Posts Tagged ‘discovery’


Cast of Wonders 325: Banned Books Week – The Librarian

Show Notes

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The Librarian

by Maria Haskins

The library hadn’t been there the day before, Ella was sure of it. That patch of dirt beside the rusting piles of spaceship debris outside the refugee camp had been bare, with nothing but weeds and rocks on it. Now, there was a library there. She knew it was a library because it said LIBRARY right on it, painted in glittery letters. The word was spelled out in the twelve most commonly spoken languages and dialects in the camp. Ella recognized them all from school, even if she could only read and understand five of them. .

The building was small and rectangular. It looked like a brightly painted version of one of the metal shipping containers Ella would see at the spaceport when she went there with her friends to scavenge for leavings. Of course, you weren’t supposed to go scavenging there, but everyone did anyway. You could find anything there – scraps of metal and junky electronics for the trader, even food, if you were lucky.

Ella squinted at the library’s sign. She was supposed to come straight home after school, but school had ended early since the power went out, and Pappa wouldn’t notice she was gone until later. And who had ever heard of anyone offering books around here? Better take the chance when it was offered.

Ella opened the door and stepped inside. (Continue Reading…)


Cast of Wonders 306: The Poet and the Spider

The Poet and the Spider

by Cynthia So

You saw the Empress once, when you were still a pillow-cheeked and blossom-mouthed child. She was tall and severe, and the train of her yellow dress flowed behind her for miles and miles, a river of pure gold. You stood behind your mother and wanted to bathe yourself in that river, and the Empress turned, her crown twinkling like a cosmos of cold stars, and she looked at you. You told everyone in your village afterwards that the Empress looked at you.

It was only for a moment. Her head was briefly inclined in your direction, and then it wasn’t. She kept walking. The river of gold frothed sumptuously past for hours, until at midday a woman interrupted it. She wore a black dress that spilled from her shoulders like ink. She held a brush in one hand, and in her other she held aloft the yellow fabric, on which she wrote in decisive strokes. In her wake, the river was no longer pure, muddied by dense black columns of characters.

(Continue Reading…)

Episode 171: Pluto by C. E. Hyun

Narrated by M. K. Hobson
Audio production by Jeremy Carter
Originally published in Lightning Cake, November 2014

Listen above or download here.

Show Notes

We have a refreshing palate-cleansing flash story this week, Pluto by C E Hyun.

C. E’s fiction has appeared in Joyland, failbetter, Lightning Cake, The Good Men Project, and elsewhere. She currently lives in San Diego. You can find her online and on Twitter.

For your narrator we welcome back the dulcet tones of M.K. Hobson, famously described as “featuring Bea Arthur as Addison DeWitt!”


M. K. Hobson has decided to follow a time-honored authorial tradition and become a bitter recluse. She swore off social media and left her website to go to seed. At the moment, she exists only as a voice on short fiction podcasts such as Podcastle and here at Cast of Wonders. She leavens the tedium of her vastly expanded free time with misanthropy, paranoia, and weight lifting.




Theme music is “Appeal to Heavens” by Alexye Nov, available at

Click here to read the text of the story

Episode 130: The Phobos Monolith by Preston Dennett

Narrated by Heather Amy Robinson

Listen above or download here.

Show Notes

This week we present The Phobos Monolith, by Preston Dennett.

Preston has worked as a carpet cleaner, fast-food worker, data entry clerk, bookkeeper, landscaper, singer, actor, writer, radio host, television consultant, teacher, UFO researcher, ghost hunter and more. But his true love has always been speculative fiction and he’s decided to see if he could make his dream of becoming an SF writer come true. The result has been a string of sales with stories appearing or forthcoming in lots of places, including Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine, Perihelion, Black Treacle and several other venues. He has also earned eight honorable mentions in the Writers of the Future Contest. He currently resides in Reseda, California where he spends his days looking for new ways to pay his bills and his nights exploring the farthest edges of the universe.

Preston has several stories about to be published in different magazines, and a pair of books about UFOs forthcoming from Schiffer Publishing. You can learn more about his work at his website.

Your narrator is Amy Robinson. Amy is a voiceover actress and character talent, who has recently read several excellent stories for EscapePod, including Black Swan Oracle, Immersion, and The Heart of the Machine. We’ve got her contact details for you, including Twitter and Facebook, as well.

Theme music is “Appeal To Heavens” by Alexye Nov, available at

Read Along

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