Get Booked

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Now displaying: November, 2017
Nov 29, 2017

Amanda and Jenn give their "Swiss Army" recommendations for the holiday season in this week's episode of Get Booked.

This episode is sponsored by TarcherPerigee, publisher of Total Cat Mojo by Jackson Galaxy, and Penguin Random House Audio.


Books Discussed

Jagganath by Karen Tidbeck

Autumn by Ali Smith

The Hangman's Daughter by Oliver Poetsch

Daughter of Time by Josephine Tey

The Essex Serpent by Sarah Perry

The Fortunes by Peter Ho Davies

The Loyal League series by Alyssa Cole (An Extraordinary Union #1)

The Forbidden Hearts series by Alisha Rai (Hate To Want You & Wrong to Need You )

Nasty Women, edited by Samhita Mukhopadhyay

Braving the Wilderness by Brene Brown

The Summoner series by Taran Matharu (The Novice #1)

Warcross by Marie Lu

Jade City by Fonda Lee

The Chimes by Anna Smaill

Dot Journaling, Rachel Wilkerson Miller

Wonder Woman: Warbringer by Leigh Bardugo

Nov 21, 2017

Amanda and Jenn discuss book group picks, medieval fiction, sci-fi short stories, and more in this week's episode of Get Booked.

This episode is sponsored by Libby and the Book Riot Bookstore Giveaway.

Subscribe to the podcast via RSS here, or via Apple Podcasts here.
The show can also be found on Stitcher here.



1. Hi- going on a road trip with my 22 year old daughter from North Carolina back home to Texas in late November. Looking for an audiobook recommendation to listen to on the drive- something possibly set in the south with a mystery or supernatural bent. We like smart characters and a plot that is twisty.


2. Hi ladies!
I am a librarian at a small library outside Philadelphia with a HUGE book-club-in-a-bag collection (it comes with books, audiobooks, discussion materials--the whole works). I've just recently taken over the collection and I realized that it is tragically white. I'm doing what I can to remedy that, but I was hoping for some suggestions for diverse, newer, fairly accessible book-club lit (or non-fiction!) for the collection. We've got The Underground Railroad, The Mothers, Little Fires Everywhere, Behold the Dreamers, and Between the World and Me, to name a few.
Thanks so much!


3. Hi Amanda and Jenn!!

I listen to Get Booked religiously, and you guys have steered me into so many things I've absolutely loved. I just finished the Storied Life of A.J. Fikry, and it's left me craving more books with meaningful, adult-child relationships where at least one party is choosing to be in the others' life (adoption, mentor-ship, and similar.) What I specifically loved about A.J. and Maya was how genuinely they liked each other as people. I'd love to read more in that vein, if you have any recommendations?



4. Hello! First I want you to know that I love the show. My TBR list is huge now and My husband keeps side eyeing me as I bring new books home. I'm currently reading Doomsday Book by Connie Willis and it has made me realize how much I love books about the Middle Ages or Medieval times. I've also read the Inquisitor's Tale and A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court. What other recommendations do you have that take place in that time or are similar to those books?
Thanks so much!!


5. I suffer from a chronic pain condition and would like to find books that have conditions similar to mine (or other disabilities). Memoir or fiction would be great. I've read both of Jenny Lawson's books and cried when I found out that she had arthritis because I do not get to read about people with similar experiences much. (No Me Before You please!)


6. Hi Get Booked Ladies!
I have always loved Science Fiction and in the last few months have really gotten into short story collections. I have recently read "Stories of Your Life" by Ted Chiang (this is probably going to be my favorite book of the year), "Bloodchild" by Octavia Butler, and "Three Moments of an Explosion" by China Mieville. I have also loved in the past "The Illustrated Man" by Ray Bradbury.

I currently have "​Beyond the Rift" by Peter Watts and "Miracle" by Connie Willis on my upcoming TBR.

I am looking for some more interesting and well written sci-fi short story collections!​ ​I enjoy hard sci-fi and first contact stories. Dark, weird, speculative, and bizarre are also great ​descriptors​ for me.
​Just FYI...​I don't​ really​ like fantasy​​ (I never understood why sci-fi and fantasy are ​clumped together).

Thank​ you so much​ and love your show!
--Andrea :)


7. Hi! I teach high school English, and often listen to the podcast on my way to work, which makes for a lovely commute (but also makes it impossible to write down all of the books I want to read).
I work with several young people who are hunters, and want to read about hunting/survival/outdoorsy stuff. We have Paulsen's Hatchet and sequels and Si-cology 101 (Duck Dynasty), which have been popular among this group, and one student is reading Where the Red Fern Grows. Another of these readers started American Sniper but never finished it, and they've all read The Hunger Games. I'm ordering some Jon Krakauer, but I'm looking for more recommendations that might strike a chord with this group of readers - fiction or nonfiction, especially things that are a little more grownup (YA is awesome - more of that, please, but I worry they're not challenged by some of the middle grades texts we have available).
Thanks, and I promise to stop the car to listen to your reply (or, even better, listen with students) :)


Books Discussed

A Promise of Fire by Amanda Bouchet

Jade City by Fonda Lee

Crooked Letter Crooked Letter by Tom Franklin

The Cutting Season by Attica Locke


Shelter by Jung Yun

The Wangs vs The World by Jade Chang

My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She's Sorry by Frederik Backman, translated by Henning Koch (recommended by Elizabeth)

Ginny Moon by Benjamin Ludwig

A Bed of Spices by Barbara Samuel

Mistress of the Art of Death by Ariana Franklin

The Escape by Mary Balogh

The Right Way to Be Crippled and Naked, edited by Annabelle Hayse, Sheila Black, and Michael Northen

Pain Woman Takes Your Keys by Sonya Huber

Overclocked by Cory Doctorow

Galactic Empires, edited by Neil Clarke

The Land by Mildred Taylor (recommended by Danika)

The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness

Nov 14, 2017

Amanda and Jenn discuss Civil War reads, diverse middle-grade books, reading slumps, and more in this week's episode of Get Booked.

This episode is sponsored by City of Brass by S.A. Chakraborty and Weregirl & Chimera by C.D. Bell.

Bookstore giveaway!



1. Dear Amanda and Jenn,

I am a middle school English teacher and I have a student looking for a book recommendations. She has read To Kill a Mockingbird, The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, The Giver, and Would You Reach Me and enjoyed them all. She seems to like books that tackle serious social issues as well as science fiction. Our school library is a little outdated and doesn't offer much in the way of books with diverse characters, so I'd like to direct her to something more current and with diverse characters.

Thanks in advance. I love the podcast!


2. Hey Amanda and Jenn!

I'm having baby #3 in December, and I'm looking for books to read on my e-reader during the middle-of-the-night feedings. I somehow missed this reading opportunity with my first baby, but with baby #2 a few years ago I read so much! Including at least one of Ruth Reichl's memoirs, Molly Wizenberg's Delancey and Homemade Life, but also a bit of romance, The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, and some other novels. I'm open to fiction, non-fiction, genre, etc.

The main guidelines are:
*fairly easy reads - no complex character lists and maps, and nothing too literary or high-minded.
*conducive to reading in short bursts - easy to dip in and out of. Nothing so page-turner-y that I'll stay up even longer. Short chapters or frequent text breaks are a bonus, but not required.
*nothing scary, dark, bloody, gory, etc... i.e. nothing where the jacket says (or could say) "chilling" or "haunting"
*cozy and charming, but not cheesy
*definitely no sick or dying kids/babies/children/moms, or disasters/apocalypses/tragedies
*available as ebook (Kindle)

So, what books can you suggest for me to read in the middle of the night as I nurse my new baby?


3. I am looking for books about the Civil War for my father's 60th birthday. My mother is taking him on a trip to Gettysburg and I want to give him some books that will go along with his trip. He prefers non-fiction and has already read and enjoyed Killer Angels. I was going to get him a copy of Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy - but was hoping that you might have some other great recommendations! Thank you! Love the podcast!


4. Hi,

Next year I am starting a feminist book club called SFF Fems that will read Science Fiction and Fantasy books by female authors only, with an emphasis on marginalised and own voice authors. Do you have any recommendations that would fit this criteria and make for great discussion at a book club meeting?

Thanks so much


5. I'm trying to find books for my eleven year old daughter Cathy to read, but I'm a bit stumped. She's a voracious reader, and well above a usual eleven year old's reading level (this, just to be clear, isn't me being some annoying mom who likes to talk about how special my daughter is. She just happens to be ahead in reading.). She's read and loved Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, and the Percy Jackson novels. She just read my copy of the Mists of Avalon and now has an obsession with arthurian legend. She loves history, and knights, and all that fun stuff, but I'm having a bit of trouble finding books for her.
She's been reading some adult books on her own, and I'm very lax about what she's allowed to read and watch (the evidence being that I gave her The Mists of Avalon), and am not concerned about things being "appropriate" for her. We have a very open relationship and she comes to me with questions, we discuss what she's read, and honestly we are a very liberal family. However I would like to find her some age appropriate books as well, because I think it's important for her to read about characters her age to relate to. Everything we've been looking for together either doesn't interest her, or she finds condescending. Any ideas? I think some historical fiction would be good, but I just don't know what to look for.


6. Hi guys! I love the podcast and I'm so glad you're doing the show weekly now, it's my Friday treat to listen to you on the bus.

I am in such a reading slump at the moment and I'm really hoping you can help. I had such a good reading year last year but since January, nothing is clicking with me. Could you suggest some books for getting out of a slump? I'm open to any genre, except horror (because I'm a wimp). If it helps, some books that I loved in 2015 were Spinster by Kate Bolick, Being Mortal by Atul Gawande, A Fair Fight by Anna Freeman and The Queen of the Tearling.



7. Hello there!

Not sure if you have already answered a question similar to this, but I figured I'd go ahead and ask anyway.

I am a huge fan of The Gilmore Girls, and I was wondering if you guys know of any books that give the same overall feeling as the show. The fast-paced language, the quirky characters and small town feeling, intelligent women, etc. I am open to any and all genres!

Thanks in advance!


Books Discussed

Wolf-speaker (Immortals #2) by Tamora Pierce

Get in Trouble by Kelly Link

Weapons of Math Destruction by Cathy O'Neil

Tijuana Book of the Dead by Luis Alberto Urrea

Furthermore by Tahereh Mafi

The Lotterys Plus One by Emma Donoghue (the review on Book Riot)

The Pioneer Woman by Ree Drummond

Take the Lead by Alexis Daria

The Passing of the Armies by Joshua Chamberlain

Battle Cry of Freedom by James McPherson (rec’d by Ta-Nehisi Coates)

The Bloodprint by Ausma Zehanat Khan

An Unkindness of Ghosts by Rivers Solomon

No Good Deed by Kara Connolly

Seeds of America trilogy (Chains #1) by Laurie Halse Anderson

My Life in Middlemarch by Rebecca Mead

27 Hours by Tristina Wright

Talking as Fast as I Can by Lauren Graham

Young Jane Young by Gabrielle Zevin

Nov 8, 2017

Amanda and Jenn discuss Southern fiction, Spanglish, portal fantasy, and more in this week's episode of Get Booked.

This episode is sponsored by The Big Lie by Julie Mayhew and Book Riot Insiders.

Bookstore Giveaway:



1. I love love love novels written in Spanglish, both because I'm working on my Spanish, but also because I, too, live in a different community in which most people with whom I interact are bilingual and books like Junot Diaz's are exactly how we talk, albeit in a different language. My favorite genre is literary fiction, but I would take recommendations for good mysteries, YA, essay/poetry collections, or, if they're very well-written, fantasy or sci-fi. Bonus points for evoking a strong sense of place that immediately makes me want to book a trip wherever the book is set. Note: I'm not good with animal death, so either steer clear of that or at least include a trigger warning. Thanks!


2. Hello Book Riot!

I work at a college, and like a lot of colleges, each year our school assigns a summer reading book for the first-year students. I am just curious what books you two would recommend. What book, fiction or nonfiction, would you want every new college student to read?

Thanks! Love the podcast.


3. Hello Amanda and Jenn! I love your show and all of your recommendations. I have one that I don't think you've covered yet.

Growing up, I've always loved Alice & all the other wonderful characters in Wonderland and now, more recently, Neil Gaiman's Coraline and her freaky little alternate reality. I feel similarly about Peter Pan and Neverland, though I didn't read those books (only watched the movies. Oops!) I think they all appeal to this childhood desire to find a secret room or portal (my most common nighttime dream) that is fun, exciting, colorful, magical, and adventurous. If I'm real, it also appeals to my desire to escape the stress and terror of the world.

Do you have any recommendations for similar books?

Thank you!!

P.S. I have read Harry Potter, the Secret Garden, etc. and while I enjoyed these books, I'm looking for something a little different than these. I've thought about reading the Narnia series, but still don't think it's quite what I want. I think I'd prefer something with one main character, even if there is a strong supportive cast, and also something that is a quicker read.


4. Hi Jenn and Amanda,
I love the podcast and look forward to it every week.

I feel like the last few books I've read have been stories to "get through." I enjoy them, but don't find myself savoring words for words alone. I also find that I haven't read much romance lately. Could you recommend something where the language is as decadent as chocolate and there might be some will they/won't they romantic speculation?

Favorite books include The Sugar Queen, Jane Eyre, The Blue Sword, and A Tale for the Time-Being.

Thank you!


5. I recently read and loved both Hatching Twitter by Nick Bilton and Startup by Doree Shafrir, and this latest Uber scandal has got me interested in more behind-the-scenes tech company/startup books. I read Dave Eggers' The Circle when it first came out and thought it was just kind of okay (though it feels sacrilegious to me to criticize Dave Eggers) - I need some strong characters to really hook me into a story, though it doesn't matter if they're likable or not. I'm much less interested in the technology-is-world-changing angle than I am in the company culture angle. Fiction or nonfiction doesn't matter to me - I'm just looking for a juicy story.

Thanks in advance!


6. I recently plowed my way through War and Peace and I loved it! However, I've realized that I know nothing about the Napoleonic Wars or Russian history. I prefer historical fiction but I wouldn't say no to some readable nonfiction either. Thanks!


7.  I absolutely love Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd. I recently read Whistling Past the Graveyard which had a similar storyline. Can you recommend any other books similar with a child/preteen narrator, set in the south with difficult family life? Thanks in advance. Love the show!


Books Discussed

Jade City by Fonda Lee

Orphan Island by Laurel Snyder

Shadowshaper by Daniel Jose Older

Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass by Meg Medina

The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander

Citizen: An American Lyric by Claudia Rankine

The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne Valente

Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley

Fingersmith by Sarah Waters (Malinda Lo on Recommended)

The Queen of the Night by Alexander Chee

Infomocracy by Malka Older

Reset by Ellen Pao

The Winter Palace by Eva Stachniak

Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak (Queen of the Night and Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas)

Bastard Out of Carolina by Dorothy Allison (ALL THE TRIGGER WARNINGS EVER)

The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers

Nov 1, 2017

Amanda and Jenn discuss bread-making, nonfiction for teens, survival stories and more in this week's episode of Get Booked.

This episode is sponsored by A Selfie As Big as The Ritz by Lara Williams and The Bride Who Got Lucky by Janna MacGregor.



1. Hi! I recently got into baking and was wondering if you have any great bread making cook books. Just bread, not baking in general. If it’s from a famous bakery, that would be nice! Thanks a ton!
P.S. an email reply will suffice :)


2. TIME SENSITIVE: I am a recent convert to the world of Romance, but I am feeling overwhelmed. I had tried different things over the years but just never found something that felt like MY romance. And then I discovered Penny Reid. I read Truth or Beard and then promptly flew through the rest of the existing Winston Brothers series, and now I am flying just as quickly through the Knitting In The City Books. But...I'm almost out, and it will be months before her next book is out. I love how smart, sweet, and nerdy her books are, while still being plenty hot and having a great plot in addition to the romance. Definitely looking for a contemporary setting, and love the feel of the interconnected friend/family saga with each book focusing on one member of the group. This request is time sensitive as I'm getting ready to travel on business for two months (mid-November through Mid-January,) so I need to fill up my Kindle as I won't be able to carry physical books. Help!


3. Hello! My daughter and her friend are in grade 7 and need to be reading more science non-fiction (according to their teacher). She feels that the girls will be more comfortable participating in class discussions.

Any recommendations (specifically global warming & organic food if possible). They read National Geographic but otherwise I'm at a loss.

Thank you!!!


4. Hi Jenn and Amanda,
I am looking for books with an Asian man love interest. The sexuality of the protagonists doesn't matter to me (not trying to say that they don't matter, but want to clarify that the relationship can be M/M, M/F, M/gender fluid, etc), but I am having trouble finding a book that doesn't portray Asian men and boys stereotypically as "nerdy" and not romantically desirable (those two things should never be linked!). I tried WARCROSS by Marie Lu but didn't enjoy it and I'm not sure where to go next. I prefer adult novels to YA and I enjoy pretty much every genre. Thank you!
--Joce (pronounced Joss! :D)


5. My reading interests are all over the place, which is easy in some ways because there are always lots of books I want to read, but hard to find ones that I really love. Some all-time favorites include: Random Family by Adrian Nicole LeBlanc, In Cold Blood by Truman Capote, Birds of America by Lorrie Moore, and The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver. guess I'm looking for well-written books with captivating/give me the feels characters. If you notice another common thread in those favorites, please enlighten me!


6. I've recently discovered HBO's Girls and am obsessed - I would love some really modern femininisty books that have that same feel. I've read Lena Dunham and Maggie Nelson this week (loved it) as well as Fun Home and Bitch Planet - where do I go from here for smart, funny feminist lit that also entertains?


7. Hey Amanda and Jen!

I have always loved what I guess I'll call "survival" novels. Growing up I loved Hatchet and My Side of the Mountain and Julie and the Wolves. As an adult, I've enjoyed Wild, Tracks, and The Martian. Basically, I love stories of someone learning to survive on their own whether by choice (Wild) or because of a bad situation (The Martian). I'm looking for more titles to fill this particular place in my heart. Thanks for your help!


Books Discussed

Flour Water Salt Yeast by Ken Forkish

Beard on Bread by James Beard

Hate To Want You by Alisha Rai

Radio Silence by Alyssa Cole (Off the Grid series)

We Are the Weather Makers by Tim Flannery

World Without Fish by Mark Kurlansky, illustrated by Frank Stockton

Hold Me by Courtney Milan

Wrong to Need You by Alisha Rai (out Nov 28)

Kevin Kwan’s Crazy Rich Asians series

Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese

The Fortunes by Peter Ho Davies

Losing It by Emma Rathbone

All Grown Up by Jami Attenberg

Adrift by Steven Callahan

Once Upon a River by Bonnie Jo Campbell (tw: rape)

Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage by Alfred Lansing