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If Books Could Kill
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If Books Could Kill

Author: Michael Hobbes & Peter Shamshiri

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The airport bestsellers that captured our hearts and ruined our minds
47 Episodes
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To celebrate ("celebrate") Donald Trump choosing JD Vance as his running mate we are re-releasing our "Hillbilly Elegy" episode. Enjoy!
Peter and Michael discuss "The Origins of Woke," a glimpse into the dark aspirations of the Republican Party and the mind of a very unusual man.Where to find us: Peter's other podcast, 5-4Mike's other podcast, Maintenance PhaseSources:What Speech Does "Hostile Work Environment" Harassment Law Restrict? Tunis v. Corning Glass Works, 698 F. Supp. 452 (S.D.N.Y. 1988)Pakizegi v. First Nat. Bank of Boston, 831 F. Supp. 901 Tesla Settles Discrimination Suit With Former Factory Worker...
Peter and Michael discuss the media coverage of the protests at Columbia — from the crazed, bloodthirsty ravings of right-wing media to the more muted, respectful bloodthirst of centrist media.To hear the rest of the episode, support us on Patreon:https://www.patreon.com/IfBooksPod
Peter and Michael discuss Michael Lewis’s bestselling book about the rise and fall of Sam Bankman-Fried, a young prodigy whose only flaw was that he dreamed too big.Where to find us: Peter's other podcast, 5-4Mike's other podcast, Maintenance PhaseSources:Michael Lewis Is Buying What Sam Bankman-Fried Is Selling Michael Lewis Likens Critics of His New Book on Sam Bankman-Fried to a 'Mob'The SBF trial is a reminder that crypto is a rotten businessReview: Michael Lewis's Going Infinit...
2 Better 2 AngelsSupport us on Patreon:https://www.patreon.com/IfBooksPodWhere to find us: Peter's other podcast, 5-4Mike's other podcast, Maintenance PhaseSources:Jeffrey Epstein’s Science of SleazePinker’s response to Epstein allegationsHow Jeffrey Epstein Captivated HarvardJeffrey Epstein Hoped to Seed Human Race With His DNAIt’s Official — Steven Pinker Is Full of ShitPinker, Epstein, Soldier, SpyA century of sexual abuse victimisation: A birth cohort analysisThe prevalence of child ...
We're finally discussing a good book! Naomi Klein's "Doppelgänger" chronicles the long, steady descent of another Naomi — Wolf (buddy oof) — from feminist icon to crank conspiracist. To hear the rest of the episode, support us on Patreon:https://www.patreon.com/IfBooksPod
Lean In

Lean In

2024-03-1457:0015

In 2013, Sheryl Sandberg became an icon for women who wanted to move from middle management at a tech company into upper management at a tech company. Today, Peter and Michael examine the contents of her bestselling book, survey the wreckage of corporate feminism and ask whether women will finally find liberation in the Metaverse.Where to find us: Peter's other podcast, 5-4Mike's other podcast, Maintenance PhaseSources:Facebook Feminism, Like It or NotFeminism's Tipping Point: Who Wins f...
This week we're tackling Steven Pinker's 900 page dissection of the reasons why violence, torture and war have declined over the last 10,000 years. Was it an indeterminate mixture of politics, economics, technology and serendipity? Or did some European guys write some books that said murder was bad?Special thanks to Philip Dwyer, Eleanor Janega, David M. Perry and Doug Thompson for help researching and fact-checking this episode!Where to find us: Peter's other podcast, 5-4Mike's ot...
The Art of the Deal

The Art of the Deal

2024-01-1152:2219

Before Donald Trump became America's most prominent politician and birth certificate inspector, he spent his days making everyone in New York City slightly uncomfortable. Michael and Peter discuss "The Art of the Deal," Trump’s 1987 bestseller chronicling his exploits as a celebrity slumlord. Where to find us: TwitterPeter's other podcast, 5-4Mike's other podcast, Maintenance PhaseSources:When Donald Trump Took Down Holiday Inns The Lost City of Trump Who Runs New York Now?&nbs...
To hear the rest of the episode, support us on Patreon:https://www.patreon.com/IfBooksPod
The Identity Trap

The Identity Trap

2023-12-1401:47:0325

"There are two kinds of political scientists: The types who deal with noisy data and post on Twitter with a bunch of caveats. And then there are the types who write books about identity politics." Where to find us: TwitterPeter's other podcast, 5-4Mike's other podcast, Maintenance PhaseSources:Sam Huneke's "Yascha Mounk’s Woke Straw Man"Jacob T. Levy's "The Defense of Liberty Can’t Do Without Identity Politics"Olúfẹ́mi O. Táíwò's "Elite Capture"Aaron Huertas's "We Need to Talk...
To hear the rest of the episode, support us on Patreon:https://www.patreon.com/IfBooksPod
You stare, mouth agape, at the bookstore display. It’s a self-help book, but with curse words in the title?! This must be a revolutionary new framework, not simply the same dull, reactionary ideas repackaged as hip and new.Support us on Patreon:https://www.patreon.com/IfBooksPodWhere to find us: TwitterPeter's other podcast, 5-4Mike's other podcast, Maintenance PhaseSources:The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck (Blog Post)Where A is Ordinary: The Evolution of American College and Universit...
The 48 Laws of Power

The 48 Laws of Power

2023-11-0201:05:5616

In 1996, a frustrated screenwriter got a fellowship in Italy. Twenty years later, Beyoncé released "Lemonade." Content warning: This episode includes a mention of suicide.Support us on Patreon:https://www.patreon.com/IfBooksPodWhere to find us: TwitterPeter's other podcast, 5-4Mike's other podcast, Maintenance PhaseSources:Rebecca Solnit’s “A Paradise Built in Hell”Kelly Link's "White Cat, Black Dog"The Half-Century in Bullshit: On Peter Bogdanovich’s “Paper Moon” and Robert Greene’...
Retailers have been sounding the alarm about a shoplifting epidemic driven by organized criminal syndicates. In a shocking twist, it turns out that their story is mostly made up. Join us as Peter tries to figure out where this panic originated and as Mike finally comes clean about his criminal past.To hear the rest of the show, support us on Patreon:https://www.patreon.com/IfBooksPod
San Fransicko

San Fransicko

2023-10-1901:00:4316

This week we're tackling "San Fransicko: Why Progressives Ruin Cities," a book that dares to ask: What if everything that experts think about homelessness is wrong, and everything that one crank on Twitter thinks about homelessness is right?Thanks to Ned Resnikoff for helping us with the research for this episode!Support us on Patreon:https://www.patreon.com/IfBooksPodWhere to find us: TwitterPeter's other podcast, 5-4Mike's other podcast, Maintenance PhaseSources:Inflection Points in Co...
The 4-Hour Workweek

The 4-Hour Workweek

2023-09-2156:2528

Have you ever wanted to escape the grind and follow your dreams? This week we're discussing "The 4-Hour Workweek," which reveals that all you need is a plan, a willingness to take risks and a modestly sized fraud operation built on Third World labor.Support us on Patreon:https://www.patreon.com/IfBooksPodWhere to find us: TwitterPeter's other podcast, 5-4Mike's other podcast, Maintenance PhaseSources:The Fraud and the Four-Hour WorkweekRevisiting "The 4-Hour Workweek"New! Improved! Shape...
But her e-mails! Michael explains the non-scandal that captivated the mainstream media in 2016 while Peter attempts to sow the podcast with anti-Hillary sentiment.To hear the rest of the show, support us on Patreon:https://www.patreon.com/IfBooksPod
God And Man At Yale

God And Man At Yale

2023-09-0701:11:1713

Oops all grievance.Support us on Patreon:https://www.patreon.com/IfBooksPodWhere to find us: TwitterPeter's other podcast, 5-4Mike's other podcast, Maintenance PhaseSources:No Ivory Tower : Mccarthyism And The UniversitiesThe Fire Is Upon UsThe Conservative Intellectual Movement in America Since 1945The Passion of William F. Buckley: Academic Freedom, Conspiratorial Conservatism, and the Rise of the Postwar RightWhy Are Professors Liberal and Why Do Conservatives Care?Compromised Campus:...
For this month's bonus episode we dissected Harry Frankfurt's gloriously brief bestseller and applied the concept to our favorite op-ed page. To hear the rest of the show, support us on Patreon:https://www.patreon.com/IfBooksPod
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Comments (68)

Courtney Kelly

I knew I knew his book from somewhere. reading a "who's this guy article" and was thinking "bs" the whole time, and now I know why lol thanks!

Jul 17th
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Anthony Famularo

Re: The suburbs: Rush summarized the whole problematic situation accurately with the lyrics of their song "Subdivisions," released in 1983, within the span of four minutes, including repetition and guitar solos.

May 8th
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Anthony Famularo

I wrote a bit for the University of Toronto student paper when Naomi Klein was the editor, and what I remember most about her is that even at age 21 or whatever, she was one of the most deadly serious people I've ever met.

Apr 18th
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ID19619055

People are really f’n mean in Boston. So, yes, you are more likely to experience discrimination in NE.

Apr 17th
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Shannon Compton

Ok I have to disagree here. I did not hold my daughter more than my sons or help her more. I actually have to coddle my daughter less because I know she is in a world where she will be oversexualized at a young age, she is in danger of assault, and she is from a poor family and will be treated as less-than. Plus, she will contend with menstrual cycles, the pain of childbirth, and the disappointment that men with a slight cold bring. My baby boys were much more needy. They still are at 4 and 8.

Mar 14th
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Ben Nielsen

I want to hear a critical take on the books on the liberal pedestal. How to be an antiracist, white fragility. I want to see the same critical approach given to these people.

Mar 9th
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Bagya Lakshmi

mind opening lol

Feb 24th
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Paja Storec

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Jan 13th
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R Coldbreath

I love this podcast.

Jan 10th
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Raymond Safdeye

Waaaa! 😭 you can almost hear the tears fall as they cry through an episode.... If podcast can breath this one would commit suicide

Jan 8th
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Elizabeth Barclay

oh no!! you are so #1

Jan 6th
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Torben Sangild

I really appreciate this critique of one of the most hyped books of the current millennium.

Dec 17th
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ID19619055

Thank you for pointing out the issues with expecting trans people to be able to do all of advocacy and education. There just aren’t that many of us who feel safe and secure with what might happen if we did. Thank you for being a strong ally. strong ally.

Dec 15th
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Milky Way

cursing like a bitch

Nov 30th
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ID36642122

😃

Nov 27th
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adhdbrain

wow. this book is glorifying weaponized incompetence in men and putting the onus of accountability solely on women. absolute sexist, misogynist garbage.

Nov 20th
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adhdbrain

oh, I *want* y'all to rag on these books. I appreciate the 'finding the good' tidbits throughout, because some of these books do have grains of goodness, but make no mistake... I'm here for the shameless annihilation, the "dunk fest" on these trashy novels. which, btw... if you haven't looked at the garbage fire that is Tillie Cole's novellas, specifically Darkness Embraced, do it. and tear it a new one. it's a triple-k romance story, to give you an idea.

Nov 20th
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Nicole Walawender

you guys are the best lol 😂I love your sense of humor and your points are right on . keep up with good work

Nov 13th
Reply

Maureen A

The county-wide library system for which I work buys at least 12 copies of The 48 Laws each year, because they are 1) extremely popular, and 2) routinely stolen. It's a conundrum.

Nov 3rd
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Aakash Amanat

I've been an avid reader for years, and 'If Books Could Kill' is like a hidden gem for book lovers like me. The concept of exploring the dark and mysterious side of literature is utterly fascinating. The hosts dive deep into the worlds of classic and contemporary literature, revealing intriguing stories and secrets that lie beneath the pages. It's not just a podcast about books; it's a journey into the enigmatic side of the written word. https://www.cleansway.com/brooklyn-ny/business/nyc-packaging-solution The hosts' passion for literature is palpable, and their storytelling skills are exceptional. Each episode is a delightful mix of literary analysis, historical context, and a touch of mystery that keeps me eagerly awaiting the next installment. If you're a book enthusiast, this podcast is a must-listen. It's both educational and entertaining, making it a perfect companion for long drives or quiet evenings with a good book. https://businesslistingplus.com/business-listings/nyc-packag

Nov 3rd
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