Frankenstein Recommendations

Book Cover of Frankenstein


A Movie Adaptation for Your Consideration: It just doesn’t get better than the 1931 Frankenstein, the  monster movie of all monster movies. This flick popularized the idea of the monster as a green dude with bolts in his neck, and was so iconically played by Boris Karloff that no image of the monster has ever been able to overtake or even hold a candle to the cultural influence wrought by Karloff’s shambler. Truly unmissable! 

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Podcast Episodes

Episode 15, May 20th, 2020

Erin, Claire, and Rory jumping for joy in Wishbonafide Episode 15.

The third time’s the charm they say, but we love having co-producer, Rory Nachbar, on the show every time! Wishbonafide Episode 15 hits up Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities and Wishbone’s “A Tail of Two Sitters.

Watch parts 1 & 2 of the TV show.

About Our Guest

Rory used to live with Erin and Claire in college with great happiness, and is therefore delighted that she can share this podcast experience with them. She works as a Digital Communications Specialist for Johns Hopkins University and spends her free time developing content and promoting Wishbonafide. When she isn’t on adventures with her co-producers, you can find her curled up with a good book or crafting and painting while binging crime dramas. 

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Podcast Episodes

Episode 14, May 13th, 2020

Image of Alecsa Kazenas, Claire McCrea, and Erin Venable on Zoom for Wishbonafide Episode 14.

We’ve finally found gold in Wishbonafide Episode 14! Claire and Erin sit down again in 2020 for the first time in three years to record a new new episode on Silas Marner by George Eliott and Wishbone’s episode, “Golden Retrieved,” with special guest Alecsa Kazenas!  

Watch parts 1, 2 and 3 of the TV episode.

About Our Guest

Alecsa Kazenas is a 5th grade teacher and full-time word nerd in New York, New York. She has a penchant for words you only hear once a year and knows way too much about cheese. She loves her students with her whole heart because they are, quite obviously, the best!

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The Hunchback of Notre Dame Recommendations

Book Cover of The Hunchback of Notre Dame, by Victor Hugo


My first recommendation is the musical written by Andrew Lloyd Webber The Phantom of the Opera. The 2004 adaptation is a very decent film version starring Emmy Rossum and Gerard Butler. It is a work based on the novel by Gaston Leroux the Phantom of the Opera and covers the theme of an outcast trying to find his place. It is also a very tragic story  of a disfigured man and elements similar to this one and has hauntingly beautiful music. 

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Podcast Episodes

Episode 11: April 22nd, 2020

Image of Nick Johnston for Wishbonafide Episode 11.

Put away your copy of Marlowe and do your best not to trade away your soul, because Wishbonafide Episode 11 focuses on Wolfgang von Goethe’s version of Faust, and Wishbone’s “Fleabitten Bargain” – featuring guest Nick Johnston!

Watch parts 1, 2 and 3 of the TV episode.

About Our Guest

Nick Johnston is originally from upstate New York but now lives between New Jersey and Wyoming. A graduate of Loyola University Maryland, Nick is pursuing a graduate degree in philosophy at KU Leuven with a focus on Continental philosophy. He enjoys reading world literature, Dungeons & Dragons, playing music, and the outdoors.

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The Hound of the Baskervilles Recommendations

Book Cover of The Hound of the Baskervilles


Sir Arthur Conan Doyle is a master of mystery novels and Sherlock Holmes is such a wonderfully iconic character it’s hard to compare these books to other mysteries out there. The series will be visited again in another Wishbone episode, but feel free to check out other Sherlock Holmes books in the meantime. Otherwise, I personally loved the Nancy Drew series as a fun and not graphic mystery series. Nancy solves many different cases, so there are a number of choices for people new to the series to choose from. She uses ingenuity and creativity to get through many different situations and these novels are interesting to sit down with.

To switch gears, I also highly recommend Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries TV series! It is a show set in the 1920s with a lead female detective, Miss Fisher, whose character is inspired by Sherlock Holmes. There are gorgeous costumes, fun characters, and plots that keep you entertained. There are murders and mysteries all set in such an interesting time period. Please watch if it appeals to you and enjoy!

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Cyrano de Bergerac Recommendations

Book Cover of Cyrano de Bergerac


I can’t decide between two modern retellings of Cyrano, because they both warm the cockles of my heart with their romanticism and excessive ridiculousness. Firstly, there is Roxanne (1987). Starring Steve Martin and Darryl Hannah, this is the rom com Cyrano was alway meant to be. More recently and on the pop culture trend, there is Cyrano Agency (2010), which is a korean drama in which very attractive people who work at a love connection agency help other very attractive people find dates. It’s blissful fluff. No substance here, really, but all the enjoyment to be had!

If you’re looking for higher intellectual quality in your entertainment, search out Cyrano de Bergerac (1950). It is a black and white film for any young ‘uns out there, but don’t shy away! It’s amazing! Cyrano is at his wittiest prime. If you truly can’t handle the old timey affectations of this film, try the 1990 film of the same name, starring Gerard Depardieu very finely – and in color.

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African Folktales Recommendations

Book Cover of African Folktales


When I was a child I remember being read a set of African animal fables and that’s what the Anansi stories and “The People Could Fly” reminded me of. The stories came from a book that may have been The Zebra’s Stripes and Other African Animal Tales by Dianne Stewart and Kathy Pienaar. If not, that book is very similar and I would recommend it if you would like to explore more stories like Anansi’s. These stories are meant to be educational and do so by “explaining” how animals became the way they are. The stories are fun and light hearted, enjoy!

I have read fairytales and fables from a number of different cultures that I think others would enjoy if they liked this episode. I really enjoy The Great Fairy Tale Tradition selected and edited by Jack Zipes. It features tales from Straparola, Basile, and the Brothers Grimm who wrote from different parts of Europe in different eras. These stories are more adult than the fable type tales of this episode, if you would like something a little more grim, pun intended.

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Romeo and Juliet Recommendations

Book Cover of Romeo & Juliet, by William Shakespeare


One of my favorite Shakespeare plays is A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and I highly recommend this if R&J gave you the blues. It’s a classic comedy in which everyone goes into the woods, things turn upside down and topsy-turvy, and in the end everyone winds up with what they want (more or less). There’s even an R&J reference, albeit in the original form of Pyramus and Thisbe, by Ovid. I once saw a production which had a live rock band and Puck dressed in a red speedo. Needless to say it was a thrilling experience for a 13 year old.

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Oliver Twist Recommendations

Book cover of Oliver Twist


I am going to throw a novel in here to match Erin’s film and suggest Kidnapped by Robert Louis Stevenson. Another really excellent “boys’ novel” published periodically in a magazine called Young Folks in 1886. It’s basically a rad YA novel full of action and hardship, much like Oliver Twist, about characters adapted from real life people and stories in the aftermath of the Jacobite rebellion in Scotland. Nothing like a good read about people’s miserable lives getting more difficult!

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