I was listening to my friend Keith's Time Out podcast this morning and he asked for people to review his podiobook, Borrowed Time, on their blogs. You can find his podiobook on his website penslinger.com/, at podiobooks.com, or your can subscribe through iTunes or the Zune Marketplace. Wow, 4 shameless plugs for web sites; I think that is a record for a single sentence. Anyway, he said that he would shower anyone who did that with thanks and praise. Well, I'm not one to pass an opportunity to feel the warm glow of appreciation, but first I must digress.
Podiobooks.com is great place to get free audiobooks. This site encourages folks to write and record their books, and gives them a place to publish and distribute their work. I have listened to more than 10 stories and am going back for more. The recordings range from a simple reading of the story to something like radio shows of the past with voice acting and background sounds. The site gives you the opportunity to show your appreciation to the authors by donating money that goes to support the site and the author as well. One of their biggest success stories is the 7th Son series, which caught the attention of a publisher and is now available in print. It goes to show the caliber of writers that publish here. If you have a long commute and a short budget for entertainment, check out the site and find a story that make the miles go by faster.
Now, back to the reason I am writing. Borrowed Time is a time-travel adventure that takes place in the great state of Michigan. Nestor “Ness” Relevant is a photographer who receives a package from an old college professor. The package contains a PDA that allows Ness to time travel, but with limitations. Throughout his adventure he uses the device to help him get out of sticky situations, visit his past, and get one foot up on the bad guys. But enough about the story, no sense spoiling the plot before you listen to it.
Keith takes a new angle on time travel that kept the story moving and the listener guessing. Each time Ness got into a tight spot you wondered how, or if, he would use the device to escape. He didn't use time travel as a crutch giving the listener a good mix of adventure and sci-fi all wrapped up in a neat package. The story is not long and moved at a good pace. The only time I wanted him to move the story faster was at the end of each episode. There were many times when he left the listener hanging and anxious to know what would happen next. He did a good job of making character voices distinct so it was easy to tell them apart, and added variety to his reading. The only detractor for me was when Keith did the voice of a female character. I had an image in my head that was akin to Eric Idle playing a woman in a Monty Python skit. There are also companion episodes that follow the progress of the story. He discussed the story, how he worked his ideas onto “paper”, and presented feedback from listeners. These were fun to listen to, especially when he included the blooper reel. You got an idea just how much work went into making this podcast.
Overall I really enjoyed Borrowed Time, and am looking forward to more of Keith's podcasts. Check it out, you won't be sorry.