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Episode 53 - Peyton Place by Grace Metalious (with special guest!)

Today we have a special treat for you - we got Henry from FireStarters   to read Grace Metalious' Peyton Place  with us and let me tell you... it's a real Peyton Place in there. I honestly can't even describe the plot of this book so let me just give you the trigger warnings, I guess?  So this book is trying really hard to shock you, which shouldn't shock you - the stuff that isn't  intentional in it, therefore, is... more shocking?  So on that front look out for rampant 1950's racism that thinks it's progressive including whoa  n-word count and awful depictions of mental illness, including a character who dies by suicide.  The stuff you're here for, though - the Peyton Place  stuff - includes but probably is not limited to because my god: incestuous rape and abuse, secret illegal abortion(s), an industrial carnival accident, a cat strangled in absolutely bizarre circumstances (I mean seriously usually I'm the one freaked out by animal cruelty but t

Episode 28 - Morning Glory


She's barefoot and pregnant!  He's... awfully close to barefoot!  It's Georgia!  It's 1940!  Chickens!  Old cars!  Manual water pumps!  Dooryards!  BEES!  omg bees


It's LaVyrle Spencer's Morning Glory, a book about not much in particular except the deep meaning of the heart until there's a war and then a... murder framin'?  This book has no nonconsensual sex but it does have a lot of discussion of childhood trauma, the past-tense murder of a sex worker, and some seriously weird slut shaming and then murdering of another woman which is really tonally weird and we expected better of you, LaVyrle.

We read this book because Amazing Human Beverly Jenkins mentioned LaVyrle in a list she so graciously gave us of vintage romances she really liked back when we did our episode on Night Song.  In the future I won't wait that long to listen to the lady because this book is so good except when it makes such weird choices in the last act.

And there's a MOVIE!  Starring, of all people, Christopher Reeve!  Which is incredibly weird casting!  It's one of those weird things you can either rent on Amazon for three bucks or you can watch on the more oddball free streaming places - Tubi, evidently.  Somebody watch us and tell us, wtf Christopher Reeve?  Like he's hot but I don't see him and think "rawboned country boy who probably killed a Texas whore", do you?  It's got a solid... 57% on Rotten Tomatoes with no critic score whatsoever, so clearly we need to find out.

In this episode we discussed Michael Twitty's book The Cooking Gene and this article in the Bitter Southerner, "Dear Disgruntled White Plantation Visitors."  It's a fantastic article and you should read it.

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