Afternoon Inquisition

Sunday AI: When has your curiosity gotten the better of you?

I was looking up a reference book on Amazon, and it happened again. Amazon recommended a book for me that was so strange, I couldn’t resist the temptation to download it.

Today, it was a book about were-spiders.  I had to buy it.
Because….WERESPIDERS.   I can’t wait to find out what kind of webs they spin.

A couple of weeks ago it was a book called “Kilts and Kraken”  (in which I discovered that “Release the Kraken!” is a Scottish sexual euphemism), and the week before that something called “The Firefly Witch,” which had a disappointing amount of fireflies–i.e, none.  I bought a book about carnivorous genetically modified thrips, and another one about carnivorous dust mites.    You heard about “Bug, Naked” and the heroine’s web-slinging vagina last year.

You are probably sensing a theme here.  Fiction books with insects or invertebrates in them are like a UV light to a moth for me–I can’t resist them.  With the advent of eBooks, I can now discover random odd books and download them with one click.  (Warning: eBooks are a gateway drug. For book addicts like me, this can rapidly develop into an expensive habit.)

Even when the books are terrible, I usually still have fun reading them. And as someone who wants to write fiction, but doesn’t seem to have it in me to actually write a book, I feel a little guilty about being publicly critical of a author’s efforts.  (Unless it’s something like The Worst Book I’ve Ever Read EVARCicada Summer. I can only describe it as “Sexist, Racist Plan 9 from Outer Space with Reproductively Deviant Giant Grasshoppers.” That one I lambasted with no guilt at all.)

What books can’t you resist?  Have you read anything on an impulse that was fun? 

The Afternoon Inquisition (or AI) is a question posed to you, the Skepchick community. Look for it to appear Sundays, Tuesdays and Thursdays at 3pm ET.


Bug_girl has a PhD in Entomology, and is a pointy-headed former academic living in Ohio. She is obsessed with insects, but otherwise perfectly normal. Really! If you want a daily stream of cool info about bugs, follow her Facebook page or find her on Twitter.

Related Articles


  1. ” (in which I discovered that “Release the Kraken!” is a Scottish sexual euphemism)”

    Not really the point, but as a Scot of some 38 years I have never heard that phrase being used as a euphemism for anything.

    Much as I’d like to insert some innuendo here, I’m in too good a mood after the final TdF stage.

    1. The book in question is a steampunk novel, so I’m guessing there aren’t many scots magically restricted to islands and using zeppelins, either :)

    2. Darn it! I loved “Release the Kraken!” But then I looked it up on Urban Dictionary and it is a euphemism……..for POOPING! ( Comment to be read in the voice of t Triumph the Insult Comic Dog.)

      1. A euphemism for pooping?? Some people really need to re-assess their diet if their feces look like kraken……

        Also, you can enter alternate definitions for “release the kraken” :)

  2. Ok so I guess I get to ask, what’s the name of the book about werespiders because that seems rather cool, not necessarily on par with sex or pooping that has achieved the level of Kraken but still kind of cool.

    1. It’s called “Spider’s Lullaby”, and it’s shaping up to be pretty epic. As of page 17:

      A. The name of the werespider is Charlotte
      B. Someone has stolen her egg sac, containing what may be vampire/werespider hybrid offspring

      Wow. Just….wow.

      1. OMG. Spoiler Alert: It ends with the spiderlings mentally bonding with a stripper and turning into tiny bouncers at her club.


  3. You might also like Bugs! a compilation of short horror/SF stories featuring bugs. (Disclosure: one of the stories is mine.)

    Re: What books can’t you resist? — I can’t resist free books. At the Labor Day parade in my last town every year, a group always tows along a bunch of used books and hands them out to the crowd. I committed to reading the one given to me every year and sometimes it’s hard, but every so often a free book is a winner and introduces me to an author I never heard of.

    The best title I ever got was: The Long Night of White Chickens.

  4. Werespiders, in other mythological systems of the modern era, are servers of the Weaver. Spiders weave webs like the Weaver weaves Reality. The forces of Life are the Wyrm, the Wyld and the Weaver.

    The Wyrm is the negative, the Wyld is the positive and the Weaver balances the two. Typically the Weaver is considered to be a female, thus the spider avatar, but it is more of a balancing spirit.

    Thanks Dr. Bug Lady.

      1. Come on Dr., aren’t all religions and mythological systems just role-playing games of a kind? We give gods the roles of powerful deities that influence how we play the game of life.
        I could be wrong or weird, but once you suspend disbelief; why not go all the way?
        People believe god is influencing their ‘life-rolls’ etc.
        But you are gracious for at least coming in my direction a little; so thanks.

Leave a Reply to abbotofunreasonCancel reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Back to top button