The Wonderful World of Podcasts

The Wonderful World of Podcasts

Reading is a singular activity, just you and the words on the page or the voice of a talented actor in your ear. Yet, readers are a community like any other, with fans and opinions about books, authors, and even libraries. Members of that community want to share, and many have decided to take advantage of one of the newest methods of communicating, podcasts. No matter your reading preference; literary fiction to graphic novels, genre fiction to true crime and everything in between, someone out there created a podcast to give you the latest news and best books.

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Podcasts: The Who, What and Where

A relatively new technology, a podcast is a digital file available over various devices on the internet. They have taken off in the past twenty years offering lovers of talk radio something unique, the ability to listen to each episode when it fits into their schedule. Over the two decades they have consolidated into podcast networks, such as Radiotopia, Wondery and Earwolf offering a wide variety of entertainment options as well as various podcast hosts such as Spotify, Stichers, Apple Podcast among other that you can use to listen to them on your devices.

For Your Listening Pleasure

Given their low barrier to entry, the number of podcasts grows daily, making it hard to narrow down quality choices. Here is a list to of established and knowledgeable book lovers to help get you started with your goals.

The stacks: This operates like a book club. They announce a book at the start of the month and then put up an episode discussing it at the end. Great for those who like to share a novel but want to stay home to do it.

Legendarium: The place for science fiction and fantasy lover. They offer two shows, one with a standard panel and other with authors discussing their favorite works.

Chilling Tales for Dark Nights: A one stop shop for all thing’s horror, from book discussions to short story readings.

Smart Bitches, Trashy Books: Calling all romance readers, this site promises intelligent discussions, interviews with authors and fun.

Read or Dead: Promising the latest news on releases, film and tv adaptions as well as discussing a theme, like time-traveling books or books that remind us of Scooby Doo as well as new releases

Bookmarked: The Young Adult category has grown to include adult fans as well since Harry Potter came along and this is for those fans, young and old making a site like this popular with various age groups

So Many Damned Books: Just two guys talking about book and/or interviewing authors. Not devoted to any one genre but embraces all book geekery.

Audioshelf: A podcast devoted to those who listen to their books. In addition to reviews and author interviews, they also talk to the voice actors who create the world of a great audiobooks.

Backlisted: Each week the host bring in guests as they discuss an undiscovered gem

For Real: A look at past and present non-fiction and the various stories they tell

By the Book: The hosts of this live all the advice in a self-help book for 30 days and then report the results. Sometimes funny, sometimes horrifying, always interesting.

Jeff and Will’s Big Gay Fiction Podcast: Focusing on quality books featuring LGBQIA+ characters and themes. They also have a separate podcast talking to gay writers, so a great resource for queer readers and writers.

Librarians, always looking for ways to reach out to the public, have also jumped on this technology.

Book Lust with Nancy Pearl (Seattle Channel): The most famous librarian, of course, jumped on this bandwagon. Enjoy interesting interviews with famous authors

Reading with Librarians: A monthly podcast by the Minnesota Libraries Exchange featuring a theme that they go into in depth.

Comicpop Library: A couple of librarians with a love of all things related to graphic novel and manga review and discuss them.

The Librarian Is In: A production of the New York Public Library system, this covers genre and literary fiction, pop culture and the world of librarianship.

If you have not already, check out a podcasts, The list here is a sampling of the many out there that can help you find quality materials and/or expand your reading horizons, all for less than an hour a week. Yet investing your time in these can create dividends that far outweigh the expense. They can give you a community to share your enthusiasm and allow you to look at topics in a new light. Happy reading, and listening, in the upcoming year.