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Publisher's Summary

Audie Award Finalist, Original Work, 2014

In Rip-Off!, 13 of today’s best and most honored writers of speculative fiction face a challenge even they would be hard-pressed to conceive: Pick your favorite opening line from a classic piece of fiction (or even non-fiction) - then use it as the first sentence of an entirely original short story.

In the world of Rip-Off!, "Call me Ishmael" introduces a tough-as-nails private eye - who carries a harpoon; The Wonderful Wizard of Oz inspires the tale of an aging female astronaut who’s being treated by a doctor named Dorothy Gale; and Huckleberry Finn leads to a wild ride with a foul-mouthed riverboat captain who plies the waters of Hell.

Once you listen to Rip-Off! you’ll agree: If Shakespeare or Dickens were alive today, they’d be ripping off the authors in this great collection.

The stories included in Rip-Off! are:

  • "Fireborn" by Robert Charles Wilson
  • "The Evening Line" by Mike Resnick
  • "No Decent Patrimony" by Elizabeth Bear
  • "The Big Whale" by Allen M. Steele
  • "Begone" by Daryl Gregory
  • "The Red Menace" by Lavie Tidhar
  • "Muse of Fire" by John Scalzi
  • "Writer’s Block" by Nancy Kress
  • "Highland Reel" by Jack Campbell
  • "Karin Coxswain or Death as She Is Truly Lived" by Paul Di Filippo
  • "The Lady Astronaut of Mars" by Mary Robinette Kowal
  • "Every Fuzzy Beast of the Earth, Every Pink Fowl of the Air" by Tad Williams
  • "Declaration" by James Patrick Kelly

As a bonus, the authors introduce their stories, explaining what they ripped-off - and why.

Rip-Off! was produced in partnership with SFWA - Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America. Gardner Dozois served as project editor.

The full list of narrators includes: Wil Wheaton, Scott Brick, Christian Rummel, Jonathan Davis, Khristine Hvam, L.J. Ganser, Stefan Rudnicki, David Marantz, Nicola Barber, Dina Pearlman, Allyson Johnson, Marc Vietor, and Ilyana Kadushin.

For more books from the authors of Rip-Off! click here.

©2012 Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Inc. (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"Thirteen authors, eight narrators--this themed anthology has something for everyone…. Longtime narrators Scott Brick and Stefan Rudnicki rub elbows with Star Trek alum Wil Wheaton and five others. The varied narrators mean that there's no common delivery style, but it's safe to say that everyone involved was having fun." (AudioFile)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 3.7 out of 5.0
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Story

  • 3.6 out of 5.0
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  • Story
  • joan
  • YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, NY, United States
  • 06-01-13

Some of the stories are pretty good

...but the rest ... not so much. In some they seem to try too hard to make their stories fit the theme - taking a first line from a great book and winging it from there. Frankly, I was unimpressed, even though there were tales by some of my favorite authors.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Did not wow me

This book was fun, there are a couple of stand-out stories here, but overall it didn’t really wow me.

It is definitely worth listening to if you have any favorite authors with stories in it.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

I was not impressed

Not a lot to say here. Most of the stories were mediocre, a few were awful. None really memorable or particluarly enjoyable. As you can tell, I was somewhat disappointed by this anthology. Not my cup of tea.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Steven
  • RIVERVIEW, FL, United States
  • 02-15-13

Only One Worth It

The only story in this that was worth the read was "The Lady Astronaut of Mars" by Mary Robinette Kowal. It was done in the style of Ray Bradbury and it was an EXCELLENT tribute to the author.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • Tracey
  • Schaumburg, IL, United States
  • 01-15-13

Some good, some bad

I guess when it comes to a short stories you are always going to have some good, some bad, but I really don't think I would have purchased this book if I had it to do over. There were some excellent stories, but the bad out weighed the good.
There are to many books out there more worthy of your credits!

2 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

A mixed bag

Most of the stories are amazing, but a few of them are really hard to get through.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Nice idea, poorly executed.

Only a few of the short stories in here are worth a listen: The Moby Dick one is probably the best but for most the concept got in the way of the writing. Muse of Fire is pretty good too...

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • Daniel
  • United States
  • 03-14-13

Not a total rip off....

What did you like best about Rip-Off!? What did you like least?

The same thing... That it is a compilation of several short stories by different authors.. It turns out to be both good and bad.

Any additional comments?

Some of the short stories are really great and some, well, not so much. The same thing can be said about the performances. It's definitely worth the credit to listen to the different authors. I am definitely planning a couple purchases based on this book..

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Story
  • Matthew
  • Ottawa, ON, Canada
  • 01-30-13

Mostly mediocre

There are a couple of good stories here, but mostly mediocre ones. Not really worth the credit.

1 of 5 people found this review helpful