About Niles

Niles / Alex Foster

My name is Alex Foster, and I was born in Shrewsbury in August 1978, which makes me a 27 30-year-old Leo. I’m just a little under 5’11” and my BMI is approximately 30 32. Which is bad.

I come from the small market town of Leominster in Herefordshire. I came to university in Nottingham in 1996 and stayed for a BA in French and German and an MA in Film Studies finishing in 2002.

In 2003 I was elected a Lib Dem councillor for the Basford Ward of Nottingham City Council. In 2007 I was elected to represent Leen Valley ward, which stretches from Nottingham’s Crown Island to the Nuthall Road. I lost my seat in 2011, retrained as a teacher and am now an NQT teaching French and German in a Derbyshire school

I have worked in adult education teaching basic IT skills, for two MEPs and for two MPs.


If you know me via a newsgroup or IRC then you’ll know that my internet pseudonym is Niles, or a variation of that. (Nilex, my sometime IRC nick was a typo that I rather liked the look of, and has nothing to do with either the Star Trek character Nelix or the nuclear company Nirex.) This dates from when I had an anonymous university address and no real urge to use my own name. There are at least half a dozen Alex Fosters out there. The name is taken from the character played by cute’n’dimpled concert pianist David Hyde Pierce who plays Niles in the American sitcom Frasier, and whom I do not in any way resemble.


There are a variety of pictures of me on Flickr.

Contact Details

Please see the Contact page.

MyFitnessPal – Nutrition Facts For Foods

MyFitnessPal – Nutrition Facts For Foods


50 comments on “About Niles

  1. Lorri says:

    I discovered the reading you did in 2006 of The Invisible Man where you gave this web address. I just wanted to let you know how much I am enjoying listening to your reading. I’m from California US and shamefully, most people these days can’t read worth a whit. Thank you for providing me with such delight through the endless nights of an insomniac

  2. John S says:

    I too have very much enjoyed your reading of the Invisible Man. I particularly liked the Mariner and his discussion with Mr Marvel in chapter 13! “There are some EXTRAORDINARY things in books …. and out of them…”

    • Ha! That is one of my very favorite, too! I just read it to my husband as an example of your excellent reading. I’m doing an online course on fantasy and science fiction literature and only recently discovered Libri.v.ox and you are such a pleasure to listen too. Thank you so very much for reading the Invisible Man.

    • Ha, that is one of my very favorite sections in The Invisible Man, too. I just got my husband to listen to it, for your voice, Alex is just such a pleasure to listen to, thank you for participating in Librivox and making audiobooks accessible for all.

  3. Anne Campbell says:

    Another thanks, this time from Massachusetts, USA, for your reading of _The Invisible Man_! You did a fantastic job. I lay down the other night to listen to a chapter or two before going to sleep, and I found I couldn’t stop until the book was done. Now I’ve gone back to Librivox to see what other pieces you’ve read. Thanks again!

  4. John Mihic says:

    And yet another thank you for your reading of The Invisible Man, but this time from Austin, Texas. I’m re-living my youth by listening to the classics I read so long ago. My drives to and from work are so much more enjoyable when I know I have the peace and quiet to enjoy a few chapters in solitude. You are to be commended Alex for contributing your time and effort. Somehow it just wouldn’t feel right to me if Wells’ work was read by someone who didn’t have an English accent (but then again I may be biased since my inlaws are English!). Cheers!!

  5. Tatiana says:

    My name is Tatiana and I am from Ukraine. I am studying English now and I have very much enjoyed your reading of the Invisible Man. Thanks again!

  6. Michal says:

    This one if for Agatha Christie’s The affair at Styles. Driving in Jerusalem, but feeling very much in-between-wars with Hercule Poirot. You are truly very talented. a shame though, that you did not record any more of Christie! many many thanks

  7. John says:

    In the middle of Around the World in 80 days. What a great thing to do. Read a classic for others. Many thanks.

  8. James M says:

    For the first time in my life, I’ve listened to an audio book from start to finish, and it was your reading of The Invisible Man. I would just thank you for the wonderful recording as it was an absolute listening pleasure. Your voice suited the characters magnificently and helped me drift off to sleep on numerous occasions. I hope to find more of your audio book recordings if there are any around. Thanks again.


  9. Nick says:

    I just wanted to add another thanks for The Invisible Man recording – this time from a fellow Brit! Thanks Alex!!


  10. Adam says:

    First heard you on the reading of Around the World in 80 Days, now listening to The Invisible Man.
    Wonder work! Thank you!!!

  11. G. Baker says:

    Very well done Alex! H.G.Wells works should always be read by an Englishman. Its too bad you didn’t do the reading of War of the Worlds, as I just finished listening to it before The Invisible Man and was a little disappointed it was read by 4 or 5 different people. Not that I’m knocking the other readers of said book, but it is nice to have one reader doing the job. I still appreciate their work though! Keep up the good work!

  12. Duchess says:

    Just finished Mysterious Affair at Styles and loved your recording. Especially Hercules accent, now that I see you have a BA in French explains why he sounded so good. Please record some more….. 🙂

  13. Volker says:

    I just listened to your reading of Around the World in 80 Days. Very good work!

  14. Rosalyn F says:

    I have recently begun listening to Librivox while I am driving all over the US. When I listened to Journey to the Centre of the Earth your chapters definitely stood out. Then a few months later I happened across Invisible Man and I was extremely happy to discover that you were the reader. Thank you so much for your contributions! Did you record anything else?

  15. Sean H says:

    Thank you for your recorded chapters of Journey to the Center of the Earth. I listened to this audio book during my long drive from Deadhorse, Alaska to Fairbanks, Alaska after a rigorous but successful caribou hunt. It was a real pleasure to relieve myself from a strenuous outdoor adventure with a long scenic drive while being engaged in this classic novel wonderfully read. Again, thank you and keep on with your readings. 🙂

  16. Willy says:

    I’ve listened to your and other people’s reading of Treausure Island by R.L. Stevenson. You’ve read your chapters more better than other readers! I really enjoyed. Thank you for your work! It helps me to study English. I’m from Russia. I’ve heard your website from the audiofile and I was very interested to learn about you. I admire volunteers who make free goods for all comunity.

  17. Tim Holland says:

    My name’s Tim Holland. I live in Perth, Western Australia, and a friend recently put me onto audiobooks. Like everyone else here, I really enjoyed your reading of ‘The Invisible Man’. It was the first one I chose, and now I’m keen to hear more.



  18. I guess I’ll jump in and say I too enjoyed your reading of The Invisible Man. One of my early experiences with Librivox was poor. A certain book had multiple readers, and the one who did the most was quite boring. Your reading was delightful though, I love how each character sounded a little different.

  19. Tessy says:

    I’m another Librivox listener, hailing from Dallas, TX. I’d like to thank you for your contribution to the recording of “War and Peace.” I’m nowhere near finished, but your voice has definitely been my favorite so far! Keep up the good work.

  20. kate says:

    Hello, I just drove from Huntington Beach to Vallejo, California, and listened to War and Peace the entire way. Yours is the voice I like the best, way beyond any of the others. Thank you so much for your intelligent reading and natural (rather rapid, which I like) pace. Your inflections bring out all the nuances that so many readers miss. You’re the best!

  21. kate says:

    Oh and here’s a little gift for you – a webcam in a tree in Iowa where bald eagles are about to lay eggs and raise babies. http://www.sportsmansparadiseonline.com/Decorah_Bald_Eagle_Nest.html

  22. Amir (from Toronto) says:

    I started to listen to your reading of “the invisible man” today morning. I just wanted to thank you for the amazing job you have done.

  23. Aisha says:

    You have a wonderful voice. I have enjoyed it in many of the books you have read. You are one of my favourite readers. Thank you!

  24. Mae says:

    I’ve been listening to your reading of “The Invisible Man” and you have wonderful pitch, pace, pause and inflection in your reading. Thank you so very much.

  25. sseuja says:

    Yet another appreciative listener to “The Invisible Man.” Thanks a bunch for your recording! Makes it easier to read the book for people like me who have found it somewhat difficult to return to books after technology damaged attention spans.

  26. Rgandhi says:

    I enjoyer your reading in journey to the center of the earth. Kudos!

  27. Cress says:

    I am currently enjoying your reading of “Around the World in 80 Days”. I have recently discovered audio books, I no longer have time to read what I want due to my work schedule. You are my favorite reader, you have an excellent voice, it has captured my attention. Thank you for helping me read at work. 🙂

  28. Mike says:

    I’m just about finished with The Invisible Man. You’re easily one of my favorite readers. I wish Frankenstein and Dracula had more chapters read by you.

  29. Dennis Sprague says:

    I enjoyed your reading several chapters of “Journey to the Interior of the Earth”. As an American with some English blood, it was refreshing to listen, and your pronounciation of the Author’s name was unexpected but appreciated.

  30. Iqe says:

    I loved the chapter you read of The Island of Dr. Moreau! Thank you!

  31. Dominique says:

    Thank you for volunteering to Librivox.org. I am listening to War & Peace as I drive to work morning and night in Brunei Darussalam. I really enjoying your reading.

  32. Debbie Schow says:

    I loved your reading of The Invisible Man. Your cadence, tone and conveyance of H.G. Wells intention was perfect. I am recovering from back surgery and this was such a great distraction, I was just going to listen to a chapter or two and found that I could not put it down. Thank you.

  33. Deb off Air says:

    Thank you, Loved your reading of The Invisible Man. Your tone, cadence and they way you conveyed H.G. Wells intention in your reading of his wonderful words was spot on. I am recovering from back surgery and really needed the escape this provided. It took away the pain better than a pill, I so appreciate that you took the time to do this. You have a wonderful voice.

  34. Denise McGovern - Minneapolis, Minnesota says:

    Thank you for reading The Invisible Man for Libri Vox. I was so excited to find an app for my Nook that allowed me to listen to books for free! And even better that most of those books are classics. You have an amazing voice. Very clear and very soothing. I’ll be listening to The Invisible Man again because I know I’ve missed some stuff as I’m listening to it while I’m at work. Thanks again!

  35. Freda Rachel says:

    Hello from St. Louis, Missouri! Loved your reading of The Mysterious Affair at Styles, and after reading the rest of these comments, I’m off to download The Invisible Man. Thank you so much for taking the time to record these stories. You have a great recording voice.

  36. James Lees says:

    Just finished your invisible man reading and am moving onto a whole load of other stuff – thanks a lot dude 🙂

  37. Linda says:

    Hi Alex, I’m Linda from Sydney Australia. Thank you for your wonderful reading of The Invisible Man. I have laughed out loud in places and was intrigued enough to check this site out.

  38. Andrew says:

    Superb job reading The Invisible Man. Keep it up, brother.

  39. Linda says:

    Hi Alex, I’m Linda from Sweden.
    I just want to let you know how much I enjoy the Librivox books you have recorded. Have listened to The Invisible Man and currently working on A Journey to the Centre of the Earth. You have a very pleasant voice and you make the book come alive when you read it. After this I will listen to Around the World in 80 days (as I have understood that you have read that one too) and after I will search for any other books you have recorded.
    Keep up the good work and thank you, yet again.

  40. Giovanna says:

    Hello! I’m Giovanna from Venice, Italy. I just want to thank for your great job in reading The Invisible Man. I really enjoyed it!

  41. peter says:

    I was going to say how well you had read The Invisible Man, but it has all been said. Thank you.

  42. Dave Taylor says:

    Hi Alex.
    Just finished listening to the Librivox recording of Jules Verne’s “Journey to the interior of the earth” and you were the best reader on the recording I must say. Thank you for taking the time to record your readings. All the best from Dave in Blenheim New Zealand.

  43. C K says:

    Just spent the afternoon listening to you read The Invisible Man. I enjoyed it immensely. You read it brilliantly.

  44. Allen Smith says:

    Echoing the sentiments of many posters before, thank you Alex for your superb rendition of The Invisible Man. You have a wonderful voice, really excellent narrative – quite befitting such a splendid read Wells serves up. Greetings from Scotland!

  45. Nicholas Roberts says:

    I listened to Conditions of the English Working Class in 1844, and I am currently listening to HG Wells (as I see many in the comments have) and both were remarkable, overwhelming really. You obviously have a gift, and I am just glad that we all get a chance to share in it! Grateful, thank you!

  46. Christine says:

    Yet another thank you for your excellent reading of The Invisible Man. As someone who is dyslexic great readings like yours allow me experience so many more books than I feasibly would be able to otherwise.

    Thank you for donating your time.

    -California US

  47. Bob Deridder says:

    Hi Alex,
    I just finished listening to your Librivox recording of the Invisible Man – recorded in 2006 – 15 years ago! It was a wonderful experience albeit such a sad story. I liked the way you dated each chapter and advertised your blog address – so now I can see what an interesting guy you are
    Bob Deridder, Vancouver BC Canada

  48. Dana Hayward says:

    I liked your recording of The Invisible Man.

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