Sarah MacLean (born December 23, 1978) is a New York Times bestselling American author of young adult novels and romance novels. Her first adult romance novel, Nine Rules to Break When Romancing a Rake debuted on the New York Times Bestseller List, where it stayed for four weeks. Since then, all of her adult romance novels have been on the New York Times and USA Today bestseller lists. Since February 2014, MacLean has written a monthly romance novel review column for The Washington Post. She is a two-time winner of the Romance Writers of America RITA Award for Best Historical Romance for A Rogue by Any Other Name in 2013 and No Good Duke Goes Unpunished in 2014. She's also the co-host of the Fated Mates podcast.
Recent episodes featuring Sarah Maclean
S02.20: Managed by Kristen Callihan: Scottie!!!:
Don’t miss a single moment of our 2020 episodes — subscribe on your favorite podcasting platform and like/review the podcast if you’re so inclined!In two weeks, we’re reading one of Sarah’s picks, Lorraine Heath’s Waking Up With the Duke, which was a tough choice because Lorraine is amazing and Sarah wants you to read all of her books. Read Waking Up With the Duke at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple Books, or Kobo.Show NotesJen's disappointed with the iHeartRadio Podscast awards. It's an honor just to be nominated, and that didn't even happen! For your consideration: Best Pop Culture Podcast and Best Fiction Podcast! Come on! Literary Disco wasn't even nominated!Everyone loved The Pegging episode! Jen found this really interesting article too late for those show notes, but why not drop them here? We don't really think that we jumped the shark. Oh, and any chance to drop the "smashing from the back" rap.The 20 minutes Eric cut were about RWA. So just read Jen's article for Kirkus instead. Just kidding. We don't really need D & O insurance. Do we? Either way, Eric should stop harshing our dream mellow.Scotty vs. Scottie.Our Kristen Callihan origin stories: Sarah recommends Evernight in the Darkest London series, but Jen can't help but think of Tony Stark. Jen wrote about Kristen's book The Hook Up in the Who Did it Better in the Library post.Slumpbusters from this week: The Player and Sweet Ruin for Sarah, and two Sophie Jordan books, While the Duke was Sleeping and The Scandal of it All, for Jen. And the shipbuilder book by Holley Trent is called Lowdown Dirty.If you're trying to find the sex scenes in books, Jenny Nordbak from the Wicked Wallflowers Podcast has the sure-fire keyword search word: thrust.The kind of super fancy first class where the seats turn into beds looks pretty great. Recently, we saw this happen in the movie Crazy Rich Asians.Unbuttoning a glove is a huge romantic moment in Lord of Scoundrels and The Age of Innocence.In case you have to travel with a rock band on a bus, the internet provides useful tips, of course! Jen loves this famous tour bus scene from the movie Almost Famous. Also, read Daisy Jones and the Six, which uses interview format to tell the story of the rise and fall of a 70s rock band.Our Rock Star Romance interstitial was our very first interstitial. It's 20 minutes long, and you can listen to it here.Revision is everything, but it is also very hard.Interested in more slow burn romances? Goodreads has you covered.Kerrelyn Sparks is the one who told Sarah romance is like a football game.If you're worried you have an STI like Chlamydia, please see a doctor. Also, if you have kids, make sure they get the HPV vaccination.Being a professional friend is a real job.More about the A in the LGBTQIA+ spectrum.If you're ever in Chicago, you should go to the dining room of the Chicago Athletic Association, check out the trophies, and play some bocce ball.Looking to hang out with us in April? We'll be at KissCon and Spring Fling.Buy buttons and stickers from Kelly and t-shirts from Jordan.Next up, Waking Up With the Duke by Lorraine Heath, a book that blooded Sarah.
S02.19: So You Want to Read a Historical
Don’t miss a single moment of our 2020 episodes — subscribe on your favorite podcasting platform and like/review the podcast if you’re so inclined!Next week, we’re talking Kristen Callihan’s Managed, which you may recognize as “SCOTTIE,” which is how Jen refers to it because she loves him so much. We think you’ll love it, too, and if you have time, read the next in the series, Fall, which is one of Sarah’s top 10 romances ever. Read Managed at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple Books, or Kobo.Show NotesRWA imploded and it's such a long, complicated story, but this article from Vox and this timeline by Claire Ryan are what will catch you up.Let's start at the very beginning, a very good place to start: there are seven romance subgenres: historical, contemporary, romantic suspense, paranormal, inspirational, erotic romance, and YA.When it comes to the grandmother of historicals, don't forget that Jane Austen was writing contemporaries.Johanna Lindsey died in October, and her family announced it publicly in December. The New York Times obituary was trash, so read the Washington Post or Entertainment Weekly one instead. Check out the Twitter hastag #MyFirstJohanna for people's stories about their first book by Lindsey (including Sarah's), and maybe listen to our episode on Gentle Rogue.Support Farrah Rochon for an organ in her sister's memory. And come this summer, buy her upcoming book The Boyfriend Project.In Born a Crime, Trevor Noah wrote about what his mother said about her second husband wanting to put her in a cage: For a long time I wondered why he ever married a woman like my mom in the first place, as she was the opposite of that in every way. If he wanted a woman to bow to him, there were plenty of girls back in Tzaneen being raised solely for that purpose. The way my mother always explained it, the traditional man wants a woman to be subservient, but he never falls in love with subservient women. He’s attracted to independent women. “He’s like an exotic bird collector,” she said. “He only wants a woman who is free because his dream is to put her in a cage.”Mary Wollstonecraft is all the evidence you need that feminists have been around for a long time.Jen recommends In the Dream House by Carmen Marie Machado, which is about domestic abuse in a queer relationship. The quote from Jose Estaban Munoz is, "When the historian of queer experience attempts to document a queer past, there is often a gatekeeper representing a straight present."When talking about The Doctor's Discretion by EE Ottoman, Sarah is very excited about a book called The Butchering Art by medical historian Dr. Lindsey Fitzharris, whose sometimes very gross Instagram is amazing. Doctor James Berry was trans man who lived and worked in London in the mid 1800s.If you haven't listened to our episode about Beverly Jenkins's Indigo what are you waiting for?Avon Red was a short-lived series, but then again, so was The Red Shoe Diaries. Sarah recommends On These Silken Sheets by Sabrina Darby from that series.Whores of Yore is a great blog, and definitely proves Jen's assertion that as soon as someone invented cameras, someone else wanted to get naked in front of it. Dr. Kate Lister, who founded the site, has a book called A Curious History of Sex coming out Feb 2020.Next time you are in New York, visit The Museum of Sex. Sarah recommends Hallie Rubenhold's The Covent Garden Ladies: Pimp General Jack and the Extraordinary Story of Harris' List (which out of print, but available in audio, and is the book Harlots is based on). Hallie Rubenhold's The Five is not out of print, and also excellent--it is very not a romance, and about the victims of the Ripper killings.KJ Charles is so ridiculously good. Sarah's favorites are Wanted a Gentleman and Think of England and Jen loves Band Sinister. Nicola Davidson's Surrey Sexual Freedom Society series is fantastic. Alyssa Cole's An Extraordinary Union is amazing. Monica McCarty wrote a historical series that imagines Highlanders as being kind of like Navy SEALs. Sarah talked about one of the books in the series, The Arrow on the Scotland interstitial. Honestly, we talked about so many authors, so just click on any one of the images in the photo gallery below for some of our favorites by those authors.But stickers and buttons from Kelly, tees and bags from Jordandene, take our reading challenge, and answer our survey.
S02.18: Born in Ice: The One Where the Hero Smokes
Don’t miss a single moment of our 2020 episodes — subscribe on your favorite podcasting platform and like/review the podcast if you’re so inclined!In two weeks, we’ve got another of Jen’s pics, Kristen Callihan’s Managed, which you may recognize as “SCOTTIE,” which is how Jen refers to it because she loves him so much. We think you’ll love it, too, and if you have time, read the next in the series, Fall, which is one of Sarah’s top 10 romances ever. Read Managed at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple Books, or Kobo.Show NotesWho knows what the RWA situation is when you read this, but as of this podcast, the absolute best source is Claire Ryan's blog post outlining the timeline of events. There was lots of national news coverage, but the "come on girls" comment was on NPR.The 2019 RITA ceremony was amazing, and one that celebrated the history of romance. In between when we recorded this episode and when it was released, RWA cancelled the 2020 RITA awards. When Sarah said "it was a check the organization couldn't cash" she's alluding to a less well-known section of Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" speech."La Nora" is how many people refer to Nora Roberts. Sarah mentions some of her earliest category romances, including Gabriel's Angel, an early Nora from the Silhouette Intimate Moments line. She's also read Naked In Death (Jen hasn't), but Jen loved The Brides quartet, which was probably the last Nora Roberts series she read.Sarah said she feels like readers should at least have read ten percent of an author's backlist for full romance competency. Should the "Ten Percent Rule" be a plank of the official Fated Mates Romance Reader platform? Discuss.When we talk about Nora Roberts, we used a lot of superhero language: her origin story; her vanquishing of a villanous and duplicitous plaigiarist--twice!; owning her own town; her complete dominance of the bestseller lists. None of it is hyperbole. It's possible she actually is a superhero.Lots of authors made statements about the RWA situaton. Here is Nora's, and then JR Ward's.Virginity in romance has come a long way. PS. Virginity is a construct.Somewhere in the 43 minute mark, Jen says "ope," which is the most Midwestern of sayings. If the twitter account Midwest vs. Everybody doesn't make you laugh so hard you wheeze, you're probably part of the everybody.Jen isn't the only one who thinks smoking is a short cut for villainy. She thinks The X-Files is to blame. Also, PSA: vaping is really bad for you, too.Birth control in romance has changed so much, listen to our episode on bodily autonomy for more discussion of this topic.What does it mean to do something in a fugue state?Sarah wrote a column for the Washington Post in December 2019 about how technology is changing romance.Sarah's big thread about why authors shouldn't be afraid of the problematic content in their old romances.If you're interested in a big interesting book about The Troubles, Jen recommends Say Nothing by Patrick Radden Keefe.What's a moor anyways?So you wanted to know what it was like to fly the Concorde?Buying a car? Sounds like that other Grey. Too bad this Gray was a Confederate apologist. Saying the Civil War was about "a way of life" instead of slavery is a classic Lost Cause myth. As Courtney Milan says, the devil doesn't need your advocacy.Buy buttons and stickers from Kelly, tshirt and swag from Jordan, particpate in a 2020 reading challengewith Jen and Sarah, and fill out this survey for Eric.In two weeks, we'll be discussed Managed and Fall by Kristen Callihan. If you have to pick one, make it Managed. As of this episode airing, Jen has tweeted just the word Scottie with a swooning gif at least 11 times.Our listener call in book was Star King by Susan Grant.
S02.17: Pegging Romance Interstitial
Auspicious beginning, right? Don’t miss a single moment of our 2020 episodes — subscribe on your favorite podcasting platform and like/review the podcast if you’re so inclined!We’re back next week (WE PROMISE!) with Born in Ice, by none other than the queen herself, Nora Roberts. Read Born in Ice at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple Books, Kobo or your local indie. SHOW NOTES: Jen misquoted a famous scene in Chinatown; it's actually "my sister and my daughter." Yikes.Pretty sure if you're fancasting us into this clip from Grease about the Pink Ladies, Sierra is Rizzo.We've talked a lot about Sierra's books on the podcast, but it was on the Small Town Romance interstitial that Sarah joked all of Sierra's books take place in Menage County, Kansas.The Romance for RAICES auction was the brainchild of Suzanne from Love in Panels and raised TWENTY THREE THOUSAND DOLLARS! You should definitely support her blog and patreon if you can. The crisis on the border is ongoing and getting worse. Please continue to support romance's teams at RAICES and The Young Center.We were going to rickroll you by talking about Peggy Sue Got Married and pirate romances, but we're nice that way and didn't. FWIW, Jen still thinks the plot of Peggy Sue Got Married is haunting.Sierra is also, of course, the founder, owner, and operator of The Simone Scale, which does not include teabagging even, but has been, because she loves us, updated to include pegging. The image is on our website in show notes.We did a lot of research for this episode!Everyone wants the right pegging playlist, and of course there's one on Spotify. What a world! Besides Ariana Grande's Dangerous Woman, we offer up for your consideration Back It Up, Boys by Peaches and Behind the Wheel by Depeche Mode.Here are some Sierra Simone recommended toys and harnesses. She says of the toys, "The small is VERY gently sized and some men may feel more comfortable with a toy is that isn’t a hyper-realistic reproduction of a cock."Elia Winters is a Fated Mates favorite, and we want to thank her for her help thinking through the implicatons for gender essentialism and cisnormativity in this discussion. Buy her books! Her latest Three For All has pegging.Sierra mentioned "that law about gas expanding to fill a space" -- well, I phoned Jonathan, a friend who teaches chemistry, and he says that's called entropy or Boyles Law of Kinetic Molecular Theory. Learn more about it here from Professor Dave, a Jonathan-approved chemistry youtube instructor.Samhain and Ellora's Cave (which was especially messy) were two earlier and now shuttered publishers of erotic romance.Jen Porter wrote a great twitter thread about erotic romance and character development.That's What She Said.Sarah mentioned "the RITA entry window" and goddamn if that's not a bitter pill to swallow right now. She's sorry.A little about what it means to be allosexual.Check out Roan Parrish's short story A Good Old Fashioned Chanukah Pegging, starring Ginger and Christopher from Small Change.Everyone knows you need a flared base on your butt plugs, or at least anyone who follows Jenny Nordbak knows.Romance as sex ed is complicated, but Scarlteen is on the job, and Teen Vogue would never steer you wrong.The Pegging Song that Adriana sent us from Twitter is amazing, and we want to thank @shutupaida for being so gracious about letting us play it during the podcast. Also, be sure to watch Big Mouth on Netflix, because she's writing for it now!I guess Katee Robert isn't the only one staging elaborate scenes with her Barbie dolls.The Rogue Anthologies are pretty great and there are quite a few of them.Jen had to do a major "retcon" on this hero in the Tamsen Parker book in order to read it. It's fine, really.Special thanks to our special guest Sierra Simone! You can find her on Instagram or Facebook. Read her New Camelot series, the first is American Queen! She also joined us on our MacRieve episode, and we talked about Priest, a book that blooded Sarah.You can buy a Pegging the Patriarchy button and other Romancelandia buttons at stickers at Jen's shop run by her best friend Kelly, and Sarah's t-shirts and swag from Jordandene.Next week, we'll be talking about Born in Ice by Nora Roberts! We mean it!Much thanks to all the members of the Pegging Cabal for their amazing, generous donation, and for asking us to do this episode: E is reading, Jennifer, Stephanie Blackhart, Amanda, Kini, Melinda, Tempest Bonds, Michelle Boule, JS Lenore, Eve Pendle, and Isabel. Give them a follow, or maybe this related account, Is There Pegging? But whatever you do, don't make everyone think that something is wrong with Colin Firth. We hope you enjoyed the episode!
S02.16: Christmas Romance Novel Recommendations
If you want to give us a gift this year, please like/subscribe to/review the podcast in your favorite podcasting platform!We’re back next week with the seasonally appropriate (at least in title) Born in Ice, by none other than the queen herself, Nora Roberts. Read Born in Ice at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple Books, Kobo or your local indie.Show NotesSarah and Jen like a lot of Christmas songs: Silver Bells, Fairy Tale of New York, Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas (which in fact does have a sad and not-sad version!), God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen, Carol of the Belles, Rockin' Round the Christmas Tree, Santa Baby, and Baby It's Cold Outside (which just might be super feminist?).This year, there's a new Chanukah romance anthology you should check out called Eight Kisses, and Roan Parrish just released a little snippet of a story about Ginger and Christopher from Small Change called A Good, Old Fashioned Chanukah Pegging.Oh, you aren't familiar with the Carina Dirty Bits line? They are quick and dirty--not thiccand dirty. But whatever works. Also, check out Jen's list of which romances have the best sex in the library.We have lots of favorite romance librarians, but we love Bandherbooks and our favorite archivist is Steve Ammindown at the BGSU Pop Culture Library in Ohio.The Sierra Simone story with the bear is from Hot for the Holidays anthology, but she also has a story with Kennedy Ryan in a 2019 release called Christmas in the City.Did someone say only one circulation desk? Just kidding. It's only one bed.If you want show notes for last year's holiday episode, click here.Our first episode of 2020 will be Born in Ice by Nora Roberts, a book that blooded Jen.
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Episode Count
Podcast Count
Total Airtime
3 days, 15 hours