89 episodes

The Library Coven is a bi-weekly podcast in which two bookish besties, Jessie and Kelly, discuss (mostly) YA fantasy through the lens of intersectional feminist criticism. Why? Because critique is our fangirl love language. And because talking about books is pretty magical.

The Library Coven The Library Coven

    • Arts
    • 4.5 • 28 Ratings

The Library Coven is a bi-weekly podcast in which two bookish besties, Jessie and Kelly, discuss (mostly) YA fantasy through the lens of intersectional feminist criticism. Why? Because critique is our fangirl love language. And because talking about books is pretty magical.

    Episode 70: Witchlings by Claribel A. Ortega

    Episode 70: Witchlings by Claribel A. Ortega

    You aren’t ready for the cute puns and shenanigans of the Spare Coven! In Episode 70 we discuss Witchlings by Claribel A. Ortega, a middle grade novel full of friendship, magic, and toads. Jessie and kelly reveal the shape their familiars would take and think about what their names might be prophecies for. Recommend if you like… Pet* by Akwaeke Emezi – which deals with some more overt societal issues, but I think they both have strong young girls at their core who are fighting for a more just society The Halloweentown movies New Kid by Jerry Craft Brooklyn Brujas* These books all skew towards younger readers and are overflowing with magic.  * we’ve done episodes for all of these books! but you don’t have to take our word for it – go ahead and scroll thru our episodes page 🙂 El Coco comes from the folklore of Spanish and Portuguese-speaking regions. The American Library Association (ALA) – “Access to Library Resources for Minors: An Interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights” Here’s Jessie’s breakdown of Melville Dewey super famous (and OPE! super racist, homophobic, etc.) librarian Moira Dewey is the name of the head librarian, which I’m guessing is based on a very famous librarian, maybe the most famous librarian, Melville Dewey, who created the Dewey Decimal Classification system used in most public libraries, and one of the founders of the American Library Association. I can see why that name might appeal to the author, but now it’s time to talk about what a totally terrible person he was. He was racist against Black and Jewish people, and others who were minorities , and he made it a habit to use his power to sexually harrass women librarians. Also, the DDC has had some people speak out about its hierarchical nature, the way it ghettoizes those from marginalized groups, ignores intersectional issues, originally placed queer folks and issues under “social problems,” centers christianity, and prioritized colonizer perspectives. I linked to a ton of articles that might shed more light on the issue, but I had to mention it. Maybe the librarian in the books, Moira, will end up being a villain in the future, but if this wasn’t meant to signpost to older readers where the story might go, then this is a reminder to authors to investigate the historical figures used in books. As always, we’d love to be in discussion with you, magical people. Drop us a line in the comments or reach out to us on twitter, Instagram (@thelibrarycoven), or via email (thelibraycoven@gmail.com). Access complete show notes on our website, thelibrarycoven.com. We really appreciate ratings and reviews on iTunes, Google Podcasts, Spotify, or any other platforms. Help us share the magic by spreading the word about the podcast! You can support our labor by leaving us a one-time tip on Ko-fi or purchasing books from our Bookshop! Better yet, become a monthly patron via Patreon and you can unlock a bunch of exclusive perks like access to our community of reader-listeners on Discord. Our cover art is by the talented artist nimsby. The podcast theme song is “Unermerry Academy of Magics” by Augustin C from the album “Fantasy Music”, which you can download on FreeMusicArchive.com. We support #LandBack. The Library Coven is recorded and produced on stolen indigenous land: Arapahoe, Cheyenne, and Ute (Kelly) and Chickasha, Kaskaskia, Kickapoo, Mascoutin, Miami, Mesquaki, Odawa, Ojibwe, Peankashaw, Peoria, Potawatomi, Sauk, and Wea (Jessie)

    • 44 min
    Episode 69: The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri

    Episode 69: The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri

    AND WE’RE BACK! Season 5 begins with our discussion of The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri, the first book in the Burning Kingdoms series. This book is a multi-POV tale that mostly follows Priya, a young adult with magical powers who’s entire adopted family has been killed, and Malini, an exiled princess who is trying to steal the throne from her evil brother.  The books for this first series of episodes were will be releasing were all chosen by our wonderful patrons! If you need some bookish camaraderie, join our Patreon! It’s a pay-what-you-can model starting at $1/month. In other news: Dr k uses they/them/their pronouns and has for a while! Genderqueer, enby, non-binary/trans, and just plain ole queer all currently fit. Thanks for respecting this slash for correcting yourself the next time if you make a mistake, and generally for not being s****y and transphobic 💜  This book was chosen by the wonderful Melisa @melisa.reads.it.all. You can follow her on instagram for more reviews of what she’s reading and for more book suggestions! content warning for brief mention of child death Recommend if you like… An Ember in the Ashes* Game of Thrones Six of Crows* Children of Blood and Bone* The Poppy War * (adult) Neon Yang’s Tensorate series of fantasy/silk punk novels (adult) These book share multiple POVs, have high fantasy vibes and lots of politicking going on * we’ve done episodes for all of these books! but you don’t have to take our word for it – go ahead and scroll thru our episodes page 🙂 Here’s an interview with the author that discusses the inspiration for the magical systems in the book and what real life things they’re based on Mary Oliver reads her poem “The Summer Day” (aka “The Grasshopper”) As always, we’d love to be in discussion with you, magical people. Drop us a line in the comments or reach out to us on twitter, Instagram (@thelibrarycoven), or via email (thelibraycoven@gmail.com). Access complete show notes on our website, thelibrarycoven.com. We really appreciate ratings and reviews on iTunes, Google Podcasts, Spotify, or any other platforms. Help us share the magic by spreading the word about the podcast! You can support our labor by leaving us a one-time tip on Ko-fi or purchasing books from our Bookshop! Better yet, become a monthly patron via Patreon and you can unlock a bunch of exclusive perks like access to our community of reader-listeners on Discord. Our cover art is by the talented artist nimsby. The podcast theme song is “Unermerry Academy of Magics” by Augustin C from the album “Fantasy Music”, which you can download on FreeMusicArchive.com. We support #LandBack. The Library Coven is recorded and produced on stolen indigenous land: Arapahoe, Cheyenne, and Ute (Kelly) and Chickasha, Kaskaskia, Kickapoo, Mascoutin, Miami, Mesquaki, Odawa, Ojibwe, Peankashaw, Peoria, Potawatomi, Sauk, and Wea (Jessie)

    • 55 min
    Episode 68: Lost in the Never Woods by Aiden Thomas

    Episode 68: Lost in the Never Woods by Aiden Thomas

    It’s our final episode of season 4 of the podcast, y’all! We read Lost in the Never Woods by Aiden Thomas, a Peter Pan redux with plenty of twists. We’ll be back with more episodes in summer of 2022. If you want to pick one of the books we read for next season, join our Patreon! It’s a pay-what-you-can model starting at $1/month. content warning for discussions of child death Recommend if you like… Peter Pan, any iteration Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas* Folk of the Air series by Holly Black* Brooklyn Brujas series by Zoraida Córdova* also, if you appreciate YA that is light on the romance aspect, then this book is for you * we’ve done episodes for all of these books! but you don’t have to take our word for it – go ahead and scroll thru our episodes page 🙂 article on “the shadow” and therapy by the UK-based Society of Analytical Psychology information about trauma and memory loss (“dissociative amnesia”) Resources for Abolishing Policing (by Critical Resistance) Even more resources for fighting for abolition (also by Critical Resistance because they’re just amazing) As always, we’d love to be in discussion with you, magical people. Drop us a line in the comments or reach out to us on twitter, Instagram (@thelibrarycoven), or via email (thelibraycoven@gmail.com). Access complete show notes on our website, thelibrarycoven.com. We really appreciate ratings and reviews on iTunes, Google Podcasts, Spotify, or any other platforms. Help us share the magic by spreading the word about the podcast! You can support our labor by leaving us a one-time tip on Ko-fi or purchasing books from our Bookshop! Better yet, become a monthly patron via Patreon and you can unlock a bunch of exclusive perks like access to our community of reader-listeners on Discord. Our cover art is by the talented artist nimsby. The podcast theme song is “Unermerry Academy of Magics” by Augustin C from the album “Fantasy Music”, which you can download on FreeMusicArchive.com. We support #LandBack. The Library Coven is recorded and produced on stolen indigenous land: Arapahoe, Cheyenne, and Ute (Kelly) and Chickasha, Kaskaskia, Kickapoo, Mascoutin, Miami, Mesquaki, Odawa, Ojibwe, Peankashaw, Peoria, Potawatomi, Sauk, and Wea (Jessie)

    • 38 min
    Episode 67: A Psalm of Storms and Silence by Roseanne A. Brown

    Episode 67: A Psalm of Storms and Silence by Roseanne A. Brown

    Welcome back, coven! In this episode we are discussing A Psalm of Storms and Silence by Roseanne A. Brown, the sequel to A Song of Wraths and Ruin which we talked about all the way back in episode 39! This book picks up right were the last one left off with Karina on the run and Malik living in the palace with Hanan who was brought back from the dead, and Fareed basically in control of everything. Chaos does indeed ensue! Content warning for discussions of self-harm, suicidal ideation, and miscarriage. Take care of yourself folks, and if you don’t feel up to listening to this episode at the moment, feel free to come back to it later or skip this one. We’ll talk about it in the “Kill Your Darlings” segment towards the end and provide a warning there, too [37:11-39:48].  The Trevor Project hotline suicide prevention hotline This season of the show is quickly wrapping up! Only If you want a say in what books we read and talk about next season and you want to be in communication with a great group of people who talk about books, baking, and yarn, consider joining our patreon! Recommend if you like… [read-alikes mostly, but also other media, film, tv, etc.]  A Song of Wraiths and Ruin by Roseanne A. Brown An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi  Kingdom of Souls by Rena Barron  Hyena is a trickster like Coyote (Trail of Lightning) or Loki (Norse mythology). This is a common type of god in many different belief systems. Here are a couple of different resources, since it’s really cool to see how they overlap! [cw: miscarriage] There is mention at the beginning of the book that Hanan and Karina’s mother had been through a few miscarriages, and this is a YA book, but I think it’s important for people to know that 10-20% of pregnancies end in a miscarriage, and because we don’t talk about that, many people who experience them feel like it’s their fault. So I appreciated this mention in a book for young people who may have had loved ones who experienced a miscarriage or they may have experienced them themselves, so it’s important to have these kinds of discussions. [cw: suicide and self harm] We see Malik using self harm as a way to control his mind, and the god living there, and thinking about killing himself. This is another thing that I think can be an important topic to talk about with young people. I hope people know there are people who are there for you and want to help you, and if you need help, please reach out. We’ll link to the suicide prevention hotline and the trevor project in case you feel like you need someone to reach out to.  As always, we’d love to be in discussion with you, magical people. Drop us a line in the comments or reach out to us on twitter, Instagram (@thelibrarycoven), or via email (thelibraycoven@gmail.com). Access complete show notes on our website, thelibrarycoven.com. We really appreciate ratings and reviews on iTunes, Google Podcasts, Spotify, or any other platforms. Help us share the magic by spreading the word about the podcast! You can support our labor by leaving us a one-time tip on Ko-fi or purchasing books from our Bookshop! Better yet, become a monthly patron via Patreon and you can unlock a bunch of exclusive perks like access to our community of reader-listeners on Discord. Our cover art is by the talented artist nimsby. The podcast theme song is “Unermerry Academy of Magics” by Augustin C from the album “Fantasy Music”, which you can download on FreeMusicArchive.com. We support #LandBack. The Library Coven is recorded and produced on stolen indigenous land: Arapahoe, Cheyenne, and Ute (Kelly) and Chickasha, Kaskaskia, Kickapoo, Mascoutin, Miami, Mesquaki, Odawa, Ojibwe, Peankashaw, Peoria, Potawatomi, Sauk, and Wea (Jessie)

    • 46 min
    Episode 66: Son of a Trickster by Eden Robinson

    Episode 66: Son of a Trickster by Eden Robinson

    We’re back for what might be the most chaotic episode yet! join us for our discussion of Son of A Trickster by Eden Robinson. Attempting to summarize this book is an exercise in futility (you’ll understand when you hear k try to give an on-the-fly synopsis…). While this book can get categorized as YA (the protagonist, Jared, is 15-16), there is a lot of explicit violence, so it would be better for a mature teen reader or adults. Content warning for discussions of self-harm, suicide attempt, familial abuse, drug use, and alcoholism. This book was chosen by our wonderful Patreon patron Grey! They are fantastic and wonderful. AND Grey posts amazing book reviews on Instagram, so do yourself a favor and check out their page!! Recommend if you like… Jonny Appleseed by Joshua Whitehead Butter Honey Pig Bread by Francesca Ekwuyasi Reservation Dogs (tv show) K suggests listening to this review of Reservation Dogs by Red Power Hour (a show via The Red Nation’s podcast — which you should TOTALLY support and listen to if you don’t already!!) Residential schools are a massive topic with multi-generational impacts. below you’ll find further reading and resources: this article delves into the similarities and differences between this genocide tactic in the US and Canada “The Lasting Impact of Native American Residential Schools” by Cheyenne Barefoot The National Native American Boarding School Healing Coalition Episode of The Red Nation Podcast: “American Indian boarding schools w/ Denise Lajimodiere” here’s a cute Buzzfeed article about a guy who finds his old iPod nano from high school. Let’s be like Sarah and decolonize our damn selves!! on that note, here are some dank (meme) accounts @decolonialatlas (on instagram) @illuminative (on instagram) @workingclasshistory (on instagram) @nowhitesaviors (on instagram) Here’s a great episode of the podcast All My Relations “beyond blood quantum” As always, we’d love to be in discussion with you, magical people. Drop us a line in the comments or reach out to us on twitter, Instagram (@thelibrarycoven), or via email (thelibraycoven@gmail.com). Access complete show notes on our website, thelibrarycoven.com. We really appreciate ratings and reviews on iTunes, Google Podcasts, Spotify, or any other platforms. Help us share the magic by spreading the word about the podcast! You can support our labor by leaving us a one-time tip on Ko-fi or purchasing books from our Bookshop! Better yet, become a monthly patron via Patreon and you can unlock a bunch of exclusive perks like access to our community of reader-listeners on Discord. Our cover art is by the talented artist nimsby. The podcast theme song is “Unermerry Academy of Magics” by Augustin C from the album “Fantasy Music”, which you can download on FreeMusicArchive.com. We support #LandBack. The Library Coven is recorded and produced on stolen indigenous land: Arapahoe, Cheyenne, and Ute (Kelly) and Chickasha, Kaskaskia, Kickapoo, Mascoutin, Miami, Mesquaki, Odawa, Ojibwe, Peankashaw, Peoria, Potawatomi, Sauk, and Wea (Jessie)

    • 41 min
    Episode 65: Oculta by Maya Motayne

    Episode 65: Oculta by Maya Motayne

    We’re finally going back to Castellan and reuniting with Finn and Alfie! In this episode we discuss Oculta by Maya Motayne, the second installment of the A Forgery of Magic series. This book is the sequel to Nocturna, which we discussed in episode 41, so go check that out if you haven’t yet!  In Oculta, we’re back in San Cristobal, with Finn and Alfie trying to figure out a murderous plot at the center of a v dramatic peace summit. Of course, chaos ensues!  onto the short and sweet show notes… Recommend if you like… Six of Crows and/or Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo – there’s a heist-y feeling with all of the shenanigans and plotting. Tamora Pierce’s Trickster’s Choice and Trickster Queen From Art Spiegelman’s Maus, a graphic novel about the holocaust and it’s legacy in a family, to the autobiographical All Boys Aren’t Blue by George M. Johnson and many books in between, censorship and book banning are back in our collective conversation. Below are some related resources and articles. “Book Bans Are Targeting the History of Oppression” by Marilisa Jiménez García (in The Atlantic) 2020 Banned and Challenged book list from the The Office for Intellectual Freedom at the American Library Association (published August 2021) “Banned Books Week: A Reading List” by PEN America We discuss predatory financial practices in the episode, so here is some further reading multi-faceted criticisms of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) include it’s so-called “debt-trap diplomacy” of foisting the use of Structural Adjustment Programs (SAPs) and austerity policies (don’t know WTF all those acronyms mean? here’s a source with more information) In this video, Dari Grant explains the cycle of payday loans and her ideas for disrupting it K was trying very hard to describe a website where you can drag and see the real size of countries. It’s called “The True Size Of…” K mentions the scholar and writer Jasbir Puar and the concept of “debility” she develops in the book The Right to Maim. Very heavy and important reading, so take care. As always, we’d love to be in discussion with you, magical people. Drop us a line in the comments or reach out to us on twitter, Instagram (@thelibrarycoven), or via email (thelibraycoven@gmail.com). Access complete show notes on our website, thelibrarycoven.com. We really appreciate ratings and reviews on iTunes, Google Podcasts, Spotify, or any other platforms. Help us share the magic by spreading the word about the podcast! You can support our labor by leaving us a one-time tip on Ko-fi or purchasing books from our Bookshop! Better yet, become a monthly patron via Patreon and you can unlock a bunch of exclusive perks like access to our community of reader-listeners on Discord. Our cover art is by the talented artist nimsby. The podcast theme song is “Unermerry Academy of Magics” by Augustin C from the album “Fantasy Music”, which you can download on FreeMusicArchive.com. We support #LandBack. The Library Coven is recorded and produced on stolen indigenous land: Arapahoe, Cheyenne, and Ute (Kelly) and Chickasha, Kaskaskia, Kickapoo, Mascoutin, Miami, Mesquaki, Odawa, Ojibwe, Peankashaw, Peoria, Potawatomi, Sauk, and Wea (Jessie)

    • 45 min

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5
28 Ratings

28 Ratings

Eringggggggggggg ,

THIS PODCAST IS EVERYTHING

I love this podcast. As a person who grew up gendered as a girl and woman and who loves fantasy/ sci-fi, my options for seeing myself in novels was mostly limited to Young Adult novels. I am now almost 30 and still love YA and I feel so validated listening to two brilliant, funny, lovely humans who love YA and cannot help but read it through a critical lens. This is how my brain works, with added insights and criticisms. I cannot recommend this podcast more. They discuss race, class, capitalism, ableism, heteronormativity, sexism, and on and on and on and on, in a way that doesn't guilt me for loving problematic fiction, but makes me question what I love about these stories and allows me to feel solidarity in my critique of novels that I still enjoy. So good, so smart, so considerate and thoughtful and funny and thorough.

c h l o e e l y s e ,

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

This is one of my favorite book podcasts! I love the hosts’ commentary, and they often bring up interesting critiques I haven’t thought of. If you love fantasy or YA, this is for you!

AParmesan ,

Lovely to listen to

I really enjoy the hosts’ analysis. They do a good job breaking down the mechanics of the book and discussing the representation in said books.

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