Book Fight!

Tough love for literature

Episode 75: 2014 Holiday Spectacular


Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the house, not a creature was stirring, except for a supernatural bounty hunter who just showed up unannounced in some lady’s kitchen. Also some firemen with wacky names and six-pack abs.

It’s late December, and you know what that means: time for the annual Book Fight Holiday Spectacular*, during which we take a break from our usual reading and celebrate the season by reading ridiculous books. It would be pretty tough to top last year’s offerings, which included a James Patterson novel that is perhaps the worst book ever written in (a close approximation of) the English language. Though the first of this year’s picks–Janet Evanovich’s Visions of Sugar Plums–seems determined to give Patterson a run for his (ill-deserved) money.


Adding insult to injury, the cover promises a bad-ass Santa, but the book features exactly zero bad-ass Santas.

Next up, after last year’s bizarre Christmas-themed romance novel, we took a suggestion from a listener and checked out It’s A Wonderful Fireman, a novel by USA Today best-selling author Jennifer Bernard.


The title makes (a little) more sense once you realize the book is (sort of) a retelling of It’s A Wonderful Life. Also, one of us is kind of in love with this book, and might be making plans to read more in the Bachelor Firemen series.

As always, you can stream the episode right here on our site, or download the mp3 file and do with it what you will. You can also visit us in the iTunes store, where you can (and should!) subscribe, so you’ll get each week’s episode automatically.

If you like this holiday episode, you’ll want to check back soon for the details of our annual fund drive. One of this year’s donor gifts will be a series of special bonus episodes in which we review holiday-specific books (e.g. Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day, Arbor Day).

Also, if you’re interested in reading Barrelhouse’s Ghosts of Christmas Future series (which Tom describes early in the episode), you can find all the stories and poems here.

Finally, we always welcome your feedback on what we talked about on the show. You can email us, hit us up on Twitter, or just leave a comment here on the episode post. Thanks for listening! And if you like the show, come on back next week, and tell your book-loving friends.


Download 2014 Holiday Spectacular (right-click, save-as)

*In the first year of the podcast, we referred to this episode as a Holiday Special. Last year we referred to it as a Christmas Spectacular. This year, I guess we’re splitting the difference?


Author: mikeingram25

writer, editor

3 thoughts on “Episode 75: 2014 Holiday Spectacular

  1. Suggestion for next year: Sugar Cookie Murder by Joanne Fluke ( It apparently comes with recipes for the titular cookies. I haven’t read it and so cannot vouch for the quality, but at least the cookies would presumably be good. You could also go with Gingerbread Cookie Murder or Candy Cane Murder by the same author, who has an entire series of dessert-themed murder mysteries.


  3. Pingback: How to be a weird loner on your flight to AWP | Book Fight!

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