DiscoverFated Mates - A Romance Novel Podcast
Fated Mates - A Romance Novel Podcast

Fated Mates - A Romance Novel Podcast

Author: Sarah MacLean & Jen Prokop

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The most listened to romance novel podcast, Fated Mates is co-hosted by bestselling author Sarah MacLean and romance critic Jen Prokop. Weekly episodes include romance novel read-alongs and lively discussions of the work of the genre, highlighting the romance novel as a powerful tool in fighting the patriarchy…with absolutely no kink shaming.

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We’re talking about brothers and sisters as secondary characters in romance today — by popular demand from listeners, it’s our sibling episode! We get to the bottom of why we all love secondary siblings—the overbearing olders, the wild child middles, the delightful youngers, the equally handsome and broad shouldered boys, the snarky, stunning girls, and everyone else who’s ever caught our eye and made us say “now where’s there book?!” We tackled complicated relationships, shared history and the perfect fantasy of family that romance delivers so well.Next week, we’re reading Joanna Shupe’s The Devil of Downtown, from her Uptown Girls trilogy. There are sisters! Also, it’s Jen’s favorite in the series and an absolute banger. Get it at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Apple or your local indie.If you wish you had six more days in a week of people talking about romance, may we suggest joining our Patreon? Aside from an additional episode every month you get access to our Discord, where 1000 other romance readers are talking about books they love (and many other things!) all the time. It’s so fun! Learn more about the Patreon and go join those cool people who love romance as much as we do at patreon.com/fatedmates.Show NotesWe’ve done twins, and we’ve done siblings’s best friend, but this time we’re talking about plain old siblings in romance. We’re definitely not talking about anything Tangled Lies adjacent this time.If you want the deep dives we mentioned, they are Preferential Treatment, Gentle Rogue and Devil’s Bride.Illinoise is playing on Broadway if you’re in New York this summer. They’ll be a meet-up at Steamy Lit Con for us with our listeners, details coming soon! There’s a dark romance podcast called Trigger Warning you might want to check out, and in case you want to read that romance with mummification but no cheating, it’s Dead Love by Audrey Rush The Orphan X book with the evil killer siblings is Prodigal Son.In case you have ever wondered about the provenance of the beloved Fated Mates phrase, “take the finger” this is an episode where Sarah talks about the book that inspired it.
S06.39: Summer 2024 Reads

S06.39: Summer 2024 Reads

2024-06-0501:38:27

School’s out for Jen’s summer and Sarah’s in the final stretch so we’re dreaming of romance beach reads and talking about our massive summer TBR piles! There’s something here for everyone — hot librarians, superheroes, heists, funeral homes, wedding planners and baseball players and F1 drivers and, of course, dukes.Our next read along is Joanna Shupe’s The Devil of Downtown, from her Uptown Girls trilogy. It’s Jen’s favorite in the series. Get it at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Apple or your local indie.If you love a fire hose of romance recommendations, may we suggest joining our Patreon? Aside from an additional episode every month you get access to our Discord, where 1000 other romance readers are talking about books they love (and many other things!) all the time. It’s so fun! Learn more about the Patreon and go join those cool people who love romance as much as we do at patreon.com/fatedmates.Show NotesMaybe men shouldn’t cover the WNBA, tbh. All about The electric slide.You can follow DodoTheBookBitch on Instagram; follow Sarah there to see the scratch-off TBR poster. Jacque is one our romancelandia faves, and she has a Pride reading challenge for you all. RomanticallyInclined is on Threads reading books with fewer than 100 reviews all through June.  For reviews in advance of publication, your best bet is Kirkus (Jen reviews for them), but you can also try Booklist or Publisher’s Weekly. We also talked about NetGalley and Edelweiss to discover upcoming books.If you’re in NYC, don’t miss the launch event for Liana de la Rosa’s Isabel and the Rogue next week! She’ll be at The Ripped Bodice with Sarah and Adriana Herrera…and Sophie Jordan will be there, too! Tickets and info here.
One of our most popular interstitial topics, we had to come back for a third run at Curvy Heroines this month in celebration of Bridgerton-mania online and our absolute delight that we finally get to see Penelope get that handsome man who is just back from his long trip to glow-up-land (we deserve nice things, and so do curvy heroines)! Sarah’s talking exclusively about historicals today, and Jen is bringing new-to-the-pod authors to the table…all that, and we’re naming the six historicals Sarah’s written with curvy heroines (There’s also a contemporary! Check the photo array, below). This one is a lot of fun.Our next read along is Joanna Shupe’s The Devil of Downtown, from her Uptown Girls trilogy. It’s Jen’s favorite in the series. Get it at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Apple or your local indie.Happy anniversary to our founding Patreon members — May marks one year of our Patreon and our Discord! We love you a whole lot. Learn more about the Patreon and go join those cool people who love romance as much as we do at patreon.com/fatedmates.Show NotesYou can visit the Sleeping Beauties Exhibit at the Met, which sounds pretty fascinating, is there all summer through September 2nd. All about smelling salts, Kardashian levels of rib removal which is called tight lacing, Each and Every brand deodorant, and retinol. If you’re interested historical fashion and lingerie, follow Cora Harrington on twitter, she wrote about corsets on her blog back in 2012. If you’re interested it watching a guy talking about cologne, here is link to Joshua Godfrey, the guy with the labyrinth tattoo and his journey. If you loved Fury Road, you should read Blood, Sweat, and Chrome, which is the story of how the movie was made. Here’s a supercut of Tom Hardy grunting.
S06.37: Weddings in Romance

S06.37: Weddings in Romance

2024-05-2201:19:22

Gather together your bouquets and boutonnières, wedding season is here! But, in typical Fated Mates fashion, we spend the first 20 minutes talking about Pulp Fiction (just go with it, these are the mysterious ways of the podcast and you just need to trust the process). Then, we’re talking weddings in romance novels—not the books where the main characters get hitched, but instead they are guests at a wedding. Maybe they’re fake dating, maybe they’re the wedding planners, or maybe they’re the runaway bride or abandoned groom. Of course, we can’t wait to hear about your favorite books that happen at a wedding.
We don’t often talk about secondary characters in romance, but this week, we’re talking about the women who provide wisdom, council and laughs in romance—moms, grandmothers and aunties! We talk about the shocking epidemic of orphaned main characters in romance, about how extended family provides nuance in the books, and about our very favorite mothers, grandmothers, aunties and adopted older ladies in books. Thanks to all the women who provide care and sage advice out in the world. We appreciate you.Our next read along is Joanna Shupe’s The Devil of Downtown, from her Uptown Girls trilogy. It’s Jen’s favorite in the series. Get it at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Apple or your local indie. Happy anniversary to our founding Patreon members — May marks one year of our Patreon and our Discord! We love you a whole lot. Learn more about the Patreon and go join those cool people who love romance as much as we do at patreon.com/fatedmates.Show NotesCrush, the new apple ad is honestly so bleak, and the backlash was so extreme that they pulled the ad. Look how easily they could have made it cool, though. The Matriarchy isn’t just a dream, as it turns out. The Gaza Evacuation Fund Auction raised $160,000 and it’s not too late to donate to one of the funds of people trying to get to safety.
This one is for our historical lovers! We’re talking about everyone’s favorite title — Dukes! We get to the bottom of many duke questions, including: Why so many? Why are they always dukes? What’s wrong with princes? How do these guys make their money anyway? What’s with all the normies inheriting dukedoms? What about duchesses? And more! Please remember that everything we are about to say is romance fact. Don’t @ us with real life fact. We don’t want it. Happy anniversary to our founding Patreon members — it’s one year of our Patreon and our Discord today! We love you a whole lot. Learn more about the Patreon and go join those cool people who love romance as much as we do at patreon.com/fatedmates. Show NotesThe tree thing about pollen and allergens is called botanical sexism (god it’s everywhere) and this claim, like all things, is complicated. Defining the title of duke.  What are the corn laws or the laws about chimney sweeps? You don’t really care—it’s just fossils. The Reformed Rakes podcast had a recent episode about pregnancy.The Unites States Congress is comprised of incredibly wealthy people. In 2009, Tatler got 10 of the 24 living non-royal dukes to sit down for lunch. There’s a photo. It’s exactly what you would expect. This 2021 article from Tatler lists the 4 living single dudes that either are or will be a duke. Shoot your shot, ladies.Question: has Sarah really written more dukes than fewer? A Duke: Eleven Scandals to Start to Win a Duke’s Heart, No Good Duke Goes Unpunished, The Rogue Not Taken, A Scot in the Dark, The Day of the Duchess, Daring and the Duke, Heartbreaker, The Duke of Christmas Present, and A Duke Worth Falling For (9)Not a Duke: Nine Rules to Break When Romancing a Rake, Ten Ways to be Adored When Landing a Lord, A Rogue by Any Other Name, One Good Earl Deserves a Lover, Never Judge a Lady by Her Cover, Wicked and the Wallflower, Brazen and the Beast, Bombshell, and Knockout (9)
For our forever favorite, Kate Clayborn, our third Fated Mates Live episode! During the absolutely delightful event (we had so much fun!), Kate selected an interstitial topic that we’ve never tackled, somehow? It’s time for Marriage in Trouble! We talk about the old school bones of the trope, with ingenue wives and the jaded heroes who have to crawl over glass for them, about marriages that carry enormous secrets, the grovel, the heir, and about the threat of divorce motivating men toward being their best selves. Is this good marriage therapy? It is not. Is it good podcasting? It is. We also want to thank the following publishers and authors for their incredible generosity in making sure that almost every attendee of the Live went home with a romance novel. We are so lucky to share Romancelandia with you: Avon Books, Ballantine Books, Blue Box Press, Dell, Grand Central/Forever, Gallery Books, Lauren Blakely, LJ Evans, Pippa Grant, Ana Huang, Parker S. Huntington & LJ Shen, Elle Kennedy, Avery Maxwell, Ava Miles, Max Monroe, Kathryn Nolan, Amari Nylix, Meghan Quinn, Piper Rayne, P Rayne, Stephanie Rose, Lucy Score, & TL Swan.If you want more discussion of banana-pants romance, join our Patreon and get access to our Discord, where a thousand other listeners are hanging out and giggling all day long. Show NotesRead Kate Clayborn’s The Other Side of Disappearing, which is a beautiful road trip of a romance that does not have a marriage in trouble but does have a hero who is pure fire.Sarah used to work for Susan Miller of Astrology Zone, so when she tells you that Mercury is in retrograde, you better listen. Even if it’s about The 2000 election Like Jen, you may have thought the superhymen was a myth! But now you know better because of romance, Fated Mates Live, and Megan Frampton.
Headphones in! This is not for beginners. Our second Fated Mates Live episode is live! During the event (which was so so fun we love every single one of you who came!), the fabulous Nikki Payne selected one of the most challenging interstitial topics we’ve ever tackled—Inanimate (and sentient!) objects! So! This one is very very odd, and filled with a number of recs that just prove that there is literally something for everyone in this big, beautiful romance pool. We also want to thank the following publishers and authors for their incredible generosity in making sure that almost every attendee of the Live went home with a romance novel. We are so lucky to share Romancelandia with you: Avon Books, Ballantine Books, Blue Box Press, Dell, Grand Central/Forever, Gallery Books, Lauren Blakely, LJ Evans, Pippa Grant, Ana Huang, Parker S. Huntington & LJ Shen, Elle Kennedy, Avery Maxwell, Ava Miles, Max Monroe, Kathryn Nolan, Amari Nylix, Meghan Quinn, Piper Rayne, P Rayne, Stephanie Rose, Lucy Score, & TL Swan.If you want more discussion of banana-pants romance, join our Patreon and get access to our Discord, where a thousand other listeners are hanging out and giggling all day long.
This is the first of three episodes inspired by the incredible time we had at Fated Mates Live in Brooklyn. During the event (which was so so fun we love every single one of you who came!), we asked guests Nikki Payne, Kate Clayborn and Lauren Billings of Christina Lauren to choose an interstitial topic they would like us to tackle on the show. Lauren chose a great one: Exceptions to our rules, meaning…tropes we don’t care for that are done really really well. So! This one is for everyone who’s ever asked Jen for Secret Baby or Virgin Heroes and anyone who’s ever asked Sarah for Friends to Lovers or Spies. We talk about the books that make us go…not that…but maybe that? We also want to thank the following publishers and authors for their incredible generosity in making sure that almost every attendee of the Live went home with a romance novel. We are so lucky to share Romancelandia with you: Avon Books, Ballantine Books, Blue Box Press, Dell, Grand Central/Forever, Gallery Books, Lauren Blakely, LJ Evans, Pippa Grant, Ana Huang, Parker S. Huntington & LJ Shen, Elle Kennedy, Avery Maxwell, Ava Miles, Max Monroe, Kathryn Nolan, Amari Nylix, Meghan Quinn, Piper Rayne, P Rayne, Stephanie Rose, Lucy Score, & TL Swan.Photo credits: Stephanie KeithShow NotesWe had the very best time at Fated Mates Live, and it wouldn’t have been nearly as fun without Lauren being there. Christina Lauren’s newest book, The Paradise Problem, is out May 14th. Preorder it now, and check out their tour schedule to go see them (they’re even more terrific in person) when they’re near you!Solar eclipses are very cool, and Jen really should have gone home…. as it turns out, 95% is not anything like 100%! If you have the chance, you should go get in that path of totality. Jen’s brother Erik was at his office rooftop in downtown Cleveland and saw people getting married, and also took a very cool video at totality. New York earthquake twitter was pretty funny, too. Jen, staunchly anti- virgin heroes since 2018.Kevin Costner’s speech about luck from Bull Durham. The book about women in the CIA is called The Sisterhood: The Secret History of Women at the CIA by Liza Mundy.
This week, we’re talking about film adaptation and romance novels with Yulin Kuang, filmmaker and romance novelist. We discuss her work as both a screenwriter and director (she’s writing and directing the adaptation of Emily Henry’s Beach Read), and her debut romance novel, How to End a Love Story, set inside the writers room on a television show between the author of the books the show is adapting (the heroine) and one of the writers in the room (the hero). We talk about why romance adaptations are so difficult to find, why they don’t often hit quite like we expect, and we pitch a few books we’d like to see Hollywood take a crack at. If you just can’t get enough of us, consider joining our Patreon! You get an extra episode of banter every month and access to the Fated Mates discord, full of people who love romance as much as we do. It’s pretty great, we have to say. Learn more at patreon.com/fatedmates. Show NotesMr. Sunshine is the name of the K-Drama that Jen’s friend Sunhee recommended, but also everyone loves Crash Landing on You.If you’re in New York City, you can see Sarah and Yulin together in conversation Thursday, April 11, at The Ripped Bodice in Brooklyn. Get tickets here.Find and follow Yulin Kuang at her website.
We’re finally diving into alpha submissive romance novels during this deep dive of Heather Guerre’s Preferential Treatment, one of Sarah’s best books of 2022. We’re talking about the way some romances do such immense work today—this one really digging into something that romance usually steers clear of…money. We know money and power are inexorably intertwined, but what does that really mean when relationships are budding, and when sex is on the line? How do power dynamics shift and move, how does money impact our ability to be honest in a relationship, and most importantly, should billionaires exist? All that and we finally get to the bottom of the Alpha submissive kink, why Sarah thinks it’s great, and why it just doesn’t move Jen.Oh, and for those of you who’ve been asking for years, Sarah’s doing a mini interstitial in here about books that feature alpha submissives — enjoy! Read Preferential Treatment at Amazon, or with your monthly subscription to Kindle Unlimited.Show NotesPreferential Treatment was on our Best of 2022 list.Preferential treatment is a word used to describe unfair labor practices.Here are some of the most common financial problems in relationships and marriages. Mackenzie Scott’s strategy for getting rid of money through her foundation, Yield Giving.
An absolute classic for a reason, we’re talking about Beauty & the Beast today — about the trope itself, about how the 1991 Disney movie brought it back to life (yes, we see you, Dain), and about why we love the vibe of scarred and broken men in a castle being found and renovated by whip smart, bookish heroines. Spoiler: It’s patriarchy.If you just can’t get enough of us, consider joining our Patreon! You get an extra episode of banter every month and access to the Fated Mates discord, full of people who love romance as much as we do. It’s pretty great, we have to say. Learn more at patreon.com/fatedmates. Next week, we’re finally getting to Heather Guerre’s Preferential Treatment, one of Sarah’s favorite romances of 2022. Get it at Amazon, or with your monthly subscription to Kindle Unlimited. Show NotesThanks for joining us last week at Fated Mates Live!! We had a great time, and it was amazing to see everyone. Thanks for being on this journey with us. Stay tuned for photos and more recaps—and for the recording of the Live, which will be our May 1 episode. We love soundtracks, we played the Dua Lipa song from the Barbie soundtrack, and back in the day, the Pretty in Pink soundtrack was Jen’s jam. Cassette tapes anyone? We have talked about romance retellings of all kinds with Kate Clayborn, and fairy tale retellings with Zoraida Cordova.You can find links to all of the books we discussed at fatedmates.net.
S06.28: HEA or GTFO

S06.28: HEA or GTFO

2024-03-1902:19:36

The cornerstone of the genre. The one thing that, when thrown into question, is guaranteed to enrage every corner of Romancelandia. We’re talking about Happily Ever After (HEA). Its promise, its importance, its relevance to us as readers, writers and people in the world. We talk about what really makes it hard won and deserved for us — which means yes, we’re talking about grovels and yes, we’re talking about third act break ups, and yes, we’re talking about patriarchy. Because of course we are. You’ve probably heard us talk about all the books we’re mentioning here…greatest hits are hits for a reason, y’all.There are a handful of tickets left for Fated Mates LIVE in Brooklyn, NY, this Saturday, March 23, at the gorgeous William Vale Hotel! Join us, along with Kate Clayborn, Lauren Billings (one-half of Christina Lauren), Nikki Payne, and a roomful of other romance-obsessed listeners for a night of romance shenanigans at a live taping of Fated Mates! While we’re never sure quite how it’s going to go, we can guarantee there will be books, booze and bantr…and you’ll leave full of joy from all the fun. Get Kate’s The Other Side of Disappearing three days early (and books from everyone else!) from The Ripped Bodice—links, tickets and more info are at fatedmates.net/live. If you just can’t get enough of us, consider joining our Patreon! You get an extra episode of banter every month and access to the Fated Mates discord, full of people who love romance as much as we do. It’s pretty great, we have to say. Learn more at patreon.com/fatedmates. Our next read along is Heather Guerre’s Preferential Treatment, one of Sarah’s favorite romances of 2022. Get it at Amazon, or with your monthly subsc Show NotesOpe! Jen’s mic wasn’t fully connected for the first 10 minutes of the episode, so that’s why it sounds terrible. User error on her part, Eric would never. Hang in there, she figures it out! Let John Green and the good folks at Crash Course teach you about European History and The Hundred Years’ War. The 2024 Audie Award winners included The True Love Experiment for best romance. Three more days until Fated Mates Live… a handful of tickets are left! Join us! Looking for all kinds of perfect HEA stickers, check out the Romancelandia Shop! UPDATE: The book Sarah was looking for when she was talking about Enemies to Lovers was Johanna Lindsey’s Prisoner of My Desire. All the content warnings, friends…but if you do wade in, don’t miss our chat with Joanna Shupe where we talk about it from Season 1.
A classic among classics, we’re talking enemies to lovers this week! We get to the bottom of what we think of as “enemies,” and how it differs from “rivals-to-lovers” and “friends-to-enemies-to-lovers” and “friends-to-lovers” (jk, we’ll never understand friends-to-lovers). We revisit some of our very favorite romances, talk about stakes, about impossible situations, and about how sexy hating someone can be. There are a handful of tickets left for Fated Mates LIVE in Brooklyn, NY, on March 23, at the gorgeous William Vale Hotel! Join us, along with Kate Clayborn, Lauren Billings (one-half of Christina Lauren), Nikki Payne, and a roomful of other romance-obsessed listeners for a night of romance shenanigans at a live taping of Fated Mates! While we’re never sure quite how it’s going to go, we can guarantee there will be books, booze and bantr…and you’ll leave full of joy from all the fun. We’ve even got The Ripped Bodice on hand to sell books, and the room will be available for hanging with other Firebirds after the live! Preorder Kate’s The Other Side of Disappearing three days early (and books from everyone else!) from The Ripped Bodice—links, tickets and more info are at fatedmates.net/live. If you just can’t get enough of us, consider joining our Patreon! You get an extra episode of banter every month and access to the Fated Mates discord, full of people who love romance as much as we do. It’s pretty great, we have to say. Learn more at patreon.com/fatedmates. Our next read along is Heather Guerre’s Preferential Treatment, one of Sarah’s favorite romances of 2022. Get it at Amazon, or with your monthly subscription to Kindle Unlimited.Show NotesPandora Ravenel owns a boardgame company, but I don’t think she made ouija boards. You should watch Only You (1994), directed by Norman Jewison who also directed Moonstruck! Don’t forget how charming Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants is, a very different vibe from Ripper Street.Jen thought about Kiss an Angel by Susan Elizabeth Phillips when she read an article about the updating of the gorilla enclosure at the Brookfield Zoo. IYKYK, and if you don't, listen to Jen on Learning the Tropes.Sarah said there's only one friends-to-lovers romance she likes. It's Christina Lauren's Josh & Hazel's Guide to Not Dating.
Sometimes you just have to get to the bottom of something, and that’s what we’re here for. Today, we’re taking an unexpected, unexpectedly thorough at what might be one of the rarest and most maligned heroes in Romancelandia—the Himbo. He’s darling, he’s sweet, and he’s made of nothing but love and abs. Journey with us as we consider the place of these lovable dummies in the pantheon of this great genre of ours. We just released a final 25 tickets to Fated Mates LIVE in Brooklyn, NY, on March 23, at the gorgeous William Vale Hotel! Join us, along with Kate Clayborn, Lauren Billings (one-half of Christina Lauren), Nikki Payne, and a roomful of other romance-obsessed listeners for a night of romance shenanigans at a live taping of Fated Mates! While we’re never sure quite how it’s going to go, we can guarantee there will be books, booze and bantr…and you’ll leave full of joy from all the fun. We’ve even got The Ripped Bodice on hand to sell books, and the room will be available for hanging with other Firebirds after the live! Preorder Kate’s The Other Side of Disappearing three days early (and books from everyone else!) from The Ripped Bodice—links, tickets and more info are at fatedmates.net/live. If you just can’t get enough of us, consider joining our Patreon! You get an extra episode of banter every month and access to the Fated Mates discord, full of people who love romance as much as we do. It’s pretty great, we have to say. Learn more at patreon.com/fatedmates. Our next read along is Heather Guerre’s Preferential Treatment, one of Sarah’s favorite romances of 2022. Get it at Amazon, or with your monthly subscription to Kindle Unlimited.Show NotesIf you like Matthew Macfadyen in Pride and Prejudice, perhaps you will also like him on Ripper Street.Coming to Fated Mates Live this month? Go see a musical or a dance performance or eat some pizza when you’re in New York.Apparently, we’re all talking about himbos, and because of Ken, apparently 2023 was the year of the himbo.A truly excellent himbo: Chris Hemsworth in Ghostbusters.
S06.25: It's Romance Law!

S06.25: It's Romance Law!

2024-02-2801:17:01

Y’all enjoyed Romance Science so much, we figured, why not tackle romance law next! This week, we’re discussing wills and trusts, inheritances, guardianship, and more than a few HR violations! We also begin the episode with an important addendum to Romance Science (apologies to the Passion fans in the crowd).There’s still time for you to join us for Fated Mates LIVE in Brooklyn, NY, at the gorgeous William Vale Hotel, on March 23rd, along with Kate Clayborn, Lauren Billings (one-half of Christina Lauren), Nikki Payne, and a roomful of other romance-obsessed listeners for a night of romance shenanigans at a live taping of Fated Mates! While we’re never sure quite how it’s going to go, we can guarantee there will be books, booze and bantr…and you’ll leave full of joy from all the fun. We’ve even got The Ripped Bodice on hand to sell books, and the room will be available for hanging with other Firebirds after the live! Preorder Kate’s The Other Side of Disappearing three days early (and books from everyone else!) from The Ripped Bodice—links, tickets and more info are at fatedmates.net/live. If you just can’t get enough of us, consider joining our Patreon! You get an extra episode of banter every month and access to the Fated Mates discord, full of people who love romance as much as we do. It’s pretty great, we have to say. Learn more at patreon.com/fatedmates. Our next read along is Heather Guerre’s Preferential Treatment, one of Sarah’s favorite romances of 2022. Get it at Amazon, or with your monthly subscription to Kindle Unlimited.Show NotesListen to the Romance Science episode.Pride & Prejudice won the 2024 romance bracket, hosted by Ali Parker of the RomEverAfter Pod.Romance biology addendum: the hymen, the Passion episode.Romance Law probably started with our love of TV Law: LA Law, Ally McBeal, The Good Wife, and Law & Order.
We’re joined this week by the fabulous Nikki Payne, author of Pride & Protest and this month’s new release Sex, Lies & Sensibility to talk about home renovation romance and why we all love it so much! Is it because of competence? Yes. Because we like it when characters have to walk through fire together? Definitely. Because of the metaphor for our lives and futures? Absolutely. We talk about all these things, and how Old School historical really did the business on this trope. And — a bonus! Sarah finally gets to talk with someone about Jane Austen!Nikki is joining us at Fated Mates Live! Join us in Brooklyn, NY, at the gorgeous William Vale Hotel, on March 23rd, along with Kate Clayborn, Lauren Billings (one-half of Christina Lauren) and a roomful of other romance-obsessed listeners for a night of romance shenanigans at a live taping of Fated Mates! While we’re never sure quite how it’s going to go, we can guarantee there will be books, booze and bantr…and you’ll leave full of joy from all the fun. We’ve even got The Ripped Bodice on hand to sell books, and the room will be available for hanging with other Firebirds after the live! Preorder Kate’s The Other Side of Disappearing three days early (and books from everyone else!) from The Ripped Bodice—links, tickets and more info are at fatedmates.net/live. If you just can’t get enough of us, consider joining our Patreon! You get an extra episode of banter every month and access to the Fated Mates discord, full of people who love romance as much as we do. It’s pretty great, we have to say. Learn more at patreon.com/fatedmates. Our next read along is Heather Guerre’s Preferential Treatment, one of Sarah’s favorite romances of 2022. Get it at Amazon, or with your monthly subscription to Kindle Unlimited.Show NotesWelcome Nikki Payne, author of Sex, Lies, and Sensibility. She’ll be at the Ripped Bodice on Feb 23, and at Fated Mates Live, along with Kate Clayborn, Lauren Billings from Christina Lauren, and a few hundred Magnificent Firebirds on March 23, 2024. You can get signed copies of her books at East City Books in DC.Jen had to read A Separate Peace in high school and doesn’t have the best memories of it, to be honest.The mid-90s were a real high tide for Austen adaptions: in 1995 the movies Clueless and Sense and Sensibility and a miniseries of Pride and Prejudice, and the following year the movie Emma.A little bit more about the rights of American women to have their own bank accounts, but women’s access to fair credit is still unjust.A few movies we discussed this week: The Money Pit, Something New, and Baby Boom.
We’re talking about gaming hells! Is it residual Derek Craven love? Probably. Why does Sarah love a casino so much? Why are we so into ladies being wagered by the idiot men in their lives? What makes these places that are so not sexy in real 2024 life so incredibly hot in a) James Bond movies, b) heist movies, and c) historical romances? We’re getting to the bottom of it—or at least, we’re going to talk about books we love. That’s the Fated Mates promise. We’re betting you’re going to love this one! (see what we did there?)We also talk about Fated Mates Live! Join us in Brooklyn, NY, at the gorgeous William Vale Hotel, on March 23rd, along with a collection of special guests and a roomful of other romance-obsessed listeners for a night of romance shenanigans at a live taping of Fated Mates! While we’re never sure quite how it’s going to go, we can guarantee there will be books, booze and bantr…and you’ll leave full of joy from all the fun. We’ve even got The Ripped Bodice on hand to sell books, and the room will be available for hanging with other Firebirds after the live! Tickets and info are at fatedmates.net/live.If you just can’t get enough of us, consider joining our Patreon! You get an extra episode of banter every month and access to the Fated Mates discord, full of people who love romance as much as we do. It’s pretty great, we have to say. Learn more at patreon.com/fatedmates. Our next read along is Heather Guerre’s Preferential Treatment, one of Sarah’s favorite romances of 2022. Get it at Amazon, or with your monthly subscription to Kindle Unlimited.Show NotesGet Fated Mates Live tickets for March 23, 2024 in Brooklyn.We think that waking up married is different than casinos.Derek Craven is of course our favorite casino-owner, but Sarah wrote a pretty famous casino series, too.In modern times, casinos are owned by giant conglomerates and they are definitely making a ton of money, Especially this past weekend since the Superbowl was in Vegas.The Taylor Swift Effect is real.Have we mentioned that there are lots of movies about casinos out there in the world.“Fuck me gently with a chainsaw” is a reference to Heathers, not a dark romance.An explainer about fantasy sports and where they are legal.You can join Sarah and Julia Quinn next Tuesday, February 20, online via Zoom. They'll be talking about all things Bridgerton, about romance, about reading and writing, and taking questions! Register for the free event, sponsored Illinois Libraries Present, and join them!
We’re so excited for today’s deep dive on Natalie Caña’s A Dish Best Served Hot — a sexy, second-chance romance that gave us so many feelings, including delight that Natalie is at the very beginning of her romance writing career! Here we talk about taking big swings in romance, about telling love stories against the backdrop of real life issues, and about how this book’s ending might be the closest thing to Kleypas we’ve read in a long time. Get the book at Amazon, B&N, Apple Books, Kobo or your local indie. We also talk about Fated Mates Live! Join us in Brooklyn, NY, at the gorgeous William Vale Hotel, on March 23rd! Join us along with a collection of special guests and a roomful of other romance-obsessed listeners for a night of romance shenanigans at a live taping of Fated Mates! While we’re never sure quite how it’s going to go, we can guarantee there will be books, booze and bantr…and you’ll leave full of joy from all the fun. We’ve even got The Ripped Bodice on hand to sell books, and the room will be available for hanging with other Firebirds after the live! Tickets and info are at fatedmates.net/live.If you just can’t get enough of us, consider joining our Patreon! You get an extra episode of banter every month and access to the Fated Mates discord, full of people who love romance as much as we do. It’s pretty great, we have to say. Learn more at patreon.com/fatedmates. Show NotesOn March 16 2024, Jen will be at the Forest Park Library for an event called Book Buzz. Use this link to register. It’s all about romance, and Natalie Cana, Nicole Falls, and local Forest Parker Maria Monroe.Selective mutism is a type of anxiety disorder.Humboldt Park is a Chicago neighborhood that has been ethnically Latine with the largest Puerto Rican population in the city, for a long time. The gentrification described in the book is a real problem facing the neighborhood. If you were inspired by this story, you can support La Case Norte, a real Humboldt Park organization that supports homeless teenagers.This whole Arrested Development thing about Army was very funny, just trust us.The Rock having a tea party with his daughter is very adorable.February romance articles are coming, including one written by Jen for Kirkus.You can sign up for the virtual conversation with Sarah and Julia Quinn, hosted by the Illinois Libraries (which includes Oak Park) on Feb 20th, 2024.
It’s February which means it’s time for the biggest holiday in romance — Derek Craven Day! We’re so thrilled to be able to celebrate this remarkable man—born in a drainpipe, named himself, turned to a life of spectacle stealing—with all of you! This year, we’re so excited to have friend of the pod and of Cravens, Sanjana (follow her on TikTok at baskinsuns), to chat with us about her landmark research: A Comprehensive Categorization of Kleypas Heroes. We laugh, we get serious, and yes, we even talk about Zachary Bronson. — calm down, Bronsonettes. Also — it just feels right that we’re announcing Fated Mates Live on Derek Craven Day! Join us in Brooklyn, NY, at the gorgeous William Vale Hotel, on March 23rd! Join us along with a collection of special guests and a roomful of other romance-obsessed listeners for a night of romance shenanigans at a live taping of Fated Mates! While we’re never sure quite how it’s going to go, we can guarantee there will be books, booze and bantr…and you’ll leave full of joy from all the fun. We’ve even got The Ripped Bodice on hand to sell books, and the room will be available for hanging with other Firebirds after the live! Tickets and info are at fatedmates.net/live.Next week, we’re deep diving on Natalie Caña’s A Dish Best Served Hot. Find it at Amazon, B&N, Apple Books, Kobo or your local indie. If you just can’t get enough of us, consider joining our Patreon! You get an extra episode of banter every month and access to the Fated Mates discord, full of people who love romance as much as we do. It’s pretty great, we have to say. Learn more at patreon.com/fatedmates. Show NotesWelcome Sanj. You can find her on TikTok or twitter. Her “Comprehensive Categorization of Kleypas Heroes” below went through several iterations during the pandemic, you're looking at v4. Lots of people have organized their thoughts about Kleypas characters, we also liked this one that’s a Venn Diagram.Kate Clayborn joined us in 2021 to address a deeply silly list of questions and scenarios submitted by Magnificent Firebirds. It is absolutely worth a second listen. In 2023, we dropped That’s So Craven. And then there’s our Dreaming of You read along. If you’re looking for hard data about what Derek Craven would or would never do, or just want to browse some absurd memes, the official Derek Craven Day master page has you covered. There are a few new memes this year and an answer to an important new question about Derek shopping at Winterborne’s. Finally, the YouTube version of the 2021 Derek Craven Day episode will light up any display from phone to TV with an exhaustive list of Derek Creaven would/never scenarios. You can turn down the sound and just have it loop all day long. It’s very possible that only Eric thinks this is a good idea, but you never know. Oh, and this.
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Comments (8)

Sophie K

sound quality is all wonky

Mar 1st
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BP

I recently discovered the pod and reread IAD while listening to the first season. Now I'm just binging the later episodes because it's such a comfort to have you two in my earholes during these challenging times :)

Jan 31st
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Desiree Bua

Loving it! I am so glad I found this podcast, I am really interested in the comments as well as the book suggestions

Sep 13th
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Ed Martion

Brilliant funny women! Very happy to have found the podcast. Let me know if you do other podcasts.

May 22nd
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Z B

love love love the podcasts. I KNEW Kresley was amazing, love to have it validated by romance scholars!

Mar 9th
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Tara Benshoof

I love this podcast! I don't have anyone that I can talk these over with so I love hearing all you guys put out there. This is an amazing series in so many ways. I started this series and Nalini Singh's psy/changeling series at the same time and the world building, writing technique and character arcs are just phenomenal in both. Thank you guys!!

Feb 20th
Reply (1)

Kayla Pirtle

ladies I think I'm going to have to read the series again!! thank you. lol

Feb 19th
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