The lost audiobooks of Roger Zelazny reading the Chronicles of Amber

See the original posting on Boing Boing

When I was a kid, my whole circle of D&D-playing, science-fiction reading pals was really into Roger Zelazny’s ten-volume Chronicles of Amber, but somehow I never read it; for years, I’d intended to correct this oversight, but I never seemed to find the time — after all, there’s more amazing new stuff than I can possibly read, how could I justify looking backwards, especially over the course of ten books?

But I do have some time in my day to read older books: I swim every day for my chronic pain, and when I do, I use an underwater MP3 player to listen to audiobooks that I generally get from, Downpour, or Google’s DRM-free audiobook store (the market-leading Audible, a division of Amazon, mandatorily wraps audiobooks in its proprietary DRM without allowing publishers to opt out, which has the dual deal-breaking effect of locking me into Amazon’s ecosystem and not working on my underwater MP3 player).

A couple of months ago, I decided to go looking for DRM-free versions of the Amber books, which is how I found Speaking Volumes’ editions of Roger Zelazny’s own readings of the books, long believed to have been accidentally erased and lost forever, but which were recovered and remastered in the mid-2000s. Speaking Volumes sells these as MP3 downloads and MP3 CDs, and I bought the complete set of the former and listened to them over a couple of months’ worth of laps in the pool.

Zelazny’s reading is pretty much fantastic. Read the rest