Part of

family

The Podcast Host

5 New Fiction Podcasts for Summer Adventure

article featured image

Got a long road trip ahead of you? Planning to relax by the pool? How about hiding in your basement from your idiot neighbour’s illegal fireworks display? Summer isn’t fun for everyone. But, there are always beach reading lists and blockbuster movies to distract you from the heat. Audio drama or audio fiction podcasts improve on this, with immersive experience and intellectual stimulation. Plus, they’ve got more emotional comfort food than your uncle’s barbecue. Here are five new fiction podcasts for a summer escape.

Don't Mind: Cruxmont is one of The Podcast Host's five new fiction podcast recommendations for summer 2022.

Don’t Mind: Cruxmont

Fans of cosy murder mysteries, folk horror like The Wickerman or Midsommar, and suspense like The X-Files will welcome Don’t Mind: Cruxmont. Why is everyone in this village so secretive? How could Neal’s brother seemingly vanish into thin air? Dr. Gwendolyn Kingston’s on the trail of a cure for dementia, but is it real? If Adelaide’s memory is miraculously restored, why is she telling them to run? Why does everyone want Neal and Dr. Kingston to leave before the Plum Festival? K. A Statz and Travis Vengroff, the team that brought you The White Vault, consistently deliver thrills and suspense, and Don’t Mind: Cruxmont is no exception. Pairs well with your favourite stone fruit.

1972 is one of our five new fiction podcast recommendations for summer 2022.

1972

History meets political thriller and crime drama in 1972, a Brechtian dramatization of the story of Angela Davis and Shirley Chisholm. When civil rights activist Davis is arrested, Congresswoman Chisolm fights tooth and nail for her freedom, gracefully. Intertwined with the Nixon administration’s iniquitous deals and the run-up to Reaganomics, this fast-paced story holds a mirror up to America, showing the power of persistence. Yhane Washington Smith, the creator of Harlem Queen, has spun a web of history, strong women, relevant political discourse and great music. Pairs well with a tall, cold glass of iced tea.

Chaika is one of The Podcast Host's five new fiction podcast recommendations for summer 2022.

Chaika

One woman is alone in space after the lights have gone out on Earth. Chaika‘s variation on the “woman alone in space” theme delves deeper into the search for humanity. This story is particularly resonant for lockdown survivors, especially with the coping mechanisms of the word & poem of the day. The charming artificial-intelligence characters direct her to self-examination and offer a smoke screen over the bigger mystery. Why stay alive? What happened to all the humans? Chaika educates the robots to understand how and why humans can survive. The moment where Chaika and the AI, Hygge, silently observe Venus together is (to paraphrase Michael Chabon) “as poetic as rain on a daisy.” When an uncomplicated plot explores a complicated premise, a compelling and poignant experience unfolds. Pair this with smoky lapsang souchong tea, flavoured with a drop of wildflower honey.

Newts! is one of The Podcast Host's five new fiction podcast recommendations for summer 2022.

Newts!

Newts! is a perky, absurdist speculative fiction tale, reminiscent of Attack of the Killer Tomatoes, The Blob or Soylent Green. This buoyant surf-rock musical is a necessary intellectual exercise, based on Karel Cāpek’s 1936 novel. The tale is a metaphor for all the dark moments in human history: slavery, the perils of capitalism, nationalism, and colonialism. Yet, it’s presented in a larger-than-life style evocative of an animated movie. Plus, the music is multi-layered fun. An adaptation of War With The Newts is long overdue, and it can only be told in this medium. Pairs well with popcorn & soda.

Shadows at the Door's The Picture of Dorian Gray is one of The Podcast Host's five new fiction podcast recommendations for summer 2022.

The Picture of Dorian Gray

Oscar Wilde’s novel was on my school’s summer reading list, and it may have been on yours, too. Shadows At The Door‘s elegant, faithful re-telling of a story about intoxicating, destructive sensual beauty is definitely not a kids’ podcast, though. It’s good for Pride (since the author was a tragic casualty of homophobic laws) and great for emotional catharsis. The story travels from sublime to heartbreaking and horrifying and back. The performers carry the language with mesmerizing grace. Wilde once wrote, “The only way to deal with temptation is to yield to it.” The Picture of Dorian Gray gives you the freedom to engross yourself in temptation by proxy. Pairs well with a glass of something risky and a decadent snack.

New Fiction Podcasts: Free Summer Diversion

Hollywood looks to fiction podcasts to find intellectual properties for future shows. When you listen to fiction podcasts, you get to enjoy those stories when the creator still has control. There are plenty more new fiction podcasts every week, in the “Milestones, Debuts and Finales” section of our Fiction Podcast Weekly newsletter. These new fiction podcasts will make you feel like you had a mini-vacation and came back smarter.