2015 Science Fiction Nominees and Reviews

The following audiobooks were nominated in the Science Fiction Category. Reviews will be posted as they come in.

This category will be judged by Bob from The Guilded Earlobe, Paul from Audiobook Reviewer, and Sam from The AudioBookaneers. Would you like to join them? Send an email to armchairaudies@gmail.com.

Here are the nominees:


  • The Beam: Season 1 by Sean Platt and Johnny B. Truant; Narrated by Johnny Heller, Tara Sands, Ralph Lister, Ray Chase, R.C. Bray, Jeffrey Kafer, Chris Patton, Eric Martin, Brian Holsopple, Rachel Fulginiti, Stephen Bowlby, and Emily Woo Zeller from Podium Publishing

“The audio talent is good and plentiful with 12 narrators of very different timbres and tones. I’ve seen in many reviews that the voice of Doc is the most criticized, and while I found Doc’s voice to take a little bit of getting used to, I grew fond of him quickly and looked forward to his narrations. I did, however, feel that there were far too many narrators. While I understand the parallel of an epic amount of narrators with an epic technology thriller series, the sheer volume of voice talent confused me, especially as new talent was introduced well into the book, and some voice talent read the same characters in ways different enough from other voice talents that I noticed and concentrated on the difference. Any facet of a book or audiobook that takes away from the writing is less than ideal, in my opinion.”

Audiobook Reviewer’s Full Review

“The performances are really quite fantastic as well, from the gritty tones for detective Dominic Long, the John Galt arrogance of Doc Stahl, the brother-versus-brother tension, the mysterious speechwriter, the aging singer, on and on. Well-cast and well-produced, it’s highly entertaining and winning fiction, presented with clear plot arcs across episodes and the season, successful on multiple levels.” ~ The Audiobookaneers

The Audiobookaneer’s Full Review

  • Dark Eden by Chris Beckett; Narrated by Matthew Frow, Jayne Entwistle, Ione Butler, Hannah Curtis, Robert Hook, Bruce Mann, Nicholas Guy Smith, and Heather Wilds from Penguin Random House Audio

“This book first came onto my radar way, way back in 2012 when I asked Steven Erikson for a book recommendation and he highly recommended Dark Eden, which would go on to win the 2013 Arthur C. Clarke Award and accumulate rave reviews on both sides of the Atlantic. But it wasn’t until the 2014 US release that we got this fantastic, full cast narration, and yet! by then my interest had largely cooled — two years is a long time to wait to keep the flame of a book recommendation burning. But, thanks to the Audie nomination, The Armchair Audies, and a welcome review copy from Random House Audio, I finally got to see what the fuss was about. And, holy hell, it was pretty much worth the wait, for all that.” ~ The Audiobookaneers

The Audiobookaneer’s Full Review

  • The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North; Narrated by Peter Kenny from Hachette Audio

“Peter Kenny is the narrator and does an excellent job. Harry is British as is Kenny. His voices are well done and always enjoyable. His American accents are quirky and charming, not quite right but fun to listen to none-the-less.”

Audiobook Reviewer’s Full Review

“Harry August is just overall brilliant from the story (Harry August is born in England in 1919-ish and lives and dies, then is reborn again with all his memories, again and again, meanwhile finding out through a network of such people that “the world is ending as it always must, but the end of the world is getting faster”) to Peter Kenny’s narration.” ~ The Audiobookaneers

The Audiobookaneer’s Full Review

  • Lock In by John Scalzi; Narrated by Wil Wheaton, Amber Benson, and a full cast from Audible, Inc.

“In Lock In you get a combination of sci-fi and police procedural.  The future setting feels real and other than the technology is not so different from today.  We follow Agent Shane, who grew up as a poster child for Hayden’s Syndrome and is trying to leave that behind him, on his first day of work for the FBI which also happens to be a the first day of the Hayden Walkout in protest of legislation that is going to go into effect taking away much of the government funding/benefits to people with Hayden’s.” ~ Audiobook Reviewer

Audiobook Reviewer’s Full Review

“I know Wheaton can be hit-or-miss for people. Some love his audio work, others don’t. I love it. He doesn’t fancy-pants around, drawing things out with slow, deliberate pacing, or over-the-top characterization. He’s quick, he’s clear, he’s punchy where he needs to be, and differentiates characters more than ably.” ~ The Audiobookaneers

The Audiobookaneer’s Full Review

  • The Martian by Andy Weir; Narrated by R.C. Bray from Podium Publishing

“The Martian is a life or death comedy of errors, that just so happens to take place on the surface of Mars. Andy Weir starts us off with a Mars expedition that suddenly takes a wrong turn and the crew has to evacuate under emergency conditions, leaving one of their own behind presumed dead. I am pretty sure that Mark Watney wished he was dead but he isn’t and no one knows that he isn’t, pretty much fu**ed.” ~ Audiobook Reviewer

Audiobook Reviewer’s Full Review

“The Martian was my first experience with narrator R.C. Bray, but I’m pretty sure that seeing his name in an audiobook’s credits will be a recommendation for me in the future. I really enjoyed his character-voice work, and his reading of the tightly-plotted final section had me nearly breathless. (I listen to audiobooks while driving, so this may not have been entirely safe.)” ~ 3R’S Blog

3R’s Blog’s Full Review

“Andy Weir’s The Martian was first self-published in late 2012 to tens of thousands of very happy readers, and R.C. Bray’s narration for Podium Publishing in 2013 was so good that it made many year’s best lists last year. Still, Podium went so far as to have Bray record a new narration to accompany the updated text in the February 2014 hardcover release by Crown and, again, it’s simply fantastic, a near one-of-a-kind book that spawns many, many requests for “similar” books and audiobooks, not to mention taking home this year’s Goodreads Science Fiction award and (quite recently) being named a finalist for the John W. Campbell Memorial Award.” ~ The Audiobookaneers

The Audiobookaneer’s Full Review

One thought on “2015 Science Fiction Nominees and Reviews

  1. WordsAndPeace February 15, 2015 at 5:39 pm Reply

    The Martian is the best science-fiction I have read for a long time

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