A Lot of Ennui

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Amanda and Jenn recommend fantasy, nonfiction about music, Japanese authors, and more in this week’s Get Booked!

This episode is sponsored by EveryLibrary and Book Riot’s Book Mail boxes.

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The show can also be found on Stitcher here.



1. My name is Levi and I just started listening to the podcast today. What are some books you think someone would like if they liked…
-The Chronicles of Narnia
-A Wrinkle in Time
-Anne of Green Gables
I really like old books, books in the mythical fantasy genre, and books that catch you really quickly in the plot line.

Thanks for producing the podcast!


2. I’m going on a two month European trip in August and am looking for a great, non-fiction (am open to fiction) audiobook about music. I love a broad range of music from classic country to hip hop to grunge to 60s pop. Love it all, recent music books I have enjoyed (deeply loved) have been Carrie Brownstein Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl, Bob Boilen Your Song Changed My Life and Kristin Hersh Don’t Suck Don’t Die: Giving Up Vic Chesnut (a talisman in what has been a difficult year). I’m open to memoir, overall histories and essays. I am an Audible user so it would be appreciated if possible to find out if they are available in the Australian store. THANK YOU!



3. Hi Amanda and Jenn!
I’m moving to Japan at the end of July for a year-long teaching job and I’m looking for recommendations to supplement my packing. I’m a big fiction reader so I’m looking for novels set in Japan, or that deal with Japanese culture in some way. I’m up for any genre! I’ve read a ton of Murakami and am unsure of where to go next. I’ve found books to be a great way to settle into a new place, and I’m hoping they will help me with the transition.



4. Hello

Love the show, catching up has been my go to listen for walking home from work and just the right length for my journey.
At the end of July I am flying to Las Vegas (10 hours on a plane) and was hoping you could recommend some things to read that will give me a flavour of the place without being a rough guide book. I read anything except crime so any genre including factual will be welcome. so far anything I’ve picked up that you’ve made sound great I’ve loved. (saga, a little life, shadow and bone)


5. Thank you very much for your wonderful podcast. I have listened to every episode in the last week or so (funnily enough while cross stitching!) and I really appreciate the wonderful recommendations you give (though my bank account and my exponentially growing TBR list probably do not).

I have been a voracious reader as long as I can remember – at least until a few years ago when I started grad school. Between a rigorous degree program and 2 jobs I have fallen out of the habit of reading for pleasure. I’m reading so much for grad school that I am too burnt out to read on the rare occasion that I do get the time, so I usually opt for something that takes less energy, like flipping through channels on the tv. If I do manage to open a book that isn’t academic, I often don’t feel engaged enough to keep going, even if it’s something that I know I would normally love.

But, for once, I am about to take a vehemently /non-working/ vacation beginning August 1st. I’m hoping to take the opportunity to get 100% away from my academics and recharge in preparation for (hopefully) my last year of coursework. I was wondering if you had any suggestions of books that could help me rekindle my love of reading for pleasure – the kind of book you dive right in and come out dazed, the way I used to feel when new Harry Potter books came out and I read them in less than 24 hours. In general, I tend to like science fiction, fantasy, or young adult novels – I will definitely be taking a copy of the new Harry Potter book, for example, but I’m hoping that won’t last me the whole time – but I will read outside those genres based on recommendations from others. Some of my all-time favorite books are technically Literary Fiction flavored with sci fi or fantasy, like Ready Player One or The Night Circus. Other favorites include: the Lunar Chronicles, the Inkheart series, the Abhorsen series, the Graceling series, Mr. Penumbra’s 24-hour Bookstore, and the Throne of Glass series. I’d also prefer something kind of light – not that bad stuff can’t happen, but I’d rather not come back from my vacation on a downer note.

I know this probably sounds like a tall order, but I would appreciate any help you can give me. Thanks!



Books Discussed

Zahrah the Windseeker by Nnedi Okorafor

Seraphina by Rachel Hartman

Sabriel by Garth Nix

The Bards of Bone Plain by Patricia McKillip

Musicophilia by Oliver Sacks (RJS)

Kill ‘Em and Leave: Searching for James Brown and the American Soul by James McBride (RJS and Liberty)

Let’s Talk About Love by Carl Wilson

I Don’t Care About Your Band by Julie Klausner

Beyond Murakami post

The Ring by Koji Suzuki

The Gun by Fuminori Nakamura

Snow Country by Yasunari Kawabata

My Year of Meats by Ruth Ozeki

The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt

Play It As It Lays by Joan Didion

Poolside with Joan Didion post

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. Thompson

The Melting Season by Jami Attenberg

The Bees by Laline Paull

The Moth Diaries by Rachel Klein

Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews

Prophecy by Ellen Oh