The August 2016 Indie Next List Preview

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The August Indie Next List flier, now on its way to stores in the IndieBound movement, features the month’s Indie Next Great Reads, Now in Paperback titles, and Revisit & Rediscover backlist favorites.

Beginning August 1, titles will be featured on downloadable fliers and shelf-talkers on and

The August Indie Next Great Reads

#1 Pick: Another Brooklyn: A Novel, by Jacqueline Woodson
(Amistad, 9780062359988, $22.99)
“National Book Award-winning author Jacqueline Woodson has crafted a beautiful, heart-wrenching novel of a young girl’s coming-of-age in Brooklyn. Effortlessly weaving poetic prose, Woodson tells the story of the relationships young women form, their yearning to belong, and the bonds that are created — and broken. Brooklyn itself is a vivid character in this tale — a place at first harsh, but one that becomes home and plays a role in each character’s future. Woodson is one of the most skilled storytellers of our day, and I continue to love and devour each masterpiece she creates!” —Nicole Yasinsky, The Booksellers at Laurelwood, Memphis, TN

Christodora: A Novel, by Tim Murphy
(Grove Press, 9780802125286, $27)
“Murphy uses Christodora House, an historic apartment building in the East Village of New York City, as the namesake and backdrop of his compelling debut novel. The story follows the lives of several residents over the course of four decades, expertly detailing the intersections of art and ambition, activism and loss, and the consequences of addiction and the devastation of the AIDS epidemic. I can think of no novel in recent memory in which I felt so drawn to its characters and so emotionally invested in the outcome of their lives.” —Shawn Donley, Powell’s Books, Portland, OR

Dark Matter: A Novel, by Blake Crouch
(Crown, 9781101904220, $26.99)
Dark Matter is equal parts science fiction, thriller, and theoretical self-examination, complete with an overarching love story. Crouch does a fantastic job of keeping readers grounded while traveling through multiple dimensions, and he offers introspection on how each of the life choices a person makes recreates that person in a new and profound way. I tore through this, waiting for — and finding — a spectacular conclusion. A must-read!” —Ed White, Hudson Booksellers, Marietta, GA

The Invisible Life of Ivan Isaenko: A Novel, by Scott Stambach
(St. Martin’s Press, 9781250081865, $25.99)
“Seventeen-year-old Ivan Isaenko has spent his entire life in a cloistered world, but he possesses a keen intellect and an understanding of humanity that far exceeds the confines of the Mazyr Hospital for Gravely Ill Children in Belarus. Severely physically handicapped due to radiation poisoning, Ivan has never had a friend beyond his caregivers at the hospital — until Polina is admitted. The two teens form a fast and indelible bond that will leave readers in awe of the tenacity of their commitment. Heartbreaking and awe-inspiring.” —Pamela Klinger-Horn, Excelsior Bay Books, Excelsior, MN

Textbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal: Not Exactly a Memoir, by Amy Krouse Rosenthal
(Dutton, 9781101984543, $27)
“This is the most fun and unique book I have held in my hands in a long time. It is a ‘non-linear memoir’ consisting of a quiz, random thoughts, poetry, essays, text message communications, family photos, and the captured moments of any given day. This textbook is an education in seeing the world through Rosenthal’s magical viewpoint — necessary for all who want to appreciate life’s little gifts.” —Kimberly Daniels, The Country Bookshop, Southern Pines, NC

The Woman in Cabin 10: A Novel, by Ruth Ware
(Gallery/Scout Press, 9781501132933, $26)
“When journalist Lo Blacklock sees someone throw a woman’s body over the side of a small cruise ship, it should be clear that a crime has been committed. The problem? No one is missing. This is far from the travel magazine assignment that brought Lo on board, but she can’t just give up. Something happened and she must find the answer. But can she do so without losing her own life? This is a fun read full of psychological thrills and twists that readers absolutely will not see coming.” —Linda Bond, Auntie’s Bookstore, Spokane, WA

The Secret Language of Stones: A Novel, by M.J. Rose
(Atria Books, 9781476778099, $25)
“World War I Paris is a dangerous place for the young witch Opaline Duplessi. Still in denial about the true extent of her powers and hopelessly in love with a man she can never have, Opaline becomes caught up in a Russian émigré’s plan to save a Romanov from Bolshevik spies on the windswept English coast. Magic and intrigue collide in this captivating follow-up to The Witch of Painted Sorrows.” —Paula Longhurst, The King’s English Bookshop, Salt Lake City, UT

Behind Closed Doors, by B.A. Paris
(St. Martin’s Press, 9781250121004, $25.99)
“Jack is charming and handsome, but underneath his cool exterior is a brutal psychopath who thrives on terrifying others. His wife, Grace, found out too late that he is a monster who seeks to control everything she does. Even her sister, Millie, a handicapped young woman who depends on Grace, is part of Jack’s vicious plan. Paris has crafted a riveting, intense tale that will keep readers on the edge of their seats until the last page.” —Stephanie Crowe, Page & Palette, Fairhope, AL

The Muse: A Novel, by Jessie Burton
(Ecco, 9780062409928, $27.99)
“Burton’s follow-up to The Miniaturist also takes place in the art world, but this time the settings alternate between London in the 1960s and pre-Civil War Spain in the 1930s. In 1967, a long-lost work by a dead Spanish painter turns up in London. Is it really an original Isaac Robles? Or is there a more complicated story behind the intriguing painting? A fun read with interesting meditations on the purpose and making of art.” —Susan Taylor, Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza, Albany, NY

Carousel Court: A Novel, by Joe McGinniss Jr.
(Simon & Schuster, 9781476791272, $26)
Carousel Court begins with the decline of a marriage as members of the Maguire family find themselves in the suburbs of Los Angeles, struggling to hold onto their last vestiges of power to control what feels like the free fall of their lives. Examining the paradox of both our over-connected and disconnected world, McGinniss’ clear voice is beautifully balanced with the dark desperation he reveals as the all-too-common silent partner of our lives. This is a powerful book that should not be missed!” —Luisa Smith, Book Passage, Corte Madera, CA

Mr. Eternity: A Novel, by Aaron Thier
(Bloomsbury, 9781632860934, $26)
“Clever, smart, and brilliantly comic as it deals with our humanity, our resilient spirit, and the tremendous challenges that demand our cooperative attention, Mr. Eternity is a delight. Who can resist the tale of a 560-year-old American man named Daniel Defoe, who has much wisdom to offer the world and its people. This genre-bending page-turner is a blast to read!” —Ed Conklin, Chaucer’s Books, Santa Barbara, CA

The Bones of Paradise: A Novel, by Jonis Agee
(William Morrow, 9780062413475, $25.99)
“Agee presents the saga of the Bennett family in the years following the massacre at Wounded Knee. Formed and altered by the unforgiving Nebraska Sandhills, the Bennetts are a rough, conflicted lot, and their story is filled with secrets, lies, betrayals, vengeance, and murder. Agee evokes a lost world and time without sentiment, but with a beautiful subtlety interrupted only by the true horrors of well-researched fact. A must-read for lovers of Western literature, family sagas, and historical fiction.” —Amanda Hurley, Inkwood Books, Tampa, FL

Riverine: A Memoir From Anywhere But Here, by Angela Palm
(Graywolf Press, 9781555977467, trade paper, $16)
“Haunting and surprising yet immediately relatable, Palm’s striking memoir sinks its roots deep into readers and holds fast. Everything ordinary, Palm reveals, is extraordinary — tragic, profound, amusing, brutal — when examined up close. In reflecting on her own formative years, growing up ‘between points on the map’ in small-town Indiana, Palm paints a measured, unforgettable portrait of the forces that break us free of our origins and those that inevitably call us back.” —Sam Kaas, Village Books, Bellingham, WA

The Book That Matters Most: A Novel, by Ann Hood
(W.W. Norton & Company, 9780393241655, $25.95)
“Hood offers the parallel stories of Ava, who is struggling to build a new life after the end of a long marriage, and her daughter, Maggie, living in Paris and descending into addiction. Ava is invited to join a book club whose members each suggest the book that matters most to them. In Ava’s case, a book remembered from her childhood leads to the unraveling of family secrets and a chance to move forward without old sorrows. Hood is a master at exploring the fine line between love and pain.” —Jenny Stroyeck, The Homer Bookstore, Homer, AK

I Will Send Rain: A Novel, by Rae Meadows
(Henry Holt & Company, 9781627794268, $26)
“As I read I Will Send Rain, I was transported to the West of the 1930s as the Dust Bowl storms began. Annie Bell is struggling to keep her home, body, and family free of the layers of dust that reappear as fast as they are wiped clean. Her husband has constant dreams of rain; her teenage daughter is blinded by love; her young son suffers from dust pneumonia; and now an admirer is forcing Annie to question her own ethics and being. I was moved by the simultaneous longing and complacency that make this a beautiful and powerful story.” —Lori Fazio, R.J. Julia Booksellers, Madison, CT

Half Wild: Stories, by Robin MacArthur
(Ecco, 9780062444394, $24.99) 
“MacArthur’s debut story collection is set in the hilly backcountry of southern Vermont — a rural landscape of half-abandoned farms and double-wide trailers, but also one of immense natural beauty and wildness. Her characters hew close to this land — even those who have left cannot help but return. These are beautifully drawn portraits of people who, despite poverty and decay, remain vibrantly alive to their world and to the power of memory. I cannot wait to read more from this author!” —Peter Sherman, Wellesley Books, Wellesley, MA

The Summer That Melted Everything: A Novel, by Tiffany McDaniel
(St. Martin’s Press, 9781250078063, $25.99)
“There are hundreds of coming-of-age stories, but the one told in The Summer That Melted Everything is unique. In the summer of 1984, a series of disturbing events in Breathed, Ohio, are attributed to the arrival of a 13-year-old boy named Sal who claims to be the devil. Gossip and superstitions, exacerbated by the sweltering heat, turn the villagers against Sal. Only the family of the local prosecutor welcomes the boy, who is befriended by their son, Fielding. McDaniel offers an original meditation on what is right and wrong, good and evil, in a magical, heart-wrenching, and unforgettable novel.” —Pierre Camy, Schuler Books & Music, Grand Rapids, MI

The City Baker’s Guide to Country Living: A Novel, by Louise Miller
(Pamela Dorman Books/Viking, 9781101981207, $26)
“This charming debut follows big-city baker Olivia Rawlings as she flees her cushy Boston job for small-town New England after accidentally setting her dessert — and the building — on fire. Along the way, she finds new friends, family, and a sense of belonging. Perfect for fans of Kitchens of the Great Midwest and Sarah Addison Allen, this is a comforting, big-hearted book that will enchant readers with its delightfully quirky characters, beautiful setting, and mouthwatering descriptions of baked goods.” —Rebecca Speas, One More Page, Arlington, VA

Arrowood: A Novel, by Laura McHugh
(Spiegel & Grau, 9780812996395, $27)
“When her father dies, Arden inherits Arrowood, her childhood home. The little town of Keokuk, Iowa, has seen more prosperous days, as has Arrowood, which has stood vacant for years. Arden decides to move back to Keokuk and re-establish the search for her two-year-old twin siblings who disappeared 20 years earlier under her watch. With the help of Ben, her childhood friend and a longtime resident of Keokuk, Arden re-examines the disappearance, hoping to not only find the twins, but also make peace with her own deep-rooted secrets.” —Brenda Jordan, Murder By the Book, Houston, TX

The Altogether Unexpected Disappearance of Atticus Craftsman: A Novel, by Mamen Sánchez
(Atria Books, 9781501118852, $24)
“Full of quirky characters, passionate lovers, and literary references, this novel takes the reader on a playful romp through both Spain and the human soul. You know how a sprinkle of salt makes chocolate taste sweeter? This book seems all the more timeless for the dashes of modernity throughout — the Spanish detective who references CSI, the wedding band that plays Lady Gaga — all against the intoxicating backdrop of Madrid and Granada. Delightful!” —Nichole McCown, Bookshop Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, CA

Now in Paperback

Along the Infinite Sea: A Novel, by Beatriz Williams (Berkley, 9780425278994, $16)
Recommended in hardcover by Dell Marie Swearer, Bluebird Books, Hutchinson, KS

Barefoot to Avalon: A Brother’s Story, by David Payne (Grove Press, 9780802125170, $16)
Recommended in hardcover by Sharon Wheeler, Purple Crow Books, Hillsborough, NC

City on Fire: A Novel, by Garth Risk Hallberg (Vintage, 9780804172950, $17)
Recommended in hardcover by Melinda Powers, Bookshop Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, CA

Dragonfish: A Novel, by Vu Tran (W.W. Norton & Company, 9780393352870, $15.95)
Recommended in hardcover by Sherri Gallentine, Vroman’s Bookstore, Pasadena, CA

House of Thieves: A Novel, by Charles Belfoure (Sourcebooks Landmark, 9781492633082, $15.99)
Recommended in hardcover by Stephanie Crowe, Page & Palette, Fairhope, AL

The Japanese Lover: A Novel, by Isabel Allende (Atria Books, 9781501116995, $16)
Recommended in hardcover by Anna Eklund, University Book Store, Seattle, WA

Missing Pieces: A Novel, by Heather Gudenkauf (MIRA, 9780778319313, $15.99)
Recommended in hardcover by Nancy Simpson-Brice, The Book Vault, Oskaloosa, IA

The Nature of the Beast: A Chief Inspector Gamache Novel, by Louise Penny (Minotaur, 9781250022103, $15.99)
Recommended in hardcover by Sarah Pease, Buttonwood Books & Toys, Cohasset, MA

The Tsar of Love and Techno: Stories, by Anthony Marra (Hogarth, 9780770436452, $16)
Recommended in hardcover by Cody Morrison, Square Books, Oxford, MS

Revisit & Rediscover

The Death and Life of Great American Cities, by Jane Jacobs
(Vintage, 9780679741954, $16.95) Originally published in hardcover in 1961
“I only read The Death and Life of Great American Cities in the ’90s, but it changed my experience of cities, and so my world. Jacobs’ critique of 1950s urban renewal and her analysis of what makes cities successful were revelatory and eventually changed city planning. I cheered when she won her epic battle with Robert Moses to stop plans for a four-lane highway through New York City’s Washington Square Park with the help of ‘nobody but a bunch of mothers,’ as Moses called them. Clearly, we are all in her debt.” —Carole Horne, Harvard Book Store, Cambridge, MA

Light Years, by James Salter
(Vintage, 9780679740735, $16) Originally published in hardcover in 1975
“When I first read Light Years in the early ’80s it was like discovering an instant classic. Thirty-five years later, I found myself underlining passages, revisiting old friends. We meet Nedra and Viri in 1958 in New York — ‘conjugal life in its purest, most generous form’ — as Salter observes the dissolution of a perfect marriage. Scenes fill with friends and family at dinner parties in book-lined apartments and country houses. One is left with a deep sense of melancholy, as Light Years is as bittersweet as it is intensely satisfying.” —Melanie Fleishman, Arcadia Books, Spring Green, WI

The Ninemile Wolves, by Rick Bass
(Mariner, 9780618263028, $13.95) Originally published in hardcover in 1992
“A skilled and astute nature writer as well as a fine prose stylist, Bass is the perfect narrator for this provocative, profound, and poignant story of the reintroduction of wolves into Montana. With sympathy for the rangers, the ranchers, and especially the wolves themselves, Bass brings all of his skills as an expert fiction writer and naturalist to the interwoven inhabited landscape of Montana. His empathy for the wolves and evocation of their lives is astounding and is matched by his rendering of the perceptions of the rangers who study and live alongside them. This is a testimony to the possibility of cohabitation of human, wolf, and the rest of the wild world.” —John Evans, DIESEL: A Bookstore, Santa Monica, CA