Books

Classics Without All the Class Ep #16: Heroes Are Overrated

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Classics Without All the Class Ep #16: Heroes Are Overrated

In this episode, the Tators ask what makes them abandon a book and talk about Thug Notes. Then they delve into the second installment of the trope/archetype series in preparation for this month’s book selection: The Phantom of the Opera. What makes an anti hero? Who are some of literature’s most notable examples?

Why do we all love the anti hero even more than the vanilla heroes?

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Classics Without All the Class Ep #15: Mr. Lem, Kinda Like Phlegm…We’ll Leave it at Lem

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Classics Without All the Class Ep #15: Mr. Lem, Kinda Like Phlegm…We’ll Leave it at Lem

What happens when you mix Solaris, alcoholic Otter Pops, and three Tators? The fifteenth episode of the podcast!

Jeane, Jared and Karena talk about their favorite books this month along with Jared’s many degrees of separation for Solaris‘s author Stanislaw Lem. They also find out what books will be on the next poll!

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Classics Without All the Class Ep #14: Happy Birthday CWAtC!

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Classics Without All the Class Ep #14: Happy Birthday CWAtC!

It was ladies’ night for this episode as Karena and Jeane leave Jared out (ok, he was actually stuck in traffic) to celebrate Classic Without All the Class‘s one year anniversary. Jeane reveals a possible change in opinion for a certain well-known book, and the ladies keep it laid back talking book to movie adaptations and book spoilers and more.

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Classics Without All the Class Ep #13: Anna Karenina

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Classics Without All the Class Ep #13: Anna Karenina

The Anna Karenina episode has Jeane MIA in the Netherlands, so Jared and Karena have to trudge through without her.

The Tators, dubbed the “Fantastic Fagans” for this episode, recount a recent trip to Solvang, California to visit the Hans Christian Andersen Museum, then envy everyone who made it to Book Expo America 2013. The main event is all Anna though, a discussion of May’s book selection Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy (including Jared’s Six Degrees of Separation!). To wrap up the podcast, they announce the winner of August’s book poll and set up the selections for the Tators’ Choice for September. 

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Classics Without All the Class Ep #12: Kevin Smokler’s Kind of People

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Classics Without All the Class Ep #12: Kevin Smokler’s Kind of People

This time on the podcast, the Tators find out what DTF stands for and how it relates to women’s book choices when they travel (spoiler: it really doesn’t relate), geek out about Out of Print’s Great Gatsby Game and share their bookmarks.

Also there’s a mini “CWAtC on the Go” as the Tators recount their recent visit to the Steinbeck House and National Steinbeck Museum. Also featured is CWAtC’s first author interview with Kevin Smokler, author of Practical Classics:  50 Reasons to Reread 50 Books You Haven’t Touched Since High School. To wrap it up the Tators discuss their assigned reading in school and the possible rereads that have occurred and are possible to come.

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Dinner is Coming – A Song of Sugar and Spice

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Dinner is Coming – A Song of Sugar and Spice

If you’re anything like me, you took a little extra time while reading George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire to visualize the passages in which he describes the foods of his world. He pays special attention to describing the meals in loving detail, encouraging my inner fatty to fantasize about shoveling all of that food into my face while sitting next to some of my favorite characters from the books.

Apparently Chelsea Monroe-Cassel and Sariann Lehrer felt the same way, as they set out to recreate the meals described by Martin throughout the novels. The resulting cookbook, A Feast of Ice and Fire: The Official Game of Thrones Companion Cookbook, is quite delightful.

These ladies really did their research, converting original medieval recipes to accommodate the modern kitchen. The cookbook itself is organized by the geographical regions in Martin’s world, from as far North as the Wall, South to Dorne, and even across the Narrow Sea to Meereen and Tyrosh.  Where possible, the authors include the original medieval recipe as well as suggested pairings with other recipes to create delicious, authentic meals. I also plan on actually eating all of them – even the Honey Spiced Locusts and Fiery Dornish Rattlesnake.

I will be quite honest and include both opinions of these dishes’ taste and those of whomever I can find to eat these dishes with me. Chelsea and Sariann also have their own blog where you can find some of the recipes they are working on. They also give commentary and pointers on their recipes. I would like to do something along those lines, but you will be receiving advice and commentary from a complete, self-confessed amateur.

Oftentimes when I read a recipe, I find myself wanting a slightly “simpler” explanation of what is going on – the chef who wrote the recipe obviously knows what they are doing, but I don’t always know what they mean! Hopefully knowing that someone out there is picking up this cookbook for the first time, and learning to cook these dishes for the first time will encourage you to buy the cookbook and try it out for yourself!

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Classics Without All the Class Ep #11: Brave New World

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Classics Without All the Class Ep #11: Brave New World

Episode 11 starts off with Tators Karena, Jeane and Jared chattering about crepes and burping garlic. Next we me ove on to forum news and chat about databases, the Harper Lee lawsuit and weird things customers say to booksellers. There’s some bookmark-sharing, then we jump into the discussion of Brave New World and Aldous Huxley.

Wrapping up the podcast is the announcement of July’s book as well as setting up the selections for August.

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Return of Ten Books, A Thousand Pages: Part One

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Return of Ten Books, A Thousand Pages: Part One

I don’t want to run a halfway decent idea into the ground, but I had so much fun with the “Ten Books, A Thousand Pages” project (Part One is here, and Part Two here) that I had to do it again. So I present The Return of Ten Books, A Thousand Pages, wherein I pick ten science fiction or fantasy books from the front-and-center display of the bookstore and read the first 100 pages of each to see if it’s something you (or I) would want to finish reading.

The idea is to do a quick and dirty review of the books that are going to be in your face the next time you’re out shopping or browsing the Recommended Reading sections online. And honestly, if a book can’t capture your attention in a hundred pages, I think it’s safe to find something you might like better.

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Classics Without All the Class Ep #10: Shakespeare and San Francisco

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Classics Without All the Class Ep #10: Shakespeare and San Francisco

This time on Classics Without All the Class, the Tators give the details on Shelftator Angie’s “The Year of the Gadfly” project. Jared and Karena give a heads up on the new tv show Hannibal, then the gang shares where their bookmarks are. The Tators also get together with Heather, a CWAtCer in San Francisco during their bookstore tour.

Then they share their favorite poetry for National Poetry Month and share some Shakespearian insults in celebration of the Bard’s birthday. “The Top 10 Best Feuds in Literature” wraps it all up.

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