Really Interesting Nonsense

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Amanda and Jenn discuss fall mood reading, books about friendship, horror short stories, and more in this week’s episode of Get Booked.

This episode is sponsored by the GCP Clubcar and The Good Demon by Jimmy Cajoleas.

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The show can also be found on Stitcher here.




1. Hi there!
I’m looking for books that hit the sweet spot towards fulfilling my reading challenges for this year.
I’m trying to read at least 75% female authors and at least 75% non-US/UK/Canadian (especially trying to add books from new countries).
Therefore, I’ve been reading a lot of women in translation and finding a lot of great books, but I’ve come to realize that the vast majority of what I’ve been reading are new books from the very late 20th or 21st centuries. So I’m really digging now for recommendations that touch each decade of the 20th century and/or earlier.
Do you have any ideas for books or authors?
Some good books from the last year or two I’ve loved were “Fever Dream” by Samantha Schweblin (Argentina), Han Kang’s books from South Korea, Ali Smith’s Autumn (not helping my goal :), and Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.
Thanks 🙂


2. Hello,
I love listening to the show and learning about new books to add to my ever-growing TBR pile. But this request is for my husband. He’s lately just gotten back into reading science fiction and I would love to surprise him with a new book for his birthday. He loves science fiction that mixes hard science with a good story. His recent obsession has been the Three Body Trilogy by Cixin Liu; he is also a big Arthur C. Clarke fan. Any recommendations would be appreciated!


3. Hello!

I sent in this question a while back but I don’t think it was answered yet, so I thought I’d re-submit.

I’m seeking some eerie, atmospheric books to read this fall and winter. Bonus points for books set in rainy, stormy, dreary places. My most recently read books that fall into this type of category are “Rebecca” and “And Then There Were None,” and “The Woman in Cabin 10.”

I’m open to books from all eras, as well as both YA and adult novels.

Thanks a lot! And I’m sorry if I might have missed this question on a recent show.



4. Hello,

My best friend and I no longer live anywhere near each other and may not for many years to come. One way we have maintained our bond is through reading books together. We love contemporary literature especially focused on women’s experiences. I am specifically looking for some lovely books about female friendship. As teens we both loved and deeply bonded over the sisterhood of the traveling pants series but I’m now looking for something more geared towards adults and maintaining friendship through the trials of adulthood, including perhaps long distance friendship.

Thank you!


5. Hi there! I’m looking for recommendations for my cousin who loves books that look at the world or history honestly, but still make her laugh. Her all-time favorites are The Sellout, The Good Lord Bird, A Confederacy of Dunces, and most recently Less by Andrew Sean Greer.

She keeps asking me for some absurdist satire like those books, except written by and centered on women. I know of no books that fit the bill, especially none that speak to a more diverse experience (i.e., NOT Confessions of a Shopaholic). She’s an intellectual, funny woman of color currently living in Europe, and I’d love to send her a couple books to accompany her on her travels. Please help!


6. Recently I’ve gotten into manga and I’ve been really loving the books I’ve been picking up. I’m reading Fullmetal Alchemist at the moment and have become obsessed.
It’s made me realize however how little I’ve read in translation by Japanese authors, and was wondering if you two had any novel recommendations. I read pretty much anything in any genre, so long as it’s engaging and well written I’m happy. Also before you ask I have read some Murakami. He’s a great author, but I’ve had difficulty with how he writes women. Thanks ladies!


7. Hello! I love your show and all of your recommendations. I have just started reading short story collections and, since I am a fan of horror books, I wonder if y’all would know of any horror short story collections (that are not Stephen King, already have all of those!). Thank you!


Books Discussed

The Tangled Tree by David Quammen

Headscarves and Hymens by Mona Eltahawy

Agua Viva by Clarice Lispector (1970s, Brazil), transl. Stefan Tobler

Angelica Gorodischer (Argentina), Kalpa Imperial, translated by Ursula K. Le Guin

All Systems Red by Martha Wells

Daniel H Wilson (Robopocalypse or Guardian Angels and Other Monsters)

Weathering by Lucy Wood

The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins

She Matters by Susanna Sonnenberg

Rich and Pretty by Rumaan Alam

Severance by Ling Ma

The Merry Spinster by Daniel Mallory Ortberg (published under Mallory Ortberg)

Penance by Kanae Minato, transl by Philip Gabriel

Strange Weather in Tokyo by Hiromi Kawakami, transl. by Allison Markin Powell (rec’d by Pierce Alquist)

North American Lake Monsters by Nathan Ballingrud

Fen by Daisy Johnson