S2E7: Witch, Please and Some Other Novel

Image of courtesy of Buzzfeed

Episode CW: discussion of intimate partner abuse

To record this episode, Hannah and Marcelle sat in a bed together for two hours with a singularly chill-less cat and had wildly divergent opinions about a book, sort of at one another, while the cat purred way too loudly.

Does that make it sound fun? TRUST US IT IS. If nothing else, we can promise the horniest episode we’ve ever delivered, as we sit down to talk about Rainbow Rowell’s Carry On and hash out the differences between fan fiction, intertext, and adaptation; the gayness of various cover designs; and why traditional narrative forms are so deeply satisfying.

Hang around for a new #trywitches challenge and an enthusiastic installment of #witchpleasetellme. Take it away, Todd!

Download this episode about some other book that totally isn’t Harry Potter

Credit: the exciting plot summary music is “Epic” from bensound.com. Also Hannah sings like two seconds of “The Bare Necessities” at some point.

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Hannah McGregor

I am an Assistant Professor in Publishing @ SFU. My areas of research include periodical studies, media studies, middlebrow culture, contemporary and early twentieth-century Canadian literature, critical race studies, and digital humanities. I also make a fortnightly podcast about Harry Potter.

3 thoughts on “S2E7: Witch, Please and Some Other Novel”

  1. For your friend who is looking for LGBTQ+ representation in fantasy, Lynn Flewelling has written two series of fantasy novels that are pretty good. The protagonist of The Tamir Triad (the first book is The Bone Doll’s Twin) is a trans woman, and the Nightrunner Series (Luck in the Shadows) has a gay protagonist. The Tamir Triad is quite good, and the first three books of the Nightrunner Series are good, and also can stand alone. Which is good. Because the last three descend into fanservice.

  2. So, I just finished reading Carry On specifically to listen to this episode. Before this I’ve heard of it, but not gotten around to reading it or seen much commentary on it. I’m only a short way into the episode, but y’all asked about how this relates to Harry Potter and that it might read more like fan fiction if you’ve read Fan Girl. Well, I’ve not read Fan Girl, but particularly the first 3/4 of this book reads very much like a Harry Potter AU. I liked it, but I almost had to make a conscious effort to not let the gut reaction of ‘this is just Harry Potter fan fiction’ stop me from liking the book at the start.

    My question is, at what point does a book plot become a genera? Is a story about a hero gathering a small group of friends and going on a great quest to save the world a rip off of Tolkien or just a ‘fantasy hero with a quest’ genera?

    Savior of the magic world can probably be a genera, I think what makes this give so much ‘omg it’s harry potter’ is the rather arbitrary starting magic school at 11 + greatest magic user lived in non-magic place that neglected them + evil Dumbledore

  3. I’m way late to the party but having some feelings about the humdrum being Simon’s inner child work??!! The end scene where he holds the humdrum’s shoulders and pours magic (love) into him is just incredible. Look at the chaos our inner children wreak on our world when their needs aren’t held.

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