The March 2023 Indie Next List Preview

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Here are the 25 Indie Next List and 6 Now in Paperback picks on the March 2023 Indie Next List flier.

The March title list is also viewable as a collection on Edelweiss and on the Indie Next List page as an Excel file alongside PDFs for the month’s flier and shelf-talker templates. Learn more about ABA’s recent refresh for the Indie Next List program and visit Matchbook Marketing’s program page to sign up to send the free Indie Next List e-newsletter to customers.

Additionally, to mark the start of the new month, the February Indie Next List picks are available as a flier, along with past lists, on the Indie Next List page on      

The 25 March Indie Next List Picks

#1 Pick: I Have Some Questions for You: A Novel
By Rebecca Makkai
(Viking, 9780593490143, $28, Feb. 21, Fiction)

“Rebecca Makkai redefines the campus novel for our current times. This was deftly written with such a fresh perspective and clever deconstruction of a murder case, I walked around my apartment fully immersed, book in hand.”
—Kira Wizner, Merritt Bookstore, Millbrook, NY

Pineapple Street: A Novel
By Jenny Jackson
(Pamela Dorman Books, 9780593490693, $28, Mar. 7, Fiction)

“A wholly entertaining novel about a blue-blooded Brooklyn family and their reckoning with their privilege and wealth. There is an inevitable relatability to a dysfunctional family who is (mostly) trying their best in the world.”
—Courtney Flynn, Trident Booksellers & Café, Boston, MA

Weyward: A Novel
By Emelia Hart
(St. Martin’s Press, 9781250280800, $27.99, Mar. 7, Fiction)

“An alluring tale spanning 400 years in the lives of three interconnected women. The magical connection unfolds as they each try to break free of the men that want control and the constraints of their time. Feminist and heartbreaking.”
—Nissa Moody, Solid State Books, Washington, DC

The Crane Husband
By Kelly Barnhill
(Tordotcom, 9781250850973, $19.99, Feb. 28, Fiction)

“A gorgeous and imaginative retelling of The Crane Wife, Barnhill’s novella lives on the cusp of reality and fantasy like the fairytale it’s based on.”
—Abby Bennsky, Old Town Books, Alexandria, VA

The Writing Retreat: A Novel
By Julia Bartz
(Atria/Emily Bestler Books, 9781982199456, $27, Feb. 21, Thriller)

“This story takes ‘never meet your heroes’ to a whole new level. I loved the use of tension in the book, and how the author played with supernatural elements while still keeping the story grounded in reality. Twisty, dark, and even fun!”
—Ann Branson, Beach Books, Seaside, OR

Murder Your Employer: The McMasters Guide to Homicide
By Rupert Holmes
(Avid Reader Press/Simon & Schuster, 9781451648218, $28, Feb. 21, Mystery)

“Dastardly, devious, and utterly delightful! Welcome to The McMaster’s Conservatory for The Applied Arts, a unique school that teaches you to get away with murder. Prepare to be thoroughly entertained! A unique, original and fun read.”
—Maxwell Gregory, Madison Street Books, Chicago, IL

The Golden Spoon: A Novel
By Jessa Maxwell
(Atria Books, 9781668008003, $27, Mar. 7, Mystery)

“Imagine The Great British Baking Show with a splash of Agatha Christie murder mystique. Interesting characters, intriguing subplots, and a fun setting kept me turning the pages. This is a book I can put into the hands of any reader.”
—Gail Dickson, The Bookstore of Glen Ellyn, Glen Ellyn, IL

The Farewell Tour: A Novel
By Stephanie Clifford
(Harper, 9780063251137, $29.99, Mar. 7, Fiction)

“A fun, fictional bio of a country superstar, like Loretta Lynn and Dolly Parton, making her last tour due to health issues. A moving portrait of a woman trying to break through a patriarchal industry and the pratfalls she endured.”
—Gerard Villegas, Auntie’s Bookstore, Spokane, WA

The Last Tale of the Flower Bride: A Novel
By Roshani Chokshi
(William Morrow, 9780063206502, $30, Feb. 14, Fiction)

“The chills that I got finishing this book! At once a dream and a slow building nightmare, the story is rich and lush as any fairytale. Chokshi’s playful language pulls you into a present whose edges blur into myth and bittersweet yearning.”
—Jane Alice Van Doren, Rediscovered Books, Boise, ID

A Day of Fallen Night: A Roots of Chaos Novel
By Samantha Shannon
(Bloomsbury Publishing, 9781635577921, $35, Feb. 28, Fantasy)

“An unstoppable feminist force of magic and might. A Day of Fallen Night will have you burning through the pages like wyvern fire, leaving you wishing there was another 500 pages to devour.”
—Maris Herrington, McLean & Eakin Booksellers, Petoskey, MI

Hello Beautiful: A Novel
By Ann Napolitano
(The Dial Press, 9780593243732, $28, Mar. 14, Fiction)

“I loved this big-hearted story about family and acceptance, betrayal and loyalty. The issues that arise, and emotions they evoke, are relatable. We care about each character and their relationships. This will touch every heart!”
—Marcia Vanderford, Vanderford’s Books & Office Products, Sandpoint, ID

What Happened to Ruthy Ramirez: A Novel
By Claire Jiménez
(Grand Central Publishing, 9781538725962, $28, Mar. 7, Fiction)

“Jiménez’s debut is funny and moving. A Puerto Rican girl living in Staten Island, Ruthy, disappeared on the way home from school. Years later, her sisters think they’ve found her and plan to bring her home. I loved everything about this.”
—Rebecca Minnock, Murder By the Book, Houston, TX

The Foxglove King
By Hannah Whitten
(Orbit, 9780316434997, $29, Mar. 7, Fantasy)

“I could not get enough of The Foxglove King! Compulsively readable, Whitten’s lush, romantic fantasy is filled with deathly magic and delicious court intrigue. This is the perfect new read for fans of Sarah J. Maas and Holly Black.”
—Matilda McNeely, Little Shop of Stories, Decatur, GA

Enchantment: Awakening Wonder in an Anxious Age
By Katherine May
(Riverhead Books, 9780593329993, $26, Feb. 28, Self-Help)

“May writes with such magic; accurately capturing the collective feeling of grief and trauma while also sharing examples of moments of gratitude and wonder. I enjoyed every word of this book.”
—Margaret McCampbell, Reads & Company, Phoenixville, PA

The God of Endings: A Novel
By Jacqueline Holland
(Flatiron Books, 9781250856760, $29.99, Mar. 7, Fantasy)

“By the end of the first page, I knew I would follow this narrator anywhere, and I would do it again without hesitation. The suspense of how both storylines play out is perfect, the voice is persuasive and vivid. This is a novel to sink into.”
—Gwen Papp, Literati Bookstore, Ann Arbor, MI

Go as a River: A Novel
By Shelley Read
(Spiegel & Grau, 9781954118232, $28, Feb. 28, Fiction)

“Fast paced and descriptive, the words never felt wasted. Set in the harsh reality of 1940s life, a teenage girl’s forbidden love stirs a small Colorado town where loss, prejudice, and rage prevail. As beautiful as it is devastating.”
—Paula Frank, The Toadstool Bookshop, Nashua, NH

My Last Innocent Year: A Novel
By Daisy Alpert Florin
(Henry Holt and Co., 9781250857033, $27.99, Feb. 14, Fiction)

“I read this book in one sweeping motion. Florin’s writing is clean and precise but paints a wildly detailed image of the characters and all their flaws. It was a perfect balance of heartbreaking while still being a joy to read.”
—Emily Berg, Books & Books, Coral Gables, FL

The Adventures of Amina al-Sirafi: A Novel
By Shannon Chakraborty
(Harper Voyager, 9780062963505, $32, Feb. 28, Fantasy)

“I didn’t know I could love a book so much. Chakraborty gives us a pirate adventure with a charming and sarcastic female lead, the most lovable crew, and ancient magic. Sheer perfection from start to finish — this is a guaranteed five star read!”
—Stephanie Skees, The Novel Neighbor, Webster Groves, MO

Time’s Undoing: A Novel
By Cheryl A. Head
(Dutton, 9780593471821, $28, Feb. 28, Fiction)

Time’s Undoing is a first-rate story of racial injustice and redemption. Based on the author’s family history, this dual timeline story chronicles a Black man’s death in 1929 and his great-granddaughter’s efforts to uncover the truth in 2019.”
—Trish Brown, One More Page Books, Arlington, VA

Madame Restell: The Life, Death, and Resurrection of Old New York’s Most Fabulous, Fearless, and Infamous Abortionist
By Jennifer Wright
(Hachette Books, 9780306826795, $30, Feb. 28, History)

“This well-researched and entertainingly penned account of Madame Restell draws startling parallels between the 19th century and our own, and adds an important entry to the body of work about the ‘forgotten’ women who shaped our country.”
—Julie Schultz, This House of Books, Billings, MT

The Gospel of Orla
By Eoghan Walls
(Seven Stories Press, 9781644212820, $16.95, paperback, Mar. 7, Fiction)

“Somehow, The Gospel of Orla is simultaneously zany and sincere, tackling both parental loss and a whimsical, yet heart breaking, look at a post-Christianity Jesus. This is a triumphant debut for Walls and makes me excited for his next work.”
—Isaiah Scandrette, Folio Books, San Francisco, CA

The London Séance Society: A Novel
By Sarah Penner
(Park Row, 9780778387114, $30. Mar. 7, Fiction)

The London Séance Society proves that the sophomore novel can be just as explosive as the first! Penner weaves readers through the dark, mysterious streets of Paris and London in a fast-paced thrill ride. This book is a perfect escape!”
—Kelsey Jagneaux, Tombolo Books, St. Petersburg, FL

The Dig: A Novel
By Anne Burt
(Counterpoint, 9781640096042, $27, Mar. 7, Thriller)

“With a descriptive literary style, Burt keeps you engrossed as this family drama unfolds, based on their immigration history, adolescent awakenings, and social structures that bind them. This would be a great book club pick!”
—Tina Greene-Bevington, Bay Books, Suttons Bay, MI

Users: A Novel
By Colin Winnette
(Soft Skull, 9781593767372, $27, Feb. 21, Fiction)

“Wonder what the metaverse will be like? This novel gives a glimpse into one possible future, where users of virtual reality turn memories into ‘experiences’ anyone else can share. This story has stayed on my mind since I finished it.”
—Victoria Ford, Comma, a Bookshop, Minneapolis, MN

Scorched Grace: A Sister Holiday Mystery
By Margot Douaihy
(Gillian Flynn Books, 9781638930242, $27.95, Feb. 21, Thriller)

“After 33 years of bookselling, I can say I have not read a novel as original and shocking as Scorched Grace. She’s a (punk) nun like none other (bad pun, but true) resolved to solve a murder to protect her new community and her own choices.”
—Barbara Peters, The Poisoned Pen Bookstore, Scottsdale, AZ

The 6 Now in Paperback Titles

The Candy House: A Novel
By Jennifer Egan
(Scribner, 9781476716770, $17.99, Mar. 7, Fiction)

“Egan weaves together these seemingly disparate characters and storylines into a stunning ending. The Candy House is about family, connection, legacy, technology, and so much more. It is her best work yet.”
—Ariana Paliobagis, Country Bookshelf, Bozeman, MT

The Cat Who Saved Books: A Novel
By Sosuke Natsukawa, Louise Heal Kawai (Transl.)
(HarperVia, 9780063095731, $18.99, Mar. 14, Fiction)

The Cat Who Saved Books is a love letter to book lovers, championing the emotional impact that stories have in the hearts and lives of readers. Tiger adds a bonus charming and Ghibli-esque aesthetic to this thoughtful, tender novel.”
—Andrew King, Secret Garden Bookshop, Seattle, WA

City on Fire: A Novel
By Don Winslow
(William Morrow Paperbacks, 9780062851178, $18.99, Mar. 14, Thriller)

“Winslow’s latest lights a fuse on what is sure to be a stand out trilogy in modern crime writing. That he goes back to the classics gives it a strong foundation, but this is vintage Winslow through and through. I can’t wait for the follow up!”
—Jason Hafer, Reads & Company, Phoenixville, PA

The Four Winds: A Novel
By Kristin Hannah
(St. Martin's Griffin, 9781250178619, $18.99, Mar. 14, Fiction)

“A brilliantly woven story set during the Dust Bowl years on the High Plains of Texas, The Four Winds is a story of survival that inspires us to persist. Hannah extensively researched this agricultural phenomenon and its toll on communities.”
—Claudia Maceo, The Twig Book Shop, San Antonio, TX

In Love: A Memoir of Love and Loss
By Amy Bloom
(Random House Trade Paperbacks, 9780593243954, $18, Feb. 21, Memoir)

“Amy Bloom's memoir of falling in love with and supporting her husband through early Alzheimer’s is a memorable story of dying. Far from depressing, Bloom’s warm, funny, and human voice takes us to Switzerland on a powerful trip.”
—Diane Naughton, Bards Alley, Vienna, VA

One Italian Summer: A Novel
By Rebecca Serle
(Atria Books, 9781982166809, $17.99, Mar. 7, Fiction)

One Italian Summer is pure magic. Rebecca Serle marvelously creates a literary world that feels full and alive, like I can catch a flight with Katy and experience Italy alongside her. This treasure of a book is sure to delight readers.”
—Kaitlin Smith, Copperfield's Books, Healdsburg, CA