I had the opportunity to listen to an advance copy of the new audio edition of L. Ron Hubbard’s Battlefield Earth from Galaxy Press. The commercial edition will be released on Father’s Day. They’re available for pre-order in audio as well as the book editions. If you’re a big fan of Hubbard’s fiction or this particular title I highly recommend adding these new editions to your collection. The book edition will actually have his handwritten notes included.
I haven’t seen advance copies yet of the books, but I have had the opportunity to preview the audio edition, and it is spectacular. I’ve always been a fan of fiction audiobooks, listening to them when I travel for expeditions or to speak at conferences. There’s nothing better than cruising along boring interstates with the drama of a full-fledged battle for the very survival of the human race going on in the car with me. There have also been many times driving through remote Canada and Alaska where there was no radio reception and audiobooks were my main source of entertainment.
Because I listen to so many audiobooks, I’ve grown quite particular to certain publishers that go the extra mile to make the audio experience more than just a voice reading words on a script. May favorites are the publishers that use multiple actors, sound effects, and music, almost reminiscent of the old radio broadcasts. I think my biggest pet peeve is when only one actor is used and either a man or woman is reading parts for the opposite gender.
This edition boasts “the largest full-cast audio adaptation of a novel of all time coming in at 47 ½ hours in length, with 67 actors performing 198 different characters and containing 3 hours of original music”. Along with the advance copy, Galaxy Press also sent along a list of the cast and the parts they played. It is impressive!
The cover artwork also features an original piece by Frank Frazetta. I’m a huge fan of Frazetta’s work, so much so, that, as a kid, I wanted to grow up and become the Death Dealer instead of Batman. With various editions over the years, there’s been some decent artwork that mostly featured a lone Jonnie Goodboy Tyler. This one captures much more action, and, in true Frazetta fashion features man, monster, and damsel.
Now that I’ve told you so much about the new book edition and the wonderful audio version, let’s confront the elephant in the room…the 2000 movie starring John Travolta that was considered pretty horrible by most fans of Hubbard, fans of sci-fi, and pretty much all the other humans on the planet too. I’ll settle that problem with a simple answer. The book has nothing to do with the movie. This is the source material and can’t be blamed for what happened in that adaptation.
So, it goes without saying, I highly recommend this book. It’s a wonderful story of a future dystopian Earth populated by primitive humans and their alien overlords. I think you’ll enjoy the story in any form (except the movie) but especially this audio production.
This message was written by a team of geeks, nerds, gamers, and Dr. David Powers. You can always find us at www.drdavidpowers.com. Thanks for reading!