When is a book NOT a book? When it’s a sequel to a book YOU’VE NEVER READ! Yes, this week I discover the peril of not knowing which book comes after which as I delve into the second part of an apparent two-parter that isn’t actually that difficult to understand; it’s a book for children. It’s “The Berenstain Bear Scouts and the Evil Eye!”
Joining me to talk about this confounding book is the completely confounded founder of the celebrated Twitter account Best of NextDoor, Jenn Takahashi! Jenn is confused by everything going on, but that’s fine because she has been mentioned in an article in The Atlantic and have the Berenstains? Well, yes actually. They have on a number of occasions. Still, Jenn has been mentioned MOST RECENTLY!
This week, Jamie Tyler, author of the “Cowabloga” Ninja Turtles blog, is BACK to talk about the most convoluted, frustrating, fascinating and satisfyingly unsatisfying Big Chapter Book I’ve read in a while: “The Berenstain Bears and the Perfect Crime (Almost)!” Yes, get that parenthetical in there; it’s important. Jamie and I work ourselves up to a fever pitch as nothing makes sense, adds up or resolves in any way resembling logical or even dramatically resonant. It’s amazing. And I love it.
Boy oh boy! Milton Chubb! Who is Milton Chubb, you ask? Only the strangest cub introduced in these here books. He’s introduced TWICE actually, in “Too Much Teasing” and in “The Love Match.” Two different formats that tell essentially the same story but in wildly different ways and for wildly different reasons.
To commemorate this event, I’ve brought John McCoy – host of the Sophomore Lit podcast and my co-host on Klickitcast: A Beverly Cleary Podcast – onto the show to try and suss out the point of these two books. Does the first one teach us anything about teasing? Why are Too-Tall and his gang so bad at it? Does Milton have parents, really? Do pigs have armpits? Who knows?! Not us!
This week, I’m joined by the delightful Drew Stewart to rock out to “The Berenstain Bears Go Platinum!” It’s the gripping tale of Stan and Jan Berenstain really wanting to stick it to the music of today!
Elana and Mitzi are back! Or, are here because they’ve never been on together!And we’re talking “Giant Bat Cave!” It’s a Berenstain Bear Scouts book and may, in fact be the *first Berenstain Bear Scouts book but, then again, maybe it’s not? Also, Elana gets really excited to talk about local politics and then has to settle for talking about bats.
Helen LaStar, one of the hosts of Falling In Love Montage, joins me this week to peel back the layers of “The Berenstain Bears and Queenie’s Crazy Crush!” What happens when a young girl cub falls in love with a grown man and plots to trick him into coming over to her house when her parents are – you know what? I’m going to just leave that right where I found it. Just . . . just walk away from that one.
Gena Radcliffe – one half of the Kill By Kill Podcast duo – joins me to talk about the decidedly NON-SCARY “The Berenstain Bears and the Haunted Hayride!” There’s no haunting but there IS a hayride although it is very short and they don’t go into a lot of details about it. Still . . . there it is.
Also, you can find Gena’s writing on a ton of different subjects here and I strongly suggest that you do!