled his most promising students aboard the patrol ship Arbiter. There he makes them ready, for in his heart he knows that this peace can not last.
— Introduction to The Arbiter Chronicles by Steven H. Wilson

This is the first installment of a space opera audio drama series called The Arbiter Chronicles. As of this writing, the eight episodes of Series 1 have been produced, as have the first five episodes of Series 2. All them are available at Prometheus Radio Theatre.

In the booklet that came with the CD, Steven H. Wilson, the writer/director of the program, says that The Arbiter Chronicles is a space opera that had been kicking around in his head for quite a while, and then an opportunity at a convention in Baltimore allowed him some time to put together a live performance of this drama on the main stage. The crowd liked it, so he started to produce them for sale on CD.

The drama itself is definitely entertaining and is in the tradition of Star Trek. The Arbiter is a military vessel modeled after the modern day Navy. The crew is mostly human, but includes some alien crew members like Midshipman Cernaq, who is from the planet of Phaeton. The story begins when the crew of the Arbiter discovers an old starship. The ship still works, and its crew is still on the planet below.

My only complaint is that there are too many info dump moments – moments when one character explains something to another character. The content of these conversations were very intriguing, and some of them could have made good stories in and of themselves.

The production quality is very good, with music and sound effects throughout. It’s interesting, entertaining audio theater.

Captain Jan Atal – David Keefer
Midshipman Terry Metcalfe – Steven H. Wilson
Midshipman Kevin Carson – Scott D. Farquhar
Midshipman Cernaq – Dan “Renfield” Corcoran
Midshipman Kayan’na Atal – Beatrice Kondo
Bos’n Aer’la – June Swords
Dr. Celia Faulkner – Cindy Shockey
L’lanck / Admiral Fournier / Announcer – Paul Balzc
Trace Stockard – Renee Wilson
Dr. Andrews – Andrew Bergstrom
Dawson – John Weber
Guards – Cindy Woods, John Weber

Posted by Scott D. Danielson