This engaging, humorous tale of the beyond won a Hugo Award for Best Novella.
©2005 Connie Willis; (P)2008 Audible, Inc.
"Highly enjoyable, somewhat educational and will leave readers happy at the end." (Publishers Weekly)
"Irresistible entertainment." (Booklist)
I have just discovered Connie Willis after reading "Not to Mention the Dog". The author tweaks just a few small things about everyday life to make an interesting and sometimes funny semi-fantasy, a sort of "what would happen if...." This book was great fun and kept me interested throughout. I'd advise not wasting a credit on it due to its short length, but wait until there is a sale and buy it. You won't be disappointed.
A science fiction fan for as long as I can remember but I also enjoy history (fact and fiction) and humor.
If you've never read any of Connie Willis' short stories (as opposed to her excellent novels) you owe it to yourself to give "Inside Job" a listen. This story is easily among her best (so far) and the reading by Dennis Boutsikaris is excellent.
I'm the managing editor of the Fantasy Literature blog. Life's too short to read bad books!
I have a goal of eventually reading all of the major SFF award winners, including novels, novellas, novelettes, and short stories, so that???s why I picked up Connie Willis???s Inside Job when I saw that it was available on audio. Inside Job won the Hugo Award for Best Novella in 2006. Just a couple of months ago, by the way, Connie Willis received the SFWA Grand Master Award (January 2012).
Inside Job is a story about Rob, a professional debunker of pseudoscience, and his new partner Kildy Ross, a beautiful and famous actress. They attend s??ances and visit faith healers, psychics, and palm readers, always figuring out how these hucksters are cheating the gullible and publishing their findings in their magazine, The Jaundiced Eye.
Mostly it???s the same thing over and over: an earpiece, hidden wires, a confederate in the right place. Their latest case, however, is the toughest one ever. When they attend a seminar by the new psychic in town, Ariaura Keller, she begins channeling the spirit of H.L. Mencken, the famous skeptic who reported on the Scopes Trial and famously said, ???Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American people.???
Rob and Kildy are determined to discover how Ariaura is channeling Mencken. But, more puzzling, why would a psychic who makes money tricking her audience be regaling them with monologues by H.L. Mencken? The resulting investigation is exciting, suspenseful, full of delicious logical quandaries, and often very funny.
Eventually the reader wonders if there???s such a thing as being too skeptical. At some point, you have to have faith in something or someone. What kind of relationship would you have with your loved ones, for example, if you kept demanding irrevocable proof when they said they loved you?
Inside Job was a quick read and a fun and educational story with likable characters and a delightfully silly plot. I listened to Audible Frontiers??? version which was narrated by Dennis Boutsikaris, who I liked very much.
This was a quick and fun paranormal fiction piece. When a new psychic act comes to town, ex-actress Kildy decides that her boss needs to see the show. Rob, a journalist and professional skeptic doesn't do channelers with Kildy's nudging it goes to a performance. In the end, he gets more then he bargained for and maybe the story to end all stories.
The dialog between Kildy and Rob make this novella. It was a fun and witty listen that has convinced me to pick up more by Connie Willis.
I'm a bibliophile since early childhood. Love speculative fiction, odd premises, mystery novels that teach about different places and times.
Love Connie Willis and I adore this shorter book. It's about what happens when spiritualists go real. Too funny and way too wonderful.
After having read mostly Connie Willis "Timetravel" novels before, the plot was a bit one-dimensional and the character of Kildy remained unbelievable to me.
This said, I enjoyed the reading a lot after I adjusted my (too) high expectations for this much shorter novella. Dennis Boutsikaris did a good job differentiating the characters and the dialog between Rob and Kildy sparked and drove the story. One of the highlights for me are always the quotes at the beginning of each chapter.
I really enjoyed the story. As a skeptic who desperately wants to be believe in the spirit world is spoke to all my hopes and fears. Its really well written, fast paced, great character development. Its great way to spend 2 hours.
The narrator was good but the story was neither mysterious nor interesting. At the end, I just wondered why it had been written. In my view it didn't seem to have much purpose.
This is the first book I have read by Connie Willis. She writes in an easy style and the story is interesting and keeps one interested. A debunking journalist's beliefs are questioned when one of his deceased debunking colleagues is 'channeled' through one of the charlatans he is trying to expose. All in all it is a short, fun listen which I would recommend.
My only real criticism is that the debunker-couple are so entrenched in their beliefs and there intent to debunk that when all the indications, after extensive evidence and research, point towards a genuine contact with a spirit, they continue to debunk and even conceal the truth. Makes them a bit stupid in my opinion. But this will not stop me looking for other titles by the author as I think she is very good. The narration was excellent too.
I had Miss Willis Passage and quite enjoyed it so I bought this. I had to return it, I just could not listen to it anymore.
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