Amanda and Jenn discuss genre-benders, hopeful visions of the future, overlooked literary fiction, and more in this week’s episode of Get Booked.
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1. Hi, I’m Ben, I love the podcast! I wasn’t sure how to ask for a suggestion, so I’m emailing.
I recently read Stuart Turton’s “Seven and a Half Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle” and “The Devil in the Dark Water” and am trying to find more genre bending books like those. My preferences are pretty open, though I try to stay away from YA. I do love that the aforementioned books involve a complicated mystery, but the mystery aspect isn’t as important as the genre blending. Thank you for your help!
P.s. your podcast has helped open my mind with the variety of books that y’all discuss, thanks for that.
2. It’s been a rough year (for everyone), and I am struggling to really see the light at the end of the tunnel. I’m looking for a read without too much trauma on the page that imagines a better future/society. That’s pretty open-ended, but I enjoy so much of what gets recommended on the show that I trust y’all to run with it!
Thank you for all you do; you’re getting me through all this shit.
3. Hello! On your most recent episode (the final one in 2020), one or both of you mentioned reading more nonfiction books than usual this year. I haven’t gotten into nonfiction much, but would like to read more of it. So I was wondering – what were your favorite nonfiction books that you read in 2020?
Thanks! Love the show!
4. Happy Holidays from Indonesia 🙂
I’m looking for some new reading recommendations for my girlfriend, preferable a series she can dig into. She and I have slightly different tastes, so I’m looking to the experts for some ideas 🙂
She loved Game of Thrones, Harry Potter, and The Hobbit series. Books she’s read recently that she really enjoyed were Little Eyes by Samanta Schweblin, The One by John Marrs, My Sister the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite, and now she’s loving Memoirs of a Porcupine by Alain Mabanckou.
She couldn’t get into The Handmaid’s Tale or Fever Dream.
She loves a good plot, loves dogs (including Petunia), ghosts are good, and she likes imaginative books and worlds 🙂
Some violence is ok, but not overly brutal or too graphic. Nothing too obscure or literary.
Thank you and Happy New Year!!!!
5. I have just started going through your backlist of episodes! I listen to your podcast In bed to relax after coming home from work before going to sleep, so I haven’t gotten that far in (about 27 episodes). Since I haven’t listened to all of your episodes, you may have covered this recommendation topic before (or something like it), so feel free to point me towards an episode or not answer the question if you feel like you don’t need to!
I have recently (within the past couple of years) gotten into reading literary fiction and am looking for some egregiously overlooked literary fiction that you feel everyone should love and read! I’m not looking for the super popular books that have been hyped so much, but am looking for those little gems that reader’s may have missed.
I have read “Ask Again, Yes,” “A Little Life” (which ruined me for about a week after reading it. I literally started and put down 5 books the day after I finished it because I couldn’t read anything else), “The Heart’s Invisible Furies,” “On Earth We Are Briefly Gorgeous,” and others And have loved them all. I just started “Everything I Never Told You” and am loving it! Why it took me so long to read Celeste Ng, I don’t know!
Any recommendations you provide would be greatly appreciated. And the recommendations can be as dark or depressing as you want. In fact, I’d prefer that!
Thanks for entertaining and relaxing me before I drift off to sleep each night!
Here’s hoping you have a happy and healthy 2021!
6. I usually read darker mysteries and thrillers, but during the pandemic I’ve been turning to cozy mysteries a lot, as they really are the ultimate comfort reads, especially when you can dive into a whole series. But one thing that’s coming to annoy me in most modern cozies is that the protagonist rarely actually solves the murder through any deductive reasoning. Usually they blunder around asking questions until the murderer has had enough and decides to try to murder them as well, at which point our main character always manages a narrow escape. Can you recommend a contemporary cozy mystery series where the protagonist actually uses clues to solve the murder rather than just figures out who it is by almost getting murdered themselves?
Cozy series I’ve read during the pandemic include Agatha Raisin, the Maine Clambake series, the Meg Lanslow series, Tea Shop mysteries, and Daisy’s Tea Garden. I also really love a lot of historical series, including Flavia de Luce (who I think does use clues and logic more than most!) but I’m looking for something contemporary in this case. Nothing magical or paranormal, please, I haven’t really been able to get into any of those.
7. I just read Circe by Madeline Miller and I absolutely loved it. I’m so intrigued by Greek mythology right now. Can I have some recommendations on books on Greek mythology? The Song Of Achilles by Miller is on my list. I am looking for fictional retellings or easy read non fiction.
Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by VE Schwab
Six Wakes by Mur Lafferty
SFF Yeah episode on Genre-Blenders
That Inevitable Victorian Thing by EK Johnston
The Feminist Utopia Project, edited by Alexandra Brodsky and Rachel Kauder Nalebuff
Third Rainbow Girl by Emma Copley Eisenberg
The Mason House by T. Marie Bertineau (tw: domestic violence, alcoholism)
The Old Drift by Namwali Serpell (tw: rape, racism, racial slurs)
America is Not the Heart by Elaine Castillo (tw political torture)
My Year of Meats by Ruth Ozeki (tw: child abuse, domestic violence, lots of weird dark stuff that i can’t remember precisely)
Dead in the Garden by Dahlia Donovan (tw: racism, ableism, homophobia)
Death at Breakfast by Beth Gutcheon (tw: suicide, drug abuse, child abduction, fatphobia)
The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker (tw: rape)
The Half-God of Rainfall by Innua Ellams (tw: rape on the page)
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