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Episode 21: Clan of the Cave Bear

Ayla is an anatomically modern human (is it technically Cro Magnon?  This is set in modern day Ukraine. To the Wikipedia!) orphaned and raised by a tribe of psychic Neanderthals.  This one isn't the one with all the doin' it (evidently that is Valley of the Horses which also has a bunch of blonde dudes who shop at Cave-REI), it's the one with a ton of rape and abuse in it. (A note: the cave I was talking about extensively is Shanidar.  Shalimar is, of course, a perfume.  Apologies.) So the fun thing about this book, and the factor that I know made everybody's mom love it, is the great research Auel put into it.  (Shades of Savage Ecstacy, y'all.)  She really knew her shit, at least about the state of research into Homo neanderthalensis in the late 70's - but since then there have been amazing finds and a lot of research using tools unavailable when Auel started writing.  Some of which, by the way, match her fiction.  (Uh, not the psychic part.  But the fucking…

Episode 10 - "Silver Angel"



Silver Angel by Johanna Lindsey is evidently a book about a troll doll with boobs.  There are, let's see.  Twins.  Harems.  Corsairs.  A public fight about pubic waxing.  Assassins.  Eunuchs.  Poisonings.  A vizier.

As usual, you're definitely going to want to get a vintage copy with an older cover.  What is it with these publishers reissuing these with the worst covers?

Before you listen to this episode you should know.... this is... the CURSED.  EPISODE.  of DOOM.

First, we found out the hard way that our recorder doesn't warn us when the battery runs out.  So we rerecorded the last part of the podcast.

Then, we found out that somehow we LOST the first half.  So weeks later, we tried to remember this shit and rerecorded THAT.  Which meant we had to revisit this book.  Ugh.

Also, it seems I just can't help telling and retelling my story about getting naked in the pool at Caesar's Palace, because you're gonna hear that one again in Imzadi.  Sorry 'bout that.

The trigger warnings on this are... complicated.  There is no sexual assault actually happening in this book, surprisingly.  (I did forget - there is one of those gross virginity test scenes.)  But there is a lot of talk about it, a lot of it has happened in other places, there are a lot of threats, and it's just a general atmosphere of sexual fear.  There's also... lord I don't know how to describe it, there's some... it's kink shaming and a deeply disturbing failure to understand the psychology of sexual violence and it's all very weird and upsetting.

Also, it is racist as shit.  Obviously.  Maybe there's a captivity book about a harem that isn't racist as shit but I'm having a hard time imagining it.



Our musical guest today is Lisa LeBlanc, singing "You Look Like Trouble (But I Guess I Do Too)" from her album Highways Heartaches and Time Well Wasted.  You can find her in all the usual places - Spotify, Amazon, etc. - as well as at her website and on Facebook.

This book is set in a fictional country (Barikeh) that's... somewhere in the Ottoman Empire, probably in North Africa, so I can't give real actual information about it.  However, there's plenty of cool fascinating stuff about the Ottoman Empire itself, like... did you know if you were the grand vizier and the sultan sentenced you to death, you could race the gardener-executioner and if you won, you got away!  Seriously, read all about it at the Smithsonian.




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