pippa

Episode 18 – Holiday Special Part 2 – Pyramid Scheme

The dungeon crawl continues as Abraxas, Menet, Pippa, and Nadya explore the tomb of Linnorm Kings. What mysteries await as we conclude our first annual holiday special!

Tune in for all of this and more!

Music and Sound by Syrinscape.
https://store.syrinscape.com/what-is-syrinscape/?att
Because Epic games need Epic game sounds

The Fantastic Worlds Podcast is a Fantastic Pods production. We would like to thank Amy Hankenson for writing our wonderful theme song.

Dustin Alexander (@dustinalexander)
Abbie Lammel (@bonanzafamine)
Angel Espinoza (@espinoza916)
Kay O’Connor (@shesladymacbeth)
Jess Negin (@hanktheclank)
Visit us at fantasticworldspod.com

Help us out by subscribing to our podcast and reviewing us on Apple Podcasts. Help spread the word and telling friends and share on social media using the hashtag #worldstraveler.
Thank you for listening!

Episode 17 – Holiday Special Part 1 – Rock and a Hard Place

This week’s episode only features three out of four of our heroes as Odessa takes a break to make bullets (and be angry at Menet). In the meantime, the rest of our crew joins Nadya on a special mission, and things get a little spooky, a little magical, and a little holy.

Tune in for all of this and more!

Music and Sound by Syrinscape.
https://store.syrinscape.com/what-is-syrinscape/?att
Because Epic games need Epic game sounds

The Fantastic Worlds Podcast is a Fantastic Pods production. We would like to thank Amy Hankenson for writing our wonderful theme song.

Dustin Alexander (@dustinalexander)
Abbie Lammel (@bonanzafamine)
Angel Espinoza (@espinoza916)
Kay O’Connor (@shesladymacbeth)
Jess Negin (@hanktheclank)
Visit us at fantasticworldspod.com

Help us out by subscribing to our podcast and reviewing us on Apple Podcasts. Help spread the word and telling friends and share on social media using the hashtag #worldstraveler.
Thank you for listening!

Episode 16 – The Raven Himself is Raucous

With our heroes finally in Irisen new dangers seem to lurk around every corner. Menet, Odessa, and Pippa all being new to their surroundings find their footing in this foreign landscape where Abraxas thrives. Swarmed by new information and people our heroes must stick together, through awkward conversations, and familiar faces from the distant past.

Tune in for all of this and more!

Music and Sound by Syrinscape.
https://store.syrinscape.com/what-is-syrinscape/?att
Because Epic games need Epic game sounds

The Fantastic Worlds Podcast is a Fantastic Pods production. We would like to thank Amy Hankenson for writing our wonderful theme song.

Dustin Alexander (@dustinalexander)
Abbie Lammel (@bonanzafamine)
Angel Espinoza (@espinoza916)
Kay O’Connor (@shesladymacbeth)
Jess Negin (@hanktheclank)
Visit us at fantasticworldspod.com

Help us out by subscribing to our podcast and reviewing us on Apple Podcasts. Help spread the word and telling friends and share on social media using the hashtag #worldstraveler.
Thank you for listening!

Mixed Review: The Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter Series by Laurell K. Hamilton

I got into this series while I was in high school (around 15ish) after it was recommended to me by the boy I was dating at the time. He was 16, dyed his hair black, smoked, wore skinny jeans, had a lip ring and told me he had to get electroshock therapy every Monday to manage his schizophrenia or something like that – all of which I thought officially made him the coolest person who could possibly exist. Alas, my relationship with this edgy punk lasted only three weeks – but it started me down the path of a much longer but no less turbulent relationship with Anita Blake.

The first 9 books of this series are something truly amazing, especially for a girl in high school who liked scary monsters and mysteries but was lacking a female window into those genres. Anita was tough as nails, no-nonsense, sarcastic and broken in a way that seemed revolutionary to me. These kinds of female characters seem a dime a dozen now, but I give LKH a lot of credit for helping to trailblaze the woman led smart, sexy, supernatural horror thriller novel. This first part of the Anita Blake series and it’s particular brand of feminism is a product of its time (the first book came out in 1993) and has more than a few themes that are problematic in light of how much cultural attitudes towards white 90’s feminism has shifted – but it was still a story I desperately needed and in some ways still do.

With her Browning, penguin stuffed animals, sassy coffee mugs and the ability to reanimate the dead Anita spends 9 books facing down a terrifying and wildly entertaining cast of zombies, vampires, shapeshifters, voodoo priests, evil circus performers and every other horror staple you can think of. She has a classic torrid love triangle with a hot werewolf and an equally hot vampire – both of whom are well fleshed out characters in their own right, with their own struggles and needs that often conflict with Anita’s. Her relationship with Edward, a fellow monster hunter, is still one of my favorite slow burn literary friendships to this day and the book that really expands on the development of that friendship, Obsidian Butterfly, is my favorite novel in the series.

Unfortunately, Obsidian Butterfly also marks the endpoint of the true Anita Blake series for me. In some ways I think that’s because there was no real way to top the stakes (Anita and Edward hunt a vampire so ancient she may actually be an Aztec goddess to save a child), but I think it marked such a huge change in LKH’s personal life that she started taking the series in a direction that is much more supernatural romance than horror thriller. That in and of itself doesn’t really bother me, it’s her series and if she’s in a happier romantic place herself then more power to her.

What bothers me is that outside of Anita’s romantic relationships and explorations of polyamory – some well written with great thoughtfulness (Nathaniel, Jean-Claude) some not so much (ugh Asher) – there really isn’t much story post-OB. The monster hunts, the murder mysteries, the explorations of Anita and her complex relationship with her own growing powers and dark past actions are still lightly touched on but all in all, will take up maybe 100 pages of a 500-page novel.

The rest will be spent on ever more elaborate sex scenes (which sounds titillating and is at first but you’d be surprised how fast that gets old), relationship negotiation and Anita’s strange growing dislike of other women and their strange immediate dislike of her (usually because of their uncontrollable jealousy of her many hot boyfriends). It varies from mildly interesting to eye rollingly cringy. And towards the end, almost as an afterthought, the book will wrap up the monster murder mystery in a few rushed pages and an epilogue.

And yet…I keep reading them. Every once in awhile LKH writes an entry in this series that reminds me of the Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter I loved so much in high school (hello Affliction, you gave me such hope). Heavy on the action with a well explored, very creepy monster and 1-2 pretty hot sex scenes = ideal Anita Blake.

So I let LKH keep stringing me along because when she’s on her game it’s too good not to read. I’ll leave you with some final thoughts: I miss Ronnie, Olaf needs to die in a fire, Serpentine is completely skippable, and it’s been 14 books but Micah is STILL boring.

End of rant. If you’re also in a bad relationship with this series, hit me up! We have some things to discuss.

Episode 15 – Big Wolf Energy

This week, our heroes encounter someone they already have a strange connection with – who’d have thunk it? With their first friend in Irrisen secured, the task of discussing backstories begins, and boy do we make a lot of discoveries.

Who is this mystery friend the group happens upon? And does everyone except Menet have some weird tie to Irrisen? Tune in and find out the answer to at least one of those questions!

SPOILER WARNING: We have some minor spoilers for The Dragon Prince in our intro conversation this time. Skip ahead to 10:58 to avoid if you’ve not yet watched!

Music and Sound by Syrinscape.
https://store.syrinscape.com/what-is-syrinscape/?att
Because Epic games need Epic game sounds

The Fantastic Worlds Podcast is a Fantastic Pods production. We would like to thank Amy Hankenson for writing our wonderful theme song.

Dustin Alexander (@dustinalexander)
Abbie Lammel (@bonanzafamine)
Angel Espinoza (@espinoza916)
Kay O’Connor (@shesladymacbeth)
Jess Negin (@hanktheclank)
Visit us at fantasticworldspod.com

Help us out by subscribing to our podcast and reviewing us on Apple Podcasts. Help spread the word and telling friends and share on social media using the hashtag #worldstraveler.
Thank you for listening!