Ep #112

This week Sarah Jean hosts the podcast with guest Helen as we conclude our November “Politics & Enemies to Lovers” theme with a campaign contribution of Queer Romance


> SARAH JEAN (she/her) From the woods of Massachusetts, Sarah Jean has been reading queer romance for 12 years. She runs a queer book club called Rainbow Readers of Massachusetts (https://www.facebook.com/rainbowreadersmass/) that celebrates queer lives, joy, and empowerment through genre fiction. When not reading or listening to books Sarah is plotting her queer historical romances, cuddling with her cats, and planning her next adventure. Follow Sarah on Twitter @queer_reader


> HELEN KORD (she/they) is a twenty-something artist and book reviewer living in the beautiful city of Prague in the center of Europe. Helen has been drawing ever since she picked up a pen as a tiny baby and never really stopped. You can find Helen’s book reviews at https://imallbookedup.wordpress.com/ and art at https://mirabel-chan.tumblr.com/. You can follow Helen on Twitter @mirabel_chan


> CW: NSFW–this week our language gets a little salty

> RomBkPod is a big fan of the History is Gay podcast hosted by Gretchen and Leigh, “because history has never been as straight as you think.” You can listen to the program through most major podcast vendors and follow them on Twitter @HistoryisGayPod
Link: https://www.historyisgaypodcast.com/listen

> Title: A Seditious Affair (Society of Gentlemen #2)
Author: K.J. Charles
Relation to theme: Civil servant MC, political activist MC
Representation: Queer MCs
Content Warnings: Humiliation kink, bdsm, political upheaval, anti-kink from side mc, brief transphobia that is textually challenged, period police brutality, discussions of criminalization of queerness, violence, discussions on the criminalization of poverty
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25241403-a-seditious-affair

> As mentioned, the entire Society of Gentlemen series by K.J. Charles is politically nuanced
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/series/151032-society-of-gentlemen

> Both Sarah Jean and Helen recommend the Society of Gentleman audiobooks as well, narrated by the excellent Matthew Lloyd Davies
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29803950-a-fashionable-indulgence
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30808825-a-seditious-affair
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30808241-a-gentleman-s-position

> Title: Cash (Lucky #2)
Author: Garrett Leigh
Relation to theme: Political activist MC
Representation: Bi author, queer MCs
Content Warnings: depression, anxiety, activism burnout, animal abuse/cruelty/fox hunting practices 
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43188699-cash

> When Sarah Jean references Peterloo and the Cato Street Conspiracy, she’s referring to real-life British political events that K.J. Charles incorporates into her stories

> Title: An Unnatural Vice (Sins of the Cities #2)
Author: K.J. Charles
Relation to theme: Lawyer/con-man rivalry
Representation: Queer MCs
Content Warnings: hate sex, murder, lots of murder, mentions of alcholism, morally grey main character, grief over past relationship
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32161804-an-unnatural-vice

> Here are the links to the Sins of the Cities audio books, also narrated by Matthew Lloyd Davies
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34723424-an-unseen-attraction
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35433694-an-unnatural-vice
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36461973-an-unsuitable-heir

> Title: Baker Thief
Author: Claudie Arseneault
Relation to theme: Cops & robbers
Representation: Asexual/aromantic-spectrum author, Mcs: Agender, Aromantic, Asexual, Bigender, Bisexual/Biromantic, Demisexual, Lesbian/Homoromantic, Non-binary, Transgender
Content Warnings: Fire, human experimentation, human trafficking, witch hunts
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/39979131-baker-thief

> Here’s the link to Claudie Arseneault’s Aromantic and Asexual Characters Database that Sarah Jean mentions
Link: https://claudiearseneault.com/?page_id=1320

> Title: Gilded Cage
Author: K.J. Charles
Relation to theme: Cops & robbers
Representation: bisexual heroine 
Content Warnings: past mentions of miscarriage, parental neglect, theft, murder, conspiracy
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/46368222-gilded-cage

> K.J. Charles’ Any Old Diamonds, which Sarah Jean & Helen also mention, can be found here
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/42925241-any-old-diamonds

> Harper Fox’s novels Brothers of the Wild North Sea and Seven Summer Nights were also discussed in episode #108
Link: http://lustandfoundreads.com/rombkpod/ep-108/
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17433996-brothers-of-the-wild-north-sea
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33116450-seven-summer-nights

> Elin Gregory’s novels 11th Hour and Midnight Flit were also discussed in episode #108
Link: http://lustandfoundreads.com/rombkpod/ep-108/
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30820566-eleventh-hour
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43714501-midnight-flit

> When Sarah Jean & Helen refer to the film Wings, they’re referring to the 1927 silent film that shared the first Best Picture Oscar with the silent film Sunrise at the first Academy Awards in 1929 (Wings received the award for “production” while Sunrise received the award for “art”). Wings is commonly believed to contain the first male-male kiss in Hollywood film
Link: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0018578/
Link: https://filmschoolrejects.com/culture-warrior-the-first-oscar-worthy-same-sex-kiss-and-the-academys-blurry-vision-of-history-be82326b1721/

> The Hays Code, which put an end to unambiguous homosexual displays of affection in Hollywood studio films, didn’t go into full effect until 1934. In 1968 the Motion Picture Association (now the Motion Picture Association of America or MPAA) shifted from policing filmmakers to providing content warnings to audiences through its infamous ratings system
Link: https://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=93301189
Link: https://productioncode.dhwritings.com/multipleframes_productioncode.php

> Title: Scorpio Hates Virgo (Signs of Love #2)
Author: Anyta Sunday
Relation to theme: Rival neighbors
Representation: Queer MCs-demisexual pansexual
Content Warnings: grief, death of loved one in past
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36156261-scorpio-hates-virgo

> Title: Greenwode (Wode #1)
Author: J. Tullos Hennig
Relation to theme: Robin Hood retelling (Robin/Sheriff rivalry)
Representation: Queer MCs
Content Warnings: genocide based on pagan practices by the Catholic Church, homosexuality as a sin, crusades, death, forced into a nunnery
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23571391-greenwode

> Sarah Jean & Helen discuss the Nightrunner series by Lynn Flewelling 
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/series/40357-nightrunner

> Title: Coffee Boy
Author: Austin Chant
Relation to theme: Political campaign setting
Representation: Queer author, trans author, trans MC 
Content Warnings: supervisor/intern romance, sex on page, misgendering in office setting
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32146161-coffee-boy
NOTE: Chant is actively working on republishing this work, for now please check with your library

> Title: Peter Darling
Author: Austin Chant
Relation to theme: Peter Pan retelling (Peter/Hook rivalry)
Representation: Queer author, trans author, queer MCs trans mc
Content Warnings: murder, toxic masculinity 
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33358438-peter-darling
NOTE: Chant is actively working on republishing this work, for now please check with your library

> Sarah Jean & Helen mention the novel Caroline’s Heart by Austin Chant which was also discussed in RomBkPod episode #105
Link: http://lustandfoundreads.com/rombkpod/ep-105/
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36353978-caroline-s-heart

> Title: The Morning Star (Shadow of the Templar #1)
Author: M. Chandler
Relation to theme: Cops & robbers 
Representation: Queer MCs
Content warnings: unchallenged use of R and F slurs by characters 
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7459958-the-morning-star

> Helen recommends the entire Shadow of the Templar series
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/series/48056-shadow-of-the-templar

> Title: Murder and Mayhem (Murder and Mayhem #1)
Author: Rhys Ford 
Relation to theme: Cops & robbers 
Representation: Queer MCs, Cuban-Mexican MC, agender queer author, poc author 
Content Warnings: side mc recovering from cancer, mentions of parental neglect, mentions of being kicked out for being gay, murder, attempted murder
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/24937601-murder-and-mayhem

> Sarah Jean highly recommends the entire Murder and Mayhem series, especially the audiobooks narrated by the excellent Greg Tremblay
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/26043362-murder-and-mayhem
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36390361-tramps-and-thieves

> The books on Sarah Jean’s TBR are:

>> The Crier’s War 
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/41951626-crier-s-war

>> Summer of Jordi Perez 
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31246717-the-summer-of-jordi-p-rez

>> Everything by A.J. Demas
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18022670.A_J_Demas

> Podcast shout-outs

>> The Adventure Zone: Balance Arc, a biweekly comedy and adventure actual play podcast based loosely upon the popular Dungeons & Dragons game series produced by The McElroy Family
Link: https://www.themcelroy.family/balance

>> The Penumbra Podcast, bi-weekly podcast production that follows in the tradition of the classic radio drama and features two original narratives:
>>> Narrative 1: Juno Steel: featuring a brooding, sharp-witted private eye on Mars, as he tangles with an elusive “homme fatale”, tracks dangerous artifacts of an ancient alien civilization, and faces his three greatest fears: heights, blood, and relationships. 
>>> Narrative 2: Second Citadel: featuring the merciless Sir Caroline who must corral a team of emotionally distraught all-male knights to defend their city against mind-manipulating monsters…even the ones they’ve fallen in love with
Link: http://www.thepenumbrapodcast.com/

> One more from Sarah Jean’s TBR:

>> Fortitude Smashed by Taylor Brooke
Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34669350-fortitude-smashed

> Which #QueerRomance favorites of yours did we miss? Let us know on Twitter or Instagram @RomBkPod

Happy Reading!

Music: “Lift Off” by Jahzzar
From the Free Music Archive
CC BY-SA 3.0