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General Discussion => Books 'n Readin' => Topic started by: Dustin on June 13, 2010, 05:10:23 PM

Title: Audiobooks
Post by: Dustin on June 13, 2010, 05:10:23 PM
I was just listening to what I consider a really good audio book, Frank Muller's reading of 1984. I love em for multitasking. I'm listening to one now, even though sometimes I'll type out a sentence from the book in the middle of something else. Do you have a favorite or anything you'd like to share?
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Tripe on June 13, 2010, 05:15:12 PM
Not overly fond of audiobooks per se but I like audio dramas and dramatizations and the like.

There's a thread for them here (http://forum.rifftrax.com/index.php/topic,13590.0.html)  :)
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Plastic Self-Cleaning Duck on June 13, 2010, 05:20:48 PM
"Last Words" by George Carlin and read by his older brother, Patrick....who doesn't quite have George's timing when he's doing snippets of routines contained in the book.  But a very enjoyable listen.  Got a chuckle out of an argument that Carlin talks about having with Sen. Robert (The Starfighters) Dornan on a TV talk show....
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Chaos on June 26, 2010, 06:59:12 PM
I was never a fan of audiobooks for the longest time, but a few months ago I started listening to them because I've been on a particularly monotonous assignment at work, with lots of tedious downloading and data processing that requires lots of finger work but very little brain engagement - listening to a book is a great way to kill the boredom.

Audible's versions of "Daemon" and "Freedom" by Daniel Suarez are just awesome. I think I actually enjoyed the audio reading even better than when I originally read the books (which is saying a lot for me - I like nothing better than curling up on the couch with a book).

Also, Stephen Fry reading Harry Potter is absolutely not to be missed. By far the best version out there.
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Tripe on June 26, 2010, 09:19:36 PM
Also, Stephen Fry reading Harry Potter is absolutely not to be missed. By far the best version out there.
One Christmas, Radio Four broadcast the whole of his reading of the first book which was great.
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: jindar on June 27, 2010, 08:06:12 AM
Those old discworld audiobooks read by Nigel what's-his-name are some of my favourites.
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Tripe on June 27, 2010, 03:04:46 PM
Planer

This fella

(http://img1.fantasticfiction.co.uk/images/x2/x12549.jpg)
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Chaos on June 27, 2010, 07:29:19 PM
Yeah, the ones read by that other dude who isn't Nigel Planer just aren't as good. I intend to listen to the whole series at some point, but so far I've only made it through Sourcery, plus Unseen Academicals.

I just got ahold of the Dexter books, so it looks like as soon as I finish the last Ender's Saga book, I'll be pushing back Temeraire yet again. ;)
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Plastic Self-Cleaning Duck on June 28, 2010, 12:59:58 AM
I agree that the reader can make a big difference.

I'm a huge fan of the Douglas Preston/Lincoln Child "Agent Pendergast" books.  With the last two I got the audio books rather than the print because I knew I wasn't going to have the time to sit with my eyes trained on pages for a long while.  Those books were read by Rene Auberjonois and he did a wonderful job.

Decided to go back to an older Pendergast book I'd read and listen to it this time - "The Cabinet of Curiosities" - and found that it was read by a woman.  It's not that she's bad at it. It just doesn't have the same "flavor".

And when you can get the author of the book on the audio - like Kathy Griffith on "Official Book Club Selection" and Craig Ferguson on "American On Purpose" - it's even better.  Right now I'm waiting on a copy of "This Time Together" being read by the author - Carol Burnett.  Really looking forward to that!  ;D

Also, Stephen Fry reading Harry Potter is absolutely not to be missed. By far the best version out there.

I'm debating this.  Love Fry but I tried reading the first Harry Potter book and gave up out of non-interest.  Have been wondering if this might make a difference.(and btw, he's also done his own books for audio, some Winnie the Pooh stories and an unabridged version of "Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy").
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Chaos on June 28, 2010, 06:32:08 PM
I'm sure it's fine for some, but a lot of authors don't have any talent whatsoever as performers. It just depends on where their abilities lie - for some, it's purely their gift for putting words to page... in person or just generally speaking, they can be complete non-entities.

I do have a bunch of Fry's stuff on my wishlist, but since money is always painfully tight I can't justify buying an audiobook of Winnie the Pooh right now, much as I might like to indulge the child in me. ;)
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Plastic Self-Cleaning Duck on June 28, 2010, 09:11:26 PM
I can't justify buying an audiobook of Winnie the Pooh right now, much as I might like to indulge the child in me. ;)

That's something I'd bet the library might have.

And I agree that authors who aren't performers already reading their books would be dicey.  Although Dickens and Twain used to read from their books live.....
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Chaos on June 29, 2010, 02:36:45 AM
They only did that to get laid. ;)
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Tripe on June 29, 2010, 05:11:52 AM
Knowing the sexual proclivities of the both of them, that's not all that unlikely...
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Chaos on June 29, 2010, 03:32:29 PM
It's not only a quote from Finding Forrester, it's also true!

Every performer does what they do in the hopes (or assurance) of getting laid. :)
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Plastic Self-Cleaning Duck on June 29, 2010, 04:44:11 PM
Don't know about the getting laid part but it was definately for the money.
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Dustin on June 29, 2010, 05:11:48 PM
I've recently learned that
1. Stephen King often seems to want to perform the readings for his books.
2. He has a somewhat annoying voice that lessens the pleasure of this greatly.
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Tripe on June 29, 2010, 05:38:27 PM
It's not only a quote from Finding Forrester
Never seen it. Is that the one with Michael Douglas or is that Wonder Boys?
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Plastic Self-Cleaning Duck on June 30, 2010, 12:52:56 AM
I've recently learned that
1. Stephen King often seems to want to perform the readings for his books.
2. He has a somewhat annoying voice that lessens the pleasure of this greatly.

Could be worse.  Could be a recording of that all-writer band he's in (or was in) with Dave Barry....
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Johnny Unusual on June 30, 2010, 12:09:21 PM
It's not only a quote from Finding Forrester
Never seen it. Is that the one with Michael Douglas or is that Wonder Boys?

That's Wonderboys.  Finding Forrester had Sean Connery saying "You're the man now, dog!"

I like Finding Forrestor but it really is a silly movie.  Come to think of it, I bet you could do a good riff for it.
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Chaos on June 30, 2010, 03:06:31 PM
Yes, that movie would make a very nice riff, I think.
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: jindar on July 08, 2010, 07:08:27 AM
How come? Is it because of "you're the man now, dog!"
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Johnny Unusual on July 08, 2010, 08:05:49 AM
That's actually a very small part.  Overall, it's just a cliche-filled romp and dramatically it's pretty darn lightweight.  Plus, Rifftrax are generally genre films (although what film isn't), so it would be fun to see them do just a straightforward goofy drama.
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Kete on July 08, 2010, 09:40:19 AM
Frank Muller did a great job on the Dark Tower series.  I think Stephen King read Hearts in Atlantis.  I don't remember his performance that well, other than it didn't bother me too much.  One of my favorite performances is Eli Wallach reading Insomnia.  Insomnia's not the greatest book, but I just love Eli.

I'm not a big fan of audiobooks as a replacement for actual reading, but I love to do it when reading's not possible.  I only do it with books that I've previously read, or books that I would never find time to read otherwise (and yes, a lot of it is Stephen King).
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: borg48 on August 14, 2010, 05:24:10 AM
I enjoyed both Tim Curry and Daniel Handler reading books from A Series of Unfortunate Events, but I think I prefer Tim Curry he has a great voice.
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: FordPrefect on August 14, 2010, 05:29:51 AM
I enjoyed both Tim Curry and Daniel Handler reading books from A Series of Unfortunate Events, but I think I prefer Tim Curry he has a great voice.

Well Daniel Handler preferred to have Tim Curry reading the books as well, so I think you're in good company there. Tim Curry became busy with outside projects for a while and Daniel Handler only took over in order to meet a publishing deadline. Once Curry became available again, Handler wanted him back.
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Thrifty on August 14, 2010, 06:24:14 AM
David Sedaris's books are better on tape then when read.  David's readings just make them funnier somehow.

John Hodman's books The Areas of my Expertise and the sequel More Information than You Require are fantastic because they're performances rather than straight reads. 
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: borg48 on August 14, 2010, 07:05:55 AM
I always enjoy when David Sedaris makes an appearance on npr he is great.
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Pak-Man on November 14, 2012, 07:57:33 PM
RISE FROM YOUR GRAVE, THREAD!

So is there an affordable way to download audio books legitimately without having to join some sort of club? My hour and a half drive to work is killing me a little more each day, and an audio book would be a nice way to break up the monotony.

Also are there any affordable (Let's say $20 or less) audio books (Downloadable or otherwise) that are worth a good listen? I don't want anything heady, since I'm usually going to be listening to them first thing in the morning. I'm down with shlocky sci-fi and fantasy. Something entertaining, first and foremost.
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: GordonZola on November 15, 2012, 07:41:26 AM
Librivox is your friend.

http://librivox.org/
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Sideswipe on November 15, 2012, 08:24:20 AM
Frank Muller did a great job on the Dark Tower series. 

For sure, too bad he couldn't finish the series because of his motorcycle accident.
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: SJP on December 23, 2012, 03:18:29 PM
Crap.  I didn't even know Frank Muller had died.  I just remember him doing the audiobook of The Talisman.  He did a good job reading it, but I'm very ambivalent towards the story (in that, I want to like it, but there's things that happen in it that made me not like it so much).

Always liked audiobooks, and I certainly agree that a good reader can make a break it.  Case in point, many years ago I checked out Roald Dahl's The Witches read by Richard Briers (and released by the now defunct Chivers Audiobooks, whose library I believe is now owned by BBC America).  If you don't know who Richard Briers is, he's a character actor (and at the time I write this, thankfully still among us) who did a lot of work on things Dahl wrote for television, and his reading of The Witches is one of the best audiobooks I've ever heard.  He does great voicework, has a wonderful cadence, and manages the near impossible of actually making the suspenseful parts suspenseful.

This version is now very difficult to find, though awhile back I found a site selling an MP3 of it.  The rights to new recordings have since been bought out by Recorded Books, who had the late Lynn Redgrave reading it.  I haven't heard Redgrave's reading, and while I'm sure it's quite acceptable, I just don't think it would be possible to top Brier's version...it's one of the few recording's of Dahl's work I've heard that just WORKS.
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: Sideswipe on December 23, 2012, 04:06:52 PM
I don't think he's dead.  He just has severe brain damage.
Title: Re: Audiobooks
Post by: SJP on December 23, 2012, 05:14:55 PM
Nope.  According to Wikipedia, he went into surgery in 2008 for various health problems and didn't come back out.  I don't think they were related to his motorcycle accident, but I'm sure it certainly didn't help.