I grew up on Golden Age Radio, and while I love to read, I typically consume more books via audio thanks to a job that lets me listen while I work. As an aspiring writer, I try to read a great deal of non-fiction in addition to a variety of fictional genres. I especially love history, historical fiction, science fiction, fantasy, and old-style gothic horror.
I've been following "Benny the Irish Polyglot" at his blog for a few months now, and this book is essentially all of his great hints and tips in one place, put together so you don't have to hunt for them. He's living proof that learning to speak multiple languages CAN happen, but he'll also tell you that fluency in 3 months requires 3 or more hours per day. If you don't need "mastery" or don't have that kind of time commitment, a slower pace will still get you where you're looking to be with dedication in the time frame you do have. If nothing else, dispelling the myths, addressing concerns, and providing a positive platform for beginners are what Benny does best. That's what this book is all about.
This really is the best introduction to a foreign language. While the vocabulary is limited, you learn proper pronunciation and grammar immediately, as well as speech recognition.
There isn't a story, of course, but the progression of skill is excellent.
There is no related book.
"The most boring Russian film ever." :)
I find that it is best to have supplemental materials, because unfortunately the speakers do not always enunciate. While this give opportunity to hear Russian (or whatever language) as it is actually spoken, it sometimes makes it difficult to ensure that you are repeating the sounds correctly.