SearchHomeContents PageSite Map
Vox: SF For Your Ears
by Scott Danielson

Other Vox: SF For Your Ears Columns

Audio Drama
Giant Steps: An Apocalyptic Comedy for the World Wide Web
Mark Time Award
Seeing Ear Theater
Wollcott and Sheridan
Audio Publishers
Atlanta Radio Theater Company
Books on Tape
Defiance Audio
Fantastic Audio
Full Cast Audio Books
The Reader's Chair
Recorded Books, LLC
Star Trek Novels/Audio
Star Wars Novels/Audio
Timberwolf Press
SF Talk Radio
Book Crazy Radio
Cosmic Landscapes
The Dragon Page
Hour 25
Reality Break - a science fiction talk show
Sci Fi Overdrive
SF On the Radio
The Teaching Company
Timeship Studio
Voyage's Multimedia Project

10 to the 16th to 1 10 to the 16th to 1 by James Patrick Kelly
I love a good time-travel story, and James Patrick Kelly has written a very nice one here. Set during the Cold War, Ray Beaumont, a 12 year-old boy, meets a visitor from the future. This visitor, who was sent from the future, presents young Ray with a difficult choice. I found the story very touching. I also enjoyed the many Golden Age (of science fiction) references in it -- that kid could have been me. It was ably performed by Brian Corrigan.

Hunters in the Forest Hunters in the Forest by Robert Silverberg
Also performed by Brian Corrigan is this Silverberg time-travel tale. Because life has gotten too comfortable, tickets are sold to travel back in time for folks to experience a bit of danger first-hand. Tom Mallory buys a ticket then finds himself considering an extended stay. I thoroughly enjoyed this -- another great one from Robert Silverberg.

A few others in the Random House Audible collection:
Exchange Rate by Hal Clement
Zeitgiest by Bruce Sterling
The Sky Green Blues by Tanith Lee
A Martian Romance by Kim Stanley Robinson
Skin Trade by George R.R. Martin

I can't mention the Beyond 2000 series enough, and is currently the only place one can find them. Beyond 2000 (or, 2000x) is a series of excellent science fiction radio dramas that were produced between April 1999 and August 2000 (with the exception of "By His Bootstraps", which was produced in 1982). National Public Radio started playing the shows in April 2000. The series is hosted by Harlan Ellison, produced and directed by Yuri Rasovsky, and the executive producer was Stefan Rudnicki. Hollywood Theater of the Ear was presented with the 2001 Bradbury Award by the SFWA for this series.

There are 33 shows in the collection on Audible, and here are my favorites so far:
"Repent, Harlequin," said the Ticktockman by Harlan Ellison
Here is one of Ellison's most famous stories, and one of my all-time favorite audios. Robin Williams is brilliant as the Harlequin.

By His Bootstraps by Robert A. Heinlein
Richard Dreyfuss plays a professor in this famous Heinlein time travel story that folds in on itself again and again and again. This one is not to be missed.

Even the Queen Even the Queen by Connie Willis
Connie Willis gives us this marvelous story of a young woman who has decided to accept a philosophy that shocks most of the females in her family. This one's a gem.

A Few Blips from Outer Space by William F. Nolan, Roger Zelazny, E.A. van Vogt and Others
This collection of short-shorts features Ira Burton and Charles Durning. I particularly enjoyed the reason given to support National Public Radio.

The Watchbird The Watchbird by Robert Sheckley
Here, a mechanical bird is invented which will prevent murders; when it detects brain waves it associates with murderous intent, down it swoops to stop the perpetrator. But how do you define "murder"? Sheckley's mastery comes through in this excellent drama.

Bloodchild by Octavia E. Butler
This affecting story is about human refugees on an alien planet who bear young for the native inhabitants. I was fascinated -- this is Butler at her best and most affecting.

Snow Glass Apples Also available from Audible are some audio dramas from's Seeing Ear Theater, notably "Snow Glass Apples" by Neil Gaiman, "Diary of a Mad Diety" by James Morrow and the City of Dreams series by J. Michael Straczynski.

To this, add a number of audiobook titles. Some of the best stuff includes:
Snow Crash by Neil Stephenson (unabridged)
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (and the other titles in the "trilogy", all unabridged and read by Douglas Adams)
Many of Simon and Schuster's Star Trek titles
Several unabridged Discworld novels by Terry Pratchett
Legends: Stories by the Masters of Fantasy, Volumes 1-4 edited by Robert Silverberg (my favorite is Volume 4, which includes Frank Muller's reading of George R.R. Martin's "The Hedge Knight")

I hope to see Audible grow by leaps and bounds, and I see nothing stopping them. Their growing selection is excellent; their software solid and easy to use. I like the convenience of the digital audio player very much, and will use it as my first option for future audio purchases.


Audible Logo I've listened to several of Audible's selections in four different ways. Through my PC speakers, from two different Audible digital audio devices, and from an audio CD made from a downloaded title.

First I tried an audio stream through my PC speakers. This worked great -- I didn't even have to download the file to listen. The main drawback here is that it is not portable.

Then I used a cartridge available from Audible for my Handspring Visor. It's called an Audible Advisor. It snaps into the cartridge slot on my Handspring, and then allows me to download audio content into it for playback whenever I want. It holds 16 Mbytes worth of audio content (I always use the highest audio quality possible and this translated into about 2 hours of content). I found the Audible Advisor very simple to use, and I liked the fact that it added functionality to a device I already owned.

Third is the Audible Otis digital audio player. This very cool little device holds 64Mb of audio (at the highest audio quality available from Audible, this is approx. 8 hours of content). It is 7.5cm x 5.6cm x 1.9cm -- very compact. I found this to be the smoothest experience from Audible -- I like how much content it holds and find the sound quality to be very good as well.

Last, and very new from Audible, is the ability to download content from their site and write them onto an audio CD for play in any CD player. I tried this and the entire process was very smooth and easy. Audible will allow you to write two copies this way before it locks that file for further writing.

Copyright © 2002 Scott Danielson

Scott discovered the world of SF audio years ago, when he spent hours a day in his car. His commute has since shortened considerably, but his love for audio remains. By trade, he's an electrical engineer. Aside from reading and writing science fiction, his hobbies include community theater, where he can often be found behind the soundboard or (much less often) on the stage.

SearchContents PageSite MapContact UsCopyright

If you find any errors, typos or other stuff worth mentioning, please send it to
Copyright © 1996-2014 SF Site All Rights Reserved Worldwide