Audiobook Review: “Black Towers to Danger” By L. Ron Hubbard 


Audiobook Review: “Black Towers to Danger”

By L. Ron Hubbard

Multi-cast performance

Produced by Galaxy Audio

Approx. 2 hours.


It never ceases to amaze me, the number of genres covered by L. Ron Hubbard during his writing heyday of the mid-20th century pulp fiction days.  During that time period the pulps were a regular source of entertainment since there was no internet and very little television, if any.  Escapism fiction was pretty much needed with the height of the Depression during the peak of the pulps’ popularity.


Hubbard wrote in the typical genres;  Westerns, Sea Adventures, Air Adventures, and the genre that got me hooked on Hubbard, Science-Fiction.  Some of his stories nearly made up their own genre.   This story, “Black Towers to Danger,” is one that could have been its own genre, oil exploration.  Hubbard wrote a couple of stories that could fit into this genre and pretty much could have created his own pulp magazine book. 


In the days of the pulps different magazines covered different genres and Hubbard wrote for many of them.  This story was originally published in the October, 1936 issue of “Five Novels Monthly.”  “Five Novels Monthly” magazine had its run from 1928 up until World War II and a paper shortage caused the magazine to publish quarterly until the last issue was published in 1948.  The main focus of this magazine was to tell a story as a whole.  Sometimes the pulps would run longer stories in parts so that the readers would be sure to buy the next issue.  “Five Novels” strove to make sure the readers got full stories every issue.


“Black Towers to Danger” is an oil drilling adventure where Bill Murphy has 30 days to bring a claim of an oil strike in Venezuela.   But as with all Hubbard stories it is never that easy and there’s a dame involved.  The dame happens to be the daughter of a rival driller who is set to take over Murphy’s wells if he doesn’t turn in that claim.   The rival is found dead and the woman, who Murphy happens to be in love with, thinks Murphy killed her father.  The truth is darker and more sinister and revolves around greed. Murphy encounters murder, a vengeful woman, and the destruction of his rig before he uncovers the truth and leads the listener/reader on thrilling adventure.


Once again the listener’s adventure is brought to life with the excellent full production from Galaxy Audio.  Excellent voice actors, sound effects and perfect original mood music make this story come to life and puts the listener in the middle of the action.  Two hours of your life will move by so fast that you may find yourself wanting to go out and start drilling for oil in your own backyard.