In episode 48, the Mamas are joined by everyone’s favorite uncle to celebrate Pride month and chat about Tim Federle’s middle grade character, Nate Foster, a theater lover who stars in a book series and a new Disney musical. The trio follows up the book vs.movie discussion with 6-ish adult and kid books that turned them into readers (or book nerds as Margie no-so-lovingly puts it). Johnny also spills the tea on Margie’s grad school years from a century ago. Get your hot goss here!
Better Nate Than Ever by Tim Federle
Books That Turned Us into Readers
- A Wrinkle in Time by Madeline L’Engle
- The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tokein
- Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
- Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
- Call Me by Your Name by Andre Aciman
- Fever 1793 by Laurie Halse Anderson
- The Island of the Sequined Love Nun by Christopher Moore
The Mamas are split over their MG Fantasy Reads (for ages 8-12) but it’s not surprising since Heather loves flying horses and all things magical while Margie would rather read true crime stories unless a Sasquatch is involved. Find out where your loyalties lie by joining the debate. Plus, you can jump start your summer reading with six great new recommendations for all ages from the Mamas.
Solimar by Pam Muñoz Ryan
Amira & Hamza: The War to Save the World by Samira Ahmed
Pick 6: Summer Reads for All Ages
- Lower Middle Grade: The Orphans of St. Halibuts by Sophie Wills
- Teen/YA: Just Our Luck by Julia Watson
- Grown Ups: A Certain Hunger by Chelsea G. Summers
- Preschool: Roar! I’m a Dinosaur by Merrill Rainey
- Middle Grade: Northwind by Gary Paulsen
- Grown Ups: The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman
On the eve of Mother’s Day, the Mamas are packing their bags for Mars. They’ve got their motion sickness cures and their poopoo sprays tucked into travel bags; and they’re looking forward to a few days of weightlessness in the silence of space. Join the Mama’s space club so you aren’t left angry walking (or floating) alone.
Packing for Mars for Kids by Mary Roach
Books for a Quiet (and less disappointing) Mother’s Day
- Jane Austen’s Table: Recipes Inspired by the Works of Jane Austen: PIcnics, Feasts and Afternoon Teas By Robert Tuesley Anderson
- Balanced and Barefoot: How Unrestricted Outdoor Play Makes for Strong, Confident, and Capable Children by Angela J. Hanscom
- Craft in the Real World: Rethinking Fiction Writing and Workshopping by Matthew Salesses
- Into the Wild by Jon Krakhauer
- Let’s Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson
- Educated by Tara Westover & Educating by LaRee Westover
After a break, the Mamas are back with a fun way to boost your summer reading: pairing a gown-up book series with a Middle Grade book series that share the same world and characters in the spirit of Spin-Offs that only kids of the 80’s and 90’s could love! Inspired by their cold beach walks, the Mamas jumped on an ocean-themed book series for Middle Graders that ties into a series of grown-up books with the same characters and overall themes. Parent/child book club, anyone?
Grown-Up Book: Mangrove Lightning by Randy Wayne White
Middle Grade Book: Fins by Randy Wayne White
Pick 6: More Book Spins-Offs We Love!
1. Alexander McCall-Smith’s chapter book The Great Cake Mystery has the same MC as his adult series the #1 Ladies Detective Agency
2. Carl Hiaasan’s Chomp, Hoot, Scat, Flush, Skink and Squirm are MG books that are styled like his adult books
3. Famous adult author Terry Pratchett’s MG book, Only you Can Save Mankind
4. Finishing School Series is a steampunk MG series by Gail Carriger who also has adult steampunk books
5. Death Comes to Pemberley is a book and movie based on the Pride and Prejudice characters by Jane Austen written by famous mystery author P.D. James
6. The whole family can join the fun with Little House on the PrairiePicture Books that match up to themes and scenes in the Middle Grade series by Laura Ingalls Wilders
The Mamas celebrate Women’s History Month in Episode 43, by sharing new middle grade biographies about fierce women: one covers an early 1800s highflyer and the other a 1960s Sci-Fi writer. Both books include detailed info of the dramatic times that influenced the women’s childhoods, making them perfect options for use in the classroom. The Mamas also share their favorite women authors of grown-up books. Believe it or not, they read those too.
Lady Icarus: Baloonomania and the Brief Bold Life of Sophia Blanchard by Deborah Noyes
Star Child: A Biographical Constellation of Octavia Estelle Butler by Ibi Zoboi
Pick 6: Women Authors of Grown-Up Books We Love
Donna Barba Higuera
The Two Lit Mamas celebrate Middle Grade March with random selections from their TBR piles before they collapse and crush them. Margie went for funny superheroes, of course, while Heather dug into a survival story that was a little too real. Listen in as the Mamas gush over poetry (shocker, right?), get on their soap box in defense of graphic novels (not a shocker), and share their favorite female MCs from middle grade books in honor of Women’s History Month (totally on brand).
The Super Villain’s Guide to Being a Fat Kid by Matt Wallace
Alone by Megan E. Freeman
Bat Pig Series: When Pigs Fly by Rob Harrell
Pick 6: Favorite Female MCs from MG books
- Margaret from Are You There, God? It’s Me Margaret by Judy Bloom
- Jesse Keyser from Running Out of Time by Margaret Peterson Haddix
- Iris from Song for a Whale by Lynn Kelly
- Esperanza from Esperanza Rising by Pam Munoz Ryan
- Ada from the War that Saved My Life and The War I Finally Won by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley
- Mimi Mackson from Midsummer’s Mayhem by Rajani LaRocca
In this episode, The Mamas celebrate Black Authors in Middle Grade Lit. (Really it’s more like worshipping, bordering on stalking, you know how they can get, but anyway…) The Mamas showcase some of their favorite writers across diverse genres including, fantasy, historical fiction, realistic fiction, poetry, and horror (oh, my!). Get ready to grow your TBR piles!
The Girl in the Lake by India Hill Brown
Some Places More Than Others by Renee Watson
Root Magic by Eden Royce
Pick 6: More Fantastic Books
1. Paradise on Fire by Jewell Parker Rhodes
2. Amari & the Great Game by BB Alston
(Amari and the Night Brothers reviewed here)
3. The Hill We Climb, Change Sings & Call Us What We Carry by Amanda Gorman
4. Take Back the Block by Chrystal D. Giles
5. Star Child: A Biographical Constellation of Octavia Estelle Butler by Ibi Zoboi
6. When the World Turned Upside Down by K. Ibura
In todays book chat, the SciFi loving Mamas are giddy about two new time travel Middle Grade books (for 8-12 year olds) that take them back 5 years and 500 years. But, before they get started the Mamas share their fantasy time travel vacays, including sipping tea with Abigail Adams and throwing down with the magnificent Ottomans. Don’t worry! The Mamas won’t let you get stuck in the past (especially the ’80s) so jump aboard the time machine and laugh along with Two Lit Mamas.
DaVinci’s Cat by Catherine Gilbert Murdock
Operation Do-Over by Gordon Korman
Arrrrr, the Mamas uncover buried treasure with three pirate-themed books for Middle Graders readers (aged 8-13) in the 39th episode of Two Lit Mamas Podcast. Their high seas discussions quickly freeze over with six tips for beating the winter blahs that don’t include walking the plank. Join them if you dare!
- The Extremely Inconvenient Adventures of Bronte Mettlestone by Jaclyn Moriarty
- Dark Waters by Katherine Arden
- Pirate Queens: Dauntless Women Who Dared to Rule the High Seas by Leigh Lewis, illustrated by Sara Gomez Woolley
Pick 6: How the Mamas beat the winter blahs
- Lots of carbs, including homemade bread, French pastries, and pretzels. Yes, please!
- Get cozy with Danish Hygge and throw another log on the fire.
- Game the system with games.
- Embrace the Swedish mantra “There’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing.”
- Murder in books, movies, TV shows and podcasts
- Make your family mission statement “Always Be Learning.”
For the first episode of the new year, the Mamas are kicking it at the back of the class, reading twisted fairy tales, passing notes about their latest obsessions (we’re looking at you Will Smith and Jeff Goldblum); while keeping their heads down and hoping to stay under the radar of Mrs. 2022’s evil glare. Come join the rebels in the back – this is your two-minute warning!
Beasts and Beauty: Dangerous Tales by Soman Chainani
Pick 6: Our 2022 Obsessions
- Trashy Reality TV
- Bigelow Green Tea with Elderberry
- Maker Spaces & Loose Parts Play
- Welcome to Earth with Will Smith on Disney+
- The World According to Jeff Goldblum on Disney+
- Prepping for High School graduation