Between the two of them, Stephanie and Michelle have read the Man Booker Prize shortlist, as well as most of the longlist. This week, Stephanie and Michelle discuss the books that made it through to the shortlist, those that didn't (how did Reservoir 13 not get to the shortlist?), and predict the winner.
We can't stop talking about Sherlock. To celebrate 125 years since the publication of The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, Stephanie and Jimmy are joined by Dr Lee O'Brien to discuss the continuing appeal of Conan Doyle's most famous creation. They discuss the lovable Watson, the beguiling Irene Adler, the surprising darkness of these stories, and why Sherlock can be such a pain in the neck.
George Eliot's novel Middlemarch is often featured in lists of the best novels of all time, and it continues to be a favourite of literary critics and historians everywhere. This week, Stephanie is joined by Dr Geoff Payne and Dr Lee O'Brien to discuss Dorothea Brooke, Will Ladislaw, the ever-lasting appeal of the novel, and all things Eliot.
The Castle of Otranto was the first Gothic novel: the novel that started the craze for the Gothic that's never ceased since. On Horace Walpole's 300th birthday, Stephanie is joined by Dr Lee O'Brien to discuss the ongoing appeal of the Gothic, Manfred as Gothic hero, giant helmets, and whether you're supposed to find the novel funny.
The Man Booker Dozen (otherwise known as the longlist) is about to be whittled down to six. On the eve of the shortlist announcement, Stephanie and Michelle discuss the longlisted novels, pick their favourites, and predict the novels that will go through to the shortlist.
Liane Moriarty's Big Little Lies was a New York Times bestseller, and now it's an award-nominated HBO series starring Reese Witherspoon and Nicole Kidman. That's really exciting for us, as Liane Moriarty is a Macquarie University English Department alumni! This week, Stephanie is joined by Associate Professor Marcelle Freiman, who supervised Liane's first creative work, to discuss the book, the series, and how excited we are to see a promising student become an international sensation.
Are you a kindred spirit? Are you of the race that knows Joseph, as Miss Cornelia would say? If you understand those references, you're probably as big an Anne of Green Gables as Stephanie. This week, Stephanie chats to Jimmy about the new Netflix adaptation Anne with an E, Jimmy's beloved 1980s adaptation, and all things Anne Shirley.
Francis Webb is the best Australian poet you've never heard of. At least, that's what Dr Toby Davidson thinks. This week, Stephanie and Michelle discuss Australian poetry, cultural cringe, and Francis Webb's influence on the poets who came after him. This podcast also features recordings of Francis Webb reading his own poetry.
Georgette Heyer wrote crime and historical novels, but is most widely known for her best-selling and beloved Regency romances. Stephanie is joined on the podcast this week by her fellow Heyer tragic, Dr Lee O'Brien, to talk about all things Regency and romantic. They discuss romance heroes, dog sidekicks, Beau Brummell, historical research, and what to do about your problematic faves.
To say Game of Thrones is popular is to wildly understate the case: the first episode of the most recent series caused Foxtel to (temporarily) crash. This week, Stephanie and Jimmy are joined by Professor Louise D'Arcens to discuss the popularity of the series and the enduring appeal of the medieval, as well as try to untangle the racial and sexual politics of Westeros.