Episode Archives

Ep 166: The Red Tower by Thomas Ligotti

Discussion Notes: The Red Tower by Thomas Ligotti

This week’s story: The Red Tower by Thomas Ligotti

Next week’s story: Granma’s Porch by Alexia Tolas

Rated: Clean

At the request of a listener, Andy, Gerald, and Anais discuss “The Red Tower” by Thomas Ligotti. Andy, who was looking forward to reading a Ligotti short story, was disappointed, but Anais was thrilled. In part she was thrilled because she found what she believed to be an obvious metaphor wherein The Red Tower is a representation of the human mind. Her confidence is rocked when no one else – not even other reviewers on the internet – share her view. Gerald learns what creepypasta is.

Andy’s recommendation: Read “The Stairs and the Doorway” by unxmaal on Reddit.

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The Escape | John L’Heureux | Literary Roadhouse Ep 165

Discussion Notes: The Escape

This week’s story: The Escape by John L’Heureux

Next week’s story: The Red Tower by Thomas Ligotti

Rated: Clean

Andy, Gerald, and Anais discuss “The Escape” by John L’Heureux. “The Escape” is the brilliantly told story of Eddie Prior, a pragmatic family man who faces Parkinson’s in late life and grapples with the disease alongside a newfound appreciation for painting which, as the disease progresses, becomes increasingly not pragmatic. All three hosts absolutely loved the story’s sheer genius, though Anais for some reason struggled to leave her analytical brain to embrace the reader brain. Andy in particular enjoyed the story because the author is a former Jesuit priest, which Andy argues on the show is the coolest kind of priest.

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Black Leopard Red Wolf | Marlon James | Literary Roadhouse Bookclub Ep 26

Discussion Notes: Black Leopard Red Wolf

For this discussion we read Black Leopard, Red Wolf by Marlon James.

In two weeks we will read The Bridegroom Was a Dog by Yoko Tawada.

Rated: Exlicit. SUPER Explicit!

We were supposed to release this book discussion in April. However, this book really did a number of Gerald, Colette and Anais. The gratuitous violence and sexual violence made the book difficult to read. We finally discussed it in May, and were slow to publish for similarly anguished reasons.

We start the discussion by focusing on what we did like about the book, and there was a lot to love and admire. James’s talent is undeniable. However those talents were at times difficult to appreciate. There was too much unnecessary (and at times borderline silly) violence to get through. We reserve our rants for the last 15 minutes of the discussion.

We will be releasing the next three book discussion two weeks apart to help us get back on schedule.

Please leave an iTunes review! It helps us attract a wider audience and keep growing.

We air the first Friday of every month, and discuss the books on Twitter between shows using #LRHBookclub.

We’d love to hear from you

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Ross Perot and China | Ben Lerner | Literary Roadhouse Ep 164

Discussion Notes: Ross Perot and China

This week’s story: Ross Perot and China by Ben Lerner

Next week’s story: The Escape by John L’Heureux

Rated: Clean

Andy, Gerald, and Anais discuss “Ross Perot and China” by Ben Lerner. Gerald and Andy did not care for the story which Anais loved. In particular she loved the theme that dwelled on the contrast between predictable aesthetics versus the unknowable interiors of minds and of homes. She valiantly defends the story, and even convinces Andy to consider a different theme. But can she convince him to raise his rating?

We apologize for Anais’s subpar audio today. She was traveling during the recording of this episode and did not have her usual set up.

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Three Friends in a Hammock | April Ayers Lawson | Literary Roadhouse Ep 163

Discussion Notes: Three Friends in a Hammock

This week’s story: Three Friends in a Hammock by April Ayers Lawson

Next week’s story: Ross Perot and China by Ben Lerner

Rated: Clean

Andy, Gerald, and Anais discuss “Three Friends in a Hammock” by April Ayers Lawson and dig into themes centered on friendship and whether or not love is real. Our hosts appreciated the depth of the story’s insights into human relationships. However, something was missing for all three hosts, something that prevented a more robust enjoyment of the story. Through discussion, they dig deep into what that is.

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The Palm Tree Bandit | Nnedi Okorafor | Literary Roadhouse Ep 162

Discussion Notes: The Palm Tree Bandit

This week’s story: The Palm Tree Bandit by Nnedi Okorafor

Next week’s story: Three Friends in a Hammock by April Ayers Lawson

Rated: Clean

Andy, Gerald, and Anais discuss “The Palm Tree Bandit” by Nnedi Okorafor. This African fairytale enchants all three hosts alike. Anais appreciated the story’s feminist themes that were cloaked in a vibrant village that felt both modern and timeless. Andy enjoyed the local legend of the Palm Tree Bandit who manifests with fantastical features, while Gerald appreciated the framing device’s clever ability to keep the story within certain expectations. But could the child-friendly narrative hold all three hosts’ attentions for long?

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The Demon Lover | Elizabeth Bowen | Literary Roadhouse Ep 161

Discussion Notes: The Demon Lover

This week’s story: The Demon Lover by Elizabeth Bowen

Next week’s story: The Palm Tree Bandit by Nnedi Okorafor

Rated: Clean

Andy, Gerald, and Anais discuss “The Demon Lover” by Elizabeth Bowen. “The Demon Lover” is Bowen’s most anthologized story. Published in 1945, this frightful tale is set in World War II London in an area of Kensington that’s been bombed and near deserted.

True to form, the Literary Roadhouse hosts have much to debate about this spooky story. Anais proposes a psychological reading of the demon.  Does she manage to convince her co-hosts? Or, as Andy wonders, does it even matter? Will this new interpretation of the story help Gerald see past some issues he had with the prose?

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Poetry | Greg Jackson | Literary Roadhouse Ep 160

Discussion Notes: Poetry

This week’s story: Poetry by Greg Jackson

Next week’s story: The Demon Lover by Elizabeth Bowen

Rated: Clean

Katie Hagaman, Author

Katie Hagaman, Author

This week we welcomed Katie Hagaman as a guest to discuss “Poetry” by Greg Jackson.

Katie Hagaman is an author and illustrator from the mountains of North Carolina. Having written for well over a decade for personal enjoyment, two years ago she decided to take her pursuits a step further and publish some of her works. To date, she’s released two children’s books, Haven’t You Heard? and In This Book You Will Find, as well as book one of her new series of novels entitled, The Awakening.

 

 

 

https://katiehagaman.wixsite.com/mysite-1 
Twitter: @hagaman_kl
Instagram: @klhagaman
Goodreads Author Page

Gerald, Anais and Katie discuss “Poetry” by Greg Jackson. The story reflects on the impulse to create and tell stories and to connect with others, and the desire to rebuff the fear of death by turning experiences into myths. Its depth provided a fertile ground for discussion, though the discussion was not above speculating over whether or not the main characters’ relationship was doomed to fail.

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The Seraph and the Zambesi | Muriel Spark | Literary Roadhouse Ep 159

Discussion Notes: The Seraph and the Zambesi

This week’s story: The Seraph and the Zambesi by Muriel Spark

Next week’s story: Poetry by Greg Jackson

Rated: Clean

Gerald, Andy and Anais discuss Muriel Spark’s celebrated short story “The Seraph and the Zambesi” which beat nearly 7,000 entrants to win a short story competition in The Observer in 1951. Anais loved the story, but Gerald and Andy struggled to enjoy it. Can Anais convince them of literary story’s merits?

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Bread and Wine | Mike Chapman | Literary Roadhouse Ep 158

Discussion Notes: The Hanging Stranger

This week’s story: Bread and Wine by Mike Chapman

Next week’s story: The Seraph and the Zambesi by Muriel Spark

Rated: Clean

We start the episode by sharing some sad news. Our founding co-host Maya Goode passed away suddenly on April 26th. You may listen to our audio tribute at the top of the episode or read our tribute here.

We recorded today’s episode before Maya passed, and were able to carry on none the wiser to the dark news to come.

Gerald, Andy and Anais had a great time deeply exploring the religious themes in this quantum-physics heavy science fiction story. Anais draws parallels to an episode of Futurama and the Isaac Asimov story “The Last Question” which we also discussed on this podcast. Gerald loved the twist. Andy loved the conceit of “the echoes.” Stay for a fun game in which Andy and Gerald try to eat a god.

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Psst: Full list of short stories discussed on the podcast >>