The August 2010 Indie Next List Preview

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Here's a preview of the Indie Next List Great Reads and 12 "Now In Paperback" titles, featured with jacket images, on the August Indie Next List flier, on its way to ABA member stores in the IndieBound movement.

The August Indie Notables will be featured in a downloadable flier and shelf-talkers on, beginning August 1.

The August 2010 Indie Next List Great Reads

The Hanging Tree: A Starvation Lake Mystery by Bryan Gruley
(Touchstone, $15, 9781416563648)
"Gruley does it again in this second Starvation Lake mystery. With his journalist's eye for detail, he transports the reader to small town, hockey-obsessed northern Michigan, where they experience a lifestyle and come to know the inhabitants fully. The characters have even more pull this time around, and the pacing is 'keep-you-up-too-late' perfect! I'm looking forward to installment number three. Go for the hat trick, Bryan!" -- Beth Simpson, Cornerstone Books, Salem, MA

The Tower, the Zoo, and the Tortoise: A Novel by Julia Stuart
(Doubleday, $24.99, 9780385533287)
"Balthazar Jones, a retired military man, is now a Beefeater living in the Tower of London with his family and his 181-year-old pet tortoise named Mrs. Cook. When the queen decides that her menagerie of donated animals should return to live at the Tower as they had centuries before, Balthazar becomes their keeper. This is a touching family story, as well as a delightfully whimsical and zany tale of man and beast. Great fun!" -- Karen T. Harris, Bunch of Grapes Bookstore, Vineyard Haven, MA

Let's Take the Long Way Home: A Memoir of Friendship by Gail Caldwell
(Random House, $24, 9781400067381)
"This is the heart-warming and heart-wrenching story of the author's deep friendship with writer Caroline Knapp. Through rowing, swimming, writing, their dogs, and sharing life experiences, they nurture a connection that we would all love to have with someone. An honest and unforgettable tribute to best friends." -- Ellen Jarrett, Porter Square Books, Cambridge, MA

Heart of Lies: A Novel by M.L. Malcom
(Harper Paperbacks, $13.99, 9780061962189)
"M. L. Malcolm weaves an engrossing tale of a man in conflict with himself. Leo Hoffman's unique mastery of languages offers him opportunities that motivate choices with far-reaching consequences in the years between the World Wars. Beginning in Budapest, Leo's journey into self-deception will take him into the subcultures of Paris, Vienna, and Shanghai and threaten his integrity and his love for the beautiful Martha Levy. Readers will be captivated by the well-researched history, exciting international intrigue, and one man's enduring passion." -- Jane Glaser, Next Chapter Bookshop, Mequon, WI

Super Sad True Love Story: A Novel by Gary Shteyngart
(Random House, $26, 9781400066407)
"This Herculean burst of a novel is charged with a furious energy, a restless insanity, an overall lust, and a love affair with language. Lenny Abramov is part Woody Allen protagonist, part dutiful dreamer, and wholly human. Eunice Park is the object of his affection, and she means business. Super Sad True Love Story is all that it promises to be, with super sharp satire, prophetic visions, plucky otters, and a lot more. It's a miracle this book doesn't explode in the reader's hands!" -- Zach Sampinos, Sam Weller's Books, Salt Lake City, UT

A Dog's Purpose: A Novel by W. Bruce Cameron
(Forge, $22.99, 9780765326263)
"This is a charming story of a dog's search for meaning over the course of several lifetimes, from that of a feral dog, to a beloved family pet, a search-and-rescue dog, and a victim of abuse. I laughed and cried, all the while appreciating the fragility of life as seen through the first-person narration of this remarkable dog." -- Fran Wilson, Colorado State University Bookstore, Fort Collins, CO

Burn: An Anna Pigeon Novel by Nevada Barr
(Minotaur, $25.99, 9780312614560)
"Nevada Barr has established Anna Pigeon as one of the premier characters in crime fiction. Even on leave from the National Park Service, Anna is unable to avoid trouble as she encounters Clare Sullivan, a wanted murderer with a compelling story. The two combine Anna's passion and persistence and Clare's acting ability to track down a group abducting children. Written with Barr's usual verve and precision to natural detail, this is a worthy addition to the saga of Anna." -- Bill Cusumano, Nicola's Books, Ann Arbor, MI

In Harm's Way: A Novel by Ridley Pearson
(Putnam Adult, $25.95, 9780399156540)
"Sheriff Walt Fleming is used to coming into contact with the rich and famous, since his beat borders Sun Valley, Idaho. When a football star is found murdered, the circumstances seem to implicate the one woman Walt has let into his heart since he split with his wife. Now he must balance his desire to protect her with the need to honor the oath he has sworn to uphold as a lawman." -- Jennie Turner-Collins, Joseph-Beth Booksellers, Cincinnati, OH

The Personal History of Rachel DuPree: A Novel by Ann Weisgarber
(Viking Adult, $25.95, 9780670022014)
"I devoured this debut novel, needing to know how African-American pioneer Rachel DuPree would sustain her strength, protect her children, and pluck food from a parched earth and a dry cow, all while attempting to understand her proud, stubborn, and aloof husband. My image of the West and Native Americans, and my understanding of the racism that spreads with emigration have been forever impacted by her story." -- Cheryl McKeon, Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park, WA

Displaced Persons: A Novel by Ghita Schwarz
(William Morrow, $25, 9780061881909)
"This is a bold first novel about those who survived the Holocaust and how they continued to live their lives after the horrors of the war. Beginning in 1945, Pavel, Fela, and Chaim meet and become fast friends. After emigrating to America, the three start families and created new lives, all without discussing their experiences with anyone. The weight they carry inside themselves affects their lives and those of their children. Displaced Persons is a story of survival, but it is also about rebuilding ones life and maintaining the promise of hope." -- Sherri Gallentine, Vroman's Bookstore, Pasadena, CA

The Murder Room: The Heirs of Sherlock Holmes Gather to Solve the World's Most Perplexing Cold Cases by Michael Capuzzo
(Gotham, $26, 9781592401420)
"It's books like this for which the phrase 'page turner' was invented. This deeply compelling work of nonfiction details the lives and interests of the men and women who founded the Vidocq Society, a group of forensic specialists dedicated to solving of cold case murders. A fascinating read!" -- Mike Burns, Howard's Bookstore, Bloomington, IN

City of Veils: A Novel by Zoe Ferraris
(Little, Brown and Company, $24.99, 9780316074278)
"This is a book that overwhelms you. While it can be regarded as a mystery, it is also a commentary on the various cultures in Saudi Arabia today, and how everyone there -- male and female, conservative or not -- is adjusting to the contemporary world with all of it's contradictions. Zoe Ferraris does an incredible job of showing the lives of her characters with honesty and compassion." -- Martin Sorensen, Green Apple Books, San Francisco, CA

The Girls of Murder City: Fame, Lust, and the Beautiful Killers Who Inspired Chicago by Douglas Perry
(Viking Adult, $25.95, 9780670021970)
"Chicago during Prohibition in the year 1924 was a dangerous place to be an adulterer and a great place to be a killer. A lady killer. Just ask Belva Gaertner and Beulah Annan, two murderesses who became media sensations thanks to Maurine Watkins, a lowly 'girl reporter' for the Chicago Tribune. With detailed accounts of Jazz Age Chicago and 'Murderess Row' in Cook County Jail, Perry highlights a time when newspapers clamored over these killers, giving birth to the celebrity criminal and the power behind the manipulations of the mighty press." -- Kristin Bates, McLean & Eakin Booksellers, Petoskey, MI

The Moses Expedition: A Novel by Juan Gomez-Jurado
(Atria, $24.99, 9781416590644)
"Warning: This adventure may get you a sunburn if you start it at the beach, because you won't want to put it down. A hidden Nazi war criminal, the Mossad, the CIA, a Vatican secret service agent, mercenaries of all stripes, and an optimistic Madrid reporter are all in search of the Lost Ark. International intrigue has never been so much fun!" -- Becky Milner, Vintage Books, Vancouver, WA

The Blessings of the Animals: A Novel by Katrina Kittle
(Harper Perennial, $14.99, 9780061906077)
"When veterinarian Cami Anderson's husband of 18 years walks out, you can feel the punch to her gut. Just like you can feel the bite an abused horse gives Cami's arm, the anguish she feels watching her teenage daughter struggle, the tentative attraction she feels when new men arrive in her life, and the love she feels for the motley assortment of rescued animals, the quirky life-long friends, and the complicated extended family that people her world and eventually pull her through. In this story of learning to stand on your own two feet, Kittle once again proves that she can stand up with the very best storytellers of our time." -- Jill Miner, Saturn Booksellers, Gaylord, MI

I Curse the River of Time: A Novel by Per Petterson
(Graywolf Press, $23, 9781555975562)
"Fans of Out Stealing Horses will not be disappointed by Petterson's latest novel, which pulses with lyrical prose. Set against the backdrop of the collapse of Communism in 1989, the story follows Arvid, who, when his mother is diagnosed with cancer, joins her at their summer house. Shifting between the present and Arvid's memories, I Curse the River of Time explores the strained relationship between mother and son, as well as Arvid's struggle to make sense of a life that has gotten away from him." -- Natalie DelBusso, Wolfgang Books, Phoenixville, PA

Strangers at the Feast: A Novel by Jennifer Vanderbes
(Scribner, $26, 9781439166956)
"Oh, how family holidays can go wrong -- terribly wrong. Thanksgiving for the Olsons begins on a hopeful note, yet the reader feels a clear sense of impending doom. Anyone will be able to relate to the family dynamics of this classic American family in this familiar, yet disturbing novel. Vanderbes nails every character and each voice perfectly." -- Valerie Koehler, Blue Willow Bookshop, Houston, TX

The Typist: A Novel by Michael Knight
(Atlantic Monthly Press, $20, 9780802119506)
"This novel offers up for our consideration the lives of three boys during the American occupation of Japan -- two American soldiers with no heroic combat feats to their credit, and a Japanese boy attempting to adapt and better himself in an alien environment -- and the lifelong injuries their tours produced. It is a chapter of World War II that has gone largely unnoticed by books, movies and celebrations of remembrance, and yet has produced both casualties as well as stories of hope just the same." -- Simone Bratcher, Bookin' It!, Belmont, NC

The Homecoming Party by Carmine Abate
(Europa Editions, $15, 9781933372839)
"The Christmas bonfire, a communal effort held in the church courtyard, is the scene of an annual homecoming party in an Albanian-speaking village in Calabria. For Tullio, a victim of the crushing poverty of Southern Italy who is forced to seek work as a manual laborer in France where he leads an isolated life most of the year, it is a time to renew social ties with village friends and family, and to resume his paternal responsibilities. The bonfire is where Tullio and his son Marco tell their tales, share sorrows and frustrations, and cast off painful memories of the long absences. This Christmas, to mark Marco's passage to manhood, will be different." -- Darwin Ellis, Books on the Common, Ridgefield, CT

Zoo Story: Life in the Garden of Captives by Thomas French
(Hyperion, $24.99, 9781401323462)
"French takes us to Swaziland to witness the rescue of 11 elephants from certain death and their transport to zoos in Tampa and San Diego. In Tampa, where four of the elephants are placed, we become closely acquainted with the management and staff who work at Lowry Park Zoo. Both the animals and humans are unforgettable, and we learn of the age-old controversy over whether zoos truly provide education and conservation of species, or whether they exist solely for entertainment and earnings. My next visit to a zoo will be an entirely different experience having read this incredibly informative and controversial book." -- Sue Fleming, The King's English, Salt Lake City, UT

The August 2010 "Now in Paperback"

Day After Night by Anita Diamant (Scribner, 9780743299855, $15)

Generosity: An Enhancement by Richard Powers (Picador, 9780312429751, $15)

A Quiet Belief in Angels by R.J. Ellory (Overlook, 9781590203385, $14.95)

The Children’s Book by A.S. Byatt (Vintage, 9780307473066, $16.95)

Everything Matters! by Ron Currie, Jr. (Penguin, 9780143117513, $15)

Labor Day by Joyce Maynard (Harper Perennial, 9780061843419, $13.99)

A Happy Marriage by Rafael Yglesias (Scribner, 9781439102312, $16)

Border Songs by Jim Lynch (Vintage, 9780307456267, $15)

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind by William Kamkwamba and Bryan Mealer (Harper Perennial, 9780061730337, $14.99)

Goat Song by Brad Kessler (Scribner, 9781416561002, $14)

Bright-Sided by Barbara Ehrenreich (Picador, 9780312658854, $15)

Roll Around Heaven by Jessica Maxwell (Atria Books/Beyond Words, 9781582702377, $15)

The August 2010 Indie Next List Notables

(Featured in a downloadable flier and shelf-talkers on, beginning June 1)


Commuters by Emily Gray Tedrowe (Harper Perennial, 9780061859472, paper, $13.99)

The Doctor and the Diva by Adrienne McDonnell (Pamela Dorman Books/Viking, 9780670021888, $26.95)

Elegies for the Brokenhearted by Christie Hodgen (W.W. Norton, 9780393061406, $23.95)

The Good Psychologist by Noam Shpancer (Holt, 9780805092592, $24)

How to Be an American Housewife by Margaret Dilloway (Putnam, 9780399156373, $24.95)

Meeks by Julia Holmes (Small Beer Press, dist. Consortium, 9781931520652, paper, $16)

Memory Wall: Stories by Anthony Doerr (Scribner, 9781439182802, $24)

Outside the Ordinary World by Dori Ostermiller (Mira, 9780778328896, paper, $14.95)

Remedies by Kate Ledger (Berkley Trade, 9780425234488, paper, $15)

The Thieves of Manhattan by Adam Langer (Spiegel & Grau, 9781400068913, paper, $15)

This Must Be the Place by Kate Racculia (Holt, 9780805092301, $25)


Clandestine in Chile: The Adventures of Miguel Littin by Gabriel Garcia Marquez; Asa Zatz, translator (NYRB Classics, 9781590173404, paper, $14)

Composed: A Memoir by Rosanne Cash (Viking, 9780670021963, $26.95)

The Great Typo Hunt: Two Friends Changing the World, One Correction at a Time by Jeff Deck and Benjamin D. Herson (Harmony, 9780307591074, $23.99)

She Bets Her Life: A True Story of Gambling Addiction by Mary Sojourner (Seal Press, 9781580052986, paper, $17.95)

Twain’s Feast: Searching for America’s Lost Foods in the Footsteps of Samuel Clemens by Andrew Beahrs (Penguin Press, 9781594202599, $25.95)


Broken by Karin Slaughter (Delacorte, 9780385341974, $26)

The Koala of Death by Betty Webb (Poisoned Pen Press, 9781590587584, paper, $14.95)

Moscow Sting by Alex Dryden (Ecco, 9780061966842, $24.99)

Wanting Sheila Dead: A Gregor Demarkian Novel by Jane Haddam (Minotaur, 9780312380878, $25.99)