Category Archives: Podcasts

Podcast audio files

Episode 238 – Fourth Wing

Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros

Y’all horny for some dragons? We forged a soul bond with comedian, writer, and Scary Mommy Sarah Aswell by reading Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros together. Listen to this episode while pondering ways to legally murder your classmates!

Content warning: Here there be dragons. Also, dead parents.

Readers advisory: Here.

Footnotes: “How Rebecca Yarros Packed Dragons, Magic and Steamy Sex Into a Blockbuster Fantasy” by Alexandra Alter

“Q&A: Rebecca Yarros on Chronic Illness Representation in Fourth Wing” by Riyana Straetker

NPR Weekend Edition: “Veronica Roth’s ‘Carve The Mark’ Is A Fantasy Inspired By Chronic Pain”

Coming up next: Ice Planet Barbarians by Ruby Dixon.

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Episode 237 – This Present Darkness

This Present Darkness by Frank Peretti


The devil made us read This Present Darkness by Frank Peretti. Fortunately, we were #blessed to be joined by Izzy Wasserstein, author of These Fragile Graces, This Fugitive Heart, who helped safely guide us through this Christian thriller. Listen to this episode while waiting for a cool angel to pick you up on her motorcycle.

Content warning: False accusations of sexual assault, Christian fundamentalism, murder/suicide/demon attack.

Readers advisory: Here.

Footnotes: This Present Darkness” on Wikipedia

The long history and slow death of a word once used to describe everyone and everything from Egypt to China as well as rugs” by Yanan Wang

“15 times The X-Files’ Dana Scully was the best character on TV” by Sarah Crocker

Coming up next: Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros.

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Episode 236 – Icebreaker

Icebreaker by Hannah Grace

Ice, ice, baby! Annie Cardi, author of Red, returned to the podcast to discuss the sexy skater Booktok sensation Icebreaker by Hannah Grace. Join us as we skate back to college and dirty talk our way into the Olympics!

Content warning: Disordered eating, gaslighting, emotional abuse.

Readers advisory: Here.

Footnotes: “Who Is Hannah Grace? And Why Won’t She Show Her Face?” by Elisabeth Egan

Coming up next: This Present Darkness by Frank Peretti.

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Episode 235 – Sanctuary

Sanctuary by Nora Roberts


Nora Roberts Month continues! Heidi and Emily from Romancing the Shelf podcast returned and took us back to the 90s with the vintage romantic thriller Sanctuary. Sadly, this book has zero plates of casual pasta but it does have at least 3.5 romantic couples and almost as many murders. Listen to this episode on one of your three computers!

Content warning: Murder, sexual assault, questionable mental health care.

Readers advisory: Here.

Footnotes: Romancing the Shelf – Sanctuary

“Nora Roberts: The woman who rewrote the rules of romantic fiction” by Carole Cadwalladr

Coming up next: Icebreaker by Hannah Grace.

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Episode 234 – Nightwork

Nightwork by Nora Roberts

Our Lady Nora Roberts has written a book about a handsome criminal who admires good architecture and casual pasta? We’re so back. Our friend and Nora Roberts expert Christine has returned to discuss Nightwork with us. Listen to this episode while working on your night cheese!

Content warning: Cancer, death of a parent.

Readers advisory: Here.

Footnotes: “A Visual Guide to 35 Popular Pasta Shapes — Plus the Best Sauce to Serve with Each” by Rochelle Bilow

Coming up next: Sanctuary by Nora Roberts.

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Episode 233 – Bests of 2023

Once again, we’ve managed to sneak in a few good books this year! Here are our favorite books we read in 2023 (regardless of publication year. Long live backlist titles!)

Footnotes: Boston Globe’s Best Books of 2023 (featuring Renata’s picks for middle grade and YA!)

Coming up next: A January hiatus. Happy New Year! We’ll see you in February!


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Episode 232 – The Woman In Me

The Woman in Me by Britney Spears

We finished our adventures with the Time Traveler’s Wife but decided to linger in the 2000s for awhile longer. Friend of the Show (and the Internet’s Best Friend) Margaret H. Willison joined us to discuss Britney Spears’s memoir The Woman In Me. Listen to this episode instead of listening to the music of Justin Timberlake!

Content warning: This book contains abuse, abortion, disordered eating, and all the other stuff you’d assume.

Readers advisory: Here.

Footnotes: “Miss American Dream” by Taffy Brodesser-Akner.

“Craig Ferguson’s Monologue Defending Britney Spears From 2007 Resurfaces Amid #FreeBritney Movement” by Alexandra Del Rosario

“Mariah Carey Calls Mention in Britney Spears’ ‘The Woman in Me’ ‘Super Sweet’: ‘I Love Her'” by Ilana Kaplan

“Michelle Williams impersonates Justin Timberlake while narrating hilarious part of Britney Spears’ memoir” by Shania Russell

Mystery Show Case #2: Britney

“Britney Spears’s Conservatorship Is a Disability Rights Issue That Deserves More Attention” by Haley Moss

Coming up next: Bests of 2023.

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Episode 231 – The Time Traveler’s Wife

The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

We held our annual Patreon Choice poll and our Beloved Patrons chose to send us back in time to 2003 with The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger. Since the book is prominently set in Chicago, we were #blessed to be joined by prominent Chicagoan Ashley to unpack the Jeremy Bearimy of it all. Please do not listen to this episode while having sex with your future wife for the first time.

Content warning: Sketchy time travel age/consent issues, death of a partner, miscarriages.

Readers advisory: Here.

Footnotes: “Popular Titles are Vanishing from HBO Max After Merger” by Eric Deggans.

Audrey Niffenegger’s Chicago

The Time Traveler’s Wife: Reception

Audrey Niffenegger Tweet about The Other Husband

Legends of Tomorrow – Swan Thong

Coming up next: The Woman in Me by Britney Spears.

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Episode 230 – The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins


A cautionary tale: too many people complained about this book online so we were dumped into an arena and forced to publicly defend it to the death. Mackenzi Lee, author of many Best Bestselling books including The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue and The Winter Soldier: Cold Front, has returned to the podcast to get to talk about a book we all actually enjoyed: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins. The Capitol has mandated that all citizens listen to this episode, so please comply with their decree.

Content warning: Hunger Games.

Readers advisory: Here.

Footnotes: “Hunger Games prequel: untangling the controversy over The Ballad Of Songbirds And Snakes” by Kayleigh Dray

“Reminder That ‘Hunger Games’ Co-Stars Rachel Zegler and Josh Andrés Rivera Are Dating IRL and V Cute” by Mehera Bonner

Coming up next: The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger.

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Episode 229 – Practical Magic

Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman

Spooky season is here, so we were joined by Lily Sparks, author of the Teen Killers Club trilogy (including the latest book, Teen Killers at Large) and the upcoming The Merciless King of Moore High. We got witchy with the Owens women in Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman. This episode will bring all the cats to the schoolyard!

Announcement: Join us in our Discord server on Monday, October 30th at 8:30pm Eastern Time for a live watch of the Practical Magic movie! (It’s currently streaming on Hulu.)

Content warning: Light mention of death of parents, domestic violence, and death of a boyfriend.

Readers advisory: Here.

Footnotes: “Goodbye Earl” by The Chicks.

Episode 122 – A Discovery Of Witches

Coming up next: The Ballad of Songbird and Snakes by Suzanne Collins.

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