The Goats Also Have Strong Personalities

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Amanda and Jenn discuss memoirs by trans men, audiobooks for kids, some fantasy and dystopia, and more in this week’s episode of Get Booked.

This episode is sponsored by The History of Literature – A Podcast, Skyhunter by Marie Lu, and Care/of.

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Practical Magic trilogy by Alice Hoffman and Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo (rec’d by Sibyl)

The Harwood Spellbook series by Stephanie Burgis, starting with Snowspelled (rec’d by Laura)

Son of a Trickster by Eden Robinson (rec’d by Jennifer)

Changing Our Mind by David Gushee (rec’d by Jessica)


1. I’m at the point in my Gender Journey(™) where I think I need to read some books by trans men that talk about the experience of being a trans man! Either memoirs or OwnVoices fiction would be cool. Especially interested in hearing from men who only figured out they were trans as adults and maybe identified as lesbian before that? Thanks!


2. Hello! I am looking for a fantasy novel where the protagonist is not a young adult. As I creep into my 40’s, I’m finding it harder and harder to relate to the tortured 20-something who has to overcome their Extra Traumatic Past to fully harness their power (here’s looking at you, Trail of Lightning, City of Brass, The Space Between Worlds…) I’d really love a book where the main character is confident in his or her abilities and already has a strong sense of self and good connection to others. Captain Vimes from the Discworld Series and many of Alice Hoffman’s characters fit the bill, but I haven’t found anything recently that has rung my bell. I love Naomi Novik, Jeff Vandermeer,  and NK Jemisin and am a fan of classic fantasy, urban fantasy, and weird fiction.


3. Looking for newer fantasy or dystopian titles with male protagonist.  As a librarian, I’ve been finding it difficult to find newer titles for young readers, specifically male readers, transitioning out of Juvie reads into YA reads.  I’m often asked for read-a-likes for fantasy and/or dystopian titles with male protagonist, and I’m finding my “go to” titles are aging off of the shelves.  Specifically being asked about read-a-likes for Harry Potter, Percy Jackson, The Maze Runner, and The Brotherband Chronicles.  My “go to” titles were The Chronicles of Nick, Bartimaeus trilogy, and the Alex Rider series. I can find titles with female leads with no problem, but this doesn’t always appeal to younger male readers (they still want to ‘see themselves’ when they read.)  Is there anything you can recommend published within the past 2 years or so that can fill this void? 


4. I needed something to look forward to and am planning the trip to NYC I’ve always wanted to take. (Not sure when I’ll actually get to take it but imma be ready.) I’ve read so much historical fiction that takes place there, but not so much in modern day. Can you recommend anything that might give me some inspiration of things to see or do there that is closer to the New York I’ll see in the next year or so?


5. I have had a little success in getting through working from home while “homeschooling” my 4.5 year old this week with audiobooks.  We have listened to the first two Ramona books by Beverly Cleary two times each!  What are some other chapter books where the characters are four or five years old that we can try?  I want to keep this crafting while audiobooking up and ditch the YouTube marathons we were resorting to.  Thanks so much!


6. Hello! I have an oddly specific request. Lately I’ve really been into the Tomorrow When the War Began series by John Marsden and How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff. I’m looking for similar books: voice-y YA books in diary form where there is a disaster/war/other Big Problem and a group of teens are walking through the wilderness while trying to survive. I realize that’s incredibly specific but I’ll take as many of those elements as you can find in one book! I care a lot about the characters and relationships, and I’m looking for settings that feel pretty realistic – so, not a dystopia with lots of sci-fi or magical elements. I am open to historical fiction. (I have already read and loved Code Name Verity.)

I’d like to avoid books with domestic abuse or sexual assault as a major plotline. Thank you!!!


7. This is specific but I’m looking for pregnancy books that are informative but also not just heterosexualy focused? Or out of date with ideals of women’s bodies and rights. Does that make sense? My partner and I are going to start trying for children soon via ICI and I have no idea where to start with pregnancy information.


Books Discussed

Something That May Shock and Discredit You by Daniel Mallory Ortbery / Daniel M. Lavery

Sorted by Jackson Bird

Man Alive by Thomas Page McBee (tw: child molestation, mugging, transphobia, PTSD & disassociation)

Soulless by Gail Carriger

The Affair of the Mysterious Letter by Alexis Hall

Want by Cindy Pon

Beasts Made of Night by Tochi Onyebuchi

Hey YA Episode: On YA “Boy Books” And Driving In The Midwest

The City We Became by NK Jemisin

Once Ghosted, Twice Shy by Alyssa Cole (When No One Is Watching)

Princess in Black by Shannon Hale, Dean Hale, illustrated by LeUyen Pham

Betsy-Tacy by Maud Hart Lovelace 

Dear Martin by Nic Stone 

A Boy And His Dog at the End of the World by CA Fletcher (cw: reference to suicide, harm to animals, reference to rape, use of gender reveal as a plot point)

Like a Mother by Angela Garbes

From the Hips by Rebecca Odes and Ceridwen Morris (rec’d by Jaime)