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Legacy of Lies – Part 1

This week Danielle takes us to Maryland, or possibly England, in the Elizabeth Chandler teen novel from 2000, Legacy of Lies. Meet Megan, a teen whose whole personalty could be described in one word:...

Hyperion – Part 3

It’s Hyperion week again as Sam brings us back to the 1989 Dan Simmons novel! We’re back on the river as the pilgrims continue their journey and Martin Silenus, the poet, takes his turn to tell his story. Martin claims to have been born on Old Earth after the Big Mistake but before the planet was entirely destroyed some five-hundreds years ago. He lead an idle and wealthy life, but always knew he wanted to be a poet. Danielle doesn’t care about that, she’s just excited they brought dinosaurs back just for fun. As Earth succumbed to the Big Mistake, Martin’s mother sent him off on a multi-century space journey in cryogenic stasis, hoping the money she set aside in a savings account would accrue enough interest during his travel to set him up comfortably when he arrived. It didn’t, and Martin, after suffering a stroke and losing his language abilities, was left working in the mud pits of Heaven’s Gate in indentured servitude. This turned out to be the perfect environment to inspire Martin’s poetry, as he wrote his cantos on toilet paper and regained his language skills. By pure happenstance, his work was noticed and published to great success making him instantly, and stupidly, wealthy. Martin buys a truly amazing house with rooms on thirty-six planets connected by farcaster portals that cost a truly ridiculous amount of money to maintain. After gadding about with friends doing drugs, he writes another book of poetry that’s a massive flop and leaves him deep in debt. He starts churning out hack sequels that, while popular enough, leave him unfulfilled and still in debt. Martin decides to liquidate his assets and accept the artistic patronage Sad King Billy of the Kingdom of Windsor in Exile. Sad King Billy decides to relocate his kingdom to, where else, Hyperion, and create the City of Poets. There, Martin is unable to find a muse, and so has surgery to transform himself into a satyr and devotes himself to partying. Right at the point where he’s about to kill himself nine-years later, people in the city start being brutally murdered and Martin finds himself with a new muse: the Shrike. How could this possibly go wrong?

Hyperion – Part 2

This week Sam takes us back on the pilgrimage with the continuation of the 1989 Dan Simmons book Hyperion. The pilgrims touch down on Hyperion but find that in the three years they have been traveling, chaos has overtaken the planet. The mysterious Shrike has been wandering around murdering at will, and the citizenry of the planet—and the WorldWeb—have turned against the Shrike church. Still, with the help of some presumably no-longer-enslaved androids from the Shrike church, the pilgrims resume their journey upriver on a barge pulled by giant mantas. On the river, Fedmahn Kassad shares the story of what led him to this pilgrimage. It starts with Kassad at the Olympus Command School Historical Tactical Network on Mars in a simulation of the battle of Agincourt. How this simulation of medieval warfare helps with space combat is unclear, but nevertheless, Kassad is there and eventually meets a girl in the woods and they immediately have sex. This happens numerous times over the course of many simulations with Kassad and this mysterious woman hooking-up during battles throughout history. He becomes obsessed with her even though she never once speaks to him and he never sees her outside the simulations, or at all after he graduates. There is a boat-load of explanation of the FORCE forces and the New Bushido code, as well as more of Kassad’s backstory, but the exciting stuff happens when the space dwelling people known as the Ousters attack the Hegemony. Kassad saves the day by employing brutal tactics that turn many of the citizenry in the Hegemony against him—much to Danielle’s frustration—so the Hegemony CEO packs him on an eighteen-month time debt trip back to the Web to let things cool off. However, on the way they run into another Ouster warship and Kassad is forced to crash land on, you guessed it, Hyperion, where the mysterious woman finds him. Who is this mysterious woman? How is she connected to Kassad? How did she infiltrate the simulations? How did she know to find him here? But instead of taking her up on her invitation to ask literally any of these questions, Kassad decides they should have sex again. Sam is enraged by his priorities. Meanwhile, Danielle learns some fun new vocabulary words, so she’s the real winner here.

Hyperion – Part 1

This week Sam starts the epic recap of the 1989 Dan Simmons novel Hyperion. Far into the future after humanity has spread through the stars to many planets, a group of seven people are tasked with undertaking a pilgrimage to the Shrike, the mysterious and deadly creature that guards the Time Tombs on the planet Hyperion. The Time Tombs are opening and there is also an Ouster migration cluster that is threatening to take the planet, and the secrets of the Tombs, away from the Hegemony. Thus Meina Gladstone, the CEO of the Hegemony, sends a message in a “fatline squirt” to the Consul, who is one of the pilgrims, and tells him to be on the lookout for an Ouster spy among the group. If none of that made sense to you, don’t worry, Danielle is convinced this story is perhaps the most incomprehensible one Sam has ever shared, and totally crazy to boot. Aboard a massive spaceship made from an actual, living tree, the pilgrims gather and agree to tell their stories so they can better understand why each of them was chosen for this journey. First up to share is the Catholic priest Lenar Hoyt, who tells the story of another priest, Paul Duré, who was exiled to Hyperion by the Church for falsifying data at an archaeological dig. Duré plans to study an isolated tribe on the planet, which is composed of people supposedly descended from the crew of a seedship which crashed there hundreds of years ago. To reach the village, Duré must traverse the deadly Fire Forests filled with tesla tress which both absorb and emit lightning, a phenomenon that greatly annoys Danielle since the trees don’t seem to burn themselves down in the resulting conflagration. When Duré finds the tribe, he notices they are dimwitted, physically bland, and seemingly bereft of humanity, and show a cult-like devotion to maintaining their population at seventy people. As he stays with them, he starts to uncover a horrifying secret that shakes his faith and leads him to extreme actions. Before all that, however, is the introduction of a word gross enough to challenge “khui” for the throne of uncomfortable words: Gymnosperm. So get ready for a deep dive into a massive space opera, full of stellar sci-fi words and technobabble, that only gets weirder and more incomprehensible the more it’s explained.

Night of the Crabs (Rerun)

This week Danielle and Sam are rerunning one of their favorite episodes about the 1976 pulp horror novel Night of the Crabs by Guy N. Smith. Enjoy!

When a pair of swimmers disappear off the coast of Wales it’s up to well-known botanist, and uncle to one of the missing swimmers, Cliff Davenport to uncover what happened. Why, exactly, it’s up to him is anyone’s guess, but Cliff quickly proves himself by uncovering crab tracks on the beach (is that a thing?) and concluding his nephew was murdered by sheep-sized crabs. Spoiler: Cliff is wrong, they are, in fact, cow-sized crabs; c’mon, Cliff, do better. Cliff is made to quickly forget the grief of his lost nephew in the arms of the nubile and newly divorced Pat, who is one-hundred percent on board with giant killer crabs, having seen crab tracks herself (no seriously, are crab tracks a thing?!). The two investigate and have sex in about equal measure, but it’s not until the nearby secret, but not too secret, military base is attacked by an army of giant, invincible crabs lead by, as dubbed by Cliff, the cunning King Crab, that anyone else takes notice. Cliff, now somehow a marine biologist, works with the department of defense to devise a plan to entomb the crabs in their underwater cave. This plan, predictably, fails spectacularly, and so many are killed by the enraged crab army Danielle had to give up keeping count. All Sam knows is that he has a new hero: All hail King Crab!

Ice Planet Barbarians – Part 2

This week Danielle brings the exciting conclusion of the 2015 freezing-hot erotic sci-fi Ruby Dixon novel Ice Planet Barbarians. When we last left off, a group of women and been kidnapped by aliens then abandoned on an ice planet (the title doesn’t lie) and while most of the women slowly freeze to death, one, named Georgie, goes off to find help but instead has a sexual liaison in a cave with a different blue horned alien named Vektal. Now that we’re all caught up, it’s time for Georgie to try and guide Vektal back to her dying friends. She does this by eating a bunch of raw meat (which is gross) and falling into an ice chasm full of giant fish-faced Sasquatch things (which are also gross), and engaging Vektal in more sexual activity (which is the grossest). Eventually, Vektal finds the frozen corpse of one of the other girls, but never mind her, this means there are more women that he can bring back to his tribe, which is conveniently experiencing a dearth of women and, also conveniently, all the human women are sexually compatible and interested in the aliens, a fact Sam finds nigh inconceivable. However, the women are overjoyed to see Georgie has brought help, and only slightly perturbed by the notion of her having freaky alien sex with the blue dude accompanying her. Georgie agrees to go back with Vektal to his village to retrieve supplies for the women so they can all move there. Off she and Vektal go to the spend the night in the cave of ancestors where there’s a crashed ship frozen in the ice. Georgie pushes a button and the ship’s computer of plot convenience springs to life! The computer explains a whole bunch of stuff about how the blue aliens came to this planet and how they live, but none of that really matters since this books deals with none of that (a fact Sam is greatly frustrated by). What does matter is that the computer can magically download modern “Earth English” to the aliens’ brains, and their language to Georgie’s brain. Oh and also the girls will need to have a parasitic worm implanted in them post-haste or they’ll die from the planet’s toxic atmosphere. After much trekking to the village and back with rescuers in tow, and more alien sex than is necessary, all the women have to make a very hard decision: Die immediately or get the parasitic worm shoved in their necks. Tough call. Anyway, the girls learn that the aliens that originally abducted them are headed back, and also Georgie is likely pregnant with Vektal’s giant alien hybrid baby, but that’s a horror show we sadly miss since the book ends immediately as soon as Georgie has her man. If you want to learn more (maybe), feel free to dive into the other 21 (again, not a typo) books in this series, but as for now, please enjoy Sam’s complete breakdown at the ending of this book.

Ice Planet Barbarians – Part 1

This week Danielle brings some steamy, sci-fi erotica with the 2015 Ruby Dixon novel Ice Planet Barbarians. Georgie is your average, nondescript 22-year-old woman who finds herself abducted by aliens and thrown in a cage with several other women on a spaceship. There are also some women in suspended animation tubes around the cargo hold the cage is in, but they don’t matter for this book, but if you’re curious you can dive into one of the other 21 (not a typo) books in this series. The aliens that have abducted Georgie are cliché little green men accompanied by a security detail of giant orange aliens. Neither of these alien species are particularly relevant because the ship starts having engine trouble and they decide to jettison the cargo pod of women onto a nearby planet to pick up later. Sam takes extreme umbrage with this plan, since some of the women die in the crash landing (and their deaths are entirely brushed aside), but if the aliens had merely left the cargo pod in orbit they wouldn’t have had any problems. After suffering an apparently inconsequential head injury, Georgie is nominated to go explore the barren ice planet in search of food or anything else useful. Georgie is immediately caught in a snare trap and blacks out. While out, a blue alien creature named Vektal finds her, and the symbiotic parasite that lives in him and controls his libido goes absolutely gaga for Georgie for reasons that are beyond comprehension. Vektal decides to take Georgie to a cave and just starts going to town on her. Georgie wakes up from her second recent bout of unconsciousness to this large, blue alien with his mouth just all over her and thinks “Yeah, I’m into this” and goes with it for a while. When Vektal gets a little too frisky, she pushes him off her and that’s when they decide to do a little round of basic introductions through the alien language barrier. Camped out in this cave with Vektal and Georgie is where we leave part one, what about the other dozen-plus women slowly freezing to death in the crashed cargo pod? They’re not nearly as important as Georgie getting her alien freak on.

Book Reshorts: Bonus Break

After tackling to very long books, Danielle and Sam need a break to recover. So, please enjoy this bonus episode about the Christopher Pike book Bury Me Deep that was released for our Patreon supporters. We’ll be back next week with your regularly scheduled nonsense!

Legend – Part 2

Danielle is here with the thrilling (confusing?) conclusion of the Jude Deveraux romance novel Legend. Kady is back from the 1870s and she’s determined to learn nothing from her time there. After suffering many more indignities at the hands of her fiancé and his mom, she finally grows a spine and dumps him after weeks of waffling. It’s at this point that a magical voice reminds her that, oh yeah, didn’t she have a quest to find the decedents of Ruth by some arbitrary deadline that’s now only three days away? So Kady books it to New York City where she has absolutely no trouble finding one C.T. Jordan, the descendant in question. He is a grown man who runs a non-specific business, wears all black, and loves playing with his knife and sword collection. Kady busts into his office uninvited and he is extremely unhappy to see her and is (justifiably) rude to her. So of course, Kady is totally into him since she has the best taste in men. It turns out that since Kady has found him in time Ruth has bequeathed her all the Jordan family fortune in a will from over a hundred years ago; something so nonsensical it breaks Sam’s brain slightly. Instead of taking the money and running, Kady is determined to head back to the Colorado town of Legend to find the time portal and somehow save Cole (her erstwhile kidnapper) from being killed as a child in a robbery. C.T. is rightly skeptical of her, but quickly loses all likability when he follows her to Legend and arranges for her to be shot at so she’ll agree to work with him so that he can get into her pants, despite that he already has a fiancé and that Kady already invited him along in the first place but he declined making all his subterfuge pointless. At this point, Sam needs a drink. Also, C.T. has two cousins in the now ghost town of Legend: one is a law student wearing nothing but overalls, and the other rides a motorcycle off-road on the mountains of Colorado, and C.T. kinda makes out with that one. All this leads to Kady sleeping with C.T. (just the best taste in men) before engaging in more time-travel shenanigans so poorly thought out as to defy explanation. All that really matters is that Kady learns a valuable lesson by the end of the book: What’s most important is that she can serve the men in her life. Seriously, she has the worst taste in men.

Legend – Part 1

This week Danielle whisks us to a world of romance and fantasy in the Jude Deveraux novel Legend. Meet Kady, your average successful, attractive professional chef with no sense of self-worth. She’s engaged to Gregory, an obvious misogynist and whose mother owns the restaurant where Kady works, so it’s a perfect match. Fortunately for Kady, she happens across an improbably large flour tin. Upon opening the tin Kady finds a perfectly sized wedding dress from over a hundred years ago along with shoes and accoutrements, all somehow stuffed into that flour tin without damage. Bafflingly to Sam, Kady immediately puts the dress which opens a portal which Kady immediately goes though. She now finds herself in 1870s Colorado and sees a man being hanged by three other people. Leaping to the unsubstantiated conclusion that she must save this man and the other three are evil, Kady, still in her poofy wedding dress fights them off and takes the unconscious, half-choked man down and then goes to bed. Kady wakes up to this strange man making out with her and just accepts his explanation that he thought she was angel. The man, Cole, immediately proposes marriage which Kady refuses (yay!) but after she can’t find a job in the nearby town she takes him up on his offer (boo!). This begins a portion of the book involving the obligatory long looks, breathless almost make outs, and Kady having several opportunities to return home, but feeling just too darn torn to go back through the portal because Cole is too dreamy. Even when Cole imprisons her in his estate, Kady decides to stay and cook a massive feast since apparently she can’t leave but does have complete control over his finances. Also, Kady has been dreaming of an Arabian man with a veiled face every week since she was a child, and you might think this would be important, but the only important thing Sam can focus on is how terrible Kady’s taste in men is and WHAT SIZE IS THAT FREAKING FLOUR TIN?

Be sure to check out I Drink Your Podcast, especially the Fish Tank episode featuring Danielle and Sam. You can find them on Twitter @IDYP_Podcast, Instagram @idyp_podcast, and listen wherever you get your podcasts.