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Bookmarks Festival of Books & Authors

This playlist features books by authors who will be featured at our 16th annual Festival of Books & Authors will be September 23-26, 2021 in downtown Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Visit bookmarksnc.org/festival to learn more!

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Fates and Furies

A Novel

By Lauren Groff
Narrated by: Will Damron & Julia Whelan
Length: 14 hours 3 minutes

Fates and Furies

“It didn’t take long for me to fall in love with this book. It’s the kind of novel where I don’t mind if nothing happens, because the prose itself is gorgeous enough to sink into. But plenty does happen in this portrait of a lifelong marriage, seen first from Lotto’s point of view and then from Mathilde’s. The many plaudits and plentiful praise for this book are, in my opinion, entirely justified.”

East City Bookshop image Claire, East City Bookshop
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Florida

By Lauren Groff
Narrated by: Lauren Groff
Length: 7 hours 59 minutes

Florida

“After wowing readers (former President Barack Obama included) with 2015’s Fates and Furies, Lauren Groff returns with a collection of stories just as wise and meticulously constructed. Within the sun-kissed, palmetto-strewn swampland of Groff’s Florida, we encounter a pair of abandoned sisters, anxious mothers, and a woman being pushed to the edge. Looking inward and out, Groff examines the lives of her characters with a surveyor’s eye, capturing the sense of dread and desire that pervades their existence. Floridais an exploration of time and place, both sensual and terrifying, and seems to me both timely and timeless.”

BookPeople image Uriel Perez, BookPeople
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Matrix

A Novel

By Lauren Groff
Narrated by: Adjoa Andoh
Length: 8 hours 51 minutes

If you enjoyed Hamnet, then you’ll love Matrix.

“Absolutely amazing. The audio book is perfectly narrated by Adjoa Andoh. Her singular voice brings each of the characters to life, channeling their personalities, quirks, accents, etc. Marvelous job. Powerful and elegantly written by Groff. I loved this book so much I am tempted to start it all over again.”

Buttonwood Books and Toys image Kristine, Buttonwood Books and Toys
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The Love Hypothesis

By Ali Hazelwood
Narrated by: Callie Dalton
Length: 11 hours 8 minutes

If you enjoyed The Kiss Quotient, then you’ll love The Love Hypothesis.

“Olive is a scientist. Olive is also not a dater. She dated a guy named Jeremy, but that ended because 1) she didn’t really care and 2) she saw sparks fly between him and her BFF. Olive wants her best friend to be happy and decides to kiss a random guy to prove that she has moved on. The problem is, the random guy she kisses turns out to be none other than the known asshole professor, Dr. Adam Carlsen. Mortified, Olive apologies, but it’s not long before everyone finds out and spreads the rumor that they are dating. As Olive tries to put a stop to it, she realizes with Adam, that both can gain something from a fake dating situation. Thus, they move forward with rules and an end date in mind. But what happens when Olive starts to see a softer side of Adam? One who buys her pumpkin spice lattes and gives her such encouragement regarding her science? Also, he is pretty gorgeous. Can Olive really keep this up? Or will it implode before their end goal? This book was such a surprise that had me curled up in bed for hours. The details, the character development, and the intensity of written emotion had me feeling like I had been wrecked and then put back together, only wanting more.”

Vroman's Bookstore image Jen, Vroman's Bookstore
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My Best Friend’s Exorcism

A Novel

By Grady Hendrix
Narrated by: Emily Woo Zeller
Length: 10 hours 11 minutes

A heartwarming story of friendship and demonic possession

The year is 1988. High school sophomores Abby and Gretchen have been best friends since the fourth grade. But after an evening of skinny dipping goes disastrously wrong, Gretchen begins to act … different. She’s moody. She’s irritable. And bizarre incidents keep happening whenever she’s...

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Paperbacks from Hell

The Twisted History of '70s and '80s Horror Fiction

By Grady Hendrix
Narrated by: Timothy Andres Pabon
Length: TBA

Take a tour through the horror paperback novels of two iconic decades ... if you dare. Hear shocking plot summaries that invoke devil worship, satanic children, and haunted real estate! Horror author and vintage paperback book collector Grady Hendrix offers killer commentary and witty insight on these trashy thrillers that tried so hard to be... Read more »

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The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires

By Grady Hendrix
Narrated by: Bahni Turpin
Length: 13 hours 48 minutes

The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires

“I don’t know about everyone else, but I, for one, am really excited that vampires are making a comeback. I think they’re such a fun trope in pretty much every genre, and this was no exception. True to the Grady Hendrix style, this book was the perfect campy, slightly off-kilter, and moderately gory suburban horror story I didn’t know I needed.”

Brilliant Books Audio image Kendall, Brilliant Books Audio
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The Final Girl Support Group

By Grady Hendrix
Narrated by: Adrienne King
Length: 13 hours 49 minutes

The Final Girl Support Group

“What if gruesome murders like that of I Know What You Did Last Summer, Scream, or The Texas Chain Saw Massacre actually took place? What then happens afterward to the girls who survive the ridiculous combination of crazy guy, improvised weapon, and spooky setting? Nearly 2 decades after their respective brushes with death, these “final girls” still meet in an unamusing church basement in hopes of moving on. But when one of their own ends up dead, it’s possible their pasts have finally come for them. The Final Girl Support Group is a frenzied ride through horror movie tropes come to life. Fans of ‘80s and ‘90s slasher films will get a kick out of this satire mixed with realistic characters and topped off with ample servings of crazy. Grady Hendrix has outdone himself with this novel that runs both hard and fast, as well as realistic and over the top. An entertaining commentary on the slasher genre, through and through.”

Mysterious Galaxy Books image Nicholas, Mysterious Galaxy Books
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Little Gods

A Novel

By Meng Jin
Narrated by: Karen Huie, Francois Chau & Emily Woo Zeller
Length: 9 hours 30 minutes

“Expands the future of the immigrant novel.” – Gish Jen, New York Times Book Review

“Spectacular and emotionally polyphonic…That Jin has managed to craft such an intimate, emotionally complex story is an awesome achievement. That she managed to do it in her debut novel, doubly so.” – Omar El Akkad, BookPage (starred review)

On the night of...

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We Are Not Broken

By George M Johnson
Narrated by: George M Johnson
Length: 4 hours 3 minutes

George M. Johnson, activist and bestselling author ofAll Boys Aren't Blue, returns with a striking memoir that celebrates Black boyhood and brotherhood in all its glory.

This is the vibrant story of George, Garrett, Rall, and Rasul -- four children raised by Nanny, their fiercely devoted grandmother. The boys hold one another close through early... Read more »

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All Boys Aren't Blue

A Memoir-Manifesto

By George M. Johnson
Narrated by: George M. Johnson
Length: 5 hours 11 minutes

This program is read by the author.

In a series of personal essays, prominent journalist and LGBTQIA+ activist George M. Johnson explores his childhood, adolescence, and college years in New Jersey and Virginia. From the memories of getting his teeth kicked out by bullies at age five, to flea marketing with his loving grandmother, to his first...

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I'm Not Dying with You Tonight

By Kimberly Jones & Gilly Segal
Narrated by: Channie Waites & Brittany Pressley
Length: 5 hours 19 minutes

I'm Not Dying with You Tonight

“I loved the dual narration and the way these two young women bond during a very traumatic night, and the way their characters really seem to grow. I've read whole series that showed less character development in 20 some odd books! Segal and Jones are the perfect pair, and I can't remember reading a novel written by two authors that flowed and gelled as much as this one - the chemistry between the writers adds to the chemistry of the story. This is a total binge-read or binge-listen (I recommend both)! ”

Fountain Bookstore image Kate, Fountain Bookstore
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Why We Fly

By Kimberly Jones & Gilly Segal
Narrated by: Suzy Jackson & Jasmin Walker
Length: 6 hours 44 minutes

From the New York Times bestselling authors of I'm Not Dying with You Tonight comes a story about friendship, privilege, sports, and protest. With a rocky start to senior year, cheerleaders and lifelong best friends Eleanor and Chanel have a lot on their minds. Eleanor is still in physical therapy months after a serious concussion from a... Read more »

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The Only Good Indians

By Stephen Graham Jones
Narrated by: Shaun Taylor-Corbett
Length: 8 hours 37 minutes

The Only Good Indians

“I loved this book. Jones has a unique narrative voice, allowing ‘the entity’ to step in and take over unexpectedly, amping up the horror. Also, each character has a distinct voice that brings them to life. Jones combines the culture and traditions of the Blackfeet and Crow people with the social truths of their contemporary life. It is refreshingly different from any other horror novel I’ve read. This book is gruesome and honestly scary. I couldn’t put it down.”

Buttonwood Books and Toys image Kristine Jelstrom-Hamill, Buttonwood Books and Toys
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My Heart Is a Chainsaw

By Stephen Graham Jones
Narrated by: Cara Gee
Length: 12 hours 25 minutes

If you enjoyed The Final Girl Support Group, then you’ll love My Heart Is a Chainsaw.

“I love, love, love Stephen Graham Jones and this latest is no exception. An incredible homage to slasher films, this book is perfect for any horror fan. And the audio is AMAZING! Cara Gee gives voice to Jade in such a way that I honestly can't imagine anyone else reading this now. It's an absolute pleasure to listen to her read this!”

BookBar image Becky, BookBar
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Heavy

An American Memoir

By Kiese Laymon
Narrated by: Kiese Laymon
Length: 6 hours 17 minutes

Heavy

“Telling the truth has always been a radical and political act, but Kiese Laymon writes in Heavy with a rare, vulnerable unity of personal urgency and political clarity. This is a story about how our country’s lies and thefts weigh heavily on the hearts and souls of its black mothers and sons. About how dishonesty about white supremacy, money, sex, and violence threads through our most intimate relationships and causes us to become strangers to ourselves. If Heavy is about lies, it is also fundamentally about the redemptive power of truth, stories, language, and joy. If there’s a way out of the loneliness of being human in a country that does not value or support humanity, Laymon suggests, it is in the connection we find in the words we toss to one another, like lifelines, like laughter.”

Charis Books & More image E.R. Anderson, Charis Books & More
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Long Division

By Kiese Laymon
Narrated by: Sean Crisden
Length: 7 hours 41 minutes

Long Division

“Was life so different in 1964, 1985, 2013? This life-changing, time-traveling book within a book that explores the struggle of being a Black 14 year old in Mississippi. Laymon highlights the themes that matter most (family, love, the written word) and the racism that permeates the South - it never really goes away as the years go on, it just takes on different forms in its various cycles. This book is beautiful, thought provoking, and absolutely necessary.”

Avid Bookshop image Christy, Avid Bookshop
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The Thousand Crimes of Ming Tsu

By Tom Lin
Narrated by: Feodor Chin
Length: 9 hours 37 minutes

The Thousand Crimes of Ming Tsu

“A raucous romp through a nearly lawless post-Civil War American West. Ming Tsu’s story is captivating and impossible to put down; the cast of characters is just too unique to forget or dismiss. A blood-crusted gem of a tale.”

Flyleaf Books image Jamie Fiocco, Flyleaf Books
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The Lost Book of the Grail

A Novel

By Charlie Lovett
Narrated by: Charles Armstrong
Length: 10 hours 52 minutes

Arthur Prescott is happiest when surrounded by the ancient manuscripts of the Barchester Cathedral library, nurturing his obsession with the Holy Grail and researching his perennially unfinished guidebook to the medieval cathedral. But when Bethany Davis arrives in Barchester to digitize the library's manuscripts, Arthur's tranquility is broken....

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Escaping Dreamland

A Novel

By Charlie Lovett
Narrated by: Mike Lenz
Length: 12 hours 39 minutes

Robert Parrish’s childhood obsession with series books like the Hardy Boys and Tom Swift inspired him to become an author. Just as his debut novel becomes a bestseller, his relationship with his girlfriend, Rebecca, begins to fall apart. Robert realizes he must confront his secret demons by fulfilling a youthful promise to solve a mystery...

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