John Scalzi teams up with his friend Wil Wheaton again to deliver Fuzzy Nation, an entertaining short story set on a distant planet. Although this is a modern re-write of an older story it is still obvious that the original story is from a simpler time. Wheaton does his usual solid job as a narrator. He reads well but he doesn't do a lot of voices so his performances are slightly limited compared to some of the other narrators.
This is a classic tale of a corporation exploiting resources for profit and destroying the environment until a new life form is discovered - the "Fuzzies". There is an ensuing legal battle to protect the home world of the "Fuzzies" as scientists and lawyers square off with differing opinions. The moral compass of certain characters waver as vast sums of money are weighed against the protection of this newly discovered species. Scalzi injects his usual humor into the story and 7 hours felt about right for this one.
Although predictable at times if you are looking for a short, light sci-fi story then Fuzzy Nation will serve you well. Not quite a 4 star tale for me and I would have given it 3.5 stars if allowed.
The best thing about this selection is that it includes H. Beam Piper's original story with John Scalzi's updated treatment. Scalzi didn't just modernize the classic story - he used the basic premise and some character names but followed his own creative path in character development and plot. It turned different enough to be enjoyable on its own merits. The original still shines, despite some anachronistic sexism, obsolete technology, and lots of cigarettes.
The narrators enhanced the differences between the stories. Wil Wheaton narrated Fuzzy Nation with only limited attempts at character voices, so the dialogue needed "_____ said" after every quote for clarity. This got annoying after a while. Peter Ganim narrates Little Fuzzy with voices, making the dialogue was truer to the text, though the strong ethnic accents of some characters was also a little distracting.
Little Fuzzy was already a classic by the time I started reading SF as a teen, but its juvenile-sounding title kept me from reading it. It took John Scalzi's rewrite to convince me to give it a try as an audiobook, and I'm so glad I did.
Fuzzy Nation and Little Fuzzy are one of my best audio experiences this year. I like both stories and the narration was excellent.
In this audio book you get to compare Scalzi's telling of the story with Piper's original story. Although I like Scalzi his story is more light weight and almost a cliche compared to the original. Story is 4 for Scalzi and 5 for Piper. My ratings are reversed for the naration.
Wil Wheaton is an excellent narrator but I think little was added to the story or intro by having excellent narration. Perhaps the emotional impact is improved by the narration, that is the one thing Scalzi heightened and improved upon the original and Wil really brought it out.
Toward the end of both stories ??? yes.
I like Scalzi but Piper's Little Fuzzy is better and a 5 star classic. Your mileage may vary.
I read this book based on a recommendation, and midway through it, I thought to myself, "Is this that author who wrote the Old Man's War space novels?" He is an entertaining story teller, but holy smokes he needs to use a thesaurus when tempted to write the word, "said". It becomes distracting to listen to the word "said" repeated over and over again. There are other words like: "Replied", "Queried", "Asked", "Quipped", "Jibed", "Wondered aloud", "Laughed", "Growled", "Whispered", that came to me as I listened to the narrator. I felt bad for him having to read the word "said" over and over. If it were me reading it, I would have taken license to change the word myself. Anyway, it was a great story, and written with a sense fun that Scalzi's fans will appreciate.
This is a fun, quick read and one of my kids' favorites even though it is not a children's book (there is some swearing that will offend some, and a violent scene probably not appropriate for really young ones), but my kids were 11 and 17 at the time and both just loved it.
I loved the reluctant hero of the main character Jack, and especially his relationship with is dog Carl. I also loved the anti-corporate, yet not bludgeoning you over the head, message (which is fairly common in sci-fi anyway).
The only reason I gave the story 4 stars is because it is a little simplistic for adult fiction and I will agree that Scalzi overuses "says" to the point that it is sometimes distracting if there's a lot of quick back and forth between characters.
And then there's Wil. I can't love his narration of this story enough. Wil just knows how to read Scalzi's work perfectly. I can hear in his voice his own amusement or sadness at what he's reading and I think his cadence is perfect for it.
This is a fun book and I especially recommend it in audio form!
The inclusion of the story which it was a reboot of, and which I paid for when I purchased the combination of these two stories in one package. You know the package I bought not the half of it that you so graciously now allow me to access, but both books.
Little Fuzzy. Which I was able to compare this book to when I purchase them both together in February of 2013. Now the file for Little Fuzzy is gone from my library on my kindle and in my Audible Manager. Still waiting for an explanation Audible.
Solid performance by Wil Wheaton in Fuzzy Nation. I can't really recall the performance in Little Fuzzy because Audible or Amazon stole from the file back before I could finish listening to it.
Seriously what the hell Audible. I used a credit to purchase a dual audio book Piper's Little Fuzzy, and Scalzi's reboot. I want my Little Fuzzy audio book back, or a really good explanation as to why you removed files from my hard drives or libraries after I had purchased them. I bought one thing and you changed the deal after the fact. Very displeased with this result.
This is a cute story with unlikeable characters and unlikely situations.
Wil Wheaton is not a professional narrator. When I listen to him, I spend part of my time feeling like some regular Joe is reading the book outloud and I happen to be in the area. The rest of the time, I hear a faint whisper of Dr. Sheldon Cooper's voice as he tells me how amazing Wil Wheaton is. To be fair, I think Wil Wheaton is a great choice for the story. I listened to him read the Red Shirts and felt the same way - he's an offbeat, sci-fi-ish voice that brings Scalzi books to life.
The narration was rushed and the repetitive use of the attributives - he said...she said...he siad.....she said, was like having a splinter stuck in you hand and not able to get it out. I enjoyed the original text and narration so much more.
Between this title and a few other recent purchases, I have started to shy away from a long term love affair with science fiction. If others hadn't rated it so high I may not have been disappointed quite so much.
I am not a fan of Wil Weaton as a narrator
I would recommend that this novel was not re-released. The original was definitely dated but the rewrite did not warrant the effort.
I had never read the original novel (which is included in part two of this purchase) so had nothing on which to base my expectations. I thought it was good fun and enjoyed the flawed hero, the sense of humor of the author, and the happy ending. I found myself smiling throughout and engaged from beginning to end. I highly recommend Fuzzy Nation.