A Sad Bastards Cheat Sheet

In addition to genre classics like Watchmen and Welcome to Night Vale, The Sad Bastard Cookbook is chock-full of references to books that we wrote and that our friends wrote. Why? Because sharing art and sharing food are vital acts of community. That’s what Night Beats is about—a community of people who support each other. And stories are as important to life as eating.

If you’ve signed up to the mailing just to get the cookbook, that’s cool! But consider sticking around for a bit and checking out the rest of the Night Beats community. If you liked the cookbook, you might like them too.

Without further ado, here are the books we reference in Sad Bastards, rated on a scale of how Sad the Bastards are in it and how much they need our cookbook.

the cover of the sad bastard cookbook

Out Now

Cascade by Rachel A. Rosen. Rachel’s overworked wizard-bureaucrats barely eat between trying to prevent a climate apocalypse and avoiding the maybe-dead maybe-not elder god stirring in the depths of the ocean. And that’s without even getting into the queer disaster that is their personal lives. Do any of them know how to cook? It is doubtful. 5/5 peanut butter spoons. Get Cascade from Bumblepuppy Press, Amazon, or your favourite online ebook provider.

So Human As I Am by Rachel A. Rosen, illustrated by Marten Norr. The prequel to Cascade, this chapbook is about Ian, Jonah, and Blythe in their activist days. When you’re a broke twenty-something anarchist trying to figure out life, sexuality, and your curse of prophecy, cooking elaborate dinners isn’t a priority, or even a possibility. Someone put food in these sad bastards’ faces. 5/5 peanut butter spoons. Get the limited edition chapbook from Bumblepuppy Press.

“Alinda” in Into the Unknown by Rohan O’Duill. Space rations get pretty dull when you’re exploring a mysterious artifact. Since Rohan is such a great cook, though, we suspect his characters have some skill in the kitchen, at least when they’re planetside. 1/5 peanut butter spoons. All proceeds from the sale of this anthology go to the World Literacy Foundation, so pick up your copy!

“Birds of Fortune” in Into the Unknown by Emma Berglund. Treasure maps, flirting, and being chased by your enemies all require a lot of easily transportable sustenance. 5/5 peanut butter spoons. This is two stories for the price of one—Emma and Rohan both contributed to and edited the Into the Unknown anthology, so you get both stories in the same book.

A+E by Rysz Merey. Gender-nonconforming artistic sad sacks cannot survive on orange Tic Tacs alone. 5/5 peanut butter spoons for Ash, but Eu eats all of them. Get it from tRaum Books.

Most Famous Short Film of All Time by Tucker Lieberman. Lev and his friends actually eat pretty well during their campfire talks, but the Diversity Committee could always use a new recipe or two. 3/5 peanut butter spoons and a hug. Get it from tRaum Books

Melancholic Parables by Dale Stromberg. Bellatrix runs a bakery in at least one of her incarnations, so she’s at least got it together food-wise. Even if she’s sometimes a mouse, sometimes radioactive, and sometimes a supervillain in these weird, brief moments of magical realism. No peanut butter spoons. Get this new release of microfiction here.

Coming Soon

The Things We Couldn’t Save by Nicole Bea. There’s nothing worse than being a teenager in 2006 with limited text messages, a crush, and a faltering best-friendship. But Clarke still lives at home, and her parents are good cooks. 2/5 peanut butter spoons. Pre-order your copy (and check out the pre-order incentives!) here.

Sushi and Sea Lions by Rachel Corsini. Dany is a former prima ballerina, student teacher, and unlucky in love. She’s also a terrible cook. 4/5 peanut butter spoons, because then she wouldn’t give her date food poisoning. Sign up for an advance copy to read it first.

The Devil You Know by Nicole Northwood. If you’re the Demon of Lust and you escaped Hell to run the Hedonism Hotel in New York City, you’ve got problems on your hands. Like being chased by demon hunters, or accidentally falling in love with your night manager, Giselle. But you’re not short on extravagant food. 0/5 peanut butter spoons. Check out Nicole’s website for more info.

Query by Zilla Novikov. Many things in life are terrible, including but not limited to: the climate apocalypse, workplace spats, and trad publishing. Zilla can’t get her novel signed to an agent, and she can’t protect the Greenbelt from a bypass being built through it. But she might make some friends along the way. 3/5 peanut butter spoons for Meatless Monday. When real-life Zilla manages what her fictional counterpart cannot and signs this book, she’ll announce it on this very website. It’s all very meta.

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