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L. Ron Hubbard
Multi-cast performance, unabridged
Galaxy Audio, 2 hours

L. Ron Hubbard
Lafayette Ron Hubbard was born March 13, 1911, in Tilden, Nebraska and died January 14, 1986 in San Luis Obispo, CA. In the 1930s and 40s, he produced a large number of westerns and science fiction stories and novels, some under the pen-name René Lafayette. Among these, some were well regarded, including the fantasy Slaves of Sleep (1939), the novel Typewriter in the Sky, the well-regarded militaristic post-apocalyptic novel Final Blackout (1940), and the horror novel Fear (1940). In 1950, he published Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health, and in 1954 he founded the Church of Scientology to promote his "applied religious philosophy." Between 1954 and the early 80s, Hubbard published no further science fiction or fantasy. His Battlefield Earth was published in 1982 and eventually spawned the movie of the same name. The ten part ultra-pulpish Mission Earth series was published largely posthumously, and as with Battlefield Earth received rather poor reviews. Further biographical information can be found on the official L. Ron Hubbard website and in Bare-Faced Messiah: The True Story of L. Ron Hubbard by Russell Miller -- I'll let you decide what to believe.

Publisher's Website
SF Site Review: A Matter of Matter
SF Site Review: On Blazing Wings
SF Site Review: The Crossroads
SF Site Review: Carnival of Death
SF Site Review: The Tramp
SF Site Review: If I Were You
SF Site Review: Dead Men Kill
SF Site Review: One Was Stubborn
SF Site Review: When Shadows Fall
SF Site Review: Danger in the Dark
SF Site Review: To the Stars
BOOK REVIEW: To the Stars: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

A review by Gil T. Wilson

Greed Galaxy Audio has taken 150 short stories written L. Ron Hubbard during the 30s through the 50s and turned them into a collection of audio pulp fiction. As you might imagine, many of these are science fiction, and each one has been re-imagined into two-hour audiobooks.

The production values are set pretty high -- original music helps set the mood of the story and sound effects are added where needed. These additions are subtle and help to tell the story without overpowering the dialogue. And speaking of dialogue, the characters are all voiced by actors that portray perfect over-the-top characters. This installment of the L. Ron Hubbard collection contains three stories that have a unique approach to science fiction story-telling.

"Greed": Originally published in Astounding Science Fiction, April 1950, "Greed" is a story that mixes a little bit of philosophy from Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged with the typical L. Ron Hubbard science fiction little twist in the end. The main premise is that space cannot be explored or conquered without greed. It is greed that guides the conquest of space in that something has to be procured to make planetary travel worthwhile. This story is about George Marquis Lorrilard, a sometimes lieutenant in the United Continents Space Navy and space exploiter, as he conquers an Asian-run planet.

"Final Enemy": Super Science Stories originally published this work in September, 1950. It tells of how travelers of space from the two separate powers on Earth, the Asians and the United States, seek to explore the outer reaches of space. Each finds stories of how a powerful entity has landed before and terrorized and nearly wiped out each new planet's population. Upon hearing there is a stronger enemy out there, the two powers team up to find this other race. The twist in this story is one easily equivalent to that of a Twilight Zone episode.

"The Automagic Horse": Originally published in Astounding Science Fiction, October 1949, this is a humorous story in which an engineer for a Hollywood movie production company is seeking to build a ship to explore space while creating special effects for the movies. His assignment is to build a realistic looking horse that will bust out of a barn and survive while having a burning barn fall on the horse. The ASPCA will not allow a real horse, so the engineer makes one. His secret is to raise money for his side project by getting the movie company to pay more than he needs on the horse. Upon completion of the horse, the engineer finds some alternate ways to raise money.

For two hours of great audio book entertainment you cannot go wrong with this or any other audio pulp adventure from Galaxy Audio.

Copyright © 2011 Gil T. Wilson

Gil T. has spent a quarter of a century working in radio and has lots of spare time on his hands and reading or listening to books takes up all that time. Check out his blog to find out what he's up to at any given moment.

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