January 2013 Indie Next List

On the cover of this month's Indie Next list is Y: A Novel by Marjorie Celona

View from a bookseller

"Y is a book about the 'whys' of two lives. Why did one woman abandon her newly born daughter at the door of a YMCA? Why was it so hard for that little girl to find a real home? Why do we sometimes embrace responsiblility and sometimes run away from it? Why are people cruel to the helpless and the innocent? The characters in this book are flawed and stumbling - in other words, very human and very memorable. The issues of what it means to be a family and the meaning of 'home' are challenged, remolded, and puzzled into a story that is not always easy to read, but is difficult to put down and is impossible to forget."
--Jackie Blem, Tattered Cover Book Store, Denver, CO


Indie Next authors talk about their books...

Watch a trailer for Stephen Hunter's new Bob Lee Swagger novel about the assassination of John F. Kennedy, THE THIRD BULLET, about which Bill Bauer from Redbery Books in Cable, WI says, ". . .Hunter has done what no one has previously done: supply a breathtaking new angle on the event (assassination of JFK). While staying true to the underlying facts of the Warren Commission Report, Hunter adds a layer of historical fiction, creating a new theory of the events of that day. Swagger hunts the mastermind behind a second assassin who supplies the third, and fatal, bullet. As Swagger focuses on the shooter and closes in on the mastermind, the mastermind, in turn, hunts him. A heart-pounding thriller!"


Indie Next around the web. . .

NPR NPR
". . .These stories do all the things we hope good fiction will do: blow your mind and break your heart, make you laugh and make you think. They are the kind of stories I feel grateful for, that stick in my head and heart and make me want to be a better person”
--Jessica Stockton Bagnulo, Greenlight Bookstore, Brooklyn, NY

Critic Alan Chese reviews George Saunders' new story collection, Tenth of December.

"There is a saying 'you can never go home again' and Black explores this adage in her debut novel. Home is Galveston, TX and Clare Porterfield has not been there for 10 years. . .Black beautifully explores the idea of going home by making Galveston the true main character of this novel that will make readers reflect on their own lives and wonder what it would be like to go home again"
--Lynn Pellerito Riehl, Nicola's Books, Ann Arbor, MI
Other Indie Next books featured on NPR


Indie Next in Paperback. . .



December 2012 Indie Next List

On the cover of this month's Indie Next list is THOMAS JEFFERSON: THE ART OF POWER by Jon Meacham

View from a bookseller

"Meacham's engaging biography reveals the extraordinary skills of this uniquely gifted and driven man as wellas his heart and soul. In a poetic, moving epilogue, Meacham explains Jefferson's unabated appeal: 'He endures because we can see in him all the varied and wondrous possibilities of the human experience - the thirst for knowledge, the capacity to create, the love of family and friends, the hunger for accomplishment, the applause of the world, the marshaling of power, the bending of others to one's own vision.' Jefferson's story has never been more perfectly told. Quite simply, Meacham has written a masterpiece"
--Christopher Rose, Andover Bookstore, Andover, MA


Indie Next authors talk about their books...

Watch a trailer for Jacob Tomsky's new book, HEADS IN BED, about which Mary Muller from Market Block Books in Troy, NY says, "Here is the authentic voice of the Front Desk Agent: funny, experienced, profane, and able to tell a good story or two. Tomsky shares his story of beginning as a parking valet and rising to the heights of the front desk, with a horrifying detour through housekeeping along the way. . .Heads in Beds does for hotel workers what Anthony Bourdain's Kitchen Confidential did for restaurant workers."


Indie Next around the web. . .

Reading Group Choices

"This incredible novel traces the separate trajectories of five unforgettable lives in five different time periods. Each life story is expertly etched by Faulks, and each could stand alone, but the stories become even more compelling as they join to form a provocative whole”
--Jenny Lyons, The King's English Bookshop, Salt Lake City, UT
Other Indie Next books featured on ReadingGroupChoices.com



Indie Next in Paperback. . .



November 2012 Indie Next List

On the cover of this month's Indie Next list is THE ART FORGER by Barbara Shapiro

View from a bookseller

"The Art Forger is a clever and gripping story. Claire Roth, a talented artist, finds herself intricately involved in the seedier side of art forgeries when she makes a questionable deal to forge a Degas masterpiece. Just like a fine painting, this is a many-layered literary thriller about love, betrayal, and authenticity. Shapiro builds the story with pitch-perfect suspense and plot twists that you don't see coming. While you are drawn deeply into the story, Shapiro outlines big questions about morality, fame, and truth in a world that is all about creating illusion for the sake of beauty. A masterpiece!"
--Lanora Haradon, Next Chapter Bookshop, Mequon, WI


Indie Next authors talk about their books...

Watch a trailer for Michael Ennis' new novel, THE MALICE OF FORTUNE, about which Sarah Harvey from Tattered Cover Book Store in Denver says, "Ennis brings to life the chaos and mayhem of Italy that inspired Machiavelli's The Prince. An unlikely trio find themselves teaming up to solve the most notorious murder of the Italian Renaissance: the assassination of Borgia Pope's favorite son. . .This tale will keep you guessing right up until the thrilling conclusion"


Indie Next around the web. . .

Reading Group Choices

"Set in Northern California, Santo's debut features five generations of strong women who live in an old house on an olive grove. The women know there is a secret to harvesting the last of the olive crop to produce an oil so pure that it seems to enhance longevity. Rich with secrets, this lovely novel winds through the lives of each woman as a geneticist seeks the reason for their youthfulness. Santo gives readers an intimate look into how a family of women cope with tragedy, love, childbirth, and infidelity. Not to be missed!”
--Annie Philbrick, The Yankee Book Shop, Mystic, CT
Other Indie Next books featured on ReadingGroupChoices.com



Indie Next in Paperback. . .



August 2012 Indie Next List

On the cover of this month's Indie Next list is THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS by M.L. Steadman

View from a bookseller

"World War I is over and Tom Sherbourne returns to Australia as a lighthouse keeper on remote Janus Rock. his young bride, Isabel, joins him, and they love their isolated life on Janus. Sadness descends, however, as they try unsuccessfully to start a family. A small boat washes ashore carrying a dead man and a beautiful, healthy baby girl whom they make their own, living happily until they go back to the mainland and begin to realize the consequences of their actions. With incredibly visual prose evocative of the time and place, compelling characters, themes of forgiveness and redemption, and a riveting plot that won't let you put the book down, this is a great debut novel."

--Judy Crosby, Island Books, Middletown, RI


Indie Next authors talk about their books...

Brian Castner talks about his new book, THE LONG WALK: A Story of War and the Life that Follows, about which Bill Cusumano from Nicola's Books in Ann Arbor MI says, "his meditation on combat and it's aftermath is powerful, exhilerating, and sad, all at once. Castner relates wartime experiences that defy belief but are all too real and quickly remove any romance from the world of violence. . ."


Indie Next around the web. . .

NPR NPR
"Recently retired Harold Fry receives an unsettling letter from a co-worker from years past. Queenie is dying in hospice and when Harold sets out to post a return letter, he is seized by the idea that if he keeps walking, Queenie will live. So begins a pilgramage of personal transformation for Harold -- and quite possibly for the reader as well. . .”
--Julia MacDonald, The Yankee Book Shop, Woodstock, VT

Listen to the NPR interview: Rachel Joyce: An 'Unlikely Pilgramage' Towards Happiness

"(Monica) Wood's memoir is a compelling tale of loss on many levels. She recounts the tragedy of the unexpected death of her father an also the loss of a way of life. . .This book is a moving tales -- sad, yet funny, as Monica shares her story of growing up in a small town with all of the various folks who helped shape her life."
--Barbara Kelly, University of Southern Maine Bookstore, Portland, ME
Other Indie Next books featured on NPR Other Indie Next books featured on ReadingGroupChoices.com


Indie Next in Paperback. . .

Happy Reading!



July 2012 Indie Next List

On the cover of this month's Indie Next list is GOLD by Chris Cleave, a novel of two old friends whose lives and friendship are tested as they vie for one last moment in the sun and Olympic gold.

View from a bookseller

“Cleave is one of the luminaries of modern fiction and his talent shines just as brightly as the title of Gold. In a novel based on the world of competitive cycling, Cleave offers all of the trauma, dedication, and courage of that elite society, but more importantly, shows us those same attributes in the lives of his other characters, particularly eight-year-old Sophie, who suffers from leukemia. This is a novel that both inspires and informs, providing sadness and exhilaration in equal measure and showing empathy for the human condition. Gold is a reading experience not to be missed.” -- Bill Cusumano, Nicola's Books, Ann Arbor, MI


Indie Next authors talk about their books...


Amy Leach talks about her new collection of essays, THINGS THAT ARE, about which Seth Marko from UCSD Bookstore, San Diego, CA writes, "This beautifully crafted , little book is filled with weird, funny, oddly poignant, and plainly stunning vignettes about the natural world around us. . .Each essay unfolds as if from the lips of an odd, old-time storyteller sitting on the edge of the firelight. . .

Indie Next around the web. . .


"Truly multiculutral in the very best sense, Marcus Samuelsson was born and orphaned in Ethiopia, adopted by a Swedish family, and learned to cook in Sweden, Switzerland, Austria, and France. . .Samuelsson brings the reader along on his amazing and passionate odyssey in an engaging memoir that is highly recommended, even for non-foodiers” - Ellen Sandmeyer, Sandmeyer's Bookstore, Chicago, IL

Listen to the NPR interview: Marcus Samuelsson: Becoming a Top Chef


“This quiet lovely story of people finding joy where they can is set near the Little Snake Hills sand dunes of the Canadian West, where small-town lives can be as dry and brittle as the prairie grasses or as rich as the history of the area. . .” -- Susan Wasson, Bookworks, Albuquerque, NM

Indie Next in Paperback. . .

Happy Reading!



New Voices | June 2012 Indie Next List





June Indie Next List. . .

On the cover of this month's IndieNext list is CANADA by Richard Ford, a "haunting and elemental novel about a young man forced by catastrophic circumstance to reconcile himself to a world that has been rendered unrecognizable."

View from a bookseller

Canada, Richard Ford's long-awaited new novel, is not one to be rushed. While the plot sounds sensational -- robbery, murders, a flight across the Canadian border -- Ford's laconic, measured prose forces the reader to slow the pace and savor the story. This is a novel about actions, intentions, and consequences as well as about belonging, introspection, and the solitary nature of life. Powerful and atmospheric, Canada will excite and gratify Ford's fans and introduce newcomers to a masterful American writer.” -- Tova Beiser, Brown University Bookstore, Providence, RI


Indie Next authors talk about their books...


Joseph Kanon talks about Istanbul and his new novel, ISTANBUL PASSAGE, about which Darwin Ellis from Books on the Common, Ridgefield, CT writes, ". . . Istanbul in 1945 -- a caldron of intrigue with layer upon layer of cultures, religions, security organizations, spies, police, foreign agents, and refugees -- is the backdrop for this tale of moral ambiguity. . .Istanbul Passage is atmospheric, believable, fast-paced, and elegantly written for a thoroughly absorbing read.”

Indie Next around the web. . .


"From the financial trader in the midst of growing midlife and career crises, to the Pakistani family struggling with faith and family, to a dying woman and her street artist son, Lanchester effortlessly weaves myriad stories into brief chapters to create a written tapestry of remarkable color and depth” - Catherine Weller, Weller Book Works, Salt Lake City, UT

Listen to the NPR interview: Right on the Money: A Capital Book for Our Times


“Through wonderful, sometimes tragic and often quirky characters, Segal offers finely honed truths about humanity. I highly recommend this book -- a wonderful summer read with some guts to it!” -- Susan Tyler, The Book Bin, Onley, VA

Indie Next in Paperback. . .

Happy Reading!



May 2012 Indie Next List

Out now, the Indie Next List for May!

Find the printed list at an independent bookstore near you. We're also offering a print-at-home version, found on the Indie Next List page directly beneath the carousel of titles, so you can browse at home and take it to your local indie.

On the cover. . .

On the cover of this month’s IndieNext list is THE LOLA QUARTET by indie favorite Emily St. John Mandel. In this novel, Gavin Sasaki is a young journalist who is fired in disgrace and upon returning home to Florida, begins an investigation to track down an old girlfriend and her daughter on the run from drug dealers.

View from a bookseller

“In her latest, St. John Mandel shows how relationships formed in high school, so often fraught with drama, can ebb and flow and fade and come back to haunt. Among her characters, the perception of what's important and the potential impact of actions varies widely, and something as seemingly insignificant as a photograph can become riddled with layers of meaning, differing for each person who sees it. The writing is taut, the characters well wrought, and St. John Mandel's characteristic infusions of moral ambiguity and complexity remind us, as good novels should, of what it means to be human.” -- Emily Pullen, Skylight Books, Los Angeles, CA


Indie Next authors talk about their books...

John Irving talks about his new novel, IN ONE PERSON, about which Libby Cowles from Maria's Bookshop writes, "There is no writer, living or dead, who better humanizes the quirky, the misunderstood, the 'different' than John Irving. Here, through his bisexual protagonist, Billy, he tenderly explores the way American attitudes toward sexuality have -- and have not -- evolved in the past half-century. A heartbreaking, hopeful, complicated, and gorgeous story.

More videos



Shelter A Land More Kind than Home

Indie Next in Paperback. . .

 

Happy Reading!



April 2012 Indie Next List

Out now, the Indie Next List for April!

Find the printed list at an independent bookstore near you. We're also offering a print-at-home version, found on the Indie Next List page directly beneath the carousel of titles, so you can browse at home and take it to your local indie.

On the cover. . .

On the cover of this month’s IndieNext list is WILD by Cheryl Strayed. In this memoir, the author vividly captures the terrors and pleasures of one young woman forging ahead against all odds on a journey that maddened, strengthened, and ultimately healed her.

View from a bookseller

“The inspiring story of Strayed's solo journey on the Pacific Crest Trail snags you from the beginning and keeps you engaged the whole way through. . . The challenges, both external and internal, that she endures while on the trail are balanced with stories about her life leading up to her brave decision to hike alone for months in the rugged Western wilderness. This is a story of survival in every sense of the word, and one that will stick with you long after you finish reading.” -- Deborah Castorina, Waucoma Bookstore, Hood River, OR


Indie Next authors talk about their books...

Nick Harkaway talks about the what gave him the idea for his new novel, ANGELMAKER, about which Hannah Johnson-Breimeier from Next Chapter Bookstore writes, ". . . an escalating escapade into a world of mad scientists, a religious cult, secret agents, a death czar, covert government bureaucrats, swarms of golden bees, and gangsters galore. Angelmaker is an imaginative romp, another delightful story from the curious mind of Nick Harkaway.”

More videos




The Lifeboat Wild The Book of Madness and Cures

Indie Next around the web. . .

". . .The research is exhaustive, the observations pungent, and the characters, both real and imagined, distinctive. Enjoy the read, but beware the wrath of Mere Lessard!” - Bill Cusumano, Nicola's Books, Ann Arbor, MI

Listen to the NPR interview: Art, Mystery And Posh Pigments In 'Sacre Bleu'

“I dare you to read the first chapter of this book and then try to set it aside. . . Grace is a thriller, a heartbreaking account of bullying, and a beautiful story about an imperfect family and the love that must save them all.”
-- Cathy Allard, BayShore Books, Oconto, WI


Indie Next in Paperback. . .

 

Happy Reading! 



March 2012 Indie Next List

Out now, the Indie Next List for March!

On the cover of this month's Indie Next list is CARRY THE ONE by Carol Anshaw. In this novel, Carmen and Matt have just gotten married and a lifetime of happiness awaits. A car full of guests hit and kill a girl following the wedding, and the heretofor predictable trajectory of their lives veers wildly off course. Deon Stonehouse of Sunriver Books & Music, (Sunriver, OR) says of the book: 'Carry the One examines the subtle shades of change this tragic accident causes in their lives. It is a compelling story of friendship, loss, betrayal, and life at its most real.

Watch this video for BIRDS OF A LESSER PARADISE, where author Megan Mayhew Bergam talks about her new collection of stories that finds the natural world around shaping lives and relationships. Anderson McKean from Page & Palette, (Fairhope, AL) says, "Birds of a Lesser Paradise is a poignant collection of stories, each filled with vivid imagery, surprising wit, and elegant prose."

Other videos for Next books include a brief glimpse at PURE, Julianna Baggott's new dystopian novel with YA/Adult cross-over appeal about which Lauren Peugh from Mrs.Nelson's Toy & Bookshop, (La Verne, CA) wrote, "I can say, without a doubt, that this is one of the best books I've read in the past year. . .this first part of a trilogy has something for everyone: mystery and intrigue, violence, romance, and rumblings of a sinister conspiracy."

Also available for watching are looks at the previously mentioned CARRY THE ONE and THE DRESSMAKER by Kate Alcott, about a young women who survives the sinking of the Titanic and must deal with the decisions made during the chaos on the doomed ship.

Other selections this month include:

  • Conversation Starters from ReadingGroupChoices.com - ARCADIA by Lauren Groff: "I am left almost speechless by the beauty and raw reality of this book. . .Groff's wonderful use of language brings us into Bit's world - the intimacy, wonder, confusion, worry, and unwavering hope he holds as a child and the struggle, shattering grief, and quiet determined bravery he develops as a man" -- Susan McCloskey, Bookshop Santa Cruz, (Santa Cruz, CA)
  • FLATSCREEN by Adam Wilson: "Reading Flatscreen in public without cracking up was a challenge, one that I did not meet, and I frequently looked like a crazy person reading the book. . .Eli's struggle to assert himself in a digitized world as a fleshed-out man is as frighteningly real as it is funny." -- Zach Sampinos, Weller Book Works, (Salt Lake City, UT)

Also, don't forget about past IndieNext picks now available in paperback, including DOC, Mary Doria Russell's novel about the life of Doc Holliday before he became the Doc Holliday and READING MY FATHER, Alexandra Styron's compelling memoir about her childhood with her father, author William Styron.

Find the printed list at an independent bookstore near you. We're also offering a print-at-home version, found on the Indie Next List page directly beneath the carousel of titles, so you can browse at home and take it to your local indie.

Happy reading!



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