Better Than The Movie

...because the book normally is!

Better Than The Movie is a podcast for people who love reading diversely, books, book news, and issues related to literacy and popular culture. Our goal is to review and discuss book themes with passion and an open mind. We want to encourage our readers to look beyond the best sellers lists and  discover new voices and stories. 

We are The Readers, the people who the publishing world should be catering to, but oftentimes  don't . We are smart. We are funny. We are sometimes a little snarky. And we always, ALWAYS, think that the book is better than the movie


EPISODE THIRTY FIVE: What's Really Good?

This week we're talking what makes a book good to us. Feel free to talk back via email ( or Google voice (210-816-2886) to let us know what draws you in!

Articles discussed in news section: 

Marlon James Wins the Man Booker Prize!

Marlon James recommends 5 Jamaican Novels

Kirkus Award winners

Angela Flournoy nom or 2015 National Book Award

PW Annual Salary Survey


EPISODE THIRTY-THREE: Listener Recommendations Vol. 1 ft. @Vivaciously_Val

This week we have a special guest in the honeycomb hideout, one of our favorite listeners--Valerie (aka @Vivaciously_Val on Le Twitter)! She's here to kick off our listener recommendations segment with a treasure trove of AMAZING books to read. For the unabridged list of all the novels she named, shoot us an email at! We also talk briefly. 



This week we cover a cornucopia of topics! From discussing the impact of Jackie Collins on the literary world to Grace Jones' memoir to writing from the outside, our news section is brimming with content. Links to articles discussed below. Our main segment is about upcoming books that we're anticipating reading. As always we end the show with our What Are You Reading? segment and introduce a new reader interactive segment. 

Articles discussed on today's show:

RIP Jackie Collins:

Literary Map: 

From the Outside: 

Grace Jones' Memoir: 

irl Have You Read?!:

Amazon Article: 

Oyster Article:

Fall Books:

Love Love:   


Ghost Summer:

The Story of My Teeth:

The Sparrow Sisters:

The Queen of the Night:

EPISODE THIRTY: Whose B*tch Is It Anyway?

WE BACK! : ) This week we're discussing the amazing article written by Jenny Zhang in response to the Yellowface/nom de plume debacle in the Best American Poetry 2015 anthology:

We're also discussing a hood lit novel. Yep, that's right. Our friends Ashley and Sarah join us to discuss a novel titled My Bitch, Yo Bitch, Everybody's Bitch. We wrap up the show with our What Are You Reading? segment.


This week's episode we're discussing quite a few hot topics. The show begins with a discussion of Ashley Ford's List of 9 Books to Add to the Modern Brown Girl Literary Canon. We were super impressed by the variety and thoughtfulness of the selections. ( We also discuss a new comic Raising Dion ( which is about a single mother raising a young boy who is discovered to have superpowers. The premise of this comic is super interesting and the youtube trailer is quite adorable( The majority of the show is spent discussion Jennifer Weiner's latest "Who Do You Love". We round out the show with a Self Pubbed Spotlight--highlighting books from authors Delaney Diamond and Quanie Miller.


EPISODE TWENTY-EIGHT: The Seinfeld Episode Part Deux

This week's show is a hodgepodge of topics and eventually ends up with our lamentations about our writing woes (real issues, not the Wheelchair Jimmy definition.) Articles discussed are linked below:

Reading for pleasure builds empathy and improves wellbeing:

Man admits to dumping thousands of books onto highway:

Mat Johnson's Loving Day being adapted into Showtime comedy series:


EPISODE TWENTY-SEVEN: Books on Books on Books Part Deux

In this week's episode we discuss:

- NYT Obituary for Dr. Julian Bond. RIP:

- An interview between Dolen Perkins-Valdez and Lauren Francis- Sharma about the power of the American story:

- The Iowa Barber offering haircuts for the price of a book being read to him:

- And wrap up with a throwback to Episode Fifteen with books on books on books part deux!


EPISODE TWENTY-SIX: A Thousand Splendid Tears

Been gone for a minute now we're back at the jump off. We're back with an extra jam packed show this week to make up for our absence. We're talking Ta-Nehisi Coates' Between the World and Me and some of the criticism it has received about the perceived lack of content regarding Black women. Then we talk about a Michigan bookstore that has decided to offer refunds to anyone who bought Go Set a Watchman and was less than impressed. The bulk of the episode is dedicated to discussing Khaled Hosseini's A Thousand Splendid Suns. Show wraps up with What Are You Reading? Oh! And we also announce a contest to win a Kindle! Check it out!



This week's show begins with a petite chat about Magic Mike XXL that's anything but literary, haha! We also have an interview with the ever so talented Angela Flournoy in which we discuss her novel The Turner House, among other things. Finally, we wrap up discussing a few novels whose central focus is the black family unit.

Books discussed in the Angela Flournoy segment:

The Turner House - Angela Flournoy:

Into the Go Slow - Bridget M. Davis: 

The Star Side of Bird - Naomi Jackson:

Under the Udara Trees - Chinelo Okparanta:

We Love You, Charlie Freeman - Kaitlyn Greenidge: 

Happiness Like Water - Chinelo Okparanta:

Books discussed in the main show segment:

This Is Where I Leave You - Jonathan Tropper:

Seating Arrangements - Maggie Shipstead:

Mama - Terry McMillan:

A Day Late & a Dollar Short - Terry McMillan:

Getting to Happy - Terry McMillan:

Waiting to Exhale - Terry McMillan:

Salvage the Bones - Jesmyn Ward:

The Darkest Child - Delores Phillips:

Perfect Peace - Daniel Black:

Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry - Mildred D.Taylor:

If Sons, Then Heirs - Lorene Cary:

Men We Reaped - Jesmyn Ward:

We Ain't the Brontes - Rosalyn McMillan:

Peace from Broken Pieces - Iyanla Vanzant:

BTTM on Social:

Google Voice: 210-618-2886



We said we weren't talking about it, but here we are. Today's show begins with us discussing why we don't be discussing Go Set a Watchman, Harper Lee's latest and greatest, haha! We speak frankly about their opinions on Atticus Finch and the revelations that have been yapped about all over the Interwebz. Next we speak to Southern writer (and show fave!) Tayari Jones. Jones speaks about the art of character naming, writing to The Base, and has THE BEST answer to our standard question we ask all writers at the end of the interview. Show wraps up with recurring "What Are You Reading?" segment and a shoutout to friend of the show, author Christina Jones.


On today's show we discuss an article from the Washingtonian, featuring the "Queen of Erotica", Zane. Article can be found here:

We also have an interview with speculative fiction author, Daniel José Older--in which he shares his thoughts on world building, writing for a particular audience and how his recent marriage has affected his writing. The show wraps up with us talking about books that are on our To Be Read (TBR) lists, including works from Sonali Dev, Suzan Lori Parks, and more!

EPISODE TWENTY-ONE: Around the World in 80 Books

First we begin with an interview with author, Victoria Christopher Murray about her new book Stand Your Ground which is a fictionalized account of an event that is becoming all too commonplace in current day, a young Black boy being shot by a White man simply for existing. After speaking with Victoria, we discuss an article from Elle South Africa about a young woman Panache Chigumzadi who is a part of a collective of young, Black, female South African artists working to control the image of Black women in media. We round out the show discussing some International Fiction.

Elle article can be found here:




Today's episode is long and jam packed with a whole buncha stuff! We begin with discussing our experiences with book clubs and why we can't ever seem to find one that catches. To help us understand how a successful book club works, we speak with Nakia, the founder of an awesome multi-city book club called BookTini. Nakia shares with us how she began her club as well as tips for maintaining a longstanding book club. 

Then we switch gears and talk about the main subject of the episode, books with themes of illicit romances. We talk about books from authors such as Kate Chopin, Zadie Smith, Liane Moriarty and more.

P.S.I hope the Lady Gaga is now stuck in your head too. :-p

EPISODE NINETEEN: Red Lip, Classic...

I'm sorry for the titular reference. : ) This week we start with a brief fangirl moment because someone (read: Jeanette) is excited about something so not literary! The conversation continues with a recap of a recent reading/signing of Balm by Dolen Perkins-Valdez and a brief discussion on what it means to be "well read" before we dive right into our main topic du jour, classic literature. As per the usual, our takes on what is considered to be classic may vary from what you'd normally see in the NYT. Finally, we wrap up with a new segment, "5 Questions With..." featuring bestselling author of The Girl Who Fell From the Sky, Heidi Durrow!

EPISODE EIGHTEEN: Let's Hear It for the Boys

We're baaaaaack! ^_^ Did ya miss us?  We begin by discussing the upcoming memoir of Naya Rivera and an amazing initiative that is putting mini libraries in barbershops so young brown boys can get their read on. To learn more about Barbershop Books, click hereThe bulk of this week's episode is spent discussing a widely overlooked population in the literary world, men! *insert snarky face emoji here* The show ends with us discussing the tragedy that is the recent events in McKinney, Texas and the silence of many of those who decry the need for diversity when it comes to police brutality against people of color.


This week's episode finds us discussing the merits of eBook subscriptions services. And by us, I mean Tahmeka because Jeanette thinks she's made of money and just keeps buying books. We discuss Oyster, Kindle Unlimited, & Scribd (briefly). The bulk of the episode is spent discussion Julie Iromuanya's Mr. and Mrs. Doctor, a novel released on Coffee House Press on 5/15. The episode concludes with the What Are You Reading? segment where we discuss a few books that have graced our shelves recently.