Get Booked

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Now displaying: February, 2018
Feb 20, 2018

Amanda and Jenn discuss independent ladies, fantasy short stories, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel reading comps, and more in this week's episode of Get Booked.

This episode is sponsored by The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton and The Birthday Girl by Sue Fortin.



1. Hi ladies!

I recently finished reading Red Clocks by Leni Zumas, and I really, really loved and related to Ro (the biographer) and Gin's (the mender) independence. They didn't have current romantic/life partners, and they weren't agonizing over being alone or over trying to find someone. I am getting sick of novels where women spend a lot of time worrying about being "on the shelf." I would like to read more books with women who are single and proud, and romance isn't anywhere near the top of their priority list. I am willing to read any genre, length, or format. Can't wait to hear what you have to recommend! Thanks so much!

--Mary Beth


2. Hi! My friend and coworker is transferring to a new position within our company to Phoenix, Arizona. She will be driving from Ohio to Phoenix with whatever she can fit into her car. While working together I introduced her to audiobooks, and I thought a list of great audiobook recommendations would be the perfect parting gift. She loves steamy romance novels, and a great male narrator's voice. I know that she has listened to all of Meghan March's books, Anna Todd, and has just recently discovered the Fifty Shades of Grey series.
Hoping to make her long drive enjoyable. Thanks so much! I greatly enjoy your show!


3. Hello!

I'm a first year 7th grade English at a school in Massachusetts, and we are about to start a unit of fantasy short stories. I'm very excited about this unit, but after looking through the anthology that we'll be using, I've noticed something that I want to change - the anthology only contains one story by an author of color ("Caleb's Colors" by Neal Shusterman).
I'd love to teach a more diverse set of stories, so I'm looking for suggestions of fantasy short stories that would be appropriate for a middle school reading level. Do you know of any anthologies that exist? I would also be happy to read them a picture book or two.
Please let me know if you can help me diversify my reading list!


4. I'm about six weeks away from giving birth to my first child, and I'm looking for something to read that will be a real page-turner but light enough that I can read it during my leave regardless of how much (or little) sleep I'm getting. I read pretty widely in terms of genre, but I do prefer fiction to non-fiction and I don't really do suspense or thrillers. Thanks!


5. Love love love your show.
I’ve just moved from a very queer loving and welcoming college campus to a not so much welcoming and loving work environment :(. I’m on a desperate search for stories with badass lesbian and queer women protagonists to dive into to remind myself my gay poc identity is valid and wonderful and loved on those tough work days.

I just finished Juliet Takes a Breath by Gabby Riviera and absolutely loved and dying for another woke read with a confident lesbian/gay/queer woman in her 20s being a total badass and rocking who they are through whatever life throws at them.

Here’s my search criteria:
- coming out not being a major plot point.
- Not YA. Characters in their 20s like me or 30s would be preferable.
- Light, fun & empowering with some humor thrown in
- contemporary
- not a mystery, thriller, or including issues of domestic violence, or sexual assault.
- a person of color protagonist would be awesome but I understand this list might be a tall order so am lenient in this category

I’m new to romance but very much open to it and am not shy about sex scenes. Open to non-fiction of all kinds, and some light fantasy and sci-fi.

Books I’ve loved the feel of
Sourdough by Robin Sloan’s themes of figuring out adulthood, and what one wants to do with their life.

River of Teeth and Taste of Marrow by Sarah Gailey.

I Hear She’s a Real Bitch by Jen Agg

Georgia Peaches and Other Forbidden Fruit made my cry - not in a good way with the having to go back into the closet kind of thing so I’d love to stay way clear of anything like that.

Thanks! I hope you can help!



6. Hi ladies!

I just blew through the charming new Amazon Prime original TV series "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel" and am really thirsting for more content like it. If you haven't had the pleasure, it's about a well-to-do house wife in the late 1950s in Manhattan who discovers her incredible talent for raunchy standup comedy as her life is falling apart around her. It's sharp, witty, smart, and has a good dose of drama. It's by the same folks as Gilmore Girls and is tonally very similar. The main character also reminds me of Joan Rivers a lot. I'd love to read some books that put me in the same mind-space while I wait (a year) for season two, but I'm not sure where to start. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!



7. Don't judge but one of my favorite movies is The Mummy (the one with Brendan Fraser) and years ago I was swept away by the Anton Rider series by Bartle Bull which is similar in tone to The Mummy. I've been having a hard time finding other books that give me a similar feeling. Any recommendations for books that have adventure, maybe a monster, a rogueish hero and some romance?


Books Discussed

Eloquent Rage by Brittney Cooper

Make Trouble by Cecile Richards

84 Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff

All Grown Up by Jami Attenberg

A Scot in the Dark by Sarah MacLean

Destiny’s Captive by Beverly Jenkins (rec'd by Jess Pryde)

Unnatural Creatures edited by Neil Gaiman and Maria Dahvana Headley

A Thousand Beginnings and Endings edited by Ellen Oh and Elsie Chapman (out June 26 2018)

Fresh Ink edited by Lamar Giles

I Am Having So Much Fun Here Without You by Courtney Maum

The Paper Menagerie: Stories by Ken Liu

Nevada by Imogen Binnie

Holding Still for As Long As Possible by Zoe Whitall

Lady Killer by Joelle Jones and Jamie S. Rich, Chelsea Cain

An American Housewife by Helen Ellis

The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman

River of Teeth by Sarah Gailey

Feb 13, 2018

Amanda and Jenn discuss immigrant stories, royalty, close friendships, and more in this week's episode of Get Booked.

This episode is sponsored by Here We Lie by Paula Treick DeBoard and Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi.




1. Hello!
I am wondering if you have any recommendations of any books about royalty in other countries besides the U.S. and Britain. I would prefer fiction, but am open to non fiction too!
Thanks for all your amazing recommendations!


2. Hi!

I recently pick up reading more voraciously again after a several year drought. I started listening to this podcast from the beginning and have already devoured a whole bunch of the recommended comics. I typically fall into a pattern of reading through whole series very quickly because I'm a tad bit obsessive, you could call me a binge reader in that sense.

I was hoping you could provide some recommendations that will challenge me from a story perspective (not a writing style), with some more deep/emotional themes. I'm kind of over the mystery thriller, vampires, Harry Potter type books.



3. I am a lover of books and read since I was a child, now that I have children of my own I want to pass that on to my girls. My dilemma is my 11yo doesn't love to read, or even like to unless she has to for school. So my question is, can you recommend some books that will maybe jump start her love of reading. She just finished Eragon for school and claims she didn't like it, but I know better, she was talking to the book. She’s a very girly girl if that helps.


4. Hi guys,
I was hoping you could recommend me some fiction that focuses on the immigrant experience in America. I recently read and loved Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue and I would love to find more like it. I'm currently reading Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie but I'm not sure where else to look.


5. Basically: I'm looking for fiction in which the characters a) have extremely close friendships and b) take care of each other's mental/physical health.

If that makes sense?

Examples: A Little Life and the ways in which everyone takes care of Jude, or The Rest of Us Just Live Here and the ways in which, well, everybody in that book takes care of everybody else.

Caveats: In spite of the example above, I generally don't like YA.


6. Hi Amanda & Jenn,

Love the show, especially how enthusiastic you are about all the books you are recommending!

I would like a recommendation myself. In the summer I love walking/hiking and climbing outdoors. Now that it's winter I'm spending more time with a book on the couch. It would be great to read about the activities I'm missing.

I loved Wild by Cheryl Strayed and Into the Wild. Also love books with extensive walking like The Hobbit (Fantasy is definitely allowed) and The Road by Cormac McCarthy. I haven't been able to find many novels about climbing/with climber(s), so that would be a bonus. Not a big fan of non-fiction, although I thought The Places in Between by Rory Stewart was amazing.

Thanks so much!


7. I stopped reading for awhile (blame Netflix and Hulu) and have recently gotten back in the habit. I've watched a lot of mob movies/shows lately so my first request would be any books about any type of mob, fiction or nonfiction (I do seem to have a thing for the Irish mob though).

My second request would be, since I've been reading mostly crime/murdery, darker type books, I'm looking for a break from that. I loved shotgun love songs by nickolas butler, a visit from the goon squad and sweetbitter. I do like music related fiction, the found family trope, romantic subplots and complicated women.


Books Discussed

After the Flare by Deji Bryce Olukotun

Winston’s War by Max Hastings

The Kindness of Enemies by Leila Aboulela

A Princess in Theory by Alyssa Cole (out Feb 27)

Gather the Daughters by Jennie Malamed (trigger warning: sexual assault, eating disorders)

Gemsigns by Stephanie Saulter

Inkheart by Cornelia Funke

Bayou Magic by Jewell Parker Rhodes

The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan

We Need New Names by NoViolet Bulawayo

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet by Becky Chambers

Sorcerer of the Wildeeps by Kai Ashante Wilson

The Red Threads of Fortune by JY Yang

Jade City by Fonda Lee

The Chimes by Anna Smaill

Feb 7, 2018

Amanda and Jenn discuss Finnish literature, mental illness, enemies-to-lovers stories, and more in this week's episode of Get Booked.

This episode is sponsored by Your One and Only by Adrianne Finlay and Comic Bento.




1. I’m heading on a trip to Finland at the end of February and I’d love to read some Finnish fiction, translated to English please! I’d love something with a strong sense of place to familiarize me with the environment/culture/weather etc. My favourite books are easy enough to fall into and ones where the characters stay with you long after the story ends. I’m generally a literary fiction reader but happily read other things except for romance and scific/fantasy (as a rule). If it helps, some of my favourite authors are Heather O’Neill, Miriam Toews, Peter Heller, A.M. Homes, Wally Lamb, David Benioff and Willy Vlautin.

Thanks for the help!


2. Hi! I love your podcast and listen to your show every week!

I just finished Turtles All the Way Down by John Green and loved Aza's perspective. I live with mental illness as does she, and I really enjoyed reading a story where the character accepts her mental illness and still struggles even though she is in recovery. I really like the non-linear way the book looks at her condition. Do you know of any other books where the main character has a mental illness, but does not exactly "defeat" it and instead learns to accept themselves? I have read I Can't Promise You a Rose Garden and enjoyed that. (Sidenote, I have read many books about people with eating disorders and I would prefer recommendations that do not include that topic.)



3. I love fiction by what I like to think of as provocative and sometimes offensive people of faith. I love books where the author writes about his or her faith tradition from a place of love, but aren't afraid to ask the messy questions, air the dirty laundry, and treat belief like the complicated, untidy, yet deeply meaningful thing that it is. Some of my favorite authors that I'd put in this category are Chaim Potok, Fyodor Dostoevksy, Graham Greene, Evelyn Waugh & Levi S. Peterson. I love would to read more fiction like this. I read widely and would be comfortable with any genre except horror.



4. Recently I read Michelle Moran's The Heretic Queen. Unfortunately, I didn't enjoy it, but it did leave me wanting to find a good historical romance or fiction in a similar vein. The main reason I did not enjoy the book was because I felt the relationship in the book was not strong enough. I have two requests, and I hope they aren't too much. I'd like the book to be set in the ancient world (Greece, Egypt, Rome), and I want a strong relationship (F/M M/M and F/F are all fine). I don't want instant love, or an undeveloped relationship- I really want to be able to root for the relationship. And before you mention it, I have read (and loved) The Song of Achilles.
Thanks for the awesome show guys! I can't wait to hear your recommendations.


5. Hello:

I am not a big romance reader. I very rarely pick up a romance. I struggle with historical fiction, so historical romance is really not my thing. However, I recently read The Hating Game by Sally Thorn and loved the contemporary romance. It was an "enemy to lovers" type books, so I enjoyed the banter and the humor.

Disclaimer: some portions were problematic, so I do not mean to say that it was perfect. But, it did keep me reading.

I would like some similar recommendations. I would prefer contemporary romance, but I'll take anything I can get that explores the "enemy to lovers" theme.

--Awful at Romance Reading


6. Thank you for an awesome podcast. I suffer from depression and considering the world’s political climate, I will continue to suffer for some time. I study humanitarian action in crisis and I love to read books that are topic heavy, such as Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie or The color Purple by Alice Walker or an anthology about racism in Sweden (I'm from Stockholm). Although the books are so good and I can't get enough (I also have ADHD which makes me unable to give up on these books but at the same time considering my depression they also make me sadder and unable to heal right now). I feel like I need something to break this habit while trying to get better and read book that’ll make me laugh or not think. I love novels about dance (favourites include Mao’s last dancer by Li Cunxin, A time to dance by Padma Venkatraman and Taking flight by Michaela DePrince) and novels from comedians like Seriously… I’m Kidding by Ellen Degeneres or How to Make White People Laugh by Negin Farsad. I’m giving you free hands, just remember – depressed, cannot stop reading awesome heavy novels, need something else though. And also, if you HAPPEN BY CHANCE to know a book about or featuring a person (not cis-gender white male) with ADHD, I’d love to hear about it.


7. Hi Amanda and Jenn!

Thanks for a wonderful podcast!

One of my favorite books is Sweetland by Michael Crummey. I enjoyed that it was set on an island, was very atmospheric, and beautifully dealt with loss and isolation. I also liked how nature was a large part of the book. I'm wondering if you have suggestions for something similar?

Thanks so much for your time!


Books Discussed

The Other Lands (Acacia #2) by David Anthony Durham

Frankenstein in Baghdad by Ahmed Saadawi

The Year of the Hare by Arto Paasilinna

The Summer Book by Tove Jansson

I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter by Erica L Sanchez (trigger warning: self-harm)

Hate to Want You by Alisha Rai

Saints and Misfits by S.K. Ali (trigger warning: sexual assault)

The Mothers by Brit Bennett

The Captive Prince trilogy by CS Pacat (all the trigger warnings)

Fire from Heaven (Alexander the Great #1) by Mary Renault, recommended by Alexander Chee (Reading My Way Out of the Closet)

Hold Me by Courtney Milan

Dating You / Hating You by Christina Lauren

Yes Please by Amy Poehler

Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes

Pond by Claire-Louise Bennett

Galore by Michael Crummey

All the Birds, Singing by Evie Wyld