New Year’s is a time for optimism, but instead Christy Admiraal discusses Sylvia Plath’s 1963 roman à clef, the Bell Jar. Also, John totally gets the dates wrong for this book’s complicated publishing history.
Christmas isn’t Christmas without presents, and literary podcasts aren’t literary podcasts without an exhaustive conversation about Louisa May Alcott’s essential coming of age book. Shannon Campe discusses.
The horse knows the way—but to WHOSE house? The answer may surprise you. The McCoy Boys are all here for the annual drunk Thanksgiving episode to discuss Lydia Maria Child’s “The New-England Boy’s Song about Thanksgiving Day” (1844).
Election Day Special: What does a 19th Century play have to do with fake news and ecological disaster? Probably nothing, but Shannon Campe and Zach Powers are here nonetheless to discuss Henrik Ibsen’s An Enemy of the People (1882).
No one would have believed in the first years of the twenty-first century that this podcast was being listened to keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man’s and yet as mortal as his own. Jason Snell discusses H.G. Wells’s The War of the Worlds (1897).
Had we but world enough and time, we could talk about more poems than just these two: John Donne’s “A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning” and Andrew Marvell’s “To His Coy Mistress.” Liz Riegel joins the discussion on meter, metaphor, and metaphysics.
Despite all my rage, I am still just a canary in a cage. Jason Snell returns to discuss San Francisco, steam beer, and gold teeth in Frank Norris’s McTeague. Reading: David Loehr. Theme music: Malcolm Nygard.
Before the Hulu series that everyone told you you had to watch was the Margaret Atwood novel that everyone told you you had to read. Caroline Fulford returns to discuss dystopias and how to tell your waves of feminism apart.
Ashley Challinor and John spend a long still hot weary dead September afternoon discussing not merely a Absalom, Absalom! by Faulkner, nor yet the ideal of the great Southern novel, but in fact the very podcast of an ideal of a thought of a concept of a the becoming of a book.
It’s a good thing the rope broke so now we have time to talk about Ambrose Bierce’s “A Horseman in the Sky” and “Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge.” Spencer Seams of coming podcast Tune In Tonight is here to discuss stories that end happily with no surprises!
The only thing you’ve got in this world is what you can sell. And we’re selling this fine podcast! Check out the quality workmanship that Nicolas Hoffman brings to this discussion of Arthur Miller’s inevitable Death of a Salesman.
Two co-hosts, alike in dignity, Sharlene Wellington and Stuart Wellington join in for a star-crossed discussion of William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Can we possibly say anything new about the most famous play ever? Probably not, but we sure giggle a lot.
You asked for it. Oh, why did you ask for it? Jason Snell returns to discuss Robert A. Heinlein’s Stranger in a Strange Land, in a double-sized podcast that will take as long to listen to as the book does to read.
This time historian Daniel Daughetee of The Lesser Bonapartes joins in to discuss Nathaniel Hawthorne’s inescapable novel The Scarlet Letter. What? You somehow made it through high school without reading it? You should have to wear a symbol of your shame for all to see! Also, last week I neglected to mention that Malcolm Nygard, composer of the new theme song, has his own podcast: Apoc Radio.
Do you dare disturb the universe? If not, do you dare to read the über-depressing novel The Chocolate War by Robert Corimer? Join Shannon Campe as we discuss the surprising number of autoerotic scenes in this seminal work of teen literature. Also! A new theme song! A surprise guest reader! And dodgy audio that lets you know I recorded this in my basement.
Ocomogosiay! This time John atones for the shame of not having read Lorraine Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun back at his lily-white high school. Fortunately, first-time podcaster Dominique Garnette joins in to discuss life in the South Side.
Don your berets! This time Erik Stadnik joins in to look at some of the poems we read in high school, by flinty New Englander Robert Frost and exuberant Midwesterner Carl Sandburg. Get in touch with your sensitive side (for once)!
Dinosaurs and mammoths and the end of the world, oh my! This time Phil Gonzales joins in to discuss the time we made it through by The Skin of Our Teeth. Is Thornton Wilder’s play still relevant? Is it understandable? Why aren’t you watching it right now?
A lot of the books we read in high school were downers, but only one book was literally about falling down, out of a tree. Al Lewis attended the real school where A Separate Peace took place and lived to tell about it, which (spoiler alert) is more than we can say for all the novel’s characters.
As Nelly might say, It’s getting hot in here, so put away all your books. Liza Daly joins me in discussing a world without books (which for our younger listeners are dead trees with printing on them), Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451.
Phonies watch out. This discussion of J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in The Rye is extra long. Who’d have guessed that John Siracusa would have so much to say? Check into a seedy hotel and have a listen, won’t you?
In our first episode we explore how similar-sounding a host’s and guest’s voices can be as John is joined by his brother, Dan, of the Flop House Podcast. We talk about everyone’s favorite story of Man vs. Nature vs. Man’s Dark Heart vs. Pig, Lord of the Flies by William Golding.