Comedy of Manners, Also With Pirates

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Amanda and Jenn discuss series, Raven Cycle read-alikes, funny reads, and more in this week’s episode of Get Booked.

This episode is sponsored by Libro.fmWilliam Shakespeare’s Get Thee Back to the Future by Ian Doescher, and Book Riot Insiders.

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The Address by Fiona Davis, rec’d by Suzanne

Kissing in Manhattan by David Schickler, rec’d by Madeleine

The Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg, rec’d by Madeleine

The Colossus of New York by Colson Whitehead, rec’d by Madeleine




1. Dear Ladies of the Bookish Bend,

I need your help finding a romance/erotica book that isn’t going to send me into fits of rage. I used to read more in the late aughts, but things got out of hand with the tropey, poorly researched, non-representative crap that was being churned out. So I’ve actively avoided the genre(s) for some time. Below is a list of things that are acceptable (YES) and a list of things that send me into rage fits (NO).


* Yes, adults. Not YA, not New Adult (whatever these mean these days), but Adult. Like, give me some thirty or forty year olds living their best lives (or not).
* Yes, chemistry then sex and not the other way around.
* Yes, sex that is described and not told.
* Yes, written by a WOC.
* Yes, would love a black Woman as the romantic female lead. And interracial romance is a huge plus.

* No love triangles. The trope is overdone & unimaginative. Not to mention, annoying. I don’t read romance or erotica to hate all the characters at the end.
* No instant sex then trying to make a nonsensical relationship work to keep having sex.
* No ridiculous miscommunications leading to silly drama to fill pages rather than a well-developed plot.
* No “deeply troubled” for whatever reason man that has to be saved by a woman in any capacity. So, no women being martyrs for dudes. There is enough of that IRL.

Unpopular opinion, I don’t like The Wedding Date for reasons I’m open to discussing at some other time. I love mysteries, books about books, books about food/restaurants, books set in England or France. I’d prefer there be no children involved, but it’s not a hard limit. Having done my own research, I know it will be difficult to hit all these criteria, but I have faith your collective book knowledge can find me something that won’t make me want to toss the book at the wall! I have linked my Goodreads as well.

Thank you for your time,
Neurotic About Erotica


2. I used to love reading trilogies and series when I was a kid and I miss the feeling of finishing a book and knowing that there’s more to discover. However, most adult trilogies and series seem to be published in genres I don’t particularly enjoy: fantasy, romance and science fiction. Can you recommend a series or trilogy for adults in another genre? I do enjoy historical fiction and read mostly literary fiction. Some crime or mystery elements are fine, but ideally shouldn’t be the focal point.

FYI, I tried Old Filth and Sea of Poppies and didn’t enjoy either of them. The Gilead series is on my list already, as is the ‘A Rising Man’ series thanks to a BR recommendation.

Thanks so much in advance!


3. Hi ladies,

I’m writing with a recommendation request for my wife. She was a voracious reader growing up, but for a variety of reasons has become a reluctant reader now in her late 20s and struggles to focus long enough to really get into a book. I’m not trying to change her, but I often hear her talking about ideas she would be interested to explore more deeply and I think, “there’s a book for that!” We recently got into comics. Her current favorite titles are Lumberjanes and Doctor Aphra. She’s a big fan of Game of Thrones, Star Wars, House of Cards, Jessica Jones, Timeless, and Dan Brown books. So I think something with some history, political intrigue, and a pinch of darkness would be up her alley. LGBT representation is a plus. Please no dragons if you make a high fantasy pick.

Many thanks!


4. Books similar to the Raven Cycle


5. Hi Amanda and Jenn! I recently started your podcast because one of my friends from my book club recommended it (and wow is running on the treadmill way more joyful now!). Work has been very emotionally taxing the last year, and I have been setting more and more time aside for reading. I have found myself falling in love with books with tasty language, most recently A Gentleman in Moscow (and Rules of Civility), The Secret History, and Circe (and Song of Achilles, which I know was mentioned in your last podcast). All seem to live in times almost apart from our own. I would love a recommendation for a book that offers a similar escape with a setting that lives in its own time/space, but mostly with the lyrical detail of A Gentleman in Moscow. Thank you again for your work!


6. Hello! (Yes, this is a second request — I can’t believe this one didn’t occur to me) I’m heading home to Malaysia for a VERY short visit in a few months (before fleeing to Europe, per my other request). It’s my first time back in five years, and may or may not involve seeing family for the first time in longer than that (there’s a complicated family situation there). I’m pretty anxious about this visit, both because of the complicated family situation and because (sigh) I have none of the things that my culture requires of a good Malay woman: I’m unmarried, there’s currently no boyfriend on the scene, there will be no babies from me, I’m not religious, and no, I’m not moving back home. Ever. I’m dreading all the questions and the (possibly imaginary) disapproval, basically. Can you recommend a book that might help prepare me for this trip, or at least help me tackle all these anxieties, both imagined and real? Thank you so much!


7. Hi!
I have really gotten into WWI and WWI historical fiction, which is great but also heavy. I would love some good audio books that will make me laugh out loud. I love all kinds of humor but sarcasm and dry humor are my favorites. I’ve listened to heartburn and a gentleman’s guide to vice and virtue. I also love crazy rich Asians and Jen Hatmaker. I prefer fiction but will try nonfiction. I rent audio books from my library’s app so please no new releases. Including my goodreads link. Thank you so much!


Books Discussed

The Deepest Blue by Sarah Beth Durst

The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton

A Princess in Theory by Alyssa Cole

Wrong to Need You by Alisha Rai

The Border Trilogy by Cormac McCarthy (#1 is All the Pretty Horses)

Master & Commander (Aubrey-Maturin #1) by Patrick O’Brian

Monstress by Marjorie Liu, Sana Takeda (tw: torture, violence, war)

Zero Sum Game by SL Huang

When the Moon Was Ours by Anna-Marie McLemore

Roses and Rot by Kat Howard (tw: child abuse)

Milkman by Anna Burns

The Bird King by G. Willow Wilson

No One Tells You This by Glynnis MacNicol

We Are Never Meeting in Real Life by Samantha Irby

People I Want to Punch in the Throat by Jen Mann

The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark