Ep. 7: The Spoilers Sidestep the Sexy Stuff in “Her Body and Other Parties”

Carmen Maria Machado

Carmen Maria Machado’s debut short story collection, Her Body and Other Parties, was a finalist for the National Book Award, the Kirkus Prize, LA Times Book Prize Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction, the World Fantasy Award, the Dylan Thomas Prize, the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction, and the winner of the Bard Fiction Prize, the Lambda Literary Award for Lesbian Fiction, the Brooklyn Public Library Literature Prize, the Shirley Jackson Award, and the National Book Critics Circle’s John Leonard Prize. In 2018, the New York Times listed Her Body and Other Parties as a member of “The New Vanguard,” one of “15 remarkable books by women that are shaping the way we read and write fiction in the 21st century.”

Her Body and Other Parties

In Her Body and Other Parties, Carmen Maria Machado blithely demolishes the arbitrary borders between psychological realism and science fiction, comedy and horror, fantasy and fabulism. While her work has earned her comparisons to Karen Russell and Kelly Link, she has a voice that is all her own. In this electric and provocative debut, Machado bends genre to shape startling narratives that map the realities of women’s lives and the violence visited upon their bodies. Earthy and otherworldly, antic and sexy, queer and caustic, comic and deadly serious, Her Body and Other Parties swings from horrific violence to the most exquisite sentiment. In their explosive originality, these stories enlarge the possibilities of contemporary fiction.


In this episode, Adriana proves how big her brain is by easily besting Todd in a literary genre battle, Crystal reveals which story “elicited the most emotional reaction,” and Anita shouts out Todd’s mom. Also, Carmen Maria Machado gives us an excuse to fan-folk LAW AND ORDER. All the while, we sip delicious drinks and listen to the same dulcet tunes we used to hear at Lake Cofee House. Wait – have we entered some sort of time-shift? Abler, is that you? Henson? Bonita?!!!??!!


  • The Tale of Genji by Murasaki Shikibu
  • Law and Order: Special Victims Unit (tv show)
  • Mindhunter (tv show)


  • The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration by Isabel Wilkerson
  • Heads of the Colored People: Stories by Nafissa Thompson-Spires
  • Underground America: Narratives of Undocumented Lives
  • Unapologetic: A Black, Queer, and Feminist Mandate for Radical Movements by Charlene A. Carruthers

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