Welcome back listeners to this mini episode of BLB that will help ease us all back into some regular programming. For those keeping a sharp eye out, our last episode was released way back in March of this year, Episode 20: Fiction & Flora. There’s been a lot of change in the air, but we are excited to be back and bringing you some new bookish content!

This summer we recommended library books to each other without saying too much as to what it was about. In today’s mini episode, we discuss both books (as per usual, spoilers ahead), while also demonstrating that sometimes the books you crave in the moment will just fall into your lap. First, we chat about Heartstopper: Volume One by Alice Oseman, an ongoing graphic novel series about identity, friendship, and a whole lot of love. Next, we chat about Big Friendship: How We Keep Each Other Close by Aminatou Sow and Ann Friedman, which we both listened to on audiobook. Neither of us knew what to expect but are glad we gave this memoir-style book a try, as it dives deep into big friendships in a way we haven’t properly considered before.

Be sure to tune in until the end of this mini episode to hear what Episode 22 will be about! Want a hint? It involves worms.

Come find us on Instagram @biglittlebookspod or email us at biglittlebookspod@gmail.com with any questions or stuff you think we should talk about in our upcoming episodes. Big thank you, as always, for tuning in!




00:02:45 – Heartstopper: Volume 1 by Alice Oseman


00:18:07 – Big Friendship: How We Keep Each Other Close by Aminatou Sow and Ann Friedman


 00:36:52 – BLB Big News for Episode 22!

Spring has sprung, dear listeners!

In this episode, Yuli & Sam fully judge books by their covers - their floral covers that is. We delve into the YA books that have recently left us feeling both entertained and educated, as well as discuss our current reads and books to look forward to in the near future. 

After tuning in, let us know which of your favourite books with floral covers we neglected to mention in this episode. Find us on Instagram @biglittlebookspod or email us at biglittlebookspod@gmail.com.


Thank you, as always, for listening!



Coming soon!

“The book is better.”


Just like us over here at BLB, if you are a bibliophile, odds are you have said this before. Sometimes this statement is well-warranted, but often there is a power to TV adaptations through which the original material translates far better than it would to a movie. Book adaptations such as Game of Thrones, Handmaid’s Tale, and more recently The Queen’s Gambit, have all come to prominence achieving worldwide recognition. In episode 19 of BLB, we chat about book adaptations that become binge worthy television. Can they act as strong ambassadors for books in general? What about the fear of doing the material justice? Many fans are cautious about books being adapted for the small screen, but sometimes they get it right. BLB chats about the times it really worked, and the times it really worked until it didn’t. Did you develop an obsession with chess during lockdown after binge watching The Queen’s Gambit miniseries? After intermission we go into a deep discussion of the book by Walter Tevis, and what we think of the show that followed. It probably goes without saying for this episode, but be cautious dear listeners, spoilers ahead!


After tuning in, let us know if there are adaptations we neglected to mention in this episode and if you agree or disagree with our analysis of The Queen’s Gambit. Find us on Instagram @biglittlebookspod or email us at biglittlebookspod@gmail.com. Thank you, as always, for listening!




00:01:45 – A Discussion on Book Adaptations


00:22:37 – Times It Really Worked


00:22:45 – Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty, Big Little Lies – HBO (2017-2019)


00:26:17 – Cocaine Blues by Kerry Greenwood (Phyrne Fisher Mystery Series), Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries – ABC (2012-2015)


00:27:29 – Gossip Girl: It Had to Be You by Cecily von Ziegesar, Gossip Girl – The CW (2007-2012)


00:30:17 – Times It Worked, Until it Didn’t


00:30:23 – Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris (The Southern Vampire Mysteries), True Blood – HBO (2008-2014)


00:32:13 – Orange Is the New Black: My Year in a Women’s Prison by Piper Kerman, Orange is the New Black – Netflix (2013-2019)


 00:34:18 – The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid’s Tale – Hulu (2017-ongoing)


00:38:55 – A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin (A Song of Ice and Fire), Game of Thrones – HBO (2011-2019)


00:42:46 – The Ones We Have Heard Good Things About, but Have Yet to Watch


00:42:50 – American Gods by Neil Gaiman, American Gods – Starz (2017-ongoing)


00:44:42 – Codename Villanelle by Luke Jennings, Killing Eve – BBC America (2018-ongoing)


00:45:33 – The Magicians by Lev Grossman, The Magicians – SYFY (2015-2020)


00:45:53 – QUIZ: What Queen’s Gambit Character Are You? https://www.zimbio.com/quiz/WjaI8veCF4v/Queen+Gambit+Character


00:48:30 – Intermission


00:48:30 – The Queen’s Gambit Discussion (1983 novel by Walter Tevis, 2020 Netflix miniseries)


01:13:30 – Literary TV Adaptations Coming Soon in 2021


01:13:51 – Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel, Station Eleven


01:14:46 – Foundation by Isaac Asimov, Foundation


01:15:42 – Pachinko by Min Jin Lee, Pachinko


01:16:50 – Grisha trilogy and Six of Crows duology, both by Leigh Bardugo, Shadow and Bone


01:17:37 – The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings


01:19:32 – #CurrentlyReading

Welcome back to Big Little Books! Even though 2020 has been tumultuous, to say the least, one thing has remained constant throughout and that is books and all they have to offer. BLB takes a look at our end-of-year stats and the new reading habits that we’ve formed along the way. Since last year, Sam has developed an appreciation for audiobooks, and Yuli might be in the market for a Kindle or e-reader in the near future! We jump into what we have been reading while also entrenched in world events, specifically discussing some of our favourite reads of 2020. Next, we actively look at the year ahead and the changes we hope to see in our reading habits. Already thinking about new book releases coming out? So have we! Yuli and Sam chat about their most anticipated reads for the first half of 2021 and good things coming to the podcast in the year ahead.  

Thank you, dear listeners, for tuning into this episode. As always, we would love to hear from you! Find us on Instagram @biglittlebookspod or email us at biglittlebookspod@gmail.com

Coming at you in February is BLB Episode 19: From Books to TV, whereby we will be discussing The Queen’s Gambit by Walter Tevis and the Netflix adaptation everyone has been obsessed with since last fall.

Friendly reminder to shop at your local independent bookstores. Stay safe out there!




00:01:53 – 2020 Cold Hard Reading Stats


00:06:00 – Goodreads Reading Stats and Goals: Pros and Cons


00:10:40 – Analysis of our 2020 Reading, discussion of BLB episode 13, and how our goals went


00:22:50 – Favourite Reads of 2020


00:23:19 – In the Dream House by Carmen Maria Machado


00:24:43 – A Darker Shade of Magic (Shades of Magic #1) by V.E. Schwab


00:25:58 – Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer #1) by Laini Taylor


00:27:39 – A Sky Beyond the Storm (An Ember in the Ashes #4) by Sabaa Tahir


00:28:00 – H is for Hawk by Helen Macdonald


 00:30:15 – The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison


00:31:03 – Saga, Vol. 1 by Brian K. Vaughan (Writer), Fiona Staples (Artist)


00:33:10 – Kindred by Octavia E. Butler


00:35:14 – A Fortune for Your Disaster by Hanif Abdurraqib


00:37:36 – Last Christmas in Paris: A Novel of World War 1 by Hazel Gaynor and Heather Webb (Our Book Bangers Book Club December 2020 Pick)


00:40:10 – Intermission


00:40:30 – Reading Goals for 2021


00:45:25 – The StoryGraph Shoutout (THEY HAVE .5 RATINGS!) https://www.thestorygraph.com/


00:48:49 – Our Most Anticipated Books for the First Half of 2021


00:49:03 – No One Is Talking About This by Patricia Lockwood (February 16, 2021)


00:50:55 – The Prophets by Robert Jones Jr. (January 5, 2021)


00:52:36 – A River Called Time by Courttia Newland


00:53:44 – Remote Control by Nnedi Okorafor (January 19, 2021)


00:54:00 – A Court of Silver Flames (A Court of Thorns and Roses #4) by Sarah J. Maas (February 16, 2021)


00:54:45 – Hot Stew by Fiona Mozley (June 1, 2021)


00:55:55 – Home Is Not a Country by Safia Elhillo (March 2, 2021)


00:57:11 – Where is BLB headed in 2021?


00:58:40 – Besides Books

Welcome back to Big Little Books! This episode is severely delayed (it was recorded in September…) but life, and 2020 in general, has thrown us some curveballs. Our apologies for the wait in getting this episode out. It is a special one, and we are happy to finally be getting it to you all.

There has been a lot going on in the world which has changed the school year in many ways, Way back in September, when back to school was in the air, it got us here at BLB thinking about our heightened connection with children’s books. What is behind it? Does our fondness for specific children’s books come from the familiarity forged through re-reading childhood favourites over and over again? So, for this episode of BLB, we chat about what books mean to us as kids. We recall the sweet rush of a Scholastic book fair, and quiz ourselves on well-known children’s authors. We talk about the books that made us readers and the books that didn’t stop us along the way. Books from your childhood can linger with you all your life, and perhaps mark you the most profoundly.

Throughout this episode you will hear some new voices, as we have chatted with some of our friends and family about their childhood reads. Listen for the chimes! Special thanks to Shireen, Ben, Louise, Erin, Kenneth, Billy, and Kaitlin for joining us in this episode. 

Do you have any favourite childhood reads we missed in this episode? We would love to hear from you! Find us on Instagram @biglittlebookspod or email us at biglittlebookspod@gmail.com Our next episode will be out end of January. We cross our hearts!



00:01:01 – Episode Agenda // Where are we at?

00:01:49 – Nostalgia & Memories of Scholastic Book Fairs 

00:06:55 – Quizzes: Classic Children’s Books and Children’s Authors


00:11:08 – The Rainbow Fish by author and illustrator Marcus Pfister, translated into English by J. Alison James


00:13:12 – Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss


00:17:55 – Where the Wild Things Are by author and illustrator Maurice Sendak


00:20:40 – Books that Were Read to Us


00:25:35 – Love You Forever written by Robert Munsch, illustrated by Sheila McGraw


00:28:20 – Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer


00:32:10 – The Giver by Lois Lowry


00:34:40 – Intermission


00:34:55 – Goosebumps by R. L. Stine


00:42:20 – The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien


00:43:28 – The Serpent’s Egg by J. Fitzgerald McCurdy


00:46:10 – General Theme of Childhood Favourites: The Faraway Tree series by Enid Blyton


00:49:55 – The books that did not stop us from becoming readers: Animorphs Series, Captain Underpants, Bridge to Terabithia and The Baby-Sitters Club (We agree to disagree on some of these!)


00:56:05 – Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume


00:57:29 – Star Girl by Jerry Spinelli


00:58:40 – Eragon by Christopher Paolini


The hard Britannica quizzes we tried:

Welcome back to Big Little Books!

In this episode: Why is it important to diversify your bookshelf? Diversity is good for everyone. Reading books that present different abilities, cultures, beliefs, and skin colour can help change your perspective and explore new experiences. Books can be a good steppingstone if you want to self-educate but do not know where the conversation should start.

This episode starts with a brief discussion about Canada Reads 2020, and the recently announced winner. We dig into books that spark discussions about race and social injustice. Also, audio books are a thing we both embrace now! Tune in to find out what we have been listening to recently.

Next, we dig into our recent reads and a new twist on the forever popular Books Spotted. We hope this episode inspires you to make a conscious effort to diversify your shelves!


If you have diverse books we should be adding to our reading lists, we would love to hear from you! Find us on Instagram @biglittlebookspod or email  us at biglittlebookspod@gmail.com



00:01:33 – Theme for Today – Diversify your bookshelves/ Diverse reads

00:03:09 – Canada Reads (https://www.cbc.ca/books/canadareads)

00:05:10 – Son of a trickster by Eden Robinson

00:05:40 – We Have Always Been Here: A Queer Muslim Memoir by Samra Habib

00:07:05 – Books to Spark Discussion: So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo

00:08:27 – Books to Spark Discussion: The Sellout by Paul Beatty

00:11:28 – Books to Spark Discussion: The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin

00:12:00 – Books to Spark Discussion: The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks About Race a collection by Jesmyn Ward

00:16:35 – Intermission

00:16:55 – Audio Books: Invisible Women: Data Bias in a World Designed for Men by Caroline Criado Perez

00:20:48 – Audio Books: The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander (tenth anniversary edition)

00:24:10 – Short Reviews: The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison

00:29:22 – Short Reviews: 21 Things You May Not Know About the Indian Act: Helping Canadians Make Reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples a Reality by Bob Joseph

00:36:03 – Short Reviews: The Lost City of the Monkey God by Douglas Preston

00:41:15 – Currently Reading: How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy by Jenny Odell

00:50:40 – Currently Reading: The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo

00:52:52 – Books Spotted (with a twist): Mapping the Interior by Stephen Graham Jones/ The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones/ The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett

01:01:07 – Besides Books!

Hello fellow bibliophiles, it has been a while! Hosts Yuli and Sam spend each episode chatting about books while hopefully adding to your always growing TBR list. Big Little Books is back to its regular programming, fuelled mostly by coffee… and sometimes wine.

For Ottawa bookworms, in this episode, we chat about OPL updates, (check out https://bilbioottawalibrary.ca for the most recent updates), as well as virtual book options. We dig into our shared read of The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls as well as our Cyber Movie Date.

Do you remember how in our last episode we thought Books Spotted would be taking a break because of the ongoing pandemic? That is no longer the case. Tune in to see why! From books about urbanism and city-life, to classic sci-fi and the prequel to the Hunger Games, Yuli and Sam talk about summer reading recommendations to dive into this summer.

We are happy to be back and hope to have more interviews and fresh updates for you soon. The next episode will be out at the end of August! Find us on Instagram @biglittlebookspod or email  us at biglittlebookspod@gmail.com


00:01:10 – Quiz – What Summer Reading Book are you? Yuli: HUNGER: A MEMOIR OF (MY) BODY by Roxanne Gay

00:02:05 – Quiz – What Summer Reading Book are you? Sam: A DUKE BY DEFAULT by Alyssa Cole (Reluctant Royals #2)

00:03:35 – OPL Updates ( https://bilbioottawalibrary.ca)

00:06:00 – How have you been doing your book shopping?

00:08:20 – Virtual Book Launches are a thing!

00:10:13 – The Glass Castle Discussion: THE GLASS CASTLE by Jeanette Walls

00:15:39 – Cyber Movie Date

00:19:10 – Short book review: H IS FOR HAWK by Helen Macdonald

00:22:06 – Short book review: THE PICTURE OF DORIAN GRAY by Oscar Wilde

00:27:08 – Short book review: BONE CRIER’S MOON by Kathryn Purdie (Bone Grace #1)

00:28:35 – Intermission

00:28:50 – Books Spotted: DARK MATTER by Blake Crouch

00:30:16 – Books Spotted: THE BALLAD OF SONGBIRDS AND SNAKES by Suzanne Collins

00:31:17 – Books Spotted: THE FINAL EMPIRE by Brandon Sanderson (Mistborn #1)



00:37:01 – Currently Reading: THEY EAT THEIR OWN by Amanda K. King and Michael R. Swanson (A Thung Toh Jig 2)

00:38:10 – Summer Reading Recommendation: THE BALLAD OF SONGBIRDS AND SNAKES by Suzanne Collins

00:40:31 – Summer Reading Recommendation: DUNE by Frank Herbert

00:42:10 – Black Squirrel Recommended Books on Urbanism and City Life: WALKABLE CITY RULES: 101 STEPS TO MAKING BETTER PLACES by Jeff Speck, CITIES FOR PEOPLE by Jan Gehl, HAPPY CITY: TRANSFORMING OUR LIVES THROUGH URBAN DESIGN by Charles Montgomery

00:43:35 – HP on Audio

00:44:26 – Besides Books

Happy Friday!


The world has turned upside down. Thankfully for us here at BLB, and for most of our listeners, books are a comfort. Unplugging from reality and getting lost in a story can deter your attention from everything that’s been going on. In today’s shorter episode, Yuli and Sam chat about Escapes in Literature.

To match the world being upside down, we start off this episode backward with Besides Books. Next, we dive into each of our top escape books for when you are stuck at home. These are stories of nerve and endurance that continue to captivate readers. We might even read an entertaining excerpt to help suck you into a story! After intermission, we have a few quizzes to help us figure out what to read next. Make sure to check out Books Spotted, as sadly this will be our last one for a little while.

Library's and stores are closed and you can’t get to a book? Check out your library’s website and see what the options are for digital copies or audiobooks

Stay healthy, stay informed, and stay kind!



00:01:20 - Books bring us comfort.
00:04:01 - Escape Book #1: STRANGE THE DREAMER by Laini Taylor
00:05:38 - Escape Book #2: ENDER'S GAME by Orson Scott Card
00:06:30 - Escape Book #3: THE HITCHHIKER'S GUIDE TO THE GALAXY by Douglas Adam
00:07:35 - Yuli reads from Hitchhiker's Guide
00:12:50 - Escape Book #4: ANGEL'S AND DEMONS by Dan Brown
00:14:28 - Escape Book #5: THE LEFT HAND OF DARKNESS by Ursula K. LeGuin
00:15:50 - Sam reads from The Left Hand of Darkness

00:21:41 - Quiz #1 / Escape Book #6: THE GOLDFINCH by Donna Tartt 
00:23:45 - Quiz #2 - Which Classic Is Your Perfect Match? Yuli: TO THE LIGHTHOUSE by Virginia Woolf
00:26:30 - Quiz #2 - Which Classic Is Your Perfect Match? Sam: 1984 by George Orwell

00:27:32 - Books Spotted: WE ARE THE WEATHER by Jonathan Safran Foer
00:29:30 - Books Spotted: SON OF A TRICKSTER by Eden Robinson

00:31:59 - Currently Reading: SAINT X by Alexis Schaitkin 
00:34:20 - Currently Reading: HOUSE OF EARTH AND BLOOD (CRESCENT CITY #1) by Sarah J. Maas
00:37:15 - Read Next: THE BOOK OF DISQUIET by Fernando Pessoa
00:39:25 - Read Next: WHO FEARS DEATH by Nnedi Okorafor
00:40:20 - Read Next: THE CITY WE BECAME by N.K. Jemisin 

00:41:50 - Conclusion 

This is a podcast about loving books and getting lost in stories. We start off this episode with a short recap of 2019 reading stats. Yuli wins for longest book read and Sam wins for the shortest (6 pages totally counts…)

We also ponder an important book-related question: Can you really say you are reading if you are listening to an AudioBook? Further discussions include Ottawa's future downtown Public Library/LAC joint facility. We delve into both topics before switching over to some regular programming. Tune in after the intermission to find out what we are currently reading and which books we spotted out in the wild.

Find us on Instagram @biglittlebookspod or email  us at biglittlebookspod@gmail.com

We would love to hear from you about any comments or feedback.


Happy reading!

Join Yuli and Sam as they interview Ottawa-based author Frances Boyle. Prairie-raised, Frances is a writer of fiction and poetry who has been creating stories since before she could hold a pen.  She has cultivated her craft by working in the legal field and raising a family; now writing full-time, she speaks to the value of rejection that has transfigured over time. We chat about past works, her newest book of poetry This White Nest, and her upcoming short story collection Seeking Shade.

We hope you enjoy this special edition of Book Ends as we break in the new decade!

Find Frances on Instagram and twitter @francesboyle19, or on her website at www.francesboyle.com


Missing Yuli and Sam’s usual (and dare we say, hilarious) banter? Next month you can look forward to a brief recap of our 2019 reading, book goals for 2020, and what we're looking forward to in the year ahead for BLB. As always, thank you for joining us on this literary journey.

Find us on Instagram @biglittlebookspod or email us at biglittlebookspod@gmail.com with feedback, comments, or books you think we ABSOLUTELY MUST read in 2020.

Happy reading!

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