Spectology: The Science Fiction Book Club Podcast
By Adrian & Matt: Science Fiction, Fantasy, & Horror Literature Enthusiasts
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Each month we select a speculative fiction book, read it, and talk about it. Early in the month we'll post a pre-read episode with context about the book, the author, its place in SF fandom, and anything else you might want to know before you read. Towards the end of the month, we'll post an episode discussing the book in-depth: the character, plot, themes, politics, and philosophy of the novel. In between, we might post some shorter episodes about other topics in the SF publishing world. We hope you enjoy!
||Explicit8.1: The Children of Time pre-read: What is "Hard" Science Fiction?||This November we're reading Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky. Woo Adrians!This episode we discuss what the "science" in science fiction means. What other books portray science well? What does it mean to write a book about science? Should science||11/12/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||ExplicitAnnouncements: Adrian guest hosts a podcast + our November book||Two quick announcements today, since we weren't able to get our usual pre-read episode recorded in time. The first is that our November book will be Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky. This is a book neither of us has read, but won the Clarke award||11/5/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit7.2: The Ballad of Black Tom post-read: When is it appropriate to destroy the world?||Late but not never! Our post-read episode for Victor LaValle's The Ballad of Black Tom. We discuss the plot & many of the themes of the novel. Why do we think Black Tom such a better retelling of Lovecraft's story? What is psychological realism? Was an||10/23/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||ExplicitIn Conversation: Books, Ebooks, & Audio Books; or, How Aesthetics Drive Reading Choices||In this bonus episode we welcome Kevin Kelsey, author of the Heradas.com SF Blog & longtime listener, to discuss our reading habits. How does reading on paper differ from reading on an e-reader? Why does one of us prefer paper for non-fiction and ebooks||10/15/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit7.1: The Ballad of Black Tom pre-read: Race & the History of Horror Fiction||For October, Matt & Adrian are dipping their toes into the world of Horror, reading Victor LaValle's novella The Ballad of Black Tom. The Ballad of Black Tom is a retelling of one of HP Lovecraft's most egregiously racist short stories, "The Horror at||10/2/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit6.2: Ninefox Gambit post-read w/ Ellie Bartels: Military Games in Science Fiction||At long last, our follow-up episode to Yoon Ha Lee's wonderful Ninefox Gambit has arrived! And Ellie is back to talk about her job & the book with us. Unlike most post-read episodes, we start off with a longer, non-spoiler discussion with Ellie about w||9/25/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||ExplicitThings We Like: September 18||Welcome back friends, it's been a while! Adrian & Matt are back from our break, happy to bring you our hottest takes on what we've been enjoying recently. And next week we'll have our post-read Episode for Ninefox Gambit by Yoon Ha Lee, so you should re||9/17/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit6.1: Ninefox Gambit pre-read w/ Ellie Bartels: Strategy War Games in Science Fiction||Late episode this week... but early episode this month! It's the Labor Day holiday weekend, so we wanted to post a longer episode to keep people company during all the BBQs and road trips. This month, the book we're reading is the Locus-award winning||8/29/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit5.2: Gnomon post-read with Max Gladstone||We're back with our post-read episode, discussing Nick Harkaway's challenging, interminable, and oh so enjoyable novel Gnomon. Spoilers all around. We also discuss postmodern fiction, writing people unlike you, and the power, both good and bad, of narr||8/21/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||ExplicitIn Conversation: Things We Like This Month||Adrian & Matt are together for a short episode going over some of their favorite books, movies, video games, and podcasts of recent. We each discuss three things that we're excited to share with each other and all of you! They are: - Making Obama, a po||8/13/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit5.1: Pre-read for Gnomon, by Nick Harkaway, with guest Max Gladstone||We're back with the #content plants crave. Joining us this week is special guest Max Gladstone, SF & fantasy author extraordinaire. But he's not here to talk about his own work, the Craft Sequence, oh no. Max wanted to discuss the phenomenal, long, daun||8/7/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit4.3: Matt's back for our Romie Futch wrap-up!||We got your hot takes right here, folks! Matt's back for a super-quick wrap-up of our series on The New & Improved Romie Futch by Julia Elliott. Matt reveals his favorite scenes from the book, we go down some rabbit holes talking about taxidermy and||7/30/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit4.2: The New & Improved Romie Futch post-read w/ Britt O'Duffy||We're back for our post-read episode of The New and Improved Romie Futch. This time, our friend Brittney O'Duffy dropped by to give her thoughts on the novel. She and Adrian discuss education as a gateway between socio-economic class in America, the use||7/23/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||ExplicitIn Conversation: Matt & Adrian talk "Spoilers"||What is a spoiler? Why do we care about them? How do different people react to them? Do fan communities police spoilers too much? If a spoiler makes you like something more, is it really a spoiler? This week, Matt and Adrian talk about their own readi||7/16/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit4.1: The New & Improved Romie Futch pre-read||July's book is The New and Improved Romie Futch, by Julia Elliott. Julia is an English and Women's & Gender Studies professor at the University of South Carolina, as well as an accalimed short story writer. Her first novel, Romie Futch follows the titu||7/9/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit3.BONUS: Talking Caribbean SF with Tobias Buckell + July book announcement||Do we have a great episode for you today oh boy! As a coda to our series on Binti and Afrofuturism, we invited Caribbean SF author Tobias Buckell to teach us about science fiction from the islands. Tobias has a patreon at patreon.com/tobiasbuckell, wh||7/2/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit3.4: Binti: The Night Masquerade post-read||Woo! Here it is, the final episode in our Binit mini-series. We get to wrap it up with a book neither of us have read before, and bring it full circle talking about Afrofuturism, university, technology, and what "herratige" really means. Links to buy||6/25/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit3.3: Binti: Home post-read||We read and discuss the second installment in the Binti trilogy. In this book, Binti: Home, Binti comes back to Earth to go on a Himba woman's pilgrimage, and has to deal with a family who doesn't understand her decisions and a homeland that is hostile||6/18/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit3.2: Binti post-read||Welcome to our first post-read episode this month, for the first novella in the Binti Trilogy: "Binti". In this episode, Adrian connects his childhood growing up in rural Alaska to Binti's background, Matt talks about why he loves the moral landscape||6/11/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit3.1: The Binti Trilogy pre-read||A new month, a new book! Or in this case, series of books. The Binti Trilogy is a set of short novellas by Nnedi Okorafor. Together they are about the same size as a novel (and about the cost). They tell the story of a young woman in Western Africa wh||6/4/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit2.3: The Sparrow vs. The Star (Minisode)||A short episode to tide you over this week! We discuss Arther C. Clarke's The Star (pdf), comparing and constrating it to The Sparrow. Full spoilers for both the story (it's only 4 pages, you should read it!) and The Sparrow. This is a relatively cle||5/28/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit2.2: The Sparrow Post-Read||Now that everyone's had time to read it, it's time to talk about The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell in detail. Did we like the book? Were the characters compelling? Did the end work for us? Was it an effective alegorical exploration of the Columbian con||5/21/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit2.1: The Sparrow Pre-Read||We're excited to announce that in May, we're reading The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell! In this spoiler free, pre-read episode, Adrian and Matt discuss religion in science fiction. How do different books handle religion in the future? Does science ficti||4/30/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit1.2: Use of Weapons Post-Read||Join us for our in-depth discussion of Use of Weapons by Iain M Banks. Content warning for violence, torture, and spoilers. Come for the rousing discussion on the place of violencein utopia, stay for the long-winded arguments over whether free will||4/23/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||ExplicitMinisode 2: Things We Like & Reader Mail||This week, we're responding to questions and comments from our listeners, and talking about some of the things we found most enjoyable this month. Learn how frequently we plan to update, our plans for future books, what albums we're listening to, and||4/16/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Explicit1.1: Use of Weapons Pre-Read||This month we're reading Use of Weapons by Iain M Banks. In our innagural pre-read episode, we discuss the Space Opera and Mil SciFi subgenres, Iain M. Banks' socialism, how his Culture novels work, and our relationship to his work. This is our first ep||4/2/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||ExplicitMinisode 1: Intro to Spectology||Welcome to our podcast! Each month, Adrian and Matt will pick a science fiction book and read it. Learn about our history with SF, why we're doing our podcast, and what our plans are in this introduction episode. As always, music is by Dubby J, and art||4/1/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
Like a book club with your best friends... but better
Smart, funny, and thoughtful - it’s like the best possible version of the conversation you might have with your roommate or college buddy. Glad I found it!
Great new addition
Smart commentary on a wide range of “serious” sci-fi.
Great new podcast.
Smart talk about good books. Can’t wait for more episodes.
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