|Average Fan Rating:||
Rating from TwistedSciFi
Thanks to the folks at the StarShipSofa Podcast, I’ve spent way too many hours in my car the last few weeks. You see, ever since the Hugo Award nominees were announced a few weeks back for “Best Fancast,” I’ve been addicted to listening to Science Fiction podcasts while driving.
StarShipSofa Podcasts are the absolute best of any that I’ve heard. In fact, they are so enjoyable that I’ve literally found myself volunteering to help out with deliveries at work and looking for excuses to run errands for my family. All of this is simply so I can spend more time in my car listening to their podcasts.
The StarShipSofa Podcast gives Science Fiction fans a little bit of everything. Each episode includes a complete, short Science Fiction story. The stable of very talented narrators makes these stories even more enjoyable.
The rest of each podcast includes a rotation of some of their standard features like ‘Cheapskates,’ “First Chapter,” and ‘Film Talk’ among others. So that you can get a flavor for how a typical episode works, I decided to review a specific episode; today I’m reviewing Episode #234 of the StarShipSofa podcast.
Tony C. Smith is the glue that holds each episode together. He introduces the show and gracefully fills the transitions. Tony’s enthusiasm shines through in each episode. How he lines up such great contributors and identifies such excellent content, I’ll never know.
Episode # 234, begins with ‘FilmTalk’ presented by Dennis M Lane from South Africa. He discusses the 1953 classic, ‘It Came From Outerspace (in 3D)’. Lane shares some quite interesting history about both the film and the story itself. He also puts the film in context of other classic Science Fiction stories as well as more modern films. Finally, he identifies why ‘It Came From Outerspace’ was a pioneering film for a variety of different reasons.
In the next section of the podcast, I think it’s just a brilliant idea to preview a Hugo Award nominee. The Homecoming by Mike Resnick was nominated in the “Best Short Story” category. The story originally appeared in the April/May 2011 issue of Asimov’s Science Fiction magazine.
Before the narration, Tony C. Smith shares some compelling background information about author Mike Resnick. Resnick is simply one of the most decorated Science Fiction authors alive today. This was a fabulous story, and I can see why it merits a Hugo nomination.
The podcast then transitions to ‘Cheapskates’ narrated by Adam Pracht. Thanks to ‘Cheapskates’, I discovered Podiobooks which is a terrific site for downloading free audio books. Wow, what a find!
It gets even better, because Adam identifies some terrific free audio books from Science Fiction author Nathan Lowell. At his recommendation, I’ve already downloaded ‘Quarter Share (Golden Age of the Solar Clipper, #1)’. So far, I’m really enjoying this story, and can already tell that I’m going to want to listen to or read the entire series.
How does Podiobooks work? The Podiobooks site is set up so that you can instantly play the free recorded content directly on your computer. If you want to go mobile, you can download a version for your MP3 player.
You must register on their site before you can download anything, but registration is free and easy. Depending on the type of MP3 device that you have, there are specific instructions for how to download your selection and begin listening.
Each story on Podiobooks is broken down into individually recorded sections; this may seem inconvenient, but it’s actually a very nice feature for people like me who have an older MP3 player with limited storage space. I downloaded the entire 1st book in 17 separate sections on my PC, but only added the first few to my MP3 player.
For me personally, I use an iPod and find that the free downloads from Podiobooks work flawlessly.
More free Science Fiction podcasts: Adam Pracht’s section of StarShipSofa gets even better however, because he also shares some other free Science Fiction podcasts that were completely new to me. They are Escape Pod, LightSpeed Podcast and ClarkesWorld Magazine. I’ve not yet had the opportunity to listen to any of these, but I’m really looking forward to it.
As a fellow cheapskate, the ‘Cheapskates’ portion of the StarShipSofa podcast may well be my favorite.
Episode #234 ends with author, Nathan Lowell, reading the first ten minutes or so of his audiobook, ‘Quarter Share.’ This story is so good, I was forced to go to Podiobooks and download the entire book.
The StarShipSofa team has really upped the ante following their recent Hugo Award nomination for best “Fancasts.” Although I’m rating a specific episode of the StarShipSofa podcast, Episode No 234, my 5-star rating could really be applied to any of the half dozen or so StarShipSofa podcasts that I’ve already heard. If you’re a fan of Science Fiction, these are just outstanding podcasts.
By the way, if you’re as interested in Science Fiction podcasts as I am, you’ll want to take a peek at my recent post, Discovering Science Fiction Podcasts which profiles the other Hugo Nominated “Fancasts,” and if you’re interested in keeping up with all of this year’s Hugo nominees, don’t miss Finding The 2012 Hugo Award Nominees on Twitter.
Thanks to my friends at StarShipSofa, my iPod is crammed full of the best Science Fiction audio content. I’d write more now, but I need to go run an errand in my car…
Have you listened to the StarShipSofa podcast? Thank you for casting your own rating of this podcast by clicking on the yellow stars above, and thank you for sharing your honest thoughts in the comments section below.