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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.

Rules for Visiting

A Novel
By Jessica Francis Kane
Narrated by Emily Rankin /  6 hours 33 minutes

Rules for Visiting

“A skillful writer can show how things that seem unrelated are actually intertwined. In this way, Kane quietly reminds us that friendships and plants may be deeply rooted but need tending to bloom completely, that words matter, that going back to their roots may change how we think about what we say, and that a quiet life can be a full one. This gentle book grows on you (the puns just keep coming), but it is a refreshing change from the stresses of our digital age or the angst of so many recent books about contemporary life. Entertaining and erudite, I highly recommend this book.”

Ann Carlson image Ann Carlson, Waterfront Books
Price:

$24.50 USD

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Disappearing Earth

A novel
By Julia Phillips
Narrated by Ilyana Kadushin /  11 hours 15 minutes

Disappearing Earth

“Julia Phillips is an author to watch. She beautifully transports us to a region of the world that I had never heard of and now can’t stop thinking about. The stories of the women there—their family dynamics, their hopes and fears, the economic and cultural divide of various communities—tell a moving story about this place in a moment in time, but ultimately about the universal struggle of women living with the expectations placed on them. A remarkable debut.”

Bookshop Santa Cruz image Casey Coonerty, Bookshop Santa Cruz
Price:

$28.00 USD

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The Bride Test

By Helen Hoang
Narrated by Emily Woo Zeller /  10 hours

The Bride Test

“This follow-up to The Kiss Quotient is an incredibly diverse and fun story about Khai, Michael’s cousin from the previous novel. He is Vietnamese-American, autistic, and believes himself to be incapable of the emotions that matter. I would recommend this to those who enjoyed The Rosie Effect and Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine. Hoang is making important waves, one sweet, sexy romance novel at a time.”

Books Around the Corner image Stephanie Csaszar, Books Around the Corner
Price:

$24.99 USD

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Cape May

A Novel
By Chip Cheek
Narrated by George Newbern /  7 hours 34 minutes

Cape May

“This book is extraordinary. In a small, empty beachside town after the season ends, a couple on their ill-planned honeymoon, slowly awakening to all the ways they can disappoint each other, stumble across a Gatsby-ish household of worldly beautiful people who embrace them wholeheartedly. The days pass in a glorious gin-soaked daze; erotic tension charges every encounter. Chip writes like James Salter, with a sense of a humor and a fuller appreciation and understanding of female desire. Moving, so gorgeous, and absolutely brilliant.”

Newtonville Books image Mary Cotton, Newtonville Books
Price:

$22.99 USD

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Once More We Saw Stars

A Memoir
By Jayson Greene
Narrated by Jayson Greene /  7 hours

Once More We Saw Stars

“Some memoirs transcend the author’s experience and become universal—I always thought of those as the good ones. Then I read Jayson Greene’s memoir of loss and grief and was forced to confront the fullness of his individual humanity in a way I hadn’t experienced before. Grief is distinctly personal and Greene’s story of the death of his two-year-old child is simply unfathomable to me, yet his honesty and willingness to sit in the fearfulness of this new life resonated deeply. Once More We Saw Stars is a wonderfully written memoir that connects on the most basic human level.”

Cavalier House Books image Michelle Cavalier, Cavalier House Books
Price:

$24.50 USD

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Miracle Creek

A Novel
By Angie Kim
Narrated by Jennifer Lim /  14 hours 4 minutes

Miracle Creek

Miracle Creek is a courtroom drama with impeccable pacing, an original plot, and stellar writing. It’s also a remarkably empathetic book, exploring the ripple effects of causality and the urgent need to do right by each other in big and small ways, recognizing that even the best of us will fail once in a while. It is a lovely reminder that even when doing the right thing feels like swimming upstream, we never know what harm may be prevented and what good might come from our actions. Agreat read that deserves broad success.”

Hudson Booksellers image Sara Hinckley, Hudson Booksellers
Price:

$31.04 USD

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Exhalation

Stories
By Ted Chiang
Narrated by Edoardo Ballerini, Dominic Hoffman, Amy Landon & Ted Chiang /  11 hours 21 minutes

Exhalation

“WOW. My first experience with Ted Chiang absolutely blew me out of the water. Each story left me with wide eyes and a racing mind, running to my husband to read a passage so we could both be knocked over with wonder. Exhalation filled me with so many questions about our collective past, present, and future, I’ll be coming back to this book again and again trying to find the answers.”

Country Bookshelf image Kasey Kane, Country Bookshelf
Price:

$31.50 USD

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The Binding

A Novel
By Bridget Collins
Narrated by Carl Prekopp /  15 hours 29 minutes

The Binding

“An absolutely gorgeous novel! Collins writes Emmett in such a way that readers will experience his confusion and frustration and then have it unknotted simultaneously as his tale unfolds. The three parts of the novel are brilliantly ordered to deliver a powerful tale that will tear your heart to pieces slowly and, in one spectacular scene, mend it completely with hope and love. Do Binders provide healing and comfort, or are they wicked magicians determined to leave you empty? What are you willing to risk for someone you love?”

Adventure Bound Books image Angela Shores, Adventure Bound Books
Price:

$34.49 USD

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I Miss You When I Blink

Essays
By Mary Laura Philpott
Narrated by Mary Laura Philpott /  6 hours 5 minutes

I Miss You When I Blink

“Mary Laura Philpott writes about today’s American woman in her marvelously frank and witty book of essays, I Miss You When I Blink. Women of all ages will nod their heads when reading about the decision to have babies (or not), the pitfalls of volunteering, the difficulty of getting a cat out from under the bed, the reward of crossing things off ‘the list,’ the challenge of finding time for relaxation, and, above all, the acceleration of time as we age. Philpott shares pivotal moments from her life in such a relatable way that, through both laughter and tears, readers will exclaim, ‘Yes, yes, this is ME!’ Don’t miss this gem!”

Vault Books and Brew image Nancy Simpson-Brice, Vault Books and Brew
Price:

$20.69 USD

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Women Talking

By Miriam Toews
Narrated by Matthew Edison /  5 hours 57 minutes

Women Talking

Women Talking is an eloquent exploration of how a group mind coalesces — as a kind of vision that comes in fits and starts, arguments and digression — to finally arrive at a decision. Or, read another way, it’s a compelling examination of the opposing voices in our own heads as we wrestle with impossible choices between the known and the unknown. What’s most compelling about Toews’ novel is its lack of sensationalism and how it shows real people struggling through the aftermath of devastating violence. Grounded in a religious culture where suffering and obedience are an expectation, these women grapple with uneasy answers to what’s best for themselves and their children. Women Talking is the quiet, startling story of coming to terms with how, or if, we save ourselves.”

Scuppernong Books image Steve Mitchell, Scuppernong Books
Price:

$18.39 USD

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Greek to Me

Adventures of the Comma Queen
By Mary Norris
Narrated by Mary Norris /  7 hours 3 minutes

Greek to Me

“What a pleasure to again spend a few hours with Mary Norris. The author of Between You & Me is back with a second book, and this time her subject is all things Greek — the language, the people, the mythology, and the culture.Greek to Me recounts Norris’ experiences learning Greek and traveling the country while putting her new skills to the test. As in her first book, Norris is excellent company, spinning tales and charming readers. Blending memoir, history, and travel, all topped off with heaps of wordy nerdiness, Greek to Me is a joy to read.”

Next Chapter Booksellers image David Enyeart, Next Chapter Booksellers
Price:

$22.99 USD

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Lot

Stories
By Bryan Washington
Narrated by Bryan Washington, Dion Graham, JD Jackson & Bahni Turpin /  5 hours 41 minutes

Lot

“This is such a phenomenal book by a writer who should be on everyone’s radar for 2019. Washington has a detailed and poignant style that reveals the tender soul within all of his characters. None of the characters that we meet in Lot are strangers — they are our mothers, brothers, lovers, and friends. Washington pulls them all together through interlocking stories, taking us in between the cracks and revealing how these characters feel and what drives them (and what doesn’t). This series of stories, told with no agenda, explores sexual awakening and identification, gentrification and its victims, and the power of family to both save us and fail us.”

hello hello books image Allie Bangerter, hello hello books
Price:

$21.00 USD

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Lights All Night Long

A Novel
By Lydia Fitzpatrick
Narrated by Michael Crouch /  12 hours 3 minutes

Lights All Night Long

“The courage of youth and the beauty of faith are crystallized in this story of love, loss, and acceptance. Ilya and his older brother, Vladimir, may have been thick as thieves, but while Ilya’s high marks in school offered him a way out of their depressing Russian town, Vladimir’s path has led to more illicit activities. Now, as Ilya navigates his new life in Louisiana, he is determined to save his brother, who is accused of murder back in Russia. Lydia Fitzpatrick’s stunning debut brings these vastly different cultures to life and imbues every scene with empathy and understanding. A brilliant and thrilling novel that shouldn’t be missed!”

Book Passage image Luisa Smith, Book Passage
Price:

$31.50 USD

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The Girl He Used to Know

A Novel
By Tracey Garvis Graves
Narrated by Kathleen McInerney & Fred Berman /  8 hours 9 minutes

The Girl He Used to Know

The Girl He Used to Know is a charming, engaging, and uplifting love story told from the perspective of Annika, who from childhood has struggled to fit in, and Jonathan, who is facing his own life challenges. I found myself rooting for these two characters throughout the novel, from their initial introduction at a college chess club meeting to experiencing the inescapable horror of the 9/11 attacks. This book is a must-read in that it celebrates differences in a realistic and believable way.”

BookSmart image Jann Griffiths, BookSmart
Price:

$22.99 USD

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The Light Years

A Memoir
By Chris Rush
Narrated by Victor Lodato /  10 hours 44 minutes

The Light Years

“Chris Rush's childhood ended when he dropped acid at age twelve. A talented, sensitive artistic kid, his search for love and family sends him into the arms of unlikely saviors who are incapable of defending him from himself. Make sure you hang on tight, because this coming of age memoir is unlike anything I've read.”

Avid Bookshop image Rachel, Avid Bookshop
Price:

$31.04 USD

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Queenie

By Candice Carty-Williams
Narrated by Shvorne Marks /  9 hours 45 minutes

Queenie

“This was excellent on so many levels. It's been comped as a Bridget Jones + Americanah. But, I think that description does all three books a disservice. Queenie does have some LOL moments but it's has many more serious moments and issues. I listened to this and much of the listen, I was stressed as AF for Queenie. I listened to her make terrible decisions and choices and I listened to her hit rock bottom. And, the whole time, I was rooting for her to just get better. There are so many intersections of race, harassment, coming of age and friendships that it made it a satisfying read. And, just as important, the reader was FANTASTIC.”

Belmont Books image Audrey, Belmont Books
Price:

$27.59 USD

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The Editor

By Steven Rowley
Narrated by Michael Urie /  10 hours 20 minutes

The Editor

“Steven Rowley’s new novel is exactly the balm I needed in today’s climate. Focusing on a young writer who discovers that his editor is none other than Jackie Kennedy Onassis, the book explores both romantic and familial relationships in a humorous and touching manner. Although the writing is wickedly barbed and the zingers fly at the speed of a 1940s rom-com, The Editor is so much more. There is real heart in the writing as well as real love between the characters. It’s a true delight and the kind of book people who loved Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine or Less will truly enjoy. Just be prepared with a box of tissues and your favorite cocktail (Jackie would suggest daiquiris).”

Wellesley Books image William Carl, Wellesley Books
Price:

$28.00 USD

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Stay Up with Hugo Best

A Novel
By Erin Somers
Narrated by Sarah Steele /  7 hours 15 minutes

Stay Up with Hugo Best

“June Bloom grew up idolizing Hugo Best's comedic talent, despite his reputation as a womanizer. But landing her dream job as a writer's assistant on his late night show has been more than anticlimactic. Unexpectedly invited to Hugo's house for the Memorial Day weekend, June feels she knows what's she getting herself into. The four days that follow are funny, sad, glamorous and not at all what June expects.”

Avid Bookshop image Rachel, Avid Bookshop
Price:

$20.69 USD

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Save Me the Plums

My Gourmet Memoir
By Ruth Reichl
Narrated by Ruth Reichl /  7 hours 54 minutes

Save Me the Plums

“In her new memoir, trendsetting food writer and editor Ruth Reichl writes lovingly of the full-blast creativity of her 10 years as editor-in-chief of Gourmet. By book’s end, you’ll miss the storied and groundbreaking magazine, but you’ll be grateful she shared the tale of how its outstanding roster of writers, photographers, designers, and cooks transformed how we look at food. Reichl takes readers behind the scenes as chefs became rock stars, as writers like David Foster Wallace reshaped food writing, and as she fought to save the magazine she adored. A beloved writer with an enviable career, Reichl reminds us that although things may change, simple, honest pleasures — like a perfect plum — endure and make life rich.”

Village Books image Mary Vermillion, Village Books
Price:

$28.00 USD

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Trust Exercise

A Novel
By Susan Choi
Narrated by Adina Verson, Jennifer Lim & Suehyla El-Attar /  9 hours 57 minutes

Trust Exercise

“Set inside the acting program of an elite high school, Choi’s novel seems to consider every major preoccupation of our moment — class, gender, sexuality, race, power, predation, authenticity, ‘genius’ — with language that’s both uproarious and frothing with vital rage. To describe the plot in any detail, though, would reveal too much of Trust Exercise’s inventive, audacious form. Best let this novel sink into your bones with as few spoilers as possible before its final scene seizes your heart. And it will seize your heart. Trust me.”

Literati Bookstore image Samuel Krowchenko, Literati Bookstore
Price:

$22.99 USD

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