[Funin’ and Sunin’ by Kevin MacLeod plays]
C: Welcome back to episode 31 of Not Now, I’m Reading, your one-stop shop for all things genre. My name is Chelsea.
K: And I’m Kay.
C: And today we are here to talk about a romance novel that we adore by forever friend and perennial bae Alisha Rai. We are here to talk about…
C: Hate to Want You?
K: It’s Hurts to Love You.
K: Alright, so this will have come out about a week and a half ago when this episode goes live. It’s Hurts to Love You.
K: It is the third book in the Forbidden Hearts series, which we will literally never be able to get right.
C: Never ever, ever, ever.
K: I don’t know if Alisha picked these titles or if it’s an editor thing, which, it’s almost always someone at the publisher which picks final titles for things. I will literally never be able to tell you which of these books is which. And guess what? It doesn’t matter! Cause if I’m recommending one of them to you, it’s fine if I told you the wrong one cause they’re all great. [Laughs]
C: Just read them all, anyway. Do yourselves a favor.
K: So this series is Hate to Want You, Wrong to Need You, and Hurts to Love You, in that order. It’s probably the only time I will ever tell you the correct order and it’s just cause I’m looking at it on a computer screen right now.
C: And we have an episode on the first one, which is…
K: Hurts to Love You is the one we’re talking about now. Hate to Want You is the one we already did an episode on.
C: Yes. We will have links to the other book that we talked about previously in the show notes, but bottom line, guys. Whatever the fuck we manage to call them when we finally get the title right, this book is phenomenal and great and fantastic and they’re wonderful.
K: All of these books are wonderful. We blanket recommend all three of these.
C: Blanket recommend Alisha.
K: And, okay, I think you can enjoy these in any order. If you pick up this one, that’s fine. There are gonna be some minor spoilers.
K: And not just in the way that…a lot of romance series, you can read in any order and the only ‘spoilers’ you’re gonna come across is the couples.
K: Which is not normally a big deal breaker for people who read romance, because you know the couple is gonna get a Happily Ever After/Happily For Now. The way that these families have some fairly big family secret stuff that unfolds throughout the three books…I mean, I don’t know that…it’s not gonna spoil the reading experience for you if you read these out of order.
K: Cause they’re all lovely and the romances really do stand on their own.
K: But you are gonna get, you know, some spoilers for some family drama stuff that is revealed throughout the series if you start with this last book.
C: And Alisha does little mini-recaps.
K: These really do stand on their own.
C: So you’ll have missed it, but they really do. Depending on how much interest that particular subplot holds for you, you can read these in whatever order that you’d like.
K: But if you wanna avoid all spoilers for the series? Just know that we read them all. We suggest all of them. They’re all great. I would read them in order. You don’t have to. You don’t have to listen to the end of the episode where we’re actually talking about the book if you wanna avoid all spoilers, just by the fact that it’s the last book there will be spoilers.
C: There’s still gonna be a solid thirty to forty minutes of talking you’re gonna be able to listen to by the time we get there.
K: Surprising absolutely no one who has ever heard an episode of our podcast before. [Laughs]
C: Which is also now our transition point to talking about, of course, what we’ve currently finished or we are currently reading at the moment. We’ll go back and forth. I’ll go first this time since I made Kay go first last time. I am actually, I have finished two traditionally published things.
C: Which should not feel like as much of an accomplishment as it does.
K: Guys, we’ve been reading so much fanfiction and we’re fine with that.
C: You know what, I have reached my Zen place of just acceptance and I know me and the wave will ride out eventually and I’ll go back to reading a ton of traditionally published stuff and we’ll get there and it’s fine and it’s working out. So the first thing I wanna talk about is an audiobook I read. It’s a sequel. It’s the second half of a duology. It’s called The Lord of Opium by Nancy Farmer.
K: You’ve talked about the first book in this series on the podcast before, right?
C: Yes, I did. The House of the Scorpion. Yep.
C: Leave me alone.
K: Guess why she’s listening to these?
C: Leave me alone. Nobody has to guess.
C: It’s not a guess if you just know the answer. If this is your first ever episode, I listened to these audiobooks because they’re narrated by Raúl Esparza. Listen to any of our last dozen episodes and you’ll find out just how long and how deep this love has been abiding.
K: We love Raúl Esparza. The end. You know? [Laughs]
C: Period. Always and forevermore. So I really, really liked the wrap-up of this book. I think that the duology can be sometimes a hard split to pull off because it can be, everyone’s kind of familiar with the pace of a trilogy.
K: I love a good duology, though. You know?
C: They’re a little bit tougher.
K: Here’s the thing: a lot of trilogies should’ve been duologies.
K: And there wasn’t enough material for three books.
C: But because of that we’ve become used to this format of trilogies.
C: Of understanding how they’re structured and the general beats they’re going to follow. And all those beats are still there in a duology, they’re just split a little differently. And so…When they’re done they’re done super well and I thought this was done super super well. It’s kinda nice, it wraps up very very nicely, but they could potentially, there are enough stores and enough characters introduced in the second one that they could do another one or even an expanded universe like companion series or whatever. I don’t think Nancy Farmer has any attention of doing this.
K: When did these come out?
C: They’re not…it’s been a while.
K: I was gonna say, I didn’t think these were new. Here’s my thing, there is literally always a chance.
C: Never say never.
K: Even after the author is dead.
K: Sometimes a series will continue and surprise you. Which, I get that that doesn’t happen in YA a lot. But a lot of my dad’s mystery and thriller writers he follows, they’ll die and then the estate picks someone to keep writing them. And the series just goes on. [Laughs]
C: And granted, I don’t think that’s gonna happen here. This book came out in 2013.
K: Nancy Farmer’s not Robert B. Parker, you know?
C: Exactly. And in five years, in YA that’s long enough that I don’t think they’re ever gonna pick it back up. But.
K: Never say never.
C: They could if they wanted to. Never say never. What was a delightful bonus was at the end of the audiobook they actually had an interview between Nancy Farmer and Raúl Esparza and I didn’t know it was gonna happen.
C: And I’m so glad I wasn’t actually by my phone to stop the audiobook when they said ‘The End’ and played the outro music because then Raúl started talking and it was delightful, it was like a solid fifteen to twenty minute interview.
K: That’s so charming!
C: Also, if you can find the audiobook from your library pick that up and it was actually kinda cool to hear them talking about the differences between acting and writing and narrating and different creative processes and all that fun stuff. So.
K: Even just the difference between voice acting versus narration is super interesting.
C: And well it’s interesting because Raúl talked about how like he’s a very kinetic person and he’s a very frenetic person, which if you have ever seen him do anything ever is very, very apparent.
K: He’s such a theater kid. [Laughs]
C: So. And we know this. When you’re doing just straight audio recording you can’t really be waving your arms around and bumping into shit and just be moving all the time cause the microphones will pick all that up times like a million when you’re in a professional studio.
K: I wish you guys could at some point see me and Chelsea recording, cause you can tell which one of us was the choir kid —
K: — and which one of us was a theater kid.
C: Kay sits SO NICELY with her hands in her lap.
K: I sit very still.
C: And I am like, bumping into shit and I have a leg up on the bed. Constantly moving.
K: Literally flailing her hands around.
C: Waving my arms and shit. I did an entire Booktube video about how I talk with my hands and about framing so you can’t see my hands when I talk with my hands.
K: I have a lot of microphone training that I just will never get over.
C: All my microphones in theater were very far away or already on my body. So it didn’t matter as much. It’s fine. That was a fun little tangent. But anyway, that’s The Lord of Opium by Nancy Farmer. It’s one of those books where I can’t really say much about it because it’s a direct follow-up and all of the plot lines and stuff would generally spoil, but I would definitely recommend the duology as a whole especially if you can find it on audio.
K: Very nice. I don’t plan on reading those.
C: I wouldn’t expect you to.
K: Do you think I would like them?
C: I don’t think you would hate them. I think that you would. And here’s the thing. I think if I were reading them in text?
K: It would’ve been whatever?
C: I don’t think I would’ve enjoyed them as much.
K: Yeah. Probably wouldn’t have read the second one?
C: No, I probably would’ve.
C: Because the first one stops at a good spot and like I said I’m always here for a good duology especially in YA which is super oversaturated in trilogies. Not that everything isn’t, but super hardcore oversaturated. So I mean, I probably woulda read it anyone, but…I gave both copies four stars and I don’t, they probably would’ve been solid two and a half, three stars if I’d just read them in print. I mean, unless you want to indulge in that Raúl kick and you don’t have it in you to do Under the Dome for forty plus hours.
K: Which I’ve already done in the last six months.
C: But if you don’t wanna do that, I mean, Raúl is always lovely, but I don’t think story wise that they would be your favorite thing.
K: No, that’s fine. So I also just finished an audiobook. And I’m 99% sure I’ve talked about this book on the podcast before, just because it’s actually my favorite book. It’s To Say Nothing of the Dog by Connie Willis.
C: If you haven’t talked about it I know I did because you made me read it.
K: If you guys are unfamiliar with Connie Willis, she’s kind of one of the grand dames who’s still writing in SFF. I’m currently on a break with her because her last book, during all her promo, she talked a lot of shit about romance because people kept wanting to talk about the romantic storyline in her most recent book. And I was like Connie, why you gotta say this shit? But I really love a lot of her work. Particularly her older stuff, I think, has aged fairly well and I think some of her newer stuff is not as great. But I would recommend this book to the end of the world. It is To Say Nothing of the Dog, or How We Found the Bishop’s Birdstump at Last. The audiobook in particular is really lovely. It’s narrated by Steven Crossley, who’s one of my favorite audiobook narrators. And who, in a lovely bit of meta, has also narrated Jerome K. Jerome’s Three Men in a Boat, which was the inspiration for the title of To Say Nothing of the Dog. If you’re unfamiliar with To Say Nothing of the Dog or Connie Willis’s work in general, she has a series of novels and short stories all set in this universe where time travel was invented. And they realize, the venture capitalist type folks who originally funded all the research that got them going, realized that they couldn’t go plunder the treasures of the past. They basically go ‘fuck this’ and now time travel is just the domain of literal historians. So the books are about the Oxford history department and they go do research in the past. They’re academics. It’s super hilarious, really funny. This book in particular, this rich lady has funded a bunch of research if they will help her rebuild Coventry Cathedral. So they’re gonna rebuild Coventry Cathedral, but in order to do that they have to go all over the past getting exact measurements and details about it, because, you know, it was bombed out during the Blitz. The protagonist is Ned Henry, who is looking particularly for the Bishop’s Birdstump, which is just the shiny MacGuffin of this book.
C: I spent so much time googling what a Bishop’s Birdstump was and it all just led me back to Connie Willis.
K: Yeah, it doesn’t matter. It’s a shiny MacGuffin like things in Marvel.
C: It’s just a thing they’re looking for. It doesn’t matter.
K: And it’s hilarious when they find it, but it’s not actually the important part. It’s got an amazing, ginormous ensembles cast. It’s got lovely wink and nod stuff to a bunch of really classic mystery stuff. Which is great, cause it’s got a lot of classic mystery vibes. Amazing banter, several lovely side romances, cause there’s not a main romance, but it’s just lovely. And lots of wonderful animal stuff. And just, it’s so charming.
C: It’s very idyllic. I think of that book and I just think of boating mishaps on the river.
K: Right? There’s Victoriana.
C: Tiny dogs.
K: Also golden age of mystery stuff.
C: And I don’t do mysteries, but it’s very cute. I really liked it. Especially on audio. It’s very good.
K: Charming is just really the main word that comes to mind and there’s a reason why this is one of my comfort reads, because even though they’re going and doing dangerous things I never feel like anything bad is going to happen to these people. Which is not the case with basically all the rest of the books in this series. The first book she wrote in this series, The Doomsday Book, the main character goes back in time to the Middle Ages and ends up in the wrong year and gets trapped because of the Plague. So her drop won’t open to go back because she’d bring the Plague back with her. And then the other books in this series, Blackout and All Clear, a bunch of historians get stuck in the past during World War II and one of them does actually die. Spoilers. I won’t tell you who it is, but don’t read those if you can’t stand one of the main characters not making it through the duology. Which, hey! Duology!
C: Hey, but no thank you.
K: Which, no. But I think all of these books have won at least one of the major SFF awards. They’re really lovely. I talked about this for way too long. I just love this book a lot. The audiobook is really good. Your library almost definitely has a copy, so. Pick it up.
C: Mine had a couple. The second traditionally published thing I’m going to talk about is a graphic novel. I did a little bit of a catch up graphic novel reading binge on Hoopla but then I also got a couple things in in physical form from the library for the SFF Awards. If you missed or didn’t listen to the last episode, I talked about the Booktube community, the SFF Booktube community specifically is running their yearly community award and we have a bunch of different categories including graphic novel. One being everyone’s a aliebn when ur a aliebn too by jomny sun. This is, if you are at all familiar with jomny sun on twitter you’ll be familiar with their style of work and the way that they illustrate and kind of what their content is and the graphic novel is just an extended version of that. The principle is that an alien is sent to earth and instead of finding humans he talks to trees and rocks and mountains and hedgehogs and birds and ducks and things.
K: It reminds me a little bit of Ford Prefect from Hitchhiker’s Guide.
K: Where he comes to Earth and thinks that the primary form of life on the planet are the cars.
C: Yeah, but at the same time he is talking about a beaver about the existential dread of not having your dam built in time. And he’s talking to a hedgehog about the fleeting nature of creativity. And he’s talking to a tree about giving and taking and setting appropriate boundaries for your emotions and I have so many screencap pictures in my phone of the book as I was reading it because I was like I am so in love with this tiny adorable little alien and all of these really just kind of beautiful sentiments. I am running the group discussion for this on the Booktube SFF Goodreads and one of the primary kind of criticisms people have is there’s not a lot of story, nothing really happens, it’s just this alien walking around talking to creatures and having snippets of conversations.
K: That sounds super charming.
C: It’s very charming and it made me feel very comforted. It’s a very comforting, comfortable book.
K: Their twitter feed is very good for my soul.
C: Yes. Exactly.
K: So I’m planning on reading this.
C: It’s just more like a bunch of that in bind up. And of course if you know their, and we’ll link to their twitter so you can see smaller examples of that. Because it’s not intricate. And that critique is valid in that the story quote unquote is the alien walking around and having these little conversations. Nothing really happens, you know? Does that make sense? There’s not really an actual plot other than these beautiful moments so if that’s something you’re looking for in your graphic novels that’s not something you’re going to find here but I don’t really care. And this is literally the kind of book that you could just pick up whenever and turn to a page and find something. Give it a couple good flip throughs.
K: I have sat through plenty of lit fic that had no plot, okay? This sounds much better than that.
C: And this one you’ll be able to finish in maybe an hour and a half tops.
K: There you go.
C: And not sixty days of your life or whatever. Highly recommend it. So that’s everyone’s a aliebn when ur a aliebn too by jomny sun.
K: Do you want to explain to them why you’re saying that word the way you’re saying it?
C: Absolutely. If the, the way that it’s written out and throughout the books there are frequent misspellings or additional letters added. So the title’s Everyone’s a Alien but it’s a-l-i-e-b-n When UR u-r a aliebn too. And that’s something that appears in the text of the book, the adding of the b’s to the letters in alien. The your as ur. The truncated text and intentional misspellings because the alien is an alien and not fluently using English grammar and spelling. It may bother you, I just skipped it I skimmed over it I mentally just said it the way that I would say it in English so it’s not a thing that bothered me, but it’ll be a thing that’s going to catch for some people so that’s a good, a good call, friend.
K: I’m super curious about the audio for that. Cause I know that there is an audiobook.
C: I didn’t realize that. I’m always curious about audiobooks for graphic novels period, but that one especially like. Grammar stuff and intentional misspellings that would be very interesting.
K: Next up I’m moving on to fic. The first one is Collecting Princesses by imaginary_golux. That name might sound familiar to you as a writer we’ve recced a few things from because they write a lot of really great Star Wars stuff. This is Beauty and the Beast fic but it’s also general princesses slash ladies in fairytales fic. It’s tagged ‘alternate universe – fairytale,’ ‘fractured fairytale,’ ‘canon-typical violence,’ ‘fairytales are kind of fucked up,’ ‘fluff and humor,’ and ‘true love’s kiss.’ But the summary does a really good job of basically explaining what’s gonna happen. ‘Adam doesn’t really have time to get a really good sulk going, after he’s turned into a Beast, because princesses start turning up on his doorstep begging for sanctuary. None of them are his princess, but it is awfully nice to have company…
Belle is slightly terrified of the Beast who collects princesses, but to save her father, she’ll dare anything.’ So it’s basically what it says on the tin, where as soon as he’s turned into the beast, the first princess shows up and is like I have this fucked up situation and I need to run away. Can I stay here? And he’s like sure, and then they just keep showing up until the castle is filled with princesses. Which honestly would be much creepier to the townsfolk to think he’s holding a bunch of princesses captive in his castle, than just there’s a beast up in the castle. Alone.
C: All by himself.
K: How is this man keeping all of these women in his thrall? Oh, and he’s not a man, he’s a beast!
C: Please do everything in that voice all the time forever.
K: That’s exactly what’s going to happen from now on. So that’s Collecting Princesses by imaginary_golux. It’s just under 3,000 words and it’s adorable, but also fucked up.
C: Yeah, that sounds right. Oh, man, speaking of adorable, but fucked up, it’s time for my fic recs and we’re gonna start with Consenting to Dream by emungere, which is a Hannibal fic. So, you know, there’s your tie-in. This is one of my old standby favorites in this fandom. This is the only fic that I have ever then gone and commissioned a piece of fanart for from Ira. We’ll link to their Tumblr and to this piece specifically in the show notes. It’s super great. This is basically a fic that starts off with Will and Hannibal taking a walk in the winter time and Will doesn’t have a scarf so Hannibal gives Will his scarf and then they progress from there and Hannibal continues to buy Will clothes. A little sugar daddy-y.
K: We’ve definitely talked about this on the podcast before.
C: At least twice. But it’s still so good and I don’t even care. It’s delightful. I love emungere. Hannibal is in that weird intersection of comfort fandom because of how beautiful it is, but also hooo, ooo buddy, darkness and hello.
K: He’s a cannibal.
C: He’s always a cannibal.
K: Hannibal is a cannibal.
C: The food is always people.
K: Everything is people including the beer, and that’s word of God. And by God I mean Bryan Fuller. Specifically said that even the beer is people.
C: So it’s very much so an interesting place to be, but I really, really adore the fandom and I really adore emungere, so that’s Consenting to Dream.
K: Alright, next up, we’re just continuing in this vein of random fandoms. I don’t know if you’ve noticed this. I reread recently one of my old favorite Teen Wolf fics by dear friend mklutz, it’s Murder, He Wrote which is basically what it sounds like. [Laughs] In which Stiles accidentally becomes a bestselling author through a series of shenanigans that could only happen to Stiles. As in, he wrote it as a joke during his third year at Berkeley during the stupidest class since his high school chemistry class. His buddy Scott knew he was writing it and sent it to this girl he was crushing on. The girl he was crushing on is besties with their old high school not-quite-friend Lydia. Lydia sells his book to a New York publisher and is like, by the way, I sold your book, I want a 20% commission. And this all takes place within the first couple paragraphs. And then the actual story is about Stiles is into his career writing and he’s kind of avoiding his deadline by trying to solve cold cases. And it’s delightful. There’s a lovely romance plot because of course it’s Derek and Stiles. There’s a great mystery plot. And everything’s paced perfectly because MK. And this is just over 31,000 words. So it’s not a short one. Sorry not sorry. But it’s adorable and you should read it. It’s Murder, He Wrote by mklutz.
C: Alright, this next one I have is shorter. It’s 20k.
K: [Laughter] I liked that your voice went up like it was a question.
C: It is shorter objectively, but short is relative because it’s still 20k. It’s Thirty-Nine Years by sevenfists. I’m getting back into hockey fandom. The trade deadline just passed so.
K: We’re up in our hockey feels, a little bit.
C: When am I not in my hockey feels, but turn that knob up just a little bit.
K: [Whispers] Playoffs.
K: Guys, fandom can apply to all different sorts of things.
C: All things. This is the only sportsball fandom I have ever been a part of.
C: So it’s Thirty-Nine Years by sevenfists. It’s a Sid/Geno fic, a snowed in fic. And basically it is Sidney wanting to go to Russia to visit Geno which presents, on the one hand, some logistical problems, because Russia. But also is adorable.
K: Because Russia. ‘Because Russia’ is just an entire thesis in two words.
C: I mean. I’m just saying. Queer politics in Russia and getting into all of that? It’s just.
K: If you’d like to get into all of that, may I suggest to you [laughs] There was an Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe. Oh my god, that fic.
C: Oh my god, for a second I forgot you were talking about the fic and was like what kind of stroke are you having right now?
C: I can’t do this anymore. I quit everything and everything is cancelled.
K: For the reference of everyone who is not Chelsea and you’re interested in a hockey RPF fic that touches on politics in a very nuanced and well-research way, I’ve talked about it on the podcast before, There was an Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe by Shoshanah-ben-hohim. Sorry, I know I butchered that, but I tried. And we’ll link that in the show notes, obviously, but it’s so good. And it’s nominally a Sid/Geno fic, but it’s really let’s smuggle some children out of Russia fic. It’s a novel and amazing and if they filed the serial numbers off that shit I would buy it like that.
C: So fast. But Thirty-Nine Years is basically after going to visit Geno in Russia they end up getting snowed in together in a cabin and romantic hijinks ensue and it’s wonderful because there’s pining and snuggling and really tall boys being confined together in a very small space, which is just a very adorable visual that I really, really love. And it’s super great. There is this thing that happens and a lot of the fics where Sid goes to visit Geno where he tries to learn Russian very, very badly and I am just smitten with this whole image and I love it a lot.
K: Okay, you know the thing in fics where sometimes they’ll talk about Sid buying Russian language tapes when Geno comes over? That’s an actual thing that happened.
C: I’m going to literally have my head explode all over you. Get out of here.
C: They are too cute. You know I keep my RPF shipping boundaries firmly within the fic realm and don’t actually go near the real people who are involved. But also that is super cute.
K: But also. Their real life brotp is excellent. Yeah.
C: That’s the thing. I don’t ship them in real life, but their established and well-documented friendship is a very adorable thing, mostly because they’re both very weird people and I love having weird people be friends with each other.
K: Hockey friendships are great and hockey players are weird and just that combination is just a delight. Combined with the fact that the NHL has the best social media crews of any professional sports league in North America, basically.
C: But that’s Thirty-Nine Years by sevenfists.
K: So delightful. Next up, again, making the rounds to random fandoms. Harry Potter! This one, I mean, I’ll just read you the summary:
Narcissa wakes with the certain feeling that something is terribly wrong.
Draco is acting differently, Narcissa is worried, Lucius is confused, and a meeting inside Madam Malkin’s goes very differently from the way it happened the first time around.
K: So this is called A New Beginning by LullabyKnell. Who is one of my forever faves? It’s a time travel fix-it that basically only gets to the very beginning of the story and yet it feels like a really lovely self-contained piece. But it starts with Narcissa waking in the middle of the night just knowing something is wrong and we, as the reader, know that an older Draco has just now woken up in younger Draco. Who is about to go to Diagon Alley before his first year and meet Harry for the first time. And he’s gonna be able to [Whispers] change all the things. But Narcissa doesn’t know that and it’s from her point of view and it’s so good. It’s so good. And I love the author’s notes on this, including: The Malfoys are not good people. I’m trying to write them as a loving family, but they’re also manipulative supremacists. I have no idea if my attempt at balancing caring couple/parents with Slytherin assholes worked. Narcissa does some dubious things and thinks some awful stuff. So warnings for that, obviously. But it’s really wonderful. If you are looking to just read some interesting thought experiments as fic, I highly recommend just kind of browsing through LullabyKnell’s backlog of fics. There’s a ton of them and they are across the board really lovely. So, again, that is A New Beginning by LullabyKnell.
C: Alright, and I will then end with my Harry Potter fic. This is a Drarry fic. This is another one that has come out of the Career Fair collection Big Bang that happened. I, I mean, obviously this fandom has lots and lots of delightful events.
K: Career Fair is so fun.
C: But this one has turned out particularly fun and delightful fics this year. This one, the title? [Laughs] Kay is rolling her eyes so hard it hurts. The title of this one is The Mysterious D by unadulteratedstorycollector. Which is a title that I find delightful and Kay finds less so.
K: I mean, I sent her this link.
C: Your mileage may vary. And the fic itself is great. Whatever you may feel about the title. This is a, uh alternate universe, well, this is, obviously, alternate career post-epilogue. It is, it’s fun because it’s an epistolary that’s tagged not epistolary. Basically Harry has taken a job with Neville at his garden shop and Draco is an apothecary and he’s an agoraphobic apothecary so he doesn’t leave his house a whole lot so he communicates mostly by the post and so he’s looking for somebody to supply him better potions ingredients cause his current supplier is no good and he hears that Neville Longbottom has opened a shop and he kind of knows he’s vaguely heard whisperings that Harry is working there, but he needs new stuff anyway so he writes an order and he just signs it as D. And then it is, he is, the mysterious D and he gets these letters from Harry and they kind of become pen pals writing little notes back and forth on order forms and but it’s also odd because they know each other in real life. Obviously Harry, Ron, and Hermione are friends and friends with Neville and his wife and then Blaise Zabini and Pansy Parkinson are also still involved in this circle group of friends for various reasons and so Pansy is friends with Draco and brings him along one day so they do this really delightful thing where Harry is writing to the mysterious D about his feelings for Draco and the mysterious D is Draco. And that is like my favorite thing.
K: So if identity porn stuff makes you uncomfortable, steer clear of this one. But if not, if you’re looking for more identity porn in your Harry Potter fic.
C: It’s super great. I really really loved it. It’s super sweet. I really liked the way that storycollector has done their Draco in this fic. I think Draco is one of those characters where the appeal will vary based on the way that the author chooses to kind of come at the characterization that they do and I really, really like this particular version of Draco. It’s longish. It’s 16k so it’s not short, but it’s also by no means the longest thing we’ve ever recced to you guys. So if you’re looking for another fun takeaway from the Career Fair collection I really recommend this one.
K: Nice! This last one is really, we’re going hard on random fandoms. [Laughs] This is a series rec. And it is technically primarily a Narnia series, but the longest part of this involves Susan Pevensie being recruited by Torchwood. So it’s also Torchwood fic. I have watched very little of Torchwood, so you need very little context to understand what’s happening if you’re familiar with the Chronicles of Narnia mythos at all you’re gonna be fine. It’s called, as a series, National Service, by burntcopper. It’s runs to 63,000 words if you count the 3,000 word au tag fic on the end. Which is, um. So basically the premise of the series is that after the Pevensie children return to the present, they’re not really good at passing for normal anymore.
K: And England still has a national service requirement for young men even though they were too young to serve in the war when they got home. So Peter, obviously, ends up in the Army. And Edmund does for a very little while before being very swiftly recruited by the Secret Service. Because of fucking course Edmund Pevensie would be in Her Majesty’s Secret Service.
C: Okay, listen, I have an eternal soft spot for Edmund and Susan.
K: That’s because they’re the fucking best and they’re the two focus characters in this series.
C: Which is wonderful.
K: Everyone gets great nods, but Edmund and Susan 5ever. I love them so much. It’s a queer Edmund reading, also, which duh.
C: My favorite reading.
K: Duh. I know that everyone wants to hook up with Jack Harkness, but picture brief hookup between Edmund Pevensie and Jack Harkness. You’re gonna have to read this now is seriously what you’re getting from that.
C: What else is new? When have I ever left an episode without having to read a new thing?
K: I think all of this series is really great. My favorite piece, though, is probably. [Laughs] [Whispers] They’re all so good. The fifth one is called Putting the Natives at Ease and the summary is: No parent wants to know this about their children. It’s 2,300 words of Ellen and Robert Pevensie coming to turns with how weird their children have gotten since they came back from the country, but before they’re actual adults. [Laughs] It’s so good. I mean, burntcopper’s writing’s just really great, but. This series is excellent. Go read it immediately. It’s National Service by burntcopper.
[Funin’ and Sunin’ by Kevin MacLeod plays]
C: Wonderful. Alright, friends, well that wraps up our currently reads list. So we will go on to, don’t even tell me how long we spent talking about it because I saw you look.
C: I know it’s not gonna be a good number. It’s fine.
K: Well, I mean, we’re not gonna talk about this book for too long because we don’t wanna spoil too much.
C: We don’t wanna spoil anything. There’s really not a ton to say that’s just not…
K: We fucking love this book.
C: Gushing admiration. So just so we can officially be profesh about it. This is Hurts to Love You by Alisha Rai, the third one in the Forbidden Hearts series.
K: The first two are Hate to Want You and Wrong to Need You.
C: Yes. And the first two tell the stories of Livvy Kane and Nicholas Chandler in Hate to Want You and Jackson Kane and Sadia Ahmed in Wrong to Need you. So this one is about Evangeline ‘Eve’ Chandler and Gabriel ‘Gabe’ Hunter. Eve is the younger sister to Nicholas Chandler, who we meet in the first book.
K: She’s an heiress who has very recently quite her position in the family business.
C: And so she’s…she’s not foundering. She has ideas and plans for what she wants to do, but she’s also readjusting to this whole new…
K: Worldview, basically.
C: Life and worldview she’s now living.
K: She is by far the youngest character in this series, but she still very much knows who she is as a person and I love her so much. [Laughs]
C: The Chandler family and the Kane family have both been through quite a bit through these first books.
K: Run these folks through the ringer, did our Alisha.
C: Do we even need to say again that one of my favorite things about Alisha?
K: She brings the angst.
C: All that angst. That I need.
K: Which, guys, the fact that I still really love these tells you that while there is angst.
C: They’re balanced enough to like.
K: Very fluffy endings for you. You’re not gonna have sad endings. Bad things happen to these people, but it’s going to be okay. [Laughs]
C: Everything works out. This one is especially interesting because there is some additional very intense layers added to the family drama stuff.
K: Which I called, actually, fairly early on in this series and not just in this book. And I don’t know if that was me imaging things or if that was Alisha dropping breadcrumbs earlier.
C: I mean, I didn’t get it, but we’ve long established on this podcast that I am Bad At Reading.
K: So Gabe is a tattoo artist and in the first book when Livvy comes home cause her mom breaks her hip, I think? It’s been a while since I read that one. She comes home because her mom is not doing well and she takes a guest artist spot at Gabe’s shop and she specializes in watercolor tattoos which I love.
C: So good. But can we just talk about Gabe? Can we talk about Gabe and the? Like. Food writing. Tattoo like artistry and people doing art? All those feels that get really super great into competence porn and people doing things that they do really well.
K: Alisha writes such good competence porn.
C: Does it so fucking great.
K: It’s one of my favorite things about all of her work. Her people have something that they’re really wonderful at.
C: Very, very good at.
K: That they’ve worked hard to be good at, but that they’re very accomplished at.
C: So this one’s got tattoo stuff. Jackson’s there so there’s the cooking and food element I just really really loved this book.
K: Also this book does something I love, which is getting the band together for a big family event. In this case, it’s a [Singsongs] wedding! I love weddings. I love weddings in romance novels!
C: It’s a wedding!
K: You have the drama but you also have the romance and the friendship.
C: And it’s my favorite kind of wedding cause it’s a ‘cursed’ wedding so it’s about all of these things relating to the wedding going so horribly.
K: But it’s fine cause they love each other and it’ll be fine. And it’s also a semi-sorta destination wedding. They’re not going super far away, but they’re going up somewhere for a little bit. And I love that where everyone’s kind of isolated from their normal place and have to spend more time together. Forced proximity is great.
C: And it’s accidental forced proximity because everyone else cancels for Reasons. And they have to be together.
K: This has so many of my favorite tropes. So many!
C: So many!
K: We’re just grinning foolishly at each other.
C: I have nothing to say.
C: This book was like…It was the perfect final button on this whole trilogy that Alisha’s been doing.
K: It’s so good.
C: The friendship in this book? Some of the mental health talk in this book?
K: Can we just take a moment…the whole series. I’m just gonna read to you a bit of the acknowledgements form this book, okay? And just try not to sob, because Chelsea’s gonna be turning her back to the microphone so she doesn’t start crying into the mic. [Clears throat] ‘The theme of this series was meant to be hope. Hope that maturity and wisdom can conquer the most seemingly insurmountable obstacles. Hope that love can triumph. And hope that we can be imperfect and accepted and adored as we are. My wish is that you enjoy these families as much as I loved writing them. And if you need it that the Kanes and Chandlers refill your well of hope.’ And fuck you, Alisha, they absolutely refilled my well of hope, but also I’m having an emotion and why? Why? Just carve my heart out with a spoon and hand it to me and I will say thank you. And that is the experience of reading an Alisha book.
C: There is a scene in this book that I literally read and just had to put. And I am hyperbolic a lot you guys, so I understand when it’s hard to understand when I’m being serious, but it was legitimately, it hit close enough to home that I was like, I got chills and I was shook. And there is this scene where Eve calls her best friend Madison and goes, “Can you tell me I’m not being weird?” Eve blurted out, feeling silly and needy and unable to stop herself. “You’re not weird,” Madison said with so much certainty Eve felt like she’d been wrapped in a blanket of love. “You are absolutely completely 100% not strange or abnormal and nothing is wrong with you. You are fine as you are.” And Kay knows how many times on bad brains day have I?
K: Brain weasels. Brain weasels!
C: Called or texted you and told you to tell me that I’m not x, y, z or I’m not being this or I am not rational and feeling that. And having that person in your life is a blessing and to see that kind of real life accuracy in situations and low-key very strong positive mental health and coping skills.
C: Being displayed without any way labeling them or bannering them as such is just. I….fuck, Alisha, I love you so much. I love this book so much.
K: There’s a fucking amazing array of mental health issues addressed throughout this series. All very sensitively and with clear, so much thought and research put into the best way to handle all of these different things. And I just…so appreciative. So appreciative of the hard work that Alisha puts into her books. And also these books are funny. They’re not just all dark and sad and dark romance. They’re hilarious, too. And they have amazing friendships. And great funny moments.
C: And they’re hot as fuck.
K: Hot, hot, hot sex scenes.
C: Holy fuck, you guys. Okay, so speaking of tropes.
K: Even in the middle of hot sex scenes there will be funny stuff, cause I definitely highlighted this part. “I’m not a moaner.” “You’re a dirty talker. Like —
C and K at the same time: “Sex closed captioning.”
C: I know! I highlighted it and made a note. This is the perfect metaphor, like…that is perfect. Like, Alisha nailed it. That is so perfect.
K: Bless you, Alisha.
C: I will never not think of dirty talk as —
C and K: Sex closed captioning.
C: It’s wonderful. Plus, you wanna talk about tropes? Motherfuckers get locked into a cabin together in the rain after a horseback ride gone awry.
K: It’s just like chef’s kiss! Perfection.
C: It’s like she crawled into my Id and pulled it out into a book.
K: She pulled almost every single trope that I love and made this book so great and trope-eriffic, but in an absolutely flawlessly executed and well-plotted way.
C: And then she gave him a man bun and had several good scenes about pulling out that ponytail. You can make that face at me all you want. I like what I like and I know what I know. Don’t tell me you didn’t lose it when you got those cover preview shoots or whatever because that cover is.
K: I know that’s your favorite one. Chelsea likes her men a little dirtier than I do.
K: Okay, not just a little. A lot. If I am going to bother to be anywhere near a man he needs to be really clean-shaven and shit.
C: Oohh, nooo. Give him to me like in a Baja sweatshirt a couple days off the festival circuit dirt. Clean, not smelly. Unshaved with a little bit of a man bun. I loved it. I have a type. It’s clean suits and manbuns. Not together, but just in general.
K: It continues to be a perpetual shock that Chelsea and I have anything in common to talk about.
C: I mean, we are opposites attract, but also the same person.
K: Here we go. Here we go, if you wanna talk about the differences in our dude type all you have to do is look at SebStan at the very beginning of the first Cap movie.
C: No. No, no. End. End of Winter Soldier. End of Winter Soldier. Dirty.
K: And that is the range of my preference to Chelsea’s. [Laughs]
C: Pull his ponytail back with that leather braid and roll him around in the dirt a little bit and serve him up emotionally tortured and glassy-eyed like he was in Kings and that’s how I want my SebStan. Sold.
K: So now you guys understand that.
C: But still that doesn’t hold up, because Bearded Cap or non-bearded Cap, you are definitely not on team no-bearded Cap, are you? [Gasps]
K: If I’m just looking! Then fine.
C: [Wails] Noooo.
K: But would I want bearded Cap all up on this? Not versus non-bearded Cap. [Laughs]
C: This shit is not an either or not at all. I am just. I’m sorry your opinions are valid but also incorrect and that is do not pass go.
K: If we’re talking purely just looking, then sure. Bearded Cap is absolutely fantastic. But again. Not even exaggerating a little bit about the beard burn. [Laughs]
C: I feel like I’m gonna have to go talk to my therapist about your answer to this question. I just don’t want to deal with this, friends. The reason we’re on this tangent is that we don’t have anything else to say about Alisha’s book other than we fucking loved it. We just love it so much.
K: It’s so good. Please go drool over these covers.
C: Do you have a favorite part that’s not super spoilery?
K: I think my favorite part is the last couple lines of the book. There’s a really great line from the second chapter, that’s: In the nonprofit world, the more a party looked like a gala where a supervillain might take the guests hostage, the more of a success it was.
K: Which is just a really great example of hilarious pithy little lines she just scatters throughout cause she’s a fucking genius. I just, I don’t have anything to say about this book that’s not spoilery other than I fucking loved it and you should go read it. And if your library doesn’t have it, yet, please request that your library purchase some copies. Also, if you have never requested a book from your library before —
C: Please do that!
K: Please do that, it’s usually quite easy.
C: As a librarian, we love hearing directly from patrons what it is that you want us to buy because we have budgets and we know what to buy, but we love hearing directly from you that if we buy a thing there will be at least one person guaranteed to read it.
K: And some libraries, they don’t get approval to buy things until they’ve had a certain number of requests for them.
C: Yes, so. If you get all your friends on board, start requesting. Even if it’s just you and you request a lot? That can also do, that can also carry some weight and be super helpful.
K: My library buys almost everything that I’ve requested.
C: It’s usually just saying I can point to this specific person who will read this thing.
K: And if you become a regular requester from your library and you have a good track record of requesting books that they then have in frequent circulation, they’ll start approving almost everything you request.
C: They’ll also start reccing you things that are similar.
K: [Whispers] Make friends with the librarians, it’s a great life choice.
C: It’s so great. If you listen to our novel-length episode I talk about how great it is to have Kay go through collections and pick me out things I’ll like. Being friends with a librarian is like that, but for everything.
K: For published stuff! [Laughs]
C: It’s super great. So that was just a fun little plug for libraries.
K: Utilizing your library. Our friends who are not in North America, I don’t know how your library systems work. I know that yours are not as good as ours in a lot of places and I’m super sorry if that’s the case.
C: But I do know that you should always at least double check what your local policies are and what you have access to, because even in America it might be more than you think. IE I never use my physical collection and I am almost entirely a digital reader.
K: We both are almost entirely digital readers.
C: And that goes for digital titles, too. They’ll buy you ebooks.
K: That’s how I do all my book requests, is through my library’s OverDrive system.
C: And they usually always have e-mails and chats and if you’re like me and you don’t ever like to talk to real human people, most libraries have made it easy to not have to do that and still get the materials you need.
K: Guys, for people who talk a lot, we don’t actually liked talking to people.
C: I like to talk to certain people. I like to talk to you.
K: I like talking to you, too. And we like talking to all of you guys.
C: I don’t like to talk to the general public because they don’t wanna get deep into my SebStan feelings with me on the regular.
K: Guys, I spend so much of my life talking to the general public. Have we mentioned my new job on the podcast, yet?
C: I don’t think so. Do you wanna go ahead and tell them, anyway?
K: I mean, guys, I’m a field trip coordinator for a museum, now. So I literally, all I do is talk to people. [Laughs]
C: I’m so sorry. But you get to hang out with dinosaur skeletons and virtual reality shit all day.
K: We do have a T-Rex in the lobby, so there are way worse places I could be working.
C: Fair, fair and valid. Alright, guys. I don’t think we have any more valid, valuable content about the book to offer to you guys.
K: Yeah, talking about the T-Rex in the lobby is basically the way to end though, because the hot mess from beginning we talked about things we enjoyed! Guys, usually I’ll have some minor critique of a book. Like there was a pacing issue or I thought one specific scene didn’t play well. Literally I would not change a single damn thing about this book. It is the perfect ending to this series. Way to punch me in the feels, but then also hand my heart back to me. [Sighs]
[Funin’ and Sunin’ by Kevin MacLeod plays]
C: Alright, friends, well thank you so much for joining us. We love this book a whole lot. It gave us a lot of feelings. So thanks for letting us just, like, spill them at you?
K: Also, you’ll probably notice our audio sounds a little different. It’s because this is a drop-in that we’re recording after we went to Kansas City KissCon.
C: Because we got to meet the lovely, beautiful, and talented inestimable Alisha in person and it was fantastic.
C: She’s great.
K: Guys. She’s so nice. So nice!
C: Maybe this is a little creepy to say.
C: But we both agreed, she’s very good at hugs. She gives very good hugs!
K: We are both of the opinion that you don’t go in for the hug, especially if you don’t know the person.
C: Hug consent.
K: Yeah, especially if you’re at that person’s event. But if they look like they’re going in for the hug, you obviously go in for the hug.
C: And Alisha gives A+ hugs in addition to being generally great.
K: And also amazing at taking selfies. I am always in awe of people who can take selfies, cause.
C: Kay is not.
K: I can barely find the flasher button thing on my phone.
C: Flasher button is not, I think, the thing you wanted to say.
C: But anyway.
K: Guys, I’m really tired. It was a long and wonderful day, in which we did some whoopsie things.
C: By whoopsie things she means buying books we shouldn’t have bought to get them signed.
K: It’s fine.
C: We had a wonderful day. It was a great panel. Hm. Little white?
K: We’re gonna throw out there that while the panel itself was delightful, the panelists…Alisha was literally the only woman of color there. Everyone else was white.
C: And in light of the recent RITA numbers that have come out?
K: Also it’s Kansas City. You couldn’t find a black romance author to come to your event in Kansas City? Especially, okay, it would be one thing if Avon was doing Avon-only authors at their KissCon events.
C: They made it a point to mention that it was not Avon-only authors.
K: So really? You couldn’t find me a Kimani author that was relatively local, or something? The dear, dear belated Kimani?
C: Only one of the authors was located.
K: Was it Cathy Maxwell? From Olathe, where we live.
C: Yes, so let’s hope that continues.
K: Please bring your romance events to our neck of the woods. People will come. And you’ll have a grand old time. But also.
C: That observation aside, we had a great time at the panel May did a wonderful job moderating everybody was cracking up. The questions were good. We had a delightful time.
K: Also, I am now a fan of Jill Shalvis’s husband. [Laughs]
K: There was one person on this panel…okay, all I will say about this person is they unironically retweet people like James Woods and that’s really all you need to know about them. And they were the person who made the inappropriate sexual exclamations repeatedly throughout the panel and I was just like uh. Okay.
C: Like about other authors on stage and their husbands?
K: We were like hmmmmm.
C: Maybe the kind of joke if you’re personal friends with this person and you are offstage.
K: To our knowledge they had never met before these events.
C: And even if you’re friends maybe don’t make those jokes on a panel stage?
K: Especially when it’s being livecast online? Theoretically we’ll try and find the link. Theoretically this was being streamed to Facebook and you’ll be able to see. And if they got everyone in the frame you’ll see both me and Chelsea asking questions. You’ll see me shaking from caffeine cause whoops.
C: And me shaking from generalized anxiety, cause I am a nervous wreck of a human being all the time.
K: But we both had a great time, anyway.
C: Those criticisms aside. And it’s always delightful to be in a room full of readers, but romance reader see in specific.
K: It was almost entirely women in the crowd.
C: I’m pretty sure the only men there were partners to women or were working the event at the library in some capacity. Which is not surprising.
K: I would love to see more men specifically reading romance, but it’s always nice to be at an event that’s not just a ton of dudes. Which if you’ve ever been to an SFF event, you feel a little outnumbered a lot of the time.
C: So many guys. Unless you’re going to the labeled and marketed as female-specific panels, yeah. Always nice. Plus my TBR has grown by a dangerous amount. Plus we got to meet Babs, on Twitter, she actually came and said that she knew us.
K: Hi, Babs!
C: That was the most delightful experience.
K: Guys, we were peak awkward, but it was so nice.
C: I want everyone to come say hi to me, but also I don’t?
K: If you ever spot us in the wild, please say hi.
C: Please do, but I apologize to you in advance how I react as a human being.
K: We will be so awkward. But we’ll be so delighted that you came up to us. If you are worried you’re gonna be awkward, don’t, we will be just as awkward at you and it will be delightful.
C: I’ve said so many awkward hellos to people whose podcasts I listen to. I said hi, never having seen her face, I said hi to Renay at WorldCon as she was walking out to get a cab. Just hi, I recognize your voice from the podcast, kay bye! And just walked away. Cause once again I’m a faily human so don’t ever feel like you can’t come and talk to us because it’s fine. I’ve been in similar situations.
K: Thanks, Babs.
C: All of which is to say we wanted to pop back in here and one, tell you about the event we got a chance to attend, and also let you know what our next book is going to be cause we’ve switched around the schedule a little bit and we are going to be reading Ivan by Kit Rocha. Gonna reread Ashwin and Deacon and then I just couldn’t cause I was too excited for princess and bodyguard. If you don’t know, that’s basically the elevator pitch. Princess and bodyguard secret love affair.
K: So good for me.
C: Let me say I’m also doing a reread of the O’Kane books, the Beyond series, and I’m like three books in and it’s erotica so it’s on the tin what you’re getting when you go into that. But this book? Is like fanfiction levels of slow burn. Like I’m 20% in and there were hand grazes. 50% in and they are maybe just getting ready to get some shit did.
K: That’s fucking Austenian, right there.
C: Not just for romance in general and Kit Rocha in general?
K: Guys, that’s usually not Chelsea’s jam, that’s more my jam, so that tells you how good it is.
C: I don’t usually like it because pacing like that is not usually handled super well, but I was never gonna be worried about it with Bree and Donna and it is so good. Plus you know when they hook up there is gonna be so much guilt they have to work through. And that is so good for me. Guys! Okay, this is just to tell you what we’re reading, this is not to do an episode on the book yet. That is what we’re reading next. When does it go available for purchase?
K: It’s available now.
C: By the time you’re listening to this you’ll have time to pick that up. And actually you’ll have time to pick up the first, the other first two in this series and get completely caught up. We have an episode on the first book, Ashwin, which was one of the first books, I think maybe our very first episode?
K: It was our first episode.
C: Which is just, I am weirdly, that makes me all kinds of weirdly sentimental, but that’s sentimental. So you’ll have plenty of time to pick up just Ivan, or we recommend picking up all of the Gideon’s Riders series because they’re absolutely wonderful.
K: Guys, I might like them even better than the Beyond series.
C: I mean, I can’t say that.
K: Chelsea’s like: Sophie’s Choice!
C: The Beyond series is just, not Sophie’s Choice for me. I just. I mean.
K: Were they your first?
C: No, just one of those perfect storm confluence things where I was in-between reads and in a place.
K: Did I rec those to you?
C: Yes, but right as we were just starting to become internet friends.
K: Awwww. There are many reasons why this series is special for us, but that’s definitely one of them.
C: And of course I picked it up cause they were selling the first six as an ebook before the seventh came out and I picked it up and was just like done.
K: Here for this.
C: And of course, anything that’s your first intro to a universe will often be your favorite. But that is not to say that the Gideon’s Riders books are not super fucking fantastic. We’ve talked before, they’re a little more towards the romance side of the spectrum than erotica.
K: Which is more my bag.
C: More your speed, which, again, will not surprise anyone who’s been listening to our podcast for like a minute.
K: It continues to shock me we can read any of the same things.
C: Or be friends in any capacity. That is our update, friends. Please come back and join us in two weeks when we’ll be talking about Ivan. Go pick yourself up some amazing romance and until then you can find us at our website which is nnirpodcast.wordpress.com. You can also find us on our Patreon, which patreon.com/NNIRpodcast. We cross post our regular episodes, both the audio and the transcripts so you can find that on both.
K: And those are not patron-locked.
C: You can also check out our patron perks and get a sneak preview on some of the patron episodes we’ve already done. We did an episode on Black Panther. We just put out our top five completed book series each. Which was an hour and a half long and was atrocious.
K: Guys, we guarantee you, if you are a $1 patron, our monthly mini-episodes.
C: They’re so long.
K: Literally, the transcript for this most recent one was 44 pages long. We had over 50 media mentions links for this episode.
C: So not to brag, but pretty good bang for your buck for only $1 to have access to the audio. And of course if you go above that you get input and say and all of that fun stuff. So go and check that out. You can also find us on Twitter, if you ever have personal questions or wanna follow up on a rec that we give, I am @anoutlawlife.
C: And our websites have e-mail and additional further ways to get in touch with us if you need to. So, until a couple weeks from now when we come to talk about Ivan, take care of each other and have happy reading, friends. Bye.
[Funin’ and Sunin’ by Kevin MacLeod plays]
C: Eyes and brain, foiled again.
C: Let’s try that again. I have to keep talking about this.
K: Sorry, you’ll have to start over. [Laughs] I have to keep talking about this, like you’re not delighted to talk about this?
C: I’m so delighted, but we have to get back on track.
C: Fuck you. Okay.
C: We started too late.
K: Sportsball. [Wheezes and laughs]
C: We started too late.
C: And it’s pretty long.
C: You know.