I was perhaps 9 years old when I read Have Space Suit – Will Travel, followed immediately by Space Cadet, Rocket Ship Galileo, and my all time favorite . . . Tunnel In the Sky.
By age 10, I was insatiable.
Arthur C. Clarke, Ray Bradbury, Isaac Asimov became my daily companions . . . and as I grew older Norman Spinrad, Richard Matheson, Roger Zalazny, Alfred Bester, Fritz Leiber, Poul Anderson and many others.
I consumed sci-fi (particularly short stories, but novels too) at a prodigious rate. Movies and TV shows were pale imitations, worth watching of course, but rarely worth savoring.
Over the years, as I’ve moved about the country and have lived aboard two sailboats, I’ve discarded most of those well worn old paperbacks of my youth.
But I miss them, nonetheless.
So I’m very pleased to report that the Internet Archive has more than 130 half-hour recordings – produced during the 1970s and early 1980s at the University of Wisconsin (WHA Radio 970) – that are readings of many of these well remembered short stories.
Unlike some of the OTR sci-fi shows of the 1950s, these are straight dramatic readings. One, or sometimes two short stories per episode. Usually read with a bit of futuristic music in the background and sparse sound effects.
The narrator for most episodes was Michael Hansen, and the stories were usually `sci-fi’ but sometimes wandered off into horror or occasionally even fantasy .
If you are looking for `audio books’ of sci-fi stories for your car CD player, iPod, or MP3 player then these should fill the bill.
You can download them separately, listen online to individual episodes, or download all of them in a single zip file.