The Head Hunters
Written by L. Ron Hubbard
Produced for audio by Galaxy Press with a full cast
I have to admit when I was first approached by Galaxy Press regarding reviewing of their audio books, I was a bit torn. I love stories of action and adventure from the pulp age, but I have read some of L. Ron Hubbard’s later work (Battlefield Earth and the Mission Earth series), and, well, I just wasn’t impressed. On the other hand the stories that Galaxy Press was offer me where from early in L. Ron Hubbard’s writing career and definitely in a more action/adventure vein. In the end I figured, if I didn’t like them then I would just say so. (I am all about giving honest reviews here.)
Fortunately for Galaxy Press and L. Ron Hubbard (and you), I really enjoyed The Head Hunters. The Head Hunters is a classic two-fisted pulp adventure story set in Polynesia. It centers around a man named Tom Christian. Christian is the adventure who is master of his own small sailing yacht. The story begins with Punjo Charlie, a local villain, menacing Christian’s first mate Hihi (a local islander). Punjo Charlie is trying to find a cache of gold discovered by Christian on the island’s interior and steal it. Christian and Hihi attempt to recover the gold before the rainy season hits and before Punjo Charlie finds it. But our heroes must also rescue a naive scientific expedition from the clutches of Punjo Charlie and his band of head hunters as well as recover the gold before it is too late.
As I said I really enjoyed The Head Hunters. Sure it was a bit dated as well as a little racist and sexist by today’s standards, but it was fun. A large part of what made it fun was the fact that it was produced with a full cast and audio effects and music (in the same style as books produced by GraphicAudio.) That really helped bring the story to life for me and upped the dramatic tension a bit. And the cast was great. The audio was clear even with the effects and music. The characters were well voiced. None of the accents were two thick. Every voice was unique. Quality of the audio performance over all was top notch.
Another big plus for me was that this audio books was only two hours long. I am a big fan of the short novel. I spend two hours a day driving and an hour at the gym listening to audio most days. Have a book I can complete in one days is nice sometimes.