I’m guessing at least half, if not more, are asking, “What the heck is a Podiobook?” Fair enough. Before the review, I’ll give a quick overview from Podiobooks.com:

The term podiobook was coined by Evo Terra to describe serialized audiobooks which are distributed via RSS, much like a podcast. Listeners to Podiobooks.com can choose to receive the episodes of their books via an RSS feed or by listening to episodes by directly downloading episodes from this site. Some listeners keep the audio files on their computers, some transfer the book to CD, but most transfer the file on to their MP3 player so they can listen no matter where they are.

OK, so now that you’re versed, let me get into the review of one my personal favorites, Quarter Share by Nathan Lowell.

Quarter Share by Nathan Lowell

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Author’s Web Site

Summary

When Ishmael Wang is orphaned by a flitter crash, he must make some hard decisions about how to survive in a Company-owned universe. With limited time and fewer options, he lands a job as the newest hand on the Solar Clipper Lois McKendrick and learns there’s more to life than making coffee. Join Ish, Pip, Big Bad Bev, and the rest of the Lois McKendrick’s crew as they sail the galaxy in search of profitable trade

High Point

It’s a general thing, but since you get invested in Ish, you feel a part of his successes (both big and small) as he gets his “space legs.”

Low Point

The first few chapters take awhile to get up to speed, but you’re interested enough in the character and style of the novel to stay tuned.

The Scores

Originality: While totally common in old seafaring tales to have the main character start at the bottom of the ship, it’s not all that common in Sci-Fi. Most of the time we’re given the captain and officers point-of-view. 5/6

Story: It’s an enjoyable tale, but not a story like we’re used to. It’s more a narrative of Ish’s life on board the Lois McKendrick. And that’s not a bad thing at all. What it’s missing a good, solid antagonist or well-defined goal. 4/6

Imagery: Lowell does a good job of describing the surroundings, but excels at Ish’s internal feelings and moods. 4/6

Characterization: These are real-life and interesting characters. 5/6

Emotional Response: This is Lowell’s gift, you genuinely like Ish and the crew and find yourself longing to walk the hallways with them and perhaps sample some of that epic coffee. 6/6

Production: Nathan’s voice and style has been called “fireside chat-like” and it’s really fitting. Aside from the occasional noise from papers being shuffled, it’s a good and clean recording. 5/6

Overall: I found myself plowing through this book in a matter of days and couldn’t wait to grab the next book in the series, Half Share. 5/6

Total Score: 34 out of 42

Note: For Podiobook reviews, the usual Book Review rubrick is being used with Production replacing Editing (which will include editing, but will also include sound quality and voice acting/narration).