Book Fight (general)

This week we're discussing Hunter S. Thompson's famous essay on the Kentucky Derby, which many people credit as the starting point for his gonzo style of journalism. Neither of us had read the piece before, and we realized that a lot of our impressions of Thompson were based on his legend, more so than on the work itself. Also this week: raccoon selfies, tourists who pay to take pictures with docile (and likely mistreated) tigers and elephants, and why there are so many car selfies on dating sites. 

Direct download: Ep187_Summer17_Thompson.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EST

We're kicking off a new season for Book Fight, with a slight change in programming. This week marks the first episode of the Summer of Selfies, in which we'll be discussing some of the best--and worst--autobiographical writing.

Up first: an essay for The New Yorker by Jia Tolentino, in which she argues that the heyday of a particular kind of personal essay is over.

Direct download: Ep186_Summer17_Tolentino.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EST

This is a free preview of our first Book Fight After Dark episode. The full version is available to monthly subscribers, via our Patreon page. For $5 a month, you'll get monthly bonus episodes like this one, plus the satisfaction of supporting a podcast you love (or at least like?). 

If you've already subscribed, there's no need to listen to this brief preview--just go enjoy the full episode over on Patreon. And we'll be back on Monday with another regular (free) episode.

Thanks for listening! And for supporting the show.

Direct download: BFAfterDark1_Teaser.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:30pm EST

This week we seek to settle an age-old debate: do you read the foreward first, or wait until you've read the book? Also: Nazis, animal cruelty, impotence, and classic Czech literature.

Thanks for listening! 

Direct download: Ep185_Hrabal_Trains.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EST

We talk about the latest graphic novel by Daniel Clowes. Also we talk about Garfield fan fiction. You're welcome.

 

Direct download: Ep184_ClowesPatience.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EST

It's the last week of our spring season, in which we've been discussing stories about different kinds of flings. For this final installment, we're discussing the Lydia Davis story "Break It Down," about a man who's attempting to calculate the literal cost of a short-lived affair. Though his accounting is really just a different way to explore the ways a relationship can leave lasting marks.

Also this week: Writers who had successful romantic relationships. The benefits and drawbacks to dating a writer. And what literary quotes are most likely to get someone into bed? 

Thanks for listening!

Direct download: Ep183_Spring17_Davis.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EST

This week we welcome back fan favorites Kelly Phillips and Claire Folkman, the duo behind Dirty Diamonds, an all-girl comic anthology. They're currently working on their 8th book, Sex. They picked our book this week, a comic by Carolyn Nowak (Girl Town, Radishes) about a woman who orders a robot companion and then tells him her secrets. 

We talk about Diana's Electric Tongue, comic inspiration, running a small-press publishing company, working with your friends, Weird Al, the line between sex-themed writing and smut, and why Tom has never taken Mike for a panzarotti. 

For more, check us out online, find us on Twitter or Facebook, and subscribe to the show in iTunes.

Thanks for listening!

Direct download: Ep182_DirtyDiamondsReprise.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EST

This week we're talking about a new essay by Samuel Delany, self-described sex radical. "Ash Wednesday," from the Boston Review, is about a weekend trip the author takes to participate in a seniors' group-sex weekend.

Also this week: The sex lives of authors, and should the reading habits of your potential romantic partners matter?

Direct download: Ep181_Spring17_Delaney.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EST

This week's book is a brand new novel by Marcy Dermansky, about a woman who heads to San Francisco for the funeral of her former boss and, once there, begins to realize she might want to change her life.

We talk about the book's deadpan humor, its unique voice, and whether we're cool or not cool with ghost cars in literature. In the second half of the show, Mike is bummed out by Twitter, and also by dummies. 

Thanks for listening!

Direct download: Ep180_TheRedCar.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EST

This week we continue our "spring fling" theme by discussing one of the most famous stories about affairs: Chekhov's "The Lady with the Dog." We also talk about Robert Lowell's romantic life, and the time he took his ex's letters and straight-up appropriated them for his poems. In the second half of the show, we do a deep dive into Yahoo Answers to see what kinds of affair-related questions people have (spoiler alert: people are the worst).

Direct download: Ep179_Spring17_Chekhov.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am EST