Episode 4: The Black Moth 1-2

Not a "typical" romance, this author's skill will surprise you.
Prologue, chapter 1 and chapter 2.

Rating: G
Suitable for everyone, although young children won't necessarily understand what is going on.


The Black Moth

The Book
Look for this book and other Georgette Heyer novels at your library, local or used book stores or on Amazon. This book is in the public domain.
The Fashions
The Pretender
Charles Edward Stuart: a.k.a. Bonnie Prince Charlie

The Slang
Cant and Expressions
Slang not included in the above list:
  • Make a leg: A bow, esp. in the phrase to make a leg; probably from drawing the leg backward in bowing. [Obs.][1913 Webster]

  • High Toby: The high toby, the high-road the low toby, the by-road. A highwayman is a “high tobyman;” a mere footpad is a “low tobyman.”

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Georgette Heyer

Not a lot of people may know this author, but once they do, they jump on the bandwagon. There are many more spots than these on the internet but these seemed to be the most complete to me:
Folks just discovering Heyer:
This is no bodice-ripper, but it is wonderfully romantic in a madcap sort of way. In fact, Heyer wrote it in 1934, and it’s a Georgian, not Regency period, if that matters (I believe it does, to some) but reading this thing was like watching one of my favorite screwball comedies of that era. The heroine is a humorous scamp, the hero - Gad, I fell in love with him! He only shows up in about a third of the book, but he is so well drawn, so clever and funny and wry, that he steals every chapter he’s in. The rest of the book is dominated by secondary characters who kept me in stitches, particularly the overindulging brother, Pel and his drinking/gambling buddy, Pom.

I picked it up yesterday and couldn’t put it down - read it right through the night...

I said, “no, it’s not sexy at all - but it IS romantic, but just tantalizingly so. What it is, is freaking hilarious.”
Anyway, I overcame my prejudice and took out the only two Heyer books on the shelves: the aforementioned Beauvallet and another complete gem, The Unknown Ajax.

Well, be still my beating heart. I am a convert to Georgette Heyer's romances, even if I might not be converted to anyone else's.

And reading a description of the dashing Beauvallet, an English pirate riding into France to steal away the Spanish girl he has fallen in love with, made me open my eyes to what is appealing in manly men...
Gentle irony and subtle humor in prose that is not uncomely and sometimes rises to Austenian heights--Georgette Heyer a much underrated, underread master of the historical romance. It's a shame because there is much fun to be had with Ms. Heyer's magnificent novels.
Steven Riddle is not new to Georgette Heyer, but he is reading Powder and Patch for the first time.
The Black Moth:


Episode 3: Shirley Jackson Sampler

Shirley Jackson usually calls to mind horror fiction but she also wrote some very funny stories about her family.

Episode 3: Shirley Jackson humor sampler

Rating: G
Suitable for everyone.

Look for this book and other Shirley Jackson novels at your library, local or used book stores or on Amazon. Links are in the show notes which are here.

Episode 3: Show Notes

Notes for Episode 3

About the author
Shirley Jackson

Miette reads Charles

The Books
These books are under copyright.

Featured Podcast
Librivox: Free audiobooks from the public domain.

Much thanks
To those who have so kindly mentioned Forgotten Classics.

Shirley Jackson

Shirley Jackson: House and Guardians
There are other sources out there but be careful reading them as they tend to give away plot twists and endings. I found this to be a very balanced overview of Jackson's work as well as being careful not to ruin stories for those who hadn't read them yet.

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Episode 3: Shirley Jackson Sampler

Episode 22: Shirley Jackson Horror


Episode 2: Topper

Do you think you know all about Topper if you saw the movie or television show? Wrong! The book is so much better ...

Episode 2: Topper Sample

Why is this episode so long? There's a really good reason and you won't mind. I promise!

PG (fine for older kids and up).

Look for this book and other Thorne Smith novels at your library, local or used book stores or on Amazon.

Show notes are here.

Episode 2: Show Notes

Helpful information
  • dys·pep·sia n. Disturbed digestion; indigestion.
  • White duck trousers
  • "Race relations...": remember that this book was written in less politically correct times, although the reference is fleeting and the author's take on it very modern.
  • General: still working with the learning curve on volume levels, microphone placement, etc. Hopefully all is smooth enough not to detract from listening pleasure but if so, rest assured I am working on it.
About the author:
Thorne Smith

The Book
Topper (Modern Library)
This book is under copyright.

Much thanks
To those who have so kindly mentioned Forgotten Classics:
  • Maria Lectrix, a podcaster extraordinaire of classics in sci-fi, mystery, the Church Fathers, and much more.
  • The Curt Jester, one of my favorite bloggers who knows how to appreciate and review a good book.
  • CraftLit, the podcast that made me realize listening to books while knitting was such a genuine pleasure. Without Heather's insistence I surely wouldn't have thought of putting together a promo, much less getting around to actually doing it.
  • Christopher Bailey
  • Mike Aquilina

Thorne Smith

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Episode 1: A Tale of Three Tales

A South American folk tale that has a personal connection ...
all about the days
"When the rat had a tail like a horse ..."
Story rating
Kid friendly.

Show notes are here.

Episode 1: Show Notes

Featured Author
Charles J. Finger

Featured Work
Tales from Silver Lands: A Tale of Three Tales

This book is in the public domain.

Hear the Classics
Henry James, Charles Dickens, Jane Austen ... Heather's got 'em for you at CraftLit

And I just hafta say ... the cover above is from the 1974 hardcover. I always thought that it was quite hideous ... until I saw the atrocity on the newest version. Just try to ignore this if buying the book and focus on the folk-tale-ish goodness on the inside.

Charles J. Finger

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