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  • gilwilson 5:56 PM on March 15, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: adventures in the orient, ,   

    Loot of the Shanung By: L. Ron Hubbard 

    19084267Loot of the Shanung
    By: L. Ron Hubbard
    Narrated by: R. F. Daley, Jim Meskimen, Robert Wu, Christina Huntington, Tadao Tomomatsu
    Length: 1 hr and 54 mins
    Release date: 08-12-14
    Publisher: Galaxy Audio

    Once again it’s time for some fun from
    the Golden Age of Stories. It’s another pulp fiction story from L.Ron Hubbard, who I think was the king of the pulps, he at least was one of the busiest. This time we have the story “Loot of the Shanung,” which was originally published in 1936 in “Smashing Novels” pulp magazine. Here we have an American reporter in China, and the heiress daughter of a missing American oil magnate, combining forces to find her father.

    Hubbard wrote several stories that take place in the mysterious “Far East.” Asian countries prettsmashing_novels_193605y much were the thing of mystery, imagination and mysticism to us in the Western Hemisphere. Hubbard was well experienced in that portion of the world having spent a few years there. His stories that take place there always relay the social, economic, and political struggles of the area. These super action stories always featured a hero who was there to save a damsel in distress. Hey it was the ’30s, misogyny was a way of life.

    Billionaire George Harley Rockham appears to have been abducted from the Shanung, a coastal steamer, when that ship comes up missing. Rockham has his hands in oil throughout China, and if he doesn’t show within four days his stock will fall, and his oil rights will be up for the taking. Jimmy Vance, a reporter who goes after any story till it’s been solved, has been working on the story since the ship went missing. Rockham’s daughter walks in his office offering a big reward if Vance will find her father. Vance refuses the award, but smells a good story and joined the girl in her search. She’s abducted by crooks, but Vance turns the table on them, then they had for Kowloon, an island near Hong Kong, where he suspects pirates may have boarded the Shanung. The hero being a writer is a common occurrence in Hubbard’s adventure stories. Write what you best know about.

    Pirates, Gangsters and Military all create an adventurous atmosphere that will allow you to get lost in a pulp fiction story. The best part is if you were to get the audiobook version, like I did, you get a full production. Galaxy Audio puts these together as if they were old fashioned radio dramas. The actors all create fun, believable character that are worth rooting for or hating.

    Publisher’s Summary

    Stop the presses! One hundred thousand dollar reward offered for the return of George Harley Rockham! That’s more than enough to turn Shanghai newspaperman Jimmy Vance’s head. Throw in the gorgeous dame who’s offering the reward – Rockham’s daughter Virginia – and he might lose his head altogether. As fast-talking as Jimmy Stewart in The Philadelphia Story, Vance jumps at the chance…the money…and the girl. But as Jimmy quickly discovers, there are several billion reasons to watch his back. Because that’s how much Rockham is worth, and there are some very hard cases out there willing to kill to separate the old man from his money. Next thing Jimmy knows, Virginia’s tied to a chair, and he’s got a couple of guns pointed at his head. But it’ll take more than a little rope and a couple of firearms to keep this reporter down. The truth is tied to the mysterious fate of a steamship named Shanung – and what Jimmy finds could be the biggest story of his life…if he lives to tell it.

    In the issue of Smashing Novels where this story first appeared the editor wrote: “‘Loot of the Shanung’ is a soul-stirring tale of the China Sea, a story of modern piracy set in the Far East. L. Ron Hubbard wrote it. He knows China. He has been there. He traveled through the country and met the people and observed their customs. Smashing Novels will have other stories from him – stories of far-off places and little known people. He knows of what he writes.”

    ©2014 Galaxy Audio (P)2014 Galaxy Audio

     
  • gilwilson 3:39 PM on May 29, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , adventures in the orient, , , , , , , , , , , ,   

    Audiobook Review: “The Red Dragon” By L. Ron Hubbard 

    reddragon

    “The Red Dragon”

    By L. Ron Hubbard

    A multi-cast performance

    Produced by GalaxyAudio

    Approx 2 hours

     

    With the exception of a few stories here and there I have nearly listened to all of GalaxyAudio’s productions of stories from the master story-teller, L. Ron Hubbard, up to those released until the end of this year.  There are a couple I have missed but don’t worry I will be getting those soon, one way or another.  The have almost become an addiction.

     

    The reason I love hearing these audiobooks is the superb production quality that goes into these books.  The voice actors used in each book are all top caliber and are able to bring to life the over the top characters created by Hubbard, from the lowly sidekick to the larger than life hero.  Each actor creates a full characterization in his/her vocal performance that paints a mental picture of each character that brings back the cover pictures from the old pulp fiction magazines where these stories were originally published.

     

    Add to the perfect vocal performances the subtle yet effective sound effects.  In each story the sound effects are subtle enough to not distract from the story, yet so perfectly produced that, as the listener, you will be dodging bullets, flying in old-timey aircraft with wind whipping your scarf, or dusting off dirt from the trails.    Then the addition of an original musical score that keeps the listener in the mood of each adventure.  All these tie in together to create a two hour performance that can easily compete with any movie for some great entertainment.

     

    This time around GalaxyAudio releases, “The Red Dragon,” which was originally released in the February, 1935 issue of “Five Novels” magazine.  This time around Hubbard tells the story of Michael Stuart, a red haired officer in the Marines whose career came to a halt after a failed attempt to return the Chinese Imperial Dynasty to power in the ‘30s.  Stuart has been abandoned by his country and is unable to get out of China, so, he spends his time to help others.

     

    Stuart’s latest adventure brings him to help a young woman who is on the search for a mysterious black chest hidden by her father before his murder.  Drawing on his many life’s adventures, Hubbard brings the hero and the woman all across the scenic countryside of China, including The Great Wall, to caves in Manchuria where the black chest must be recovered before it falls into the wrong hands.

     

    Two hours of pure excitement and adventure make this audiobook one two hear while doing house work or working on a major project; as long as you don’t stop working to listen solely to the performance you will find yourself working faster trying to keep pace with the hero.

     
  • gilwilson 9:37 PM on June 27, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: adventures in the orient, , , , , , , , , , hostage to death, , ,   

    Hostage to Death by L. Ron Hubbard 

    Hostage to Death
    by L. Ron Hubbard
    Multi-cast performance
    Produced by Galaxy Audio (2009)
    Approx. 2 hours

    Once again it’s time to dive into the Golden Age of Stories, when many Americans could get great escapism fiction from pulp magazines.  One of the most prolific pulp fiction writers was L. Ron Hubbard, writing stories from many genres and being published in nearly all the pulps.  This time around we go on a far flung adventure and join up with the French Foreign legion.

    I can remember when I was young that a young man would instead of run away and join the circus had the option of running away and joining the Foreign Legion, I think I remember some TV show where a kid threatened to do so but being only 9 years old was talked out of it by his parents.  The French Foreign Legion has been known to be an elite force with training that is more intense than any other military allowing anyone from any nationality to serve the French Army.

    This story, “Hostage to Death” was originally published in “Five Novels Monthly” July, 1935 and is an adventure that will lead to double crosses within double crosses.  Legionnaire Officer, Bill Reilly receives a severed hand that serves as a message and a threat.  The hand is that of some unlucky soul that crossed into Abd El-Ulad’s territory and that if nothing is done an Englishwoman, Kay MacArthur’s hand will be sent next, basically challenging the Legion to rescue her.  Knowing it could be a trap, Reilly’s sense of honor overrides and he sends his squad in to rescue the woman.  The good news, the woman is rescued. The bad news, it was a trap and the railroad they were supposed to be guarding is blown up.  Reilly is tried and convicted to 15 years for abandoning his post.

    But the Legion has other plans for Reilly.  Now that Reilly is known to be sent to the roughest prison in history the Legion plans for his escape so he can infiltrate another enemy’s camp, that of Abd El-Krim.  Reilly takes to Krim the plans for movement of ammunition and basically sells Krim several trainloads of Legion weapons.  The Legion does this so the enemy can attack and weaken Spain, who is threatening the French.  The problem is that the French have one more plan of doublecrossing Reilly which could put him and Kay MacArthur in the path of certain death.

    Once again Galaxy Audio productions along with a superb cast present an adventure from the Stories from the Golden Age.  The sound effects alone put you in the middle of the fight with rattling machine guns and clashing of blades.  You may find yourself ducking the gunshots while trying to rescue the dame while listening.

     
  • gilwilson 10:15 PM on February 23, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: adventures in the orient, , , , , , , , , , , , , , south seas   

    “Yukon Madness” by L. Ron Hubbard 

    “Yukon Madness”
    by L. Ron Hubbard
    Multicast performance
    produced 2010 by Galaxy Audio
    Approx 2 hours

    I keep diving into my collection of L. Ron Hubbard stories that have been re-released by Galaxy Press and Galaxy Audio.  Back in the days of old (okay, the mid-20th century), writers could make money for about a nickel a word by publishing short stories in the pulps.  The pulps were magazines that printed short stories that were printed on cheaper paper to keep the price down to about 5 or 10 cents per issue.  The cheaper paper was pulpy and lumpy and the stories from that time are referred to as pulp fiction.  Hubbard wrote many stories from this time period, often referred to as the Golden Age of Stories.  Galaxy Press and Galaxy Audio are keeping the pulp fiction feel by re-printing these stories in short books that closely resemble the old pulps using the original artwork and keeping the books at 120 pages or so and feature from one to three stories. The cool part is that with the audio books they are creating an audio pulp.  The audio books all come out to be about 2 hours and feature a fully produced (with sound effects) and multi-cast performance that sound like the old radio dramas from around the same time period.

    “Yukon Madness,” originally published in”Mystery Adventures” Aug 1935, tells of the hunt for Itauk the Madman who has spread death to the Yukon, throwing the bodies of his victims to his sled team of twelve wolves. Tracking him down are Canadian Mountie Tommy McKenna and his partner Simmons. But when the pair separate to hunt for food, Itauk attacks Simmons and lets his wolves make an unmentionable feast that Tommy later discovers on his return to camp.
    Enraged, Tommy follows the maniac’s trail to a village and en route he meets an enchanting Eskimo woman named Kaja. Of course, the route’s a trap set by Itauk, and the only one who can save Tommy is Kaja, who is engaged to be wed to the ruthless killer, and who plans to serve the Mountie as the next meal for his personal wolf pack.  Though wounded, Mounty Tom McKenna uses a ruse to vanquish the rampaging Itauk the Madman, and then leaves him to the wolves.   This makes for a fun short story that is over before you know it and just enough time to get your adrenaline up.

    “The Cossack” was originally published in the May-June, 1935 issue of “Unknown” This one is a sad tale of love lost and betrayal of a leader.  Colonel Komroff has caught the eye of the Duchess in revolutionary Russia.  The only problem is; Komroff has a woman waiting for him back home.  The Duchess could give him everything including advancements in his career.  When she offers him an advancement in rank all she asks in return is a kiss.  Komroff spurns her advances and she ships him off to a far off post.  For months he waits for a letter from his girl back home but not a single one arrives, when finally he receives notice she was poisoned.  When he confronts the Duchess and he still rejects her she has him killed before a firing squad.  Luckily Komroff has friends and is snuck out of town.  Jump ahead some time and the Duchess is driven out into hiding as the country seeks to destroy communism.  She sees Komroff fighting in the enemy’s army and in a final confrontation worthy of a great opera the tragedy unfolds.

    The Small Boss of Nunaloha    “South Sea Stories” Feb 1940
    A man short in stature but large in courage, is in charge of a small trading post on the south seas island of Nunahola.  When a pirate attempts to take over the man is beaten by the pirate, but continually defies him driving the pirate mad and eventually away from the Island.

    So, in this short audio book we travel from The Great White North, to Revolutionary Russia to a South Seas Island, some great adventure with tales that range in emotion as they do locale.

     
  • gilwilson 1:41 PM on February 5, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: adventures in the orient, , , , , , , inky odds, , , , , ,   

    “Inky Odds” by L. Ron Hubbard 

    “Inky Odds”
    by L. Ron Hubbard
    Multi-cast performance
    Produced by Galaxy Audio
    Approx 2 hours.

    I’m really having a lot of fun exploring in the orient with L. Ron Hubbard.  Okay what this means, in case you are new to the Stories from the Golden Age, is that one of the genres L. Ron Hubbard wrote in when he wrote for the pulp fiction magazines back in the early to mid 20th century was “Adventures in the Orient” and listening to the recently released audio books produced by Galaxy Audio I am having a blast and each story seems as though I’m transported through time and space to visit the lands and time of which Hubbard wrote these intriguing stories.

    Actually out of all the genres I can’t pick which is my favorite.  There are Air adventures, Sea Adventures, Far Flung Adventures, Adventures in the Orient, Science-Fiction, Fantasy and Westerns.  Okay, really I can say that the Sci-fi and Fantasy are my faves but as for the others they all are fun to hear.  Especially with the outstanding production quality issued by Galaxy Audio.  Excellent voice actors, special effects and original music push these stories out to create a life of their own.

    This adventure in the orient is called “Inky Odds” was originally published in June of 1940 and tells the tale of the best newspaper correspondent in China, Bat Conroy of World Press, and an ambitious new correspondent,  Perry Lane of International Service, who beats him to the “scoop,” cross paths in the war-ravaged country.   Actually the story is Bat’s story and trying to figure out who this Perry Lane is and how he’s scooping Bat on every story.  Now as a listener in the 21st century the mystery is not so much of a mystery.  But when putting the story in the perspective of the time it was written, they mystery remains a mystery to Bat Conroy until the very end.  This is another story that shows how L. Ron Hubbard’s fiction writing was a bit ahead of its time.

    The biggest story of the war between Japan and China breaks out and Bat is not only there to report on it but he helps in the story.  A group of Americans are holed up in the Consulate in a Chinese city that is under siege by the Japanese army.  Among the Americans is a doctor whose wife has found her long lost husband and insists on going up river with Bat and a rescue team.   The rescue team is bring medical supplies to the Americans.  Bat gets a boat hired and has to write the story of the event and not let this Perry Lane scoop him.

    Stowing away on the boat is a woman who each time she meets Bat she gives him a different name, and after the third time he goes with calling her all 3, Lois Dorothy Alice.  The whole boat trip is being reported via International Services’ Perry Lane.  Bat cannot figure out how this is happening.  The rescue boat is attacked by Japanese bombers as they head up the Yang Tze river to rescue the Americans.  Bat gets everyone off the boat but not before saving the medical supplies.   Bat convinces a Chinese army General to loan him an armored vehicle so he can deliver the supplies.

    Bat drives to  the Consulate but is attacked before arriving and is knocked unconscious during the attack.  When he awakens he not only is being treated by one of the American doctors but he finds he’s not fired because the his stories have scooped International Services, but how, he’s been unconscious for 5 days.

    With some great humor and adventure this story is yet another story from L. Ron Hubbard that will amaze you with the depth of information.  In fact with all the detail Hubbard throws into his stories you know, he had to have lived some aspect of the stories, and that’s what makes them so fun the hear as an audio book or read the printed page, the detail and depth.

     
    • Tom McNulty 10:19 PM on February 5, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      I read this one too and it’s a real gem. And you’re right, Gil, those Galaxy audio books are truly outstanding!

      Like

  • gilwilson 10:19 PM on November 16, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: adventures in the orient, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , the falcon killer   

    “The Falcon Killer” by L. Ron Hubbard 

    “The Falcon Killer”
    by L. Ron Hubbard
    Multicast performance
    produced by Galaxy Audio
    Approx 2 hours.

    I’m really loving the vast array of genre’s from L. Ron Hubbard’s pulp fiction days.  More to the point I’m loving the production work of the Galaxy Audio releases of these stories from the various genres.  During the mid-20th century Hubbard wrote numerous stories for the numerous pulp fiction magazines that were published during the time.  What got me hooked were the science-fiction and fantasy stories, which are my favorite genres of any literature.  After listening to all the Stories from the Golden Age in the sci-fi/fantasy genres I was highly impressed by the production of each audiobook.

    Galaxy Audio, part of Galaxy Press, is releasing all the old Hubbard stories to create these 2 hour audio pulps, that bring to mind the old radio dramas from around that same time.  Each one of these audiobooks is a flash back to when stories were fun.  Galaxy Audio has a great team of voice actors for the books and the sound effects and music are superb.  Just picking out any book will get you hooked.

    This time around I listened to one of Hubbard’s Tales from the Orient, “The Falcon Killer,” which was originally published in April, 1939.  This story takes place in War-torn China in the early part of the 20th century.  This is the story of an ace free-lance fighter pilot, nicknamed “The Falcon Killer (Tzun Kai),” who is actually Bill Gaylord, raised in Peking by his American parents. Gaylord lost both of them as a child during the violent Boxer uprising and then saw his foster family slaughtered in wartime. With a past that’s hardened his soul and given him nerves of steel, Gaylord has used his resolve to down more Japanese aircraft than can be counted. Gaylord has a tattoo of a half dragon which has some meaning that only the Chinese know.  This tattoo provides the great twist at the end of the story that makes this a true Hubbard pulp-fiction.

    Events pit Gaylord against a Japanese spy who has caused untold trouble for the Chinese. Gaylord must somehow find and defeat him or risk losing an ancient Chinese kingdom to the land of the rising sun.

    Just before the local ruler can sell out his people Gaylord is discovered to be within the town and is called join the ruler for dinner.  Gaylord discovers his dinner has been poisoned, but will it be too late before the Japanese move in and take over, creating one more province under the rising sun banner?

    This story has some great aerial battles, escapes and intrigue that will keep you wondering whether the Falcon Killer will live to see another day.

     
  • gilwilson 8:23 AM on July 21, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: adventures in the orient, , , , , , , , , , , , trail of the red diamonds   

    “The Trail of the Red Diamonds” by L. Ron Hubbard 

    “The Trail of the Red Diamonds”
    by L. Ron Hubbard
    Multicast performance
    Produced by Galaxy Audio, 2010
    Approx. 2 hours.

    This September marks another month where Galaxy Audio and Galaxy Press release another set of “Stories from the Golden Age.”  This audio pulp will take you on an adventure with a couple of tales from the Orient.  The book is also availaby from Galaxy Press in a pulp version you can hold in your hand and read but this review covers the audio book version.

    All the audio books from Galaxy Audio have all been a pleasure to hear.  I started out with my interest in Science Fiction (which Hubbard wrote some really fun sci-fi) but since discovering these releases from Galaxy Audio, I have been testing out all the genres.  I’m still waiting to sample some of the westerns, but I have a feeling that’ll be coming soon.  I mean it’s gotta be good if any of the others are a sign.  All these audio books have superb voice acting, original music and subtle yet effective sound effects.  These all combine with the excitement and thrills of the twists and turns of Hubbard’s writing to make for an experience that will leave you looking for more.

    The two stories in this collection are:

    “The Trail of the Red Diamonds,” originally published in “Thrilling Adventure” magazine January, 1935 and is a story of betrayal, espionage, death and adventure.  This story was originally written under the pseudonym of Lt. Jonathan Daly, who by chance, but more likely by design, is the main character in the story.  This story mixes in a lot of reality in that the authenticity comes from Hubbard’s many experiences in China.

    Lt. Daly translates an original manuscript of Marco Polo’s travels  and discovers that Kublai Khan was buried with some rare red diamonds.  The diamonds were to light the Kahn’s way to heaven.  Lt. Daly sets out to follow Marco Polo’s directions to find the red diamonds.  Along the way are double crosses, death and deception.  At what cost to Daly is the trail to these diamonds?  Untold riches sound good but when the Chinese army and renegades want those riches for themselves, Daly has some competition.

    “The Hurricane’s Roar,” originally published in  “Thrilling Adventure” magazine April, 1939 is another story of betrayal, espionage, death and adventure.  Hubbard’s second story about the man the Chinese call “Feng-Feng” or “Wind-Gone-Mad” the true interpretation for the Chinese slange for hurricane, actually pilot-adventurer Jim Dahlgren—and a conspiracy to incite a provincial war.  “Wind-gone mad” plays both sides of a provincial war against each other to have them discover they have already been played against each other, along the same lines he stops a war by creating a war between the provinces.  As you can tell this story is full of twists and turns and double crosses that only L. Ron Hubbard does so well.

    These two stories are a perfect pairing for some adventures in the orient that will be the perfect companion in your next audio adventure.

     
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