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Jen Prokop

Host of Fated Mates
Romance correspondent for @KirkusReviews. Sarah MacLean's other half on the @FatedMates podcast. She/her.

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Recent episodes featuring Jen Prokop
19: I don’t know; she’s a witch: Wicked Abyss
Fated Mates
The final book of IAD (so far) is here! We’re talking Sian, Lila, why horns are the BEST, and why the king of hell is the very best hell-monarch…except for his queen. Also, we talk Disney properties, complicated thoughts on how it is possible that Kresley is still getting better with each book, and the fact that we’re probably going to start a new IAD reread right away because obviously we are. Fated Mates returns with Season Two in September — don’t forget to like & subscribe in your favorite podcasting app so you don’t miss a single second of us in your earholes!And more than all this — thank you for listening to us talk at you about vampires, valkyries, wolf holograms, horns & Rune for 39 weeks — there honestly aren’t words for how much we love you for listening! Team Vertas 4eva! — xoxo Sarah & Jen Show Notes This is The End is by The Doors, and Closing Time is by Semisonic. The RITAs were amazing, and one of the best things about it was this romance trailblazers video. Lila is a face character at Disney. Inside the Mouse is a book you should read, or just this New York Times article where John Jerimiah Sullivan (omg. his essays are so good! Read Pulphead!) trying to figure out the best place to smoke weed there. That Banksey video. Because Disney is too expensive, #TeamReadsRomance suggests Cedar Point if you like roller coasters. Hela's crown in Thor Ragnarok is PRETTY GREAT. It's interesting to think about a framing device and what it does for a story. Sarah's WaPo piece about the Alpha Feminist. All about archetypes and the princess trope. The Room of Requirement is part of Hogwards. When we talked about time, Sarah recommended Kylie Scott's Repeat. Tim Curry as The Darkness in Legend or The Devil in Fantasia. We talked about curvy heroines way back at the beginning of this podcast. Everything Sian owns is in a box to the left. The Beauty and the Beast Library. We're all on Munro Watch. Thanks to everyone for listening to season one of Fated Mates!
18.5 : Antiheroes in Romance: Interstitial
Fated Mates
It seems only right that our final Season One interstitial be about antiheroes because we’ve pretty much been a fancast for antiheroes since the start of this podcast! Let us talk to your earholes about wicked heroes and why we love them! Don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast in your favorite podcasting platform so that you know the moment we start Season Two (in early September)!Next week, it’s the end! WHAT HOW IS THAT POSSIBLE?! We’re talking Sian (HORNS HORNS HORNS HORNS HORNS HORNS HORNS) & Lila with Wicked Abyss, featuring the literal King of Hell, and the Queen who takes fully no shit from him. Get Wicked Abyss at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple Books, Kobo, or at your local indie! Show Notes What is the appeal of the antihero? Fangirl Jeanne wrote a really interesting thread about why she ships villains and what it means to believe in an HEA for everyone. The Sierra Simone Scale seems relevant here. We here at Fated Mates love a grovel. Morality Chain is a very specific trope. Jen's goodreads search for books with criminal heroes versus criminal heroines. Take a minute to donate to RAICES because we do have concentration camps on our border, and it's so hard to know what to do about it. Jen and Sarah talked about female antiheroes in pop culture: Catherine Zeta Jones in Traffic and Mary Louise Parker in Weeds. Jen's Rita thread about how white guys get to be anitheores. Movie time references: Sarah is Italian, so since there are no Italian mafia guys anymore, watching The Godfather is the only choice. The "one armed man" reference is to The Fugitive. What are we talking about when we talk about billionaire money. A "diamond of the first water" Molly Fader, Molly O'Keefe, and M. O'Keefe are three pen names for one author who really knows her branding. #Blessed Wicked Abyss in next and then...we're done with season one. Commence mourning.
18: We Got to the Bag of Severed Heads! Shadow's Claim and Shadow's Seduction
Fated Mates
We’re taking a turn into the world of the Dacians, and Jen and Sarah are having STRIFE because, as usual, Jen is wrong. We’re combining Shadow’s Claim and Shadow’s Seduction — talking about what it means to be a Kresley heroine, why writers tackle spin off series, the challenges of straight writers writing queer stories, and why we would appreciate receiving the heads of our enemies as tributes. Don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast in your favorite podcasting platform — and while you’re there, please leave us a like or a review. We’re getting down to the wire with Season One of Fated Mates — in two weeks, join us for Wicked Abyss, featuring the literal King of Hell, and the Queen who takes fully no shit from him. Get Wicked Abyss at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple Books, Kobo, or at your local indie! Show Notes You know Kresley is self-publishing when you see it's Valkerie Press. In IAD, a sorceri queen has the most power in that area. Love triangles are very common in YA. Eloisa James' first novel was Potent Pleasures, the the line Sarah quoted is: "Charlotte was one week short of 17 when her life was changed, falling into two halves like a shiny child's ball: before and after." The best thing that ever happened at Coachella. Uh. While researching for this podcast, Jen realized that Deadmou5 is real. Sarah's hero/heroine/heroine's best friend on the line book is A Rogue By Any Other Name, which you can get in ebook for $1.99 right now! There apparently was a crossover between IAD and Gena Showalter's Lords of the Underworld series. Tell us what you know. Gay romance author and all around good guy Nathan Burgoine explains why "Gay for You" is a problem. No one like a milksop. All about the Kinsey Scale, and Jen thinks of this very funny tweet from her friend Zach every time she hears the phrase "Kinsey scale." Happy Days didn't spin off from something, it was the spinner. Frasier was a Cheers spin-off. The Dacians is not an IAD spin-off. It is IAD. This is canon now. The Arcana Chronicles is Kresley's YA series. Jen recommends The Animators by Kayla Rae Whitaker if you're interested in a novel about women artists at work. In two weeks, we're finishing Season One (sniff!) with Wicked Abyss! Lost Limb Count Arms and Hands (8) Conrad cuts off his own hand with a rusty axe so he escape the "witched" chains his brothers locked him in. (Dark Needs at Night's Edge) Cadeon has both of his hands burned off in the same scene where he loses an eye. There's description of what Cade's baby fingers look like as they are re-growing. It's...kinda gross. (Dark Desires After Dusk) Sebastian pulverizes most of his right arm during the Hie. He regenerates. (No Rest For the Wicked) Lucia peels all the skin off from her hand in order to free herself from some handcuffs. (Pleasure of a Dark Prince) In order to retrieve the ring from La Dorada , Lothaire cuts off her finger. (Pleasure of a Dark Prince) Lanthe and Carrow cut off Fegley's hand so they can use his thumb to unlock their torques. He's later killed. (Demon from the Dark) After receiving Lothaire's heart in a box, Ellie cuts off her middle finger and sends it to him. (Lothaire) Chloe's shoulder is dislocated in the escape from her auction (MacRieve). Chest and Torso (7) Omort severs Rydstrom's spine and punches through his torso in a fight. Sabine saves him and enlists Hag to help heal him. (Kiss of a Demon King) Lucia's neck is broken. She regenerates. (Pleasure of a Dark Prince) On Torture Island, Regin, MacRieve, and Brandr are vivisected. It's pretty terrible. (Dreams of a Dark Warrior) Declan's skin is peeled off by the Neoptera as a child. (Dreams of a Dark Warrior) Lothaire rips out his own heart and sends it to Ellie in a box. (Lothaire) Head, Face, and Eyes (6) Bowen loses an eye and most of his forehead during the Hie. Mariketa has cursed him and he can't heal until he returns to her. (Wicked Deeds on a Winter's Night) Cadeon loses an eye and part of his forehead and hair when fighting. It all regenerates. (Dark Desires After Dusk) During a rugby match, Garreth has his teeth knocked out and swallows them. (Pleasure of a Dark Prince) Lothaire kicks out La Dorada's remaining eye and throws her over a cliff. (Dreams of a Dark Warrior) In the Bloodroot Forest, the tree grows over Lothaire's lips and tongue. (Lothaire) After she gains her immortality, Chloe's hair grows, but she cuts it off every morning. (MacRieve) Lanthe agrees to have her tongue cut out to save herself and Thronos, knowing she can still use the power of persuasion telepathically. (Dark Skye) Horns (2) Cadeon cuts off his own horns to prove to Holly that he is worthy of being her mate. She tells him to let them grow back (Dark Desires After Dusk) Malkolm is captured by his enemies in Oblivion and taken to the city of Ash. The publicly cut off his horns and then intend to kill him, but Carrow saves him. (Demon from the Dark) Legs and Feet (3) Lachlain tears off his own leg to reach Emma. He regenerates. (A Hunger Like No Other) Mariketa's skull is fractured and her leg is torn from her body. She heals herself after Bowen lays on the ground. Ivy grows over her and heals her. (Wicked Deeds on a Winter's Night) Thronos is chasing Melananthe and loses a foot when a portal closes on it. (Kiss of a Demon King) While in Pandamonia, Thronos is trapped in a Groundhog Day like trap, doomed to repeat his worst nightmare over and over again. When he believes that Lanthe is about to die, he repeatedly tears of his legs in order to reach her. He never actually loses a limb, but he was willing, so we're counting it. (Dark Skye) Beheading as a Romantic Gesture (4) The first time Garreth spies Lucia, it's when she shoots an arrow and beheads a kobold. He notices that it's "a fantastical shot" and he's super into it. Later, he helps her pick up the head because he's a real gentleman like that. (Pleasure of a Dark Prince) Later in the book, they are under attack from vampires and Lucia asks him to help. Garreth promises to "give her their throats" and beheads two vampires. But she's upset about it because of a previous bad experience with cannibalism. (Pleasure of a Dark Prince) Malkolm beheads men that attacked Carrow in Oblvion, and he throws them to prove he's a worthy mate. (Demon from the Dark) Declan fights and beheads several creatures as they escape Torture Island, including squeezing one dude so hard his eyes pop out and then he twists his head off. (Dreams of a Dark Warrior) Thronos beheads several foes during fights, which impresses Lanthe; but he also beheads Felix, a sorcerer who once tricked Lanthe and stole her sorcery. (Dark Skye) The bag of heads, yo. This is the pinnicle of this category, obviously. (Shadow's Claim) Beheading as a Non-Romantic Gesture Ellie cuts off Lothaire's head, leaving a slender 1/8 of an inch left. It was kind of an accident, but he deserved it. (Lothaire) Maybe? Does Garreth's losing his connection with his mortal soul count? (Pleasure of a Dark Prince) When Soroya inhabited Ellie's body, she subjected her to a full Brazilian wax. Ellie doesn't realize it's happened until she takes control of her body again. (Lothaire)
17.5: This isn't a podcast; this is a Brazen and the Beast hype video
Fated Mates
Sarah has a new book coming next week! Listen to Jen ask her all kinds of questions that she can’t answer…and also talk about why silent, grunting heroes are the best kinds. Preorder now, and get Brazen the second it is released into the world on Tuesday, July 30th! Next week, we’re tackling the Dacians in two weeks with a two-for-one episode featuring both of these Lothaire spinoff stories, Shadow's Claim (featuring demon-sorceress Bettina and Dacian assassin Trehan) & Shadow's Seduction (featuring Caspion the demon and Mirceo the vampire prince)! Show Notes Jen loves hype video, and there are some for the USWNT are amazing. All about advanced reading copies (ARCs) and what it looks like when you get typeset pages. Jen has a new title at Kirkus: romance correspondent. She's been interviewing a lot of authors. Kate Clayborn perfectly described why we love a grunting hero. Only 33 Fortune 500 CEOs are women, which is nonsense. Listen to our Curvy Heroines interstitial. Covent Garden and the rookeries. What's a life peerage? Derek Craven forever. What it means to be "on the shelf." Audiobook narrator Justine Eyre is the narrator for Sarah's books. Can you even imagine what would happen if she and Petkoff ever got together and narrated a romance? Preorder Brazen & the Beast at Amazon, B&N, Kobo, Apple, or Indiebound -- or from Sarah's local indie, WORD, and get it signed and with fun goodies!
17: Sexclamation Points! - The Player!
Fated Mates
Our favorite person, Kate Clayborn, is back with us to wrap up the Game Makers series with THE PLAYER! Join us as Sarah explains all the ways that the damaged hero works for her (Spoiler: It’s Every Single Way), Kate digs deep on Kresley’s liberal use of punctuation, and Jen admits that Sarah was right all along. Don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast in your favorite podcasting platform — and while you’re there, please leave us a like or a review. We’re getting down to the wire with IAD, but because we’re completists, we’re tackling the Dacians in two weeks with a two-for-one episode featuring both of these Lothaire spinoff stories, Shadow's Claim (featuring demon-sorceress Bettina and Dacian assassin Trehan) & Shadow's Seduction (featuring Caspion the demon and Mirceo the vampire prince)! Show Notes Wecome back, Kate! The Grassy Knoll isn't much of a knoll, anymore. But if you're ever in Dallas, check out the Sixth Floor Museum. This kind of teabagging does not appear on the Clayborn Scale. YA Author Carrie Ryan has smart things to say about first person and scary things to say about zombies. Famous for having a big reveal: The Usual Suspects, The Sixth Sense, and The DaVinci Code. Not famous for a big reveal: Meet Joe Black. We should have asked Adriana Herrera about Dimitri's trauma. Rocky was also a self-made man, and you cannot even convince Jen that the person who invented CrossFit didn't rapturously watch this a million times. Dryer's English is a book that all the writing nerds had a pre-order, and he has strong opinions about exclamation points, but absolutley nothing to say about sexclamation points. Everyone loves foreshadowing. But in romance, no one loves an unreliable narrator. Jen recommends the YA novel One of Us is Lying, or you could kick it old-school and watch Roshomon. Pre-order Brazen and the Beast! and Love Lettering! And read Jen's interviews with Reese Ryan and Marie Tremayne and Robin Lovett on Kirkus. In two weeks, we're back to IAD with the Dacian two-fer: Shadow's Claim & Shadow's Seduction!
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Stats
Episode Count
42
Podcast Count
2
Total Airtime
1 day, 20 hours