Tor.com content by

Danielle Prielipp

Fiction and Excerpts [13]
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Fiction and Excerpts [13]

Leonard Audio Excerpt and Sweepstakes

William Shatner’s Leonard is a biography Star Trek diehards won’t want to miss. This audiobook, written and read by William Shatner, details the five decades of the two incredible actors’ friendship—from their births which took place just days apart in March 1931 and both discovering acting at just eight-years-old, to their first interaction as actors on the set of The Man from U.N.C.L.E. and the seventy-nine TV episodes/six feature films they would appear together in as Mr. Spock and Captain James T. Kirk.

Beyond their professional interactions, Shatner and Nimoy shared in many personal highs and lows, which Shatner recounts his own anecdotes and untold stories—while also retelling stories gathered from others who knew Nimoy well—presenting a full life lived beyond the images that were immortalized on film. Leonard is more than just a biography of one of the greats of TV and film; it is a deeply emotional story of a friendship between two extraordinary men.

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A Song for No Man’s Land Audio Excerpt

Tim Gerard Reynolds is no stranger to the world of sci-fi and fantasy audiobook narration (a quick search on any audiobook retailer shows more than 35 narration credits in the genres) and is a veteran narrator on the Tor.com Publishing list, having previously read Sylvia Spruck Wrigley’s Domnall and the Borrowed Child and David Tallerman’s Patchwerk.

In this latest adventure, Reynolds takes the listener back in time to the battlefields of the Great War where Robert Jones finds himself up against a force more nightmarish than the Germans and their guns. A Song for No Man’s Land is the first in a trilogy from Andy Remic.

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The Ballad of Black Tom Audio Excerpt

If for some terrible reason you can only listen to one audiobook during this Black History Month, make sure it’s this one. Award-winning narrator Kevin R. Free—who notably narrated Kai Ashante Wilson’s The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps last fall—brings his talent for voices to the streets of Manhattan and the outer boroughs in Victor LaValle’s The Ballad of Black Tom.

In The Ballad of Black Tom, Charles Thomas “Tommy” Tester is hustling to keep food on the table and a roof over his dying father’s head. It’s not easy for Tommy, a black kid from Harlem making his living by delivering occult wares to a reclusive old sorceress deep in the heart of an all-white neighborhood, but he knows the magic a suit can cast and the invisibility his guitar case can provide when faced with unfavorable glances from suspicious standers-by.

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Lustlocked Audio Excerpt

Narrator Corey Gagne returns to the kitchens of Sin du Jour in the second installment of Matt Wallace’s Sin du Jour Affair series, Lustlocked.

When the caterers are called upon to service a goblin royal wedding party, a magical food additive turns the humans in the room into horny (not that kind of horny) six-foot-tall lizards, and all they want to do is have sex (okay, maybe it is that kind of horny). Hilarity, and the activation of the building’s magical defenses, ensues.

[Listen to an excerpt]

Enter Macmillan Audio’s Mistborn Sweepstakes!

Brandon Sanderson’s latest Mistborn novel, The Bands of Mourning, is publishing in a few short days on January 26th! To celebrate the release of this hotly anticipated installment, Macmillan Audio is hosting a sweepstakes for 10 Mistborn Prize Packs! Each winner will received a signed audiobook CD of The Bands of Mourning plus a pair of “World of Mistborn” headphones. Visit Macmillan Audio’s sweepstakes page for details and to enter for a chance to win.

After you’ve entered, check below to listen to the first 6 (yes, 6!) chapters of Brandon Sanderson’s The Bands of Mourning audiobook, read by Michael Kramer.

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Patchwerk Audio Excerpt

Listen carefully when taking on David Tallerman’s Patchwerk, or you just might find yourself lost with a stranger in the middle of the TransContinental airship.

Tim Gerard Reynolds—who previously read Sylvia Spruck Wrigley’s Domnall and the Borrowed Child audiobook—narrates this romp across dimensions, as our hero (or, indeed, someone very much like him) tries to stop his own invention, Palimpsest, from ripping the universe apart at its seams.

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The Builders Audio Excerpt

If you grew up reading Brian Jacques’ Redwall series (like I did), but have graduated to bloodier literary pastures (also like me), then Daniel Polansky’s The Builders is a gory-romp of a tale you won’t want to miss. Corey Gagne—whose voice Tor.com listeners will recognize from his work on Matt Wallace’s Sin du Jour novella, Envy of Angels—tackles the cast of rats, stoats, mice, and other woodland creatures with the right combination of grit and flair.

[Listen to an excerpt of The Builders]

Domnall and the Borrowed Child Audio Excerpt

Sylvia Spruck Wrigley’s Domnall is old, achy, and cranky as they come (not to mention surrounded by fae idiots and cowards). Who better to give voice to this grump than one of AudioFile magazine’s “Best Voices” in audio, Tim Gerard Reynolds.

Irish-born Reynolds is an actor and audiobook narrator whose career has taken him from Ireland, England, and France to regional theater in the U.S. and both on and off Broadway productions. Avid listeners may recognize from his work on the Earphone Award-winning audiobook of Pierce Brown’s Red Rising.

[Listen to an excerpt]

Of Sorrow and Such Audio Excerpt

If you liked listening to Marisa Calin on the audio edition of Paul Cornell’s Witches of Lychford, then you’ll love her take on Angela Slatter’s Of Sorrow and Such! Calin’s lilting narration lends itself nicely to Mistress Gideon and the other witches and shapeshifters of Edda’s Meadow—with just the right amount of edge when the trouble with the locals places supernatural beings in grave danger.

[Listen to an excerpt from Of Sorrow and Such]

The Last Witness Audio Excerpt

A master of dialects, P.J. Ochlan demonstrates his full range while narrating K.J. Parker’s The Last Witness. Ochlan’s audio credentials extend all the way back to 1987, when he got his start working as voiceover talent in commercials and other promotions. Since then, he has expanded his résumé to include radio personality, award-winning audiobook narrator, TV/film/theater performer, and vocal coach.

Ochlan’s ability to create distinctive characters throughout a tale lends itself perfectly to The Last Witness which, despite its novella status, holds true to Parker’s style and boasts a full cast of characters ranging from princes and courtiers to merchants, academics, and other generally unsavory people.

[Listen to an excerpt from The Last Witness]

Binti Audio Excerpt

One of the golden voices of audiobooks lends her talents to the audio edition of Nnedi Okorafor’s Binti. Robin Miles—who has acted both on and off Broadway, and in television series including Law & Order—is a veteran, award-winning narrator/director of audio programs, who got her start thanks to an accidental audition with Talking Books in the 1990s. She won her first Earphones Award for her work on Cane River, which highlighted the versatility of Miles’ voice and her ability to “rely on accents and inflection” to “distinctly reflect personalities, family origins, and social status.”

This ability to characterize based on accent and inflection plays an integral part in the narration of Binti. In this science fiction novella, Binti is a brilliant young woman who is the first of the Himba community to be offered a place at the galaxy’s finest institution of higher learning. Within the first tracks of the program, listeners are introduced to a rich new culture through accent and articulation that was fine-tuned through the collaboration of the author and narrator. Listeners should be warned that once one starts listening to the program, one will be hard-pressed to press “pause” until it’s reached the thrilling conclusion!

[Listen to an excerpt from Binti]

Sunset Mantle Audio Excerpt

We hope you’ve been enjoying our excerpts from the audio editions of Tor.com’s fall publications, from the rich character work of Kevin R. Free on Kai Ashante Wilson’s The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps to the magical voice of Marissa Calin on Paul Cornell’s Witches of Lychford.

In our selection from Alter S. Reiss’s Sunset Mantle, the gritty baritone of narrator Christopher Price gives life to the doomed realm of Reach Antach and a disgraced soldier who’s looking for a place to lay his head. Price’s gravitas is well practiced, as his many theater credits include works by Shakespeare, Arthur Miller, Sam Shepard, and David Mamet. Listeners will experience the drama of hand-to-hand combat and other sounds of battle as our hero Cete fights to turn the tides of war…

[Listen to an excerpt from Sunset Mantle]

Witches of Lychford Audio Excerpt

Fans of Paula Brackston’s audiobooks will recognize a familiar, and appropriately “witchy,” voice when listening to the audio edition of Paul Cornell’s Witches of Lychford as read by voice actress Marisa Calin. Calin is a British actress, screenwriter, and novelist, who has narrated a number of audiobooks, including the aforementioned works from Paula Brackston, Kerstin Geir’s Ruby Red trilogy and Sophie McKenzie’s Close My Eyes.

[Listen to an excerpt from Witches of Lychford]

The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps Audio Excerpt

As John Scalzi so aptly stated in his recent blog post discussing the success of Lock In, particularly in its audio format, “audio has its own audience, with its own set of desires and expectations, and that’s something you’ll want to factor in as you create you [sic] work.” While this sentiment was directed more so at other writers, it is equally important to keep in mind the listeners’ expectations from the perspective of producing an audio program.

When selecting narrators for the Tor.com publishing program, one of the foremost considerations for the audio group was finding voice actors who were not only great storytellers, but who would also best represent the diversity that is central to many of the works on the list. For example, the first work we’re sharing as an audio excerpt is Kai Ashante Wilson’s The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps. This tale centers on the sorcerer (Demane) and a caravan of  men whose African American vernacular could not be pulled off with any sense of authenticity by just any reader… enter the vocal talents of Kevin R. Free.

[Listen to an excerpt of The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps]