Podcast Transcript: 73 What We’re Reading, and When You Re-Read a Series

Here is a text transcript of DBSA Podcast 73. What We're Reading, and When You Re-Read a Series. You can listen to the mp3 here, or you can read on! 

This podcast transcript was made awesome-r by Garlic Knitter, who is a badass transcriptionist like whoa.

 Here are the books we discuss:

Book Carolyn Crane - Rom Sus - Off the Edge Book raw belle aurora Book The Do Over  MK Schiller

Book The Dom Project - Heloise Belleau and Solace Ames Book The Principle of Desire - Delphine Dryden Book Whitney My Love - Judith McNaught

Book The Duke and I - Julia Quinn Book Heart of Obsidian - Nalini Singh

Book Alpha Omega  - Cry Wolf - Patricia Briggs Book Mercy Thompson - Patricia Briggs

Sarah Wendell:  Hello, and welcome to another DBSA podcast!  I’m Sarah Wendell from Smart Bitches, Trashy Books, and with me is Jane Litte from Dear Author.  Today, we talk about what we’re currently reading and whether we’re liking it, and then we answer an email from Elizabeth who wants to know what we think about re-reading a series and what happens when it doesn’t hold up when you go back to re-read it again.  We talk about a lot of books; this might be an expensive podcast.  Be ye warned!

And now, a word from our sponsor!  The all-new Maya Banks romantic suspense, After the Storm, is here!  Read about the sexy agents of the KGI team that perform jobs that government can’t, from the #1 New York Times bestselling author.

The music you’re listening to was provided by Sassy Outwater.  I’ll have more information at the end, but yes, this is totally Peatbog.

And now, without any further delay, on with the podcast!


Sarah:  To start, what are you reading right now?

Jane:  Let’s see…I am reading Carolyn Crane’s book – oh, shoot, hold on –

Sarah:  That’s what it’s called?  What is it, that’s a great title!

Jane:  No, I got a new, I got a, I finally broke down and bought a Samsung.

Sarah:  You mean the phone?

Jane:  Yeah.

Sarah:  Oh, my goodness!  You, what did you get, a Note?

Jane:  Yeah.

Sarah:  Do you like it?

Jane:  Yeah, I mean, I really like the big screen size.

Sarah:  Me too.

Jane:  It’s, the operating system is taking some getting used to.  Off the Edge by Carolyn Crane, which is a romantic suspense.  Carolyn Crane has, like, a quirky sense of humor, and you can kind of see it in the book.  I don’t know how well it’s going to work with a dark romantic suspense, but it’s interesting.  The hero is an Indiana Jones type professor by day, works for a mercenary group by other days [laughs].  He’s a linguist by trade.

Sarah:  Like you do.

Jane:  Like you do.  And so, he is a spy, essentially, and is using his skills to track down bad guys.  So then, let’s see, I read…

Sarah:  Like you do.  [Laughs]

Jane:  I read Raw by Belle Aurora, which is a book that is garnering raves from certain corners, but I thought was a terribly written book, and I have a review of that coming up.  It will probably go up before the podcast, but –

Sarah:  Is this the scathing review you mentioned this morning?

Jane:  Yeah.

Sarah:  When we were called elderly spinster aunts, or spinster aunts, not elderly, just spinster.

Jane:  Yeah.  This is a book about a woman who senses that she’s being stalked and is kind of turned on by it, which is, you know, not – it’s fine.  That, I didn’t have a problem with that.  The problem I had is that the writing itself was really lazy.  Like, she would switch, intentionally switch tenses from the first person present tense to the first person past tense, so she, you would be going along in first person present tense, then she would change to first person past tense and kind of recap things that we didn’t see, and then say, And here we are now.  And she does that several times, which I thought was weird and irritating.  She has a lot of inconsistencies in the story, some questionable word choices, and then, I just felt like the hero, beyond the technical aspects of the story, I felt like there was no sweetness or tenderness in the story at all.  The hero is stalking her.  He, whenever they do have sex, it’s really angry, humiliating stuff, and it turns her on, but I just, the whole thing kind of left a sour taste in my mouth.

Sarah:  What do you mean by questionable word choice?  Do you mean that she used words incorrectly or that she used words that are potentially extremely offensive and alienating to readers?

Jane:  Oh, that she uses them incorrectly.  Like, the heroine, Lexi, is a social worker, and she says, Well, based upon my long years of being a social worker, which really isn’t that long, she’s like, I know that this guy is a sociopath.  Well, he’s clearly not a sociopath, because a sociopath has no remorse or feeling.  I mean, they do things ‘cause they get their jollies out of it, but they don’t have any kind of morality guidelines.

Sarah:  Right.

Jane:  Well, that’s not this guy.  Like, you’ll be reading along, and you’ll be thinking, well, that, that’s not really what that word means.

Sarah:  [Laughs]

Jane:  And then, you know, Lexi’s a social worker, and she’s a, kind of a crusader, so it seemed odd to me that she would start smoking weed and doing blow and then she would be, like, totally unconcerned that one of her charges gets wrapped up in the drug trade.  You know, her, the stalker dude is involved in the drug trade.  That just didn’t make any sense to me.

Sarah:  That is kind of strange.

Jane:  If, if you are actually a social worker, and you’re, it’s not just a job to you but it’s a real calling, I think you’d have a hard time allowing one of your cases to be swept up in the drug trade.  I mean, you would be fighting actively for, against that.

Sarah:  One would think!  So you didn’t like this, and a lot of other people were saying it was just the most amazing thing ever.

Jane:  Oh, so many feels are brought forth by – I mean, that’s what I’ve read.  So many, this book makes me feel so much, and I’m, like, I just, what does it make you feel?  ‘Cause it kind of made me feel queasy.

Sarah:  [Laughs] Was nausea what you were going for there?  ‘Cause I’m kind of ill.

Jane:  [Laughs] On the good side, this is the second Belle Aurora book I’ve read, and it’s the first one I’ve finished, and there is a clear improvement in her writing from the first book that I tried to read, which was Willing Captive, to this book.  So, I mean, she’s improving.  I’d probably try her again because the improvement was so big and noticeable, but only if she would stop writing about women being captured and humiliated.  That, that wasn’t it for me.

See, what else have I been reading?  Oh, I read, did I talk, I talked about The Do-Over, did I?  Last time?

Sarah:  I don’t think so.  You had a do-over?

Jane:  No, the book called The Do-Over by MK Schiller.

Sarah:  Huh.  I, no, I don’t think so.

Jane:  Okay, it’s a fairly expensive book.  I want to say it’s almost six dollars, and one Melissa from – or Mistress M from SM Book Obsessions –

Sarah:  [laughs] Mistress M.

Jane:  – recommended to me, and we have very divergent tastes, so I wanted to give it a try.  It’s a funny book, and unlike Raw, there’s a very, there’s kind of a sweetness and tenderness underlying the story.  The heroine is this lawyer, and at first, when Melissa suggested it to me, I’m like, Oh, I don’t read lawyer books.  She’s like, well, it’s not like a huge part of the story, but it actually is a major part of the character, but it was done really well, and I felt like whatever she knew about law was sufficient enough for the author to carry this off.  But the heroine is a trial lawyer, and she’s super good at her job, but she’s not very good at making her, she doesn’t like attention, and she’s not very good at dressing herself up and making herself very attractive, because that’s just not been important to her.

Sarah:  Right.

Jane:  She’s always been kind of socially awkward.  But she’s, one of the things I loved about it is that she was so confident in her job, like, she went to this guy, when she first meets the hero, and she’s telling him, you know, I’m a great lawyer, and he’s like, oh, I can’t wait to knock her down a peg.  I can’t believe that she’s so, such a braggart about her job, and she’s like, you know what my job is?  My job is winning.  And I just thought, Yes!  I love that!  You know?

Sarah:  [Laughs] That is totally up your alley!

Jane:  Right, so, and then later on, when she has feeling insecure, he says to her, What’s your job?  And she says, Winning, and he’s like, that’s right, and we’re going to win, and I just thought that that was a – She just did a good job of presenting this female character as being both strong and vulnerable at the same time 

Sarah:  Confident.

Jane:  Right, and I think it’s rare that you see, you get to see women kind of ballsy in the terms of what they do for a living.  And, so, what the story is is that she, her sister, who is this total, the hero calls her sister a modern-day succubus.


Jane:  So, her sister is a really terrible person, and she’s a freeloader, and she just wants to marry really well, and right now she’s living off of her sister and dating Brad, who is the heroine’s coworker.  Now, the heroine has a crush on Brad, and she thinks that if she got enough information about what Brad liked that she could plan an assault and win him over.  So, she goes to his friend, Kyle, and she says, Kyle, I’ll let you have a Pulitzer-prize-winning story if you help me win Brad.  The journalist, Kyle, is this total man-whore.  And it’s not that, he’s not a man-whore ‘cause he hates women.  Do you remember when we talked about that book Tangled last time?

Sarah:  Mm-hmm.

Jane:  About it being a misogynistic book, primarily because Drew didn’t have any respect for women.  But in this book, Kyle, it’s not that he doesn’t have respect for women, it’s, he doesn’t have respect for himself, and so he just flits from relationship or from woman to woman to woman.  But initially when he sees our heroine, he’s like, she’s unattractive and she’s abrasive.  And then, as he spends more time with her, he starts saying, oh, well, you know, she has really nice hair; it’s probably her best feature.  And then he notices her eyes, and then he says, well, you know, I bet, you know, her eyes are really her best feature.  And then the next time, it’s like her smile, her smile is the best feature.  Until it’s not anything about how she appears, just that he just really enjoys having, spending time with her.  So you see a gradual change that, it’s a change that you don’t see in Tangled.  There’s an actual character conversion that you see that happens between both of them, as she becomes more confident in her appearance, and then he becomes, you know, he falls in love with this woman.  Everybody kind of changes, except for the sister, the modern-day succubus.  Brad turns out to be kind of this jerk.  He goes from the perfect man to kind of the jerk, and Kyle kind of leapfrogs him from the jerk to the perfect man.  So it was a fun, it’s funny and sexy, and I definitely recommend that book, even though it’s a little expensive.

Sarah:  That sounds really cool!  And you totally deserve a good book after reading one that made you rage.

Jane:  Okay, and so then the other book that I read which I really enjoyed was The Dom Project, and in fact, I think you would like this book.

Sarah:  I was thinking about it, and I was going to ask you about it because I had a pitch from the author, which was a really, really smart email that I really appreciated, but also you had been talking about how it mixes really good exploration of BDSM culture with a sort of a sweetness, and that sounded right up the things that I like.

Jane:  Yeah, it’s not one of those really dark ones.  It’s a friends-to-lovers story, and these are two people who are initially just kind of exploring the boundaries of her kink…

Sarah:  Mm-hmm.

Jane:  …and, ‘cause he’s the Dom and she’s the sub, but she doesn’t know what kind of sub exactly she is, other than she knows that she likes that.  So, he’s a very experienced sub; he’s got all kinds of – he serves as a Dom, excuse me – for all kinds of different people, both in a sexual and non-sexual way, and I thought that he, they did a really good job of addressing that issue and then how they, they moved from friendship to something more.  And he’s very much the one who’s like, you know, I have feelings for you; can we explore that?  Which is something you very rarely see.  They’re funny together, how they, you can really get a sense that they are really, truly friends.

Sarah:  I love that.  That’s one of my favorite things.  But, you know, the Delphine Dryden books did not work for you, even though –

Jane:  No.

Sarah:  – they’re sort of similar.

Jane:  No, I didn’t, yeah, they just did not agree.  I don’t – [Laughs] I can’t even tell you.  No, the fact of the matter is I don’t think I read after the second one.

Sarah:  I only read the first two.  I know the third one is out, but I am a lazy cow, and I haven’t read it yet.

Jane:  So.  But I think that you would like The Dom Project.  I actually think most people would like it.  It’s just kind of a sweet, funny, romantic, very sexy story, so I recommend it.

Sarah:  All right, I will try it, I will try it.  I am struggling through a book, and I am sort of curious as to whether or not you’ve heard of it.  Have you seen the, the new adult parody, Tousle Me?

Jane:  [Laughs] No.

Sarah:  [Laughs] Okay.  This is, okay, here’s the thing about parody:  In order to write a really good parody, I think you not only have to demonstrate a really good familiarity with that which you’re parodying, but it also helps to have a story that happens with the parody.  So far, what I see in the book, and I’ve read about a little more than a third, is more of an awareness and a deep knowledge and great love of the new adult tropes, but not enough of a story that I’m actually interested in the characters, but it’s really, really funny.  The characters are all aware that they’re in a book, and they reference how in a previous edit the hero was a vampire, but now he’s a billionaire MMA fighter, and in the first chapter, the heroine, who is a reviewer on Goodreads, finds out that one of her reviews has been deleted, and so he makes a phone call and buys Goodreads for her while standing in a rooftop bar.

Jane:  Oh, see, I couldn’t get, that just destroys the fourth wall so much, I could never read it.

Sarah:  He takes her to a BDSM club, which is also a Chinese all-you-can-eat buffet, for a mixed martial arts match, and his opponent has a giant tattoo with gothic letters and then the Wendy’s logo is on his forearm.  [Laughs] It’s these random pieces of silliness on every page that I like, because I like silly, and I like things that are sort of poking fun at something that they clearly like but, like I said, there’s not enough story, where I’m like – and it’s really interesting.  Mostly I’m just reading for the page-by-page humor.  My favorite part so far is that she goes to the cage match and it ends in a draw, which leads to the slam poetry round, which is [laughs], it’s so ridiculously silly, I can’t, I can’t stop reading it, even though, like I said, there’s not enough story to keep me going.  The degree to which this person understands all of the major new adult books, though, is hilarious.  There’s references to, is it the Jennifer L. Armentrout, The Something of So-and-So and Somebody Else and The Something Else of Somebody and Somebody, like, you know, The Apples of Mary and Smith and The Tangential Meeting Point of Some Two People.  There’s a whole bunch of references to titles and big hits in the early new adult era.  Era, era, it’s like a year, but era.  The humor is exactly the way I like it; the story is not quite enough, but I’m still reading it because I like silly.  I don’t think that the silly would be enough for you, especially with the degree to which they reference the fact that they’re characters in a book.

Jane:  Yeah, I would never, I hate it when authors break the fourth wall, and this would just – No.

Sarah:  That would make you bonkers?

Jane:  Yeah, it would make me bonkers.  I just feel like it’s too – that, to me, is trying too hard.

Sarah:  There is another new adult novel, although, for the life of me, I can’t figure out why this is being pitched to me as new adult, except maybe it’s the age and the things that the characters learn, and I’m not 100% sure that this is going to be for me, but it’s called Wake Me.  The heroine is apparently a formerly crappy human being who is now in a coma, but she can hear what’s going on around her.  And the hero is this doctor who finds that he’s happiest and content when he can talk to her, and he doesn’t realize that she can hear him.  So during the course of the book, she is sort of navigating this nightmare world where she knows that she’s in a coma and she knows that she’s having dreams, but she’s still experiencing them anyway, and then when she’s awake, she is trapped in her own body, she can hear what’s going on around her, and she can’t respond, and she hears this one guy’s voice all the time, and she’s basically waiting for him to come back and talk to her some more.  I like the sort of set-up.  The balance between weird dreams and doctor doing all of these inappropriate confiding things to a comatose patient, I’m having a hard time negotiating that balance, and I can’t figure out why it’s, why it’s new adult.

Jane:  Well, it –

Sarah:  Can I write a book about some cats and call it new adult?

Jane:  Yes, because –

Sarah:  Okay.

Jane:  Did you see that The Rosie Project was on the new adult bestseller list?

Sarah:  [Laughs] No!

Jane:  Yes.

Sarah:  That’s not right!

Jane:  Well?  I just think that publishers are trying to game the system the best they can.

Sarah:  Oh, for God’s sake.  That’s not new adult!

Jane:  No.

Sarah:  I mean, for God’s sake, he’s a, he’s a, he’s like, he’s very adult!  He got tenure and shit!

Jane:  [Laughs]

Sarah:  The thing about Tousle Me, the parody, that I find hilarious is that on Goodreads it has 10 five-stars, 11 three-stars, and 11 one-stars, leading to a visual pattern of review average that looks kind of like a W.  It’s awesome!

Jane:  Well, and plus, you don’t like it, the genre, so you enjoy the skewering of it.

Sarah:  Yes, I do enjoy the skewering of all of the, the billionaire mixed martial arts fighters, because, you know, billionaires regularly like having the crap pummeled out of themselves.

Okay.  So, are your ready for email number one?

Jane:  Yep.

Sarah:  Okay.  So, this is an email from Elizabeth, also known as scifigirl1986, who writes:

I’ve been listening to the podcast for a while now, and I love the discussions you have about reading tastes.  I was wondering if either of you have ever re-read a series that you previously loved and found that it didn’t hold the same appeal to you as it once did.  I was re-reading Naked in Death by J. D. Robb, and I found myself questioning how I ever could have liked this book, despite the fact that I still glom the newer books.  My problem with Naked in Death is that Roarke is a bit of an alphole.  He inserts himself into Eve’s investigation, even though he was actually a suspect and was railroading her at every turn.  In truth, he’s behaving like the serial killer he is trying to prove himself not to be, and it is disturbing that I ever liked this book.  Is this just me, or has it ever happened to you?

Has it ever happened to you?

Jane:  Well, I think that he was behaving like the serial killer was intentional, ‘cause you’re supposed to believe that, or you’re supposed to have some doubt as to whether you should –

Sarah:  Whether or not he’s the hero.

Jane:  Yeah!  I think that that was intentional.  But nonetheless, of course, there’s always books that you read early on, Jude Deveraux, for example.  I love the shit out of every book of hers, and I have tried to go back to read stuff that I’ve really loved and thought, I must have been smoking crack.

Sarah:  [Laughs]

Jane:  And the same thing with Judith McNaught.

Sarah:  Oh, Judith McNaught’s a big one for me.

Jane:  I remember, it’s been a long time since I tried to re-read Whitney, My Love, but as I was trying, I was like, you know, not only does she take, like, a hundred words to say one thing –

Sarah:  [Laughs]

Jane:  – but there couldn’t be a more misogynistic storyteller, infantilizing women constantly, and I think that when I do go back and re-read somebody’s work and, and still kind of have enjoyment of it, I think I’m, like, drawing on my memory bank enjoyment, not necessarily, like, if I had come to it cold and never read it before, would I think, Yeah, this stuff is really awesome.

Sarah:  I definitely think there’s a nostalgia factor that influences how I re-read something, but the In Death series does that to me, not because Roarke is an alpha-hole, but after a while the pattern of behavior of the two of them becomes too routine for me, and I, I suffer from series fatigue way too quickly anyway, but with the In Death series it seemed like there was a lot of them in a row where Eve would have a problem, Roarke’s influence or slightly outside the boundary of the law technique would help her, and then she would solve the case.  And then they would take a shower, and the temperature would be, like, whatever it is, 126 degrees Fahrenheit.

Jane:  [Laughs]

Sarah:  I do like the idea of setting my shower temperature, because I live in an old house, and old pipes don’t regulate the temp very well.  But that pattern got to be so repetitive that I would re-read them and think I can’t un-see the pattern now that I see it; I don’t like it anymore.

The thing that was the most difficult for me was going back to read the Bridgerton books.  I love visiting the Bridgertons; it’s the most, like I said, it’s the most safe world in historical romance because when you read the Smith-Smythe series, all of those people are previous characters; they’re all, like, perfectly safe, nothing ever bad is going to happen to them, ‘cause you can’t kill off a previous hero and heroine.  When I went back and read The Duke and I, I was horrified that I had not only liked it but told so many people to read it, because I re-read it, it must have been 10 years – you ever get that moment where you’re like, Wow, I’m old.  I do things, like, 10, 15 years ago, and I remember what I was doing 10 or 15 years ago – but it had to have been at least 10 years since I re-read it, and I, I was horrified at myself, because when I read it the first time, whatever was going on really worked for me, and I loved the whole experience, and I just thought it was delicious wonderment, and then I read it 10, 12 years later, and I’m like, Oh, my God, she rapes the hero, what’s wrong with me?!  What’s wrong with me?!  Why did I not see that?!  What’s wrong with me?!  And then I want to go back to Past Sarah and have a really stern conversation with her about, That was not good, and that’s – No!  No!  Nonono, Past Sarah, that was, wow!  What, what was I smoking?  And it’s not even just that it didn’t work.  It’s like, actual deep shame.  Like, deep, deep shame.  Ouch.

The other old-school books that used to work with, work for me, like the Catherine Coulter Magic trilogy, she has the McNaught problem in her historicals, where it takes, like, two paragraphs to say one thing.  I love them for the nostalgia.  If I was coming to them as a new reader, I would be like, This is really too dense for me.  It’s like when you want something fresh and you have cheesecake.  It’s not going to work.

I wonder if that’s true for other people, that they go back and read a series.  Like, have you ever gone back and read the Kresley Cole series?  ‘Cause I know you loved that.

Jane:  I have.  I was listening to the audiobooks, was it a couple years ago?  Yeah, a couple years ago, which I found really entertaining.  It gets to a certain point, like, there were books I just didn’t really enjoy.

Sarah:  But then there are series that do hold up, like, I know you and Angie have both re-read the Nalini Singh books, and they have such layers that every time you read them, there’s something different to discover about them.

Jane:  You know, the IED series, or even Nora Roberts, the reason the Nora Roberts books still work, I think, is because it’s a plot-heavy book, so even though she’s reusing the same type of formula, there’s a different whodunit in each story, and I think for Nalini, she has not only kind of a little whodunit but also this long-running world building, and it’s very dense world building.  And it’s fun to go back and read the books for particular characters, so I’m not necessarily reading the entire book, but I’m reading it for particular characters because I want to see where they started, and Nalini is very consistent.  I mean…

Sarah:  Yes.

Jane:  One of the things – so, book, this is a big spoiler, but the book’s been out, so, you know, suck it up, people.

Sarah:  [Laughs] Don’t worry, I’ll mark the time.  There’s a spoiler at this minute mark!

Jane:  All right, well, Heart of Obsidian was the reveal of Ghost, who is Caleb, and –

Sarah:  Wait, what, he was?  I’m just kidding.

Jane:  And so, we had done this speculation post about who Caleb, who the Ghost was, and I had asserted that it was Caleb, but I didn’t know who the heroine was, but someone in the comments had said, I think the heroine is this person and gave all of these reasons, and he said, you know, because the Caleb’s house that he’s been keeping for her is a remote area, so it has to be an F-Psy, because they don’t want to be around people.  And then he said that one of the talismans that Caleb has is a star, and that’s the NightStar clan.  And, I mean, I was just amazed at (a) this person who had picked up on all these clues and (b) that Nalini had seeded all these clues for 10 books!

Sarah:  Yes.  That was the thing that blew me away, that she had left all of those clues for 10 books, knowing that that’s where she was going.

Jane:  Yeah, so you kind of have to go back and read those, and it’s fun to go back and see, oh, well, I, I could have seen the clues here or there or whatever.

Sarah:  Yep.  And then, at least that way, you don’t get mad at yourself, like, what the hell was wrong with me that I didn’t see that the first time?  Because it’s so well hidden that even then it was a bit of a mysterious.

Jane:  Right.

Sarah:  Like when the book was out, it was a big deal who she was revealing, ‘cause people didn’t know, although you had made a very strong argument.

Jane:  Yeah, and apparently this other guy, I think it was a male reader, who had said it was going to be Faith NightStar, and I’m like, Holy crap!

Sarah:  [Laughs]

Jane:  That’s amazing!

Sarah:  But you know, when you have a really dense world, you can do that, and you can go find all the clues to different pieces of the story when the world building is dense and layered and consistent.  That makes re-reading a lot of fun, whereas with other series, it’s, the world is sort of set, the world doesn’t change or evolve any.  What other, are there any other series that you recommend people go back and re-read, aside from the Singh books?

Jane:  I love the Alpha and Omega series.  I’ve probably read that, I don’t know, four or five, six times.  I haven’t read all of the Mercy Thompson series.  I mean, I’ve read all of them once, but I’ve not re-read those books.  The romance just isn’t strong enough for me to go back and re-read the series.

Sarah:  With the Mercy Thompson books, though, there is, there are a couple scenes in each book, each book has one scene where, in early books, the degree to which the person Mercy ends up with, the degree to which that person feels something for Mercy is, is hinted at.  I’m trying not to spoil, which makes it sound like I don’t know what I’m talking about.  Whoever, the person who Mercy ends up with, is it kind of okay to talk about that by now?  I mean, the book’s been out for a while, right?

Jane:  Yeah, I mean, it’s been like five books since –

Sarah:  All right, so, in early books there is always at least one or two scenes where Adam reveals something about how he feels for Mercy, and once they ended up together and I went back and re-read them, seeing those moments was much more revealing and satisfying.  Like, there’s one scene where he’s been, I think, wrapped in silver chains, and he’s in a chair, and she’s leaning over him to try to set him free, and he puts his head on her shoulder and starts breathing in her scent, and she sort of notices, and she’s like, Yeah, whatever, but then you realize in the context of what he does feel for her, that’s a huge, huge thing that she doesn’t see that the reader will, once they know.  That’s, that can make a really fun re-read.  But that’s also the sign of a really talented author who knows, much like Nalini Singh, to hide all those clues in the beginning.

Jane:  See, I never thought that Adam’s feelings toward Mercy were hidden at all.  I thought it was pretty obvious that he had feelings for her.  The question was where her feelings lie.

Sarah:  See, I thought it was more hidden.  That’s funny.

Jane:  Oh.  See, I didn’t think so at all.  I mean, I thought from the very first book it was a classic romance set-up, you know, her with her little junkie trailer home that looks over to his property and how she’s like –

Sarah:  Giant-ass mansion.

Jane:  Yeah!  I mean, I just thought that was, yeah.  I thought that was obvious set-up that he had feelings for her.

Sarah:  [Laughs] I have to go back and have another talk with Past Sarah is what you’re saying.  [Laughs]

Jane:  No!

Sarah:  Now look, first of all, the heroine rape is not okay, and (2) they were totally meant to be together.  [Giggles]


Sarah:  So here’s a question for all of you listening at home or walking the dog or driving to work or, you know, driving around in Australia with your kids in the back seat – Hi, Kat’s kids, how you doing? – What series holds up really well for you?  What series didn’t work so well when you went back to read it?  I’m really curious.  You can email us at SBJPodcast@gmail.com; you can call and leave us a message on our Google voice number, which is 1-201-371-DBSA; or you can leave a comment on the entry for this podcast, because we’re bloggers and we totally dig comments, but I’m curious:  What series really works for you when you re-read it and what series didn’t work for you so well the second time?

Future podcasts will feature me, Jane, email, talking, romance novels, but you probably already expected that, right?  It occurred to me that I don’t tell you where we are online, and that I probably should.  You can find me at smartbitchestrashybooks.com, and you can find Jane at dearauthor.com.  Conveniently enough, she is on Twitter @dearauthor, and I am on Twitter @SmartBitches, and sometimes we’re on Facebook and, you know, sometimes we’re on a podcast, and we’re, you know, randomly places.  But it had occurred to me I shouldn’t assume you know where to find us because, you know, assuming makes kittens cry, or something.

The music you’re listening to is provided by Sassy Outwater.  This is the Peatbog Faeries, and this is a new track for the podcast; I’m very excited.  This is called “Calgary Capers”, and it is from their album Dust, which is available on iTunes and all of these other places where you can buy music.

Our sponsor Penguin would like to invite you to warm yourself up this week, and, gosh, do we all need that, with Maya Banks’ steamy new KGI thriller, After the Storm.  If you can’t get enough of alpha men and the women they love – and who can, really? – you won’t want to miss After the Storm by #1 bestselling author Maya Banks.  Enter the world of a top secret, elite hostage recovery and intelligence gathering team and read about their adventures in suspense and romance today.  You can find After the Storm wherever books are sold.

Thank you again for listening and for subscribing and for bringing us with you wherever you’re going right now.  Wherever you are, Jane and I wish you the very best of reading.

[most excellent music]


General Bitching...

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  1. 1
    kathy cole says:

    thanks much for the transcript!

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