Indie Gift Guide Flier Coming to Stores in October

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The American Booksellers Association’s Indie Gift Guide flier, to arrive in stores in the October Box mailing, features 30 titles across a range of genres, as recommended by independent booksellers.

The double-sided, four-color flier highlights titles in five categories: Romance, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Mystery/Thriller, Graphic Works, and Other Great Gifts. Each featured title is accompanied by cover art and a quote from one of the booksellers who recommended the book.

The October Box is scheduled to arrive in stores in mid-October. The titles are also viewable on Edelweiss.

Stores that would like to send a digital version of the flier to their customers can sign up with Matchbook Marketing here; stores that are already working with Matchbook Marketing can update their information here. The digital version will be sent on October 8; the signup deadline is October 2.

The titles appearing in the Indie Gift Guide flier are:


Boyfriend Material by Alexis Hall
(Sourcebooks Casablanca, 9781728206141, $14.99)
“I really, really liked this book. The narration style was humorous at times and earth-shatteringly nerve-wracking at others, and it definitely resonated with me. I thoroughly enjoyed watching Luc and Oliver warm up to each other and become better because of it. Their banter and chemistry were spot on. I will be recommending this to all my rom-com loving friends!”
—Mattie Shepard, Gramercy Books, Bexley, OH

A Duke, the Lady, and a Baby: A Multi-Cultural Historical Regency Romance (Rogues and Remarkable Women #1) by Vanessa Riley
(Zebra/Kensington, 9781420152234, $15.95)
“I love how Riley takes on so much in this book without it becoming preachy. Patience is a widow, navigating a ton as a woman of color and a breastfeeding mother. Busick is a veteran who is coming to terms with his amputated leg and finding purpose in his new life away from war. This is about everything that you sometimes have to overcome on your way to finding true love.”
—Destinee Hodge, East City Bookshop, Washington, DC

One to Watch: A Novel by Kate Stayman-London
(Dial Press Trade Paperback, 9780525510444, $17)
“A funny, heartfelt, and incredibly romantic story about Bea, a fashion blogger who becomes the first plus-sized contestant on a reality show where she dates 25 men in hopes of finding a husband (sound familiar?). Bea is so relatable and easy to love that you will find yourself rooting for her from start to finish.”
—Colleen Regan, An Unlikely Story, Plainville, MA

The Star-Crossed Sisters of Tuscany by Lori Nelson Spielman
(Berkley, 9781984803160, $16)
“You’ll love this romp through the beauty that is Venice, Tuscany, and Amalfi. If you enjoy light romance, you’ll love it even more. Three women — all told they will never find love due to a family curse — are out to discover for themselves if it is true. The characters and storyline are fun, and the outcome…well, I’ll leave you to discover that for yourself.”
—Linda Bond, Auntie’s Bookstore, Spokane, WA

Tools of Engagement: A Novel by Tessa Bailey
(Avon, 9780062872937, $15.99)
“Bethany Castle is ready to make some big changes in her life. Working for her family’s real estate business as a designer, she wants to branch off and do the heavy lifting in her own home renovation flip. She finds unlikely help from Wes Daniels, a friend of her brother and someone who pushes all her buttons. This book is all about taking risks and opening up to the possibilities that life throws at you.”
—Anastasia Wiley, Rakestraw Books, Danville, CA

You Had Me at Hola: A Novel by Alexis Daria
(Avon, 9780062959928, $15.99)
“Delightfully flirty and original! Jasmine Lin is a soap opera star whose embarrassing breakup lands her on the front page of national tabloids. Ashton Suarez is a telenovela star whose character just got killed off and he is looking for a new role to launch him to U.S. stardom. Jasmine and Ashton are cast as love interests in a romantic comedy to air on the nation’s leading streaming service. A full cast of Latinx characters take the stage in this novel about the love of family, overcoming insecurities, and smoldering new love.”
—Jessica Nock, Main Street Books, Davidson, NC


Science Fiction and Fantasy

Axiom’s End: A Novel (Noumena #1) by Lindsay Ellis
(St. Martin’s Press, 9781250256737, $27.99)
“I don’t think I can properly capture my love for this debut in words. Billed as Stranger Things meets Arrival, this first-contact story is more than that. It’s a daughter coming to grips with a betrayal from her father, an alien race struggling to survive its own societal constructs, a government refusing to tell the truth. It grapples with the concept of truth as a human right and asks what the cost of secrets truly is. Every character is believable, every detail is fine-tuned.”
—Cassie Schulz, Brazos Bookstore, Houston, TX

Black Sun (Between Earth and Sky) by Rebecca Roanhorse
(Gallery/Saga Press, 9781534437678, $27.99)
“I was so immersed in this brilliant fantasy that I actually felt I was experiencing the solar eclipse when these unforgettable characters did. Until I realized that it was actually dark because I had read well into the night without pausing to look up. Rebecca Roanhorse has rekindled my love for an epic fantasy with her excellent worldbuilding effortlessly folded into a story that is inescapable in its readabilty.”
—Nichole Cousins, The Yankee Bookshop, Woodstock, VT

Deal With the Devil: A Mercenary Librarians Novel by Kit Rocha
(Tor Books, 9781250256294 HC/9781250209368 PB, $30.99/$17.99)
“Kit Rocha delivers an addictive, apocalyptic thriller with lots of action, intrigue, and sexual tension. Knox leads a group of rogue super-soldiers and Nina is a ‘librarian’ with ninja skills and lots of secrets. A mission to retrieve a lost archive goes haywire when Nina finds out about Knox’s hidden agenda. I loved this series opener and can’t wait to find out what comes next for our merry band of murderous heroes!”
—McKenzie Workman, Powell’s Books, Portland, OR

The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab
(Tor Books, 9780765387561, $26.99)
“Would you dance with the devil if it meant escape from a life of labor and misery? Addie LaRue’s desperate cry for help leads her to an unexpected escape. She will spend the next 300 years, however, deciding if it was worth the price. Full of intrigue, mystery, and passion, The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue asks the reader to consider whether life or love is the greatest gift — and what you would be willing to pay for either.”
—Pamela Klinger-Horn, Excelsior Bay Books, Excelsior, MN

Red Dust by Yoss, David Frye (Trans.)
(Restless Books, 9781632062468, $17)
“Yoss has such a unique voice for science fiction. The worlds he creates have this retro, Heinlein charm to them but with a perspective from the modern era. Red Dust is no exception; it’s a compact, well-written detective noir set in space. Part Douglas Adams, part Agatha Christie, all excellent.”
—Harry Jahnke, Country Bookshelf, Bozeman, MT

Ring Shout by P. Djèlí Clark
(, 9781250767028, $19.99)
“Macon, Georgia, 1922. African Americans, Gullahs, and Creoles team up with supernatural forces to fight monsters made from KKK hatred. Ring Shout is a masterpiece for modern times. P. Djèlí Clark puts his foot on the gas and doesn’t let up until the final sentence. Everyone and their mother needs to read this book.”
—Lizy Coale, Copperfish Books, Punta Gorda, FL


Mystery and Thriller

Blacktop Wasteland: A Novel by S.A. Cosby
(Flatiron Books, 9781250252685, $26.99)
“Beauregard has left behind a criminal past to open up his own garage and start a family. But times are tough, money has grown short, and he finds his back against the wall when someone from his past seeks him out with a job offer. An excellent crime fiction tale taking place in Virginia, this is the first book in years to actually, literally raise my heart rate. That is not hyperbole. It really sped up quick!”
—Carl Kranz, Fountain Bookstore, Richmond, VA

The Book of Atlantis Black: The Search for a Sister Gone Missing by Betsy Bonner
(Tin House Books, 9781947793774, $26.95)
“In 2008, Betsy Bonner’s sister is found dead on the floor of a hotel in Tijuana. Is it suicide? An overdose? Is it even her sister? Betsy’s sister, a talented musician and performer who changed her name to Atlantis Black, has always lived on the edge. In this memoir, Betsy’s love for her sister is apparent as she tells their overlapping stories and tries to unravel the mysteries of her sister’s life.”
—Karen Hayes, Parnassus Books, Nashville, TN

Fortune Favors the Dead: A Novel by Stephen Spotswood
(Doubleday, 9780385546553, $26.95)
“Good news, mystery readers, your new favorite sleuthing duo has arrived on the scene! Lillian Pentecost, an elegant lady detective, is not as steady on her feet as she used to be, so she enlists the unique skills of Willowjean Parker, formerly of the traveling circus, and together they take on New York City’s most baffling cases. A refreshing update to a classic golden-age mystery.”
—Rebecca Speas, One More Page Books, Arlington, VA

Murder in Chianti (A Tuscan Mystery #1) by Camilla Trinchieri
(Soho Crime, 9781641291798, $27.95)
Murder in Chianti is an atmospheric and enjoyable mystery featuring a grieving former New York City homicide detective who moves to his late wife’s hometown in Italy only to get caught up in the investigation of a murder that occurs near his home. Fans of Donna Leon and Andrea Camilleri will enjoy the vivid depictions of the food, wine, and landscape.”
—Carol Schneck Varner, Schuler Books, Okemos, MI

One by One by Ruth Ware
(Gallery/Scout Press, 9781501188817, $27.99)
“Ware’s sixth novel takes being trapped with a killer to frighteningly extreme heights. A tech startup company’s week-long dream retreat at a luxurious and remote French Alps ski chalet turns into a nightmare when an avalanche strikes, leaving the group cut off from the rest of the world. But something sinister is going on beyond being snowed in...and one by one, group members are dying.”
—Alyssa Raymond, Copper Dog Books, Beverly, MA

The Thursday Murder Club: A Novel by Richard Osman
(Pamela Dorman Books, 9781984880963, $26)
“Fans of a good English murder mystery, look no further. The main characters are four residents of a retirement home who like to work through clues from unsolved crimes. When a local murder practically falls in their lap, they can’t wait to dig in! As they work the case and frustrate the local police, clues come together, not only about the murder but their past lives as well.”
—Mary Patterson, The Little Bookshop, Midlothian, VA


Graphic Works

Barely Functional Adult: It’ll All Make Sense Eventually by Meichi Ng
(Harper Perennial, 9780062945594, $17.99)
“This book is a gem. Each section starts with a wacky anecdote, then flows into a bigger story about the author’s life. Many of these stories are deeply relatable and comforting to read. The book also includes plenty of lighthearted humor. I would suggest it to anyone who needs to take a step back and breathe amongst the craziness of life.”
—Brianna Aldrink, Schuler Books, Grand Rapids, MI

The Daughters of Ys by M.T. Anderson, Jo Rioux (Illus.)
(First Second, 9781626728783, $24.99)
“An excellent graphic novel overflowing with gorgeous art from Jo Rioux and excellent writing from M.T. Anderson. A retelling of a classic folktale, The Daughters of Ys’ fantastical tale of two sisters finding themselves in a kingdom with a sinister secret is sure to appeal to older fantasy readers. Loved it!”
—Caleb Masters, Bookmarks, Winston-Salem, NC

Fangs by Sarah Andersen
(Andrews McMeel Publishing, 9781524860677, $14.99)
“Ridiculously adorable, Fangs is a gorgeously drawn and hilarious graphic novel about a vampire and werewolf couple. Fangs explores the mundanity of relationships through pun-filled banter, making it feel incredibly relatable despite it’s supernatural premise.”
—Sophie Chen, Belmont Books, Belmont, MA

The Low, Low Woods (Hill House Comics) by Carmen Maria Machado, Dani (Illus.)
(DC Comics, 9781779504524, $24.99)
“El and Vee are best friends growing up in a very strange town. One day they go to the movies only to awaken hours later, knowing something happened to them but not having any answers. It’s not the first time it’s happened in the town of Shudder-to-Think, Pennsylvania. The drawings are fantastic and creepy, but it’s the friendship and Tales From the Crypt vibe that truly make this a standout graphic novel.”
—Kate Towery, Fountain Bookstore, Richmond, VA

Oak Flat: A Fight for Sacred Land in the American West by Lauren Redniss
(Random House, 9780399589720, $30)
Oak Flat’s immersive power left me completely stunned. Through expressive drawings, photos, testimony, and poetry, Redniss reveals not just the history of the mesa itself, but of the Apache reservation fighting to keep its sacred land intact and the town nearby that has suffered from the short-term thinking of the extractive industry. Redniss lets her subjects speak, engaging readers with nuance and passion.”
—Hannah DeCamp, Avid Bookshop, Athens, GA

The Times I Knew I Was Gay by Eleanor Crewes
(Scribner, 9781982147105, $25)
“This coming-of-age memoir is about finding oneself, specifically the things you choose to or are not ready to admit to yourself. Crewes shares her journey with openness and compelling pacing that makes it easy to read in one sitting. Crewes’ clear, spirited line illustrations are given space on the page, allowing readers entry into the story and room to reflect on their own internal journeys.”
—Marika McCoola, Porter Square Books, Cambridge, MA


Other Great Gifts

Dearly: New Poems by Margaret Atwood
(Ecco, 9780063032491, $27.99)
“Margaret Atwood never fails to disappoint me, and this book of poetry is no exception. Her first collection in 10 years covers topics like love, loss, dreams, anger, and drones. Her poetry is beautiful without being overly precious or twee. Atwood has a vivid imagination and excels at putting her observations about the world into entertaining and touching verse.”
—Scott Lange, The Bookman, Grand Haven, MI

Eat a Peach: A Memoir by David Chang, Gabe Ulla
(Clarkson Potter, 9781524759216, $28)
“David Chang’s nonlinear, often profound, and sometimes profane autobiography hits all the right notes, even when they are at odds with each other: self deprecation and swagger, sorrow and joy, truth and (possible) fiction, deep philosophical thoughts and utterly shallow actions. Eat a Peach is one of the best autobiographies I have ever read.”
—Susan Kehoe, Browseabout Books, Rehoboth Beach, DE

GLORY: Magical Visions of Black Beauty by Kahran Bethencourt, Regis Bethencourt, Amanda Seales
(St. Martin’s Press, 9781250204561, $30)
“This is everything! The stories of these amazing children are inspiring. But, of course, the star of this book is the amazing photos. They are stunning and powerful. So much emotion and beauty are expressed in each and every photo. I teared up looking at these children who look like me, who look like my Momma, Grandma, and all who came before me. These photos are of my ancestors’ wildest dreams and it is beautiful...absolutely beautiful!”
—Kim Brock, Joseph-Beth Booksellers, Cincinnati, OH

Humans by Brandon Stanton
(St. Martin’s Press, 9781250114297, $35)
“This book is amazing. I loved Humans of New York, but it did not capture my attention as much as this one did. I connected more with this book as it featured people from more than just one place. The pictures touched my heart and pulled at those heartstrings. The stories brought to life the people in the pictures. This book is the perfect gift and a must for anyone’s shelf.”
—Sandi Cararo, The Book Dragon, Staunton, VA

The Sirens of Mars: Searching for Life on Another World by Sarah Stewart Johnson (Indies Introduce)
(Crown, 9781101904817, $28.99)
“Sarah Stewart Johnson has brought a woman’s touch to the red planet. This book is a refreshing read that doesn’t attempt to exert dominance over the subject but rather presents an engaging overview of human exploration of a planet we’ve not yet set foot on. In this great read that is part natural history and part memoir, Johnson’s admiration for the planet and its explorers is woven throughout her excellent prose.”
—Christine Havens, BookPeople, Austin, TX

Solutions and Other Problems by Allie Brosh
(Gallery Books, 9781982156947, $30)
“Allie Brosh is at again — managing to make me laugh, cry, despair, and hope all in one book. There are so many hard things here, and even more so than in Hyperbole and A Half, you are inside her struggle to figure out the meaning of life. Devastating and riotous — how many books can claim to be both?”
—Anmiryam Budner, Main Point Books, Wayne, PA