Novel Pairings

Welcome to Novel Pairings, a podcast dedicated to making the classics readable, relevant, and fun. Each episode we’ll discuss one classic book and share some recommendations for more contemporary reads that feature similar themes. As two nerdy bookworms, we appreciate the role of classic lit, but we but we won’t get too academic about it. We’ll talk about the books we love and the books we loath, and help stock your TBR pile with old and new reads for every literary taste.


All Episodes

79. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë Part Two

Today, Sara and Chelsey discuss chapters 27 through the end of Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë. We discuss Jane’s journeys from coming of age to literally hiking on the moors, the juxtaposition of Rochester and another romantic interest, the ending…

78. Raising Readers with biblio therapist Anne Bogel

When Chelsey and Sara found out we were both expecting new family members, literally just a few days apart, many conversations of course turned to all things pregnancy and baby. We wanted to consider how motherhood would impact our reading lives and…

77. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë Part One

Today, Sara and Chelsey discuss chapters 1-26 of Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë. We’ve each read this Victorian Gothic novel multiple times, learning something new with each reread. In today’s conversation, we reflect on past reading experiences…

76. Our favorite tips, tricks, and insights for reading Jane Eyre

Today, Sara and Chelsey share some of their favorite tips for getting the most out of Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre. Our tips include some general advice for reading a dense Victorian novel alongside our thoughts about the genre conventions and…

75. Wrapping up summer with our favorite reads and reflections

Today, Sara and Chelsey reflect on their summer reading season with short reviews of their favorite reads, and they look ahead to their upcoming fall season. Do you enjoy hearing about our recent reads? Subscribe to to get weekly reading updates and…

74. The Women of Brewster Place by Gloria Naylor and stories of friendship, community, and resilience

Today, Sara and Chelsey gush about a new favorite novel-in-short-stories: The Women of Brewster Place by Gloria Naylor. We focus on Naylor’s memorable prose and mastery of structure, avoiding spoilers so you can listen before reading. Plus, as…

73. Greek mythology-inspired novels to topple your To Be Read list

Influenced by a delightful book club discussion with Stacey Swann, author of Olympus, Texas, Chelsey and Sara share a pile of  mythology-inspired books in today’s TBR toppling episode. Myth retellings and adaptations might be a hot trend in…

72. A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams and contemporary novels with plenty of drama

Today, Chelsey and Sara discuss a melodramatic classroom staple: A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams. We relive our classroom experiences, investigate why this play is still taught, and dig into the iconic characters made famous by Marlon…

Storybound with Laurie Frankel

We have an extra special Friday bonus episode for you! We’ve expressed our love for Laurie Frankel and her new book One Two Three on the podcast. Today, we’re sharing an episode from Storybound, in which Laurie reads an excerpt from her book. This is…

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