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The Indie Next List

With new audiobooks added each month, the Indie Next List is drawn from bookseller-recommended favorite handsells and epitomizes the heart and soul of passionate bookselling. Independent booksellers are and have always been discoverers of the next big thing, the next great read, the next bestseller, and the next undiscovered gem. The audiobook titles below have recently appeared on the list.

The Beekeeper of Aleppo

A Novel
By Christy Lefteri
Narrated by Art Malik /  8 hours 42 minutes

The Beekeeper of Aleppo

“Provocative and intense, this harrowing story of Syrian war refugees will take you on an emotional journey. This book took me well beyond the headlines and touched my soul. Perhaps its greatest strength is Lefteri’s ability to make this unquestionably horrific reality accessible. You will feel an aching need to turn the page, and then you’ll need to share this novel with others. I look forward to putting it into the hands of many readers — we need to see beyond the headlines.”

Let's Play Books Bookstore image Kirsten Hess, Let's Play Books Bookstore
Price:

$24.50 USD

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The Secrets We Kept

A novel
By Lara Prescott
Narrated by Carlotta Brentan, Cynthia Farrell, Mozhan Marnò & Various /  10 hours 55 minutes

The Secrets We Kept

“This perfect historical novel is made of the most alluring ingredients. First, a divine and doomed love affair between Russian author Boris Pasternak and his muse and secretary, Olga Ivinskaya, a woman immortalized in Pasternak’s epic novel Doctor Zhivago, which was banned in Russia for more than 30 years. Second, two American women typists working for CIA and their forbidden love story in the midst of the Cold War and the witch hunt against homosexuals. Lara Prescott brilliantly portrays how a timeless novel like Doctor Zhivago can change course of history. After I finished reading The Secrets We Kept, I pressed the book against my chest, as if I could hear the lovers’ hearts still beating.”

Aggie Zivaljevic image Aggie Zivaljevic, Kepler's Books
Price:

$31.50 USD

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The Chestnut Man

A Novel
By Soren Sveistrup
Narrated by Peter Noble /  15 hours 8 minutes

The Chestnut Man

“This is the thriller of the year! From the creator of the Scandinavian mini-series The Killing, The Chestnut Man is an unbelievably fast-paced and exciting page-turner. I literally had trouble putting it down so I could go to sleep! A serial killer is on the loose, a cold case kidnapping is brought back to life, and a politician is attacked from all sides. This is the kind of book Thomas Harris would write, and it’s one of the best-plotted mysteries in a long time. What a wonderful group of vivid characters and what a ride! Whew!”

An Unlikely Story image William Carl, An Unlikely Story
Price:

$5.74 USD

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Dominicana

A Novel
By Angie Cruz
Narrated by Coral Peña /  10 hours 12 minutes

Dominicana

“Angie Cruz is a beautiful writer with a powerful voice, and readers of Julia Alvarez and Sandra Cisneros will greatly enjoy this book! Dominicana is a riveting story about family, womanhood, and what it means to be an immigrant. Ana Cancion, who’s only 15, leaves her home behind for a new life in New York City with her soon-to-be husband, Juan Ruiz. Big lights, tall buildings, and a bright future constitute the promise of a new beginning. However, upon Ana’s arrival, her fate untangles into something unexpected. It’ll be really hard to forget these characters and the realness in their heartache. Throughout these pages, I fell in and out of love, I laughed, I cried, and I was deeply moved.”

Books & Books image Cristina Lebron, Books & Books
Price:

$31.04 USD

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The Ten Thousand Doors of January

By Alix E. Harrow
Narrated by January LaVoy /  12 hours 20 minutes

The Ten Thousand Doors of January

“This lovely, magical book is a coming-of-age story that blends the best qualities of the adventure stories of the early 20th century with some thoroughly modern sensibilities. January Scaller is an almost-orphan in the early 1900s, the unlikely ward of a rich collector of antiquities who employs her father to travel the world discovering treasures for his collections. When she discovers that she has the ability to open doors into other worlds, she finds a myriad of other civilizations, some beautiful, some terrifying, where the color of her skin and her gender don't matter the way they do in her own world. But her discovery threatens everything she believes about her life, her family and herself. The Ten Thousand Doors of January features beautiful writing and heart-stopping action. The perfect crossover novel, it will appeal equally to teens and adults alike. And January LaVoy's talented narration makes the story leap from the page. It's an immensely satisfying book!”

Inklings Bookshop image Emily, Inklings Bookshop
Price:

$29.88 USD

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The Whisper Man

A Novel
By Alex North
Narrated by Christopher Eccleston /  9 hours 38 minutes

The Whisper Man

“A creepy, sinister, can’t-put-it-down story of a town that survives and then relives the crimes of a child serial killer. For those who love psychological thrillers (with the absence of gore but plenty of plot twists and turns), The Whisper Man is a grand ride into the minds of those who kill and those who are victims. You’ll find yourself looking over your shoulder when reading this book. Don’t stand too close to an open window...”

Maria’s Bookshop image Helen Gregory, Maria’s Bookshop
Price:

$31.04 USD

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The Ungrateful Refugee

What Immigrants Never Tell You
By Dina Nayeri
Narrated by Dina Nayeri /  10 hours 33 minutes

The Ungrateful Refugee

“At a time when some people aim to terrify us with stories about the intentions of those who seek our help, this book brings a timely voice to illustrate what drives people to endure monumental hardships in order to have a chance to reach safety. An engrossing and powerful book that reveals an infrequently heard perspective on the concept of charity, giving, and receiving, The Ungrateful Refugee makes us look at ourselves and our actions as well as those who receive our acts of ‘kindness.’”

Becky Garcia image Becky Garcia, Malvern Books
Price:

$24.99 USD

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After the Flood

A Novel
By Kassandra Montag
Narrated by Hillary Huber /  12 hours 59 minutes

After the Flood

“A gripping story of one mother’s harrowing journey to survive a flooded earth and save her daughters from the dangers that surround them. Life after the great flood is treacherous, and lethal groups of raiders steal food, medicine, and children, killing those who would stand in their way. With flawed, relatable characters, After the Flood is a real thought-provoker. It demands you ask yourself: What would I do to survive? This passionate tale of survival and determination is not one to miss.”

Kelli O'Malley image Kelli O'Malley, Boswell Book Company
Price:

$34.49 USD

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Bloomland

By John Englehardt
Narrated by Charlie Thurston /  6 hours 42 minutes

Bloomland

“Englehardt’s stunning debut is not for the faint of heart; within the first few pages, a shooting occurs in the library of a fictional southern college. But the story is less about this horrific event than it is about the period leading up to it, and what happens to three different people — a student, a professor, and the shooter himself — in the aftermath. In prose that is vivid, specific, and wildly original, Englehardt shows how grief, disillusionment, and, in some cases, resilience take his characters’ lives in surprising directions. This is SO good.”

RoscoeBooks image Erika VanDam, RoscoeBooks
Price:

$22.99 USD

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Who Are You, Calvin Bledsoe?

A Novel
By Brock Clarke
Narrated by Peter Berkrot /  7 hours 47 minutes

Who Are You, Calvin Bledsoe?

“Brock Clarke is a genius. His writing is consistently brilliant and stylish, which makes the quiet moments of human understanding even more striking. I LOVE this book — it is unexpected (like all his work — how can that be?), surprising, and profoundly moving. Fans of Jim Shepard and George Saunders will love Clarke and his new book about a middle-aged man whose discovery of a secret aunt (is she a spy? a fake? his mom? crazy?) leads him across Europe in pursuit of... well, he isn’t quite sure yet. I laughed out loud, I chortled, I snickered quietly, I gasped. I can see putting this book into the hands of fans of Less by Andrew Sean Greer and Where’d You Go Bernadette— readers who like to be surprised.”

Newtonville Books image Mary Cotton, Newtonville Books
Price:

$22.99 USD

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Tidelands

The Fairmile Series: Book #1
By Philippa Gregory
Narrated by Louise Brealey /  15 hours 29 minutes

Tidelands

“A lifelong fan of historical fiction, Tidelands captured the essence of the time period without the glamour of the palaces and opulence of the court. The relationships that Gregory portrays are deep, timid, wounded by society, yet infused with the hope of a happier life. You will fall in love with Alinor's fierce protection as a mother, dreamy essence as a lover, and refusal degraded as a woman. Tidelands surprised me at every turn and left me expectant for the next in the series.”

Buxton Books image Joanie, Buxton Books
Price:

$27.59 USD

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The Nickel Boys

A Novel
By Colson Whitehead
Narrated by JD Jackson & Colson Whitehead /  6 hours 45 minutes

The Nickel Boys

“Well written and informative book based on the real story of a reform school in Florida that operated for over one hundred years. The novel is rich in detail and plot twists and has a surprise gut wrenching ending. ”

HearthFire Books and Treats image Mollie, HearthFire Books and Treats
Price:

$24.50 USD

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Hollow Kingdom

By Kira Jane Buxton
Narrated by Robert Petkoff /  10 hours 10 minutes

Hollow Kingdom

“We need more heroes like S.T. — a foul-mouthed, idealistic, moral crow with unquenchable courage — and his sidekick, a befuddled bloodhound. Kira Jane Buxton speaks crow, gull, dog, housecat, and owl with such fluency and poetry that I could not put this book down. Her vision of the zombie apocalypse is a strange and wonderful journey I want to take again and again. I really can’t think of another current novel that conveys such humor, joy, sorrow, and hope so beautifully. Thank you for restoring my faith that this world may live on.”

River Lights Bookstore image Dena Kurt, River Lights Bookstore
Price:

$29.88 USD

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Never Have I Ever

A Novel
By Joshilyn Jackson
Narrated by Joshilyn Jackson /  12 hours 55 minutes

Never Have I Ever

“Joshilyn Jackson is a masterful storyteller! I is a rare thing in my audio adventures, to find an author who can write AND narrate with equal ability, but Joshilyn Jackson is amazing on both fronts. Somewhere between a purring cat and a slythering snake, Joshilyn's silky voice pulls the reader so deep into this cat and mouse thriller as to almost be physically uncomfortable. This is the type of audio book that will find the listener missing an exit, staying up way too late, or completely losing track of what they were doing.”

Anderson's Bookshop image Mary, Anderson's Bookshop
Price:

$34.49 USD

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The Lager Queen of Minnesota

A Novel
By J. Ryan Stradal
Narrated by Judith Ivey /  11 hours 12 minutes

The Lager Queen of Minnesota

“A Minnesota family grounded in farming, beer, and award-winning pies is split for decades when one of two sisters inherits the farm. Helen and Edith — whose stories author J. Ryan Stradal effectively weaves together — stop speaking, while one’s fortunes soar and the other’s plummet. When a woman of the next generation has a chance at success, she may also reunite the Calder family. Stradal brings the heartland to the page with warmth, humor, and plenty of hops-inspired lore.”

Book Passage image Cheryl McKeon, Book Passage
Price:

$28.00 USD

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Things You Save in a Fire

A Novel
By Katherine Center
Narrated by Therese Plummer /  9 hours 36 minutes

Things You Save in a Fire

“I enjoyed Katherine Center's last book, "How To Walk Away" so naturally, I was excited to see that she had a new one out. Center's new novel, "Things You Save In A Fire" was equally entertaining. Katherine Center has a unique writing style - she manages to present full-color characters in a story which has a healthy dose of humor. It is the perfect recipe for a delightful novel. The book revolves around Cassie, a firefighter in Austin, Texas. Her estranged Mother reaches out to her and asks her to and live with her for a year at her home in Massachusetts. Her Mother is ill and needs her help. Cassie agrees and is transferred to a fire station outside Boston. Cassie's new station is chock-full of lovable characters and that's when the fun begins. Btw... Cassie even finds love. "Things To Save In A Fire" is a light read but does have depth. I found myself chuckling as well as sniffling through the pages. The narration gets an A+. This book would be a great addition to your long walks or car rides.”

Buttonwood Books and Toys image Melinda, Buttonwood Books and Toys
Price:

$31.04 USD

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Turbulence

A Novel
By David Szalay
Narrated by Gabra Zackman /  2 hours 29 minutes

Turbulence

“I was immediately swept into Turbulence by David Szalay, a short novel that is really a collection of interconnected vignettes. From one character to the next, our perception is constantly shifting and constantly challenged. Each character is satisfyingly complex and interesting, which, in combination with the brevity of each chapter, really makes it difficult to put the book down. As the characters fly all across the world, bumping into each other in various ways, we are taken out of our ourselves and reminded that an airplane full of strangers is really an airplane full of stories.”

BookTowne image Jenna Schenk, BookTowne
Price:

$17.24 USD

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The Turn of the Key

By Ruth Ware
Narrated by Imogen Church /  12 hours 13 minutes

The Turn of the Key

“Ruth Ware is back and at her dazzling best with The Turn of the Key. This arresting tribute to Henry James set in modern-day remote Scotland posts a nanny in a ‘smart house’ with several recalcitrant children and a garden full of poisonous plants. Who do you trust when everyone seems to be hiding something? Readers will be reading with all the lights on as they race to the climactic ending to see just who is minding who in this engaging summer thriller.”

Excelsior Bay Books image Pamela Klinger-Horn, Excelsior Bay Books
Price:

$27.59 USD

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The Wedding Party

By Jasmine Guillory
Narrated by Janina Edwards /  9 hours 15 minutes

The Wedding Party

“Maddie hates Theo’s snooty attitude. Theo hates Maddie’s snide comments. Alexa is their best friend, and they’re both in her wedding party. Neither knows how they’re going to deal with each other’s presence in the months to come, but as things might, their resentment turns to lust, and possibly something more. There’s one main rule: Alexa must never find out about their secret trysts. Playful, sexy, and sweet, The Wedding Party is another romantic bullseye hit from Guillory.”

University Book Store image Andrew King, University Book Store
Price:

$24.50 USD

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Inland

A Novel
By Téa Obreht 
Narrated by Anna Chlumsky, Edoardo Ballerini & Euan Morton /  13 hours 7 minutes

Inland

“Inland is a beautifully narrated by voices that are rarely heard in a story of the American west. Lurie, an immigrant from the middle east, and Nora, a pioneer wife struggling to survive, are both haunted by ghosts of their past. The dry arid desert provides a perfect backdrop for the events, relationships and challenges these two characters face. Obrect writes with dialogue present and past creating an almost dreamlike atmosphere in some places of the novel and nightmarish realism in others. This novel lays bare the struggles, relationships, personalities and conflicts that provided the foundation of the wild untamed west. This novel was epic, expansive, and completely nourishing of spirit.”

Avid Bookshop image Ellen, Avid Bookshop
Price:

$31.50 USD

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