Podcast Review #43: Dreaming of Deliverance

Title: Dreaming of Deliverance
Author: R.E. Chambliss
Genre: Fantasy
Released: 26 October 2009 – 18 May 2010
Located: iTunes, Podiobooks
Formats Available: Podcast, Dead Tree version, electronic version
Rating: R for sexual content, language and violence

Occasionally, in my Twitter circle, I’ll hear people talking about a work of podcast fiction and for one reason or another, I just kind of unconsciously decide not to listen. I will say, it is usually because I have quite a few waiting for me in my catcher, but still, it isn’t a something I think about, I just don’t subscribe.

Later, for one reason or another, this will be brought back to my attention, and quite possibly I will then give it a listen. Dreaming of Deliverance was one of these stories for me, and if it hadn’t been for Nathan Lowell inadvertently mentioning it to me in passing, I might still not have heard it.

So, on to the review.

Synopsis: Five years ago when Lindsay Paulson, a naive college student and talented distance runner, was 18, she was convicted of drug smuggling. Now, halfway through a 10-year prison sentence, she begins having what seem to be dreams, in which she leaves her cell in the night and visits another reality called Trae. Dreaming of Deliverance tells of Lindsayโ€™s experiences both in Trae, where she finds herself among people enslaved by terrifying creatures, and in prison where she tries to make sense of whatโ€™s happening in her sleep: Is she actually escaping from prison somehow or is she losing her mind? (stolen from Podiobooks.com)

Production: Ms. R.E. Chambliss production of her novel is quite good. There are a few instances of inconsistency, but they are few, far between and easily forgivable. The rare time where the transition music and her voice overlap and make hearing a bit more difficult for a few seconds, or the episode that is mixed just a bit hotter than the rest are quite the exception to the rule, and I’m sure I would be guilty of much, much worse. I am sure if you, as the listener, were not listening to one episode after another, you would not even be aware of some of these rare occasions.

Cast: Dreaming of Deliverance is a straight read podcast and Ms. Chambliss is the reader. She does a very nice job of reading each of the characters. She doesn’t go overboard on vocalizations or intonations and relies more on written cues to provide dialogue cues. It is well done and the story is easy to listen to.

Story: First, what I don’t like. I’ve never been a fan of alternate universes or realities. I don’t like the device of putting a character into a learning situation being the impetus for much of the story’s development and the character in that situation tends to make me unsympathetic to their plight. Maybe this goes back to Thomas Covenant, a character I really didn’t like but a story I really wanted to. However, there are several of these types of stories that have definitely proven to be exceptions. Riverworld, Amber, Shadowmagic, The Dreamer’s Thread, and now, Dreaming of Deliverance.

Verdict: Ms. Chambliss tells a great story. When I began listening to Dreaming of Deliverance, several elements reminded me of the previously reviewed The Dreamer’s Thread, but that quickly went away and each story remains completely unique. I have to say, Dreaming of Deliverance had me by the third episode. I anxiously looked forward to opportunities to listen. Ms. Chambliss jumped right into the stream and provided little more than a cursory nod to individual characters back stories. You knew who they were, why they did what they did, but not much beyond that. However, you really didn’t need to. The story grabs on and allows the reader/listener to simply enjoy it. And enjoy it I did. Yes, I would really have liked all the different threads to have a nice simple ending, but that wasn’t necessary. What was necessary happened. Ms. Chambliss entertained me throughout the entire story and left me wanting more. Thankfully there is going to eventually be more. This makes me very happy. I do happily recommend Dreaming of Deliverance and hope you enjoyed it as much as I did.

Oh, and Nathan… if you’ve got any more suggestions you’ve been keeping from me, spill. Now.

Disclosure: Ms. Chambliss had been following me on Twitter for a short time before I began her story. The two events were completely unrelated however, and because she engaged me in several conversations, I did return her follow and now chat with her occasionally. I even broke my own rule and provided her “clues” that I was listening to DOD. However, at no time was any incentive provided or even a suggestion made that this review would be provided. I wish someone would try to provide incentive. We’re not talking large incentives here. Cookies are good. So are first born.

Comment Pages

There are 9 Comments to "Podcast Review #43: Dreaming of Deliverance"

  • Thank goodness for good Twitter people who share the word about good books. ๐Ÿ™‚ This is one reason why this blog is so valuable for people who want to find good quality podcast novels. Not that Odin has had a chance to try them all (it seems that people keep writing them at a pace even Odin can’t keep up with).

    Another great review. I love reviews that give me an idea if I’ll want to give the book a try or not, not just if the reviewer liked it or not. This review and pretty much all the rest in this blog series does that very well. It’s one of the reasons people like me keep coming back. ๐Ÿ™‚

    BTW: Odin has a wonderful sense of humor and enjoys writing his disclaimers. Occasionally he will insert items just to see if we are listening … or for my personal amusement. This does not mean that he can be bought, even for cookies (for white birch beer? maybe – but there are reasons why he doesn’t have a mailing address on the site) ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • craigr1971 says:

    A very fair and appropriately glowing review. Ms Chambliss’ first podcast is a real gem, not to be missed by any serious fan. She combines writing chops, originality of story, palpable passion for her characters, and dulcet narration placing her in the elite of this format. Odin, you’ve hit the nail on the head with this posting. For a one-eyed Norse God, without the benefit of binocular vision, that’s a good thing……….

  • Hurrah! You found Rene’s story! She said it is even being picked up and recommended by running magazines. Rene tells a great story, I agree with you and I am a fan of her delivery. She is recording for other authors too, so her voice is liked by many. She is a member of The Wicked Women Writers, which is where I met her, and can also tell a very scary story. Again, thank you for a review that is a consistent pattern that is realistic and has become very reliable.

    PS what kind and how many cookies and where do I send them?

    • odin1eye says:

      Lol. No cookies please, i really am on a diet.

      In all seriousness though, the running was one of the things I loved about this story. I’ve never done more than a 10k (and don’t really want to) but I could definitely relate to Lindsay and her running. A good story. Dark, but still able to touch me.

  • I’ve thanked you a million times on Twitter already, but I want to thank you here too. As a new podcaster, it can be tough to get noticed. I think most people look at the Podiobooks’ charts to make their selections. But if only a small group is listening, then the book isn’t going to be on the charts! So reviews like yours are really important!

    I’ve heard from a few people that the concept of Dreaming of Deliverance didn’t grab them–but once they started it, they ended up loving the story. I wonder if I could describe it differently? But maybe it’s like a lot of books: it’s hard to get a true sense of power of the story from a paragraph or two!

    Anyway, I’m so glad you enjoyed DoD! Writing and podcasting it has been extremely rewarding and hearing back from people who’ve read or listened to it has been more thrilling and touching than I can express!

    Thanks again!!

    And let me know if you change your mind about the cookies! ;o)

    • odin1eye says:

      Thanks Renee! I always love to have author’s check in here. My goal is simply to provide prospective listeners with a variety of stories they might like. As Richard (Mainframe) has said, although I will always state my opinion of a story, I’m trying to give others enough information to form their own opinions.

      Thanks again for the comment and, even more, thanks for the story!

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