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Flamingoes in Orbit

Narrated by: Josh Shirt
Length: 9 hrs and 33 mins
4 out of 5 stars (5 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A teenager stares at his reflection and sees the Milky Way. A motorbike prowls and growls like a wild animal. A whale sings a song to end loneliness. 

Philip Ridley's collection of short stories - like his two adult novels, Crocodilia and In the Eyes of Mr Fury - became an instant cult classic when first published in 1990. Magical, poetic, heartbreaking and humorous, the sequence explores childhood, family life, romantic love in all its aspects - lost, unrequited, obsessional - and does so with a haunting mixture of both the barbaric and the beautiful that has become Ridley's trademark. In particular, these tales deal with the experience of growing up gay in a world still bristling with prejudice, and they sing and howl with the need for equality and freedom. 

This edition includes two new stories, "Alien Heart" and "Wonderful Insect", and finally completes a seminal and compelling collection first begun over 30 years ago.

©1990, 2018 Philip Ridley (P)2018 Valancourt Books LLC

Critic Reviews

"Ridley sets off a deliberate quiet and matter-of-fact prose against touches of glowing passion.... The stories achieve a startling variety. The power of the book as a whole, however, derives from the way in which these different voices blend in a single cry of frustration and regret." (Times Literary Supplement)

"Menace lurks in the shady corners of family life.... Chilling." (Time Out)

"Ridley is a visionary." (Rolling Stone)

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What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Recommend, but...

The stories can be on the harsh side. Tales of the cruel and/or stupid in a world equally so. Certainly not the standard fare and I can easily see how it could turn people off.

The narration is another oddity. The narrator makes everyone sound so lost and confused; giving the characters an innocence that isn't reflected in their actions. It seems out of place at first but ends up creating a bit of a dream-like quality.

After finishing the book I was not enamored for sure... but in the proceeding days I found my mind continually wandering back to it. Contemplating the people and their lives. Whether you liked the the stories and characters or not, you are certainly painted vivid imagery of their existence.

Recommended because there is something to be gained from this book, but not everyone may appreciate it.



A copy of this book was provided to the reviewer upon their request, but the review is their honest and voluntarily provided thoughts.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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my heart

okay I didn't know it was to expect I Knew by the blurb that we had a lot of stories in one book but I couldn't imagine the emotional ride but I will get from those stories it was raw and so wonderful I loved it the narrator was superb and everything was absolutely undescribable it was a great and wonderous ride of short tails that somehow belongs to each other
I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Enjoyed these edgy stories, Josh Shirt is perfect

Flamingoes in Orbit is my first taste of Philip Ridley’s unique and creative writing, and after perusing his backlist, I can see I’m just getting started. There’s a thread of darkness running throughout this collection of stories which I thoroughly enjoyed. After the first one I knew not to expect where any tale was headed... and I just sat back and enjoyed the ride.

Absolutely perfect for the tone of these stories is the soothing, melodic voice of narrator Josh Shirt. I’m disappointed to find he doesn’t currently have any other audiobooks available on Audible, and if this talented performer uses any other names I’d sure love to know about it.

Mr. Shirt brings these stories to life in a way that had chills running down my back. He’s subtle as he builds the tension, and when the inevitable twists come in the plot it’s a wonderful surprise as couldn’t tell it was coming.

So if you like a beautifully written, edgy story check out the writing of Philip Ridley. And if you’re looking to get lost in a thrilling audiobook, it would be hard to pick a better one than Flamingoes in Orbit.

an audiobook copy of Flamingoes in Orbit was provided to me for the purpose of my review

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Interesting

So, I was encouraged to pick up this book based on the cover and the unique title. I wasn’t sure what to expect of the story, but the stories inside were all wonderful. This collection of short works is rough and raw, full of emotion, and they all fit together in one way or another to tell a truly compelling story.

Since I listened to the audiobook, I didn’t have the words in front of me to see when one story ended, and another began. The narrator, Josh Shirt, however, made smooth transitions. The characters were also well voiced.

This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.

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Enjoyable collection of stories

This is my first time reading this book and, judging from the reviews I've seen, I missed a critical piece of literature from my youth. I liked the writing style of the stories and how they all felt very different but still felt like they belonged together. My issue was some of triggering scenes that I wish I had been warned about because they hit me like a ton of bricks to the head. Despite this, I enjoyed the stories.

I listened to the audiobook and Josh Shirt did an excellent job narrating. I didn't have the text in front of me, but he managed to catch the nuances of the characters and the writing. I also think his pacing was perfect which is often the biggest problem I encounter with audiobooks.

**I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.**

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  • ScottishJay
  • 02-20-19

A nice collection of stories

A few stories that were unrelated yet felt they belonged together. I enjoyed listening to this book and most of the stories. It lost a star under the story category for me, as with all books that consist of multiple stories, I find that though I enjoy the majority of them, there are some that dosen't quite draw me in.

Narrator performance was fantastic and I'd happily listen to more from Josh Shirt.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review