The October Indie Next List & Notables Preview

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Here's a preview of the October Indie Next List now on its way to ABA member stores in the IndieBound movement.

The list includes a strong array of fiction and nonfiction, all featuring booksellers' quotes, bibliographic information, and color images of the titles' jackets. This month's number-one title is The Given Day: A Novel by Dennis Lehane (Morrow), and other fiction on the list includes The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson (Knopf), The Other Queen by Philippa Gregor (Touchstone), The Book of Murder by Guillermo Martinez (Viking), and The Flying Troutmans by Miriam Toews. Among the nonfiction titles this month are The Dewey: The Small Town Library Cat Who Touched the World by Vicki Myron, with Bret Witter (Grand Central), American Lightning: Terror, Mystery, the Birth of Hollywood, and the Crime of the Century by Howard Blum (Crown), and The Blue Cotton Gown: A Midwife's Memoir by Patricia Harman (Beacon).

The October list also highlights, for the first time, a unique literary connection: A Most Wanted Man by John le Carre (Scribner) was chosen as an October Indie Next List title, and The Gone-Away World, a debut novel from Nick Harkaway, le Carre's son, was chosen as a Indie Next List Notable.

Looking ahead, the deadline for the November Indie Next List is Friday, September 5.

Booksellers can use the nomination form, or they can send their nominations in an e-mail to

The October 2008 Indie Next List

The Given Day: A Novel by Dennis Lehane
(Morrow, $27.95, 9780688163181 / 0688163181)
"Bestselling author Dennis Lehane turns his attention to a crime-ridden, post-World War I Boston and the events leading up to the 1919 Boston Police Strike. Richly textured and filled with historical characters (from Babe Ruth and W.E.B. DuBois to a young and ambitious J. Edgar Hoover), The Given Day is arguably Lehane's best book yet." --Donna Hawley, Howard's Bookstore, Bloomington, IN

Dewey: The Small Town Library Cat Who Touched the World by Vicki Myron, with Bret Witter
(Grand Central, $19.99, 9780446407410 / 0446407410)
"When a cold, wet kitten is pulled from a library book-return box on a winter day in Spencer, Iowa, no one could imagine what changes this very extraordinary cat would bring to a town and a library director -- both in need of some good news. More than a memoir, this book is a lesson in love, devotion, and a sense of community spirit." --Janet Hart, Bookpeople of Moscow, Moscow, ID

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
(Knopf, $24.95, 9780307269751 / 0307269752)
"Lisbeth Salander -- the girl with the dragon tattoo -- is a truly original character. Salander's computer hacking skills, and her amoral disregard of both laws and individuals, are critical in resolving the case of modern corporate fraud and the disappearance of a young girl 40 years earlier. A European bestseller, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo deserves every bit as much success here." --Ann Carlson, Harborwalk Books, Georgetown, SC

Serena: A Novel by Ron Rash
(Ecco, $24.95, 9780061470851 / 0061470856)
"Buckle your seatbelts, folks, you are in for an amazing ride. Set in the Appalachian Mountains in North Carolina during the Depression, this incredible novel is about love, greed, revenge, and survival -- a story told in epic proportions, complete with a Greek chorus of lumberjacks." --Kathryn Fabiani, R.J. Julia Booksellers, Madison, CT

American Lightning: Terror, Mystery, the Birth of Hollywood, and the Crime of the Century by Howard Blum
(Crown, $24.95, 9780307346940 / 0307346943)
"Artfully blending narratives of Clarence Darrow, D.W. Griffith, and William Burns, Howard Blum has written a masterful account of the bombing of the offices of the Los Angeles Times and the trial of the McNamara brothers. Blum gives a strong portrayal of the labor unrest at the start of the 20th century in this excellent history of a society on the cusp of a new era." --Bill Cusumano, Nicola's Books, Ann Arbor, MI

The Other Queen: A Novel by Philippa Gregory
(Touchstone, $25.95, 9781416549123 / 1416549129)
"Once again, Philippa Gregory has brought history to life, as she tells the story of a strong, passionate, real-life heroine, Mary Queen of Scots. Gregory continues to engage us in the history and characters of that era in this highly recommended novel." --Linda Richardson, Sherlock's Tomes, Pitman, NJ

Goldengrove: A Novel by Francine Prose
(HarperCollins, $24.95, 9780066214115 / 0066214114)
"What might have been a mournful story about a young girl's isolation and grief after the death of her sister becomes an uplifting portrait of love, survival, and coming of age. Prose's gorgeous writing and plotting make this an affecting and memorable novel." --Jeanne Regentin, Between the Covers, Harbor Springs, MI

Downtown Owl: A Novel by Chuck Klosterman
(Scribner, $24, 9781416544180 / 1416544186)
"Chuck Klosterman has hit the nail on the head in this depiction of small town life in the Midwest. It all rings true: the new teacher in town, single and every single man after her; the high school football coach; the town with more bars than churches. A very enjoyable read with great characters and an unexpected ending." --Carl Wichman, Varsity Mart, Fargo, ND

The Forever War by Dexter Filkins
(Knopf, $25, 9780307266392 / 0307266397)
"The Forever War is a gut-wrenching and jaw-dropping look at our protracted war on terror. Touching on the most significant moments of the war, from the Afghan campaign up to the current rebuilding efforts in Iraq, Filkins provides a clear-eyed analysis of how both our optimism and our delusions may end up costing us far more than our nation can afford." --Matthew Norcross, McLean & Eakin Booksellers, Petoskey, MI

A Most Wanted Man by John le Carre
(Scribner, $28, 9781416594888 / 1416594884)
"Le Carre's latest tale, set in Germany and involving foreign bank accounts, an unwanted legacy, and intelligence services run amuck, is the best work in years from our greatest living practitioner of the genre." --Matthew Lage, Iowa Book L.L.C., Iowa City, IA

The Archangel Project by C.S. Graham
(HarperCollins, $7.99 paper, 9780061351204 / 0061351202)
"This novel of a gifted Navy vet of the Iraq war and a CIA operative on the run and fighting to stop a deadly conspiracy is a frightening story of how people can use the government to try to control others, and of the courage of some as they fight back. Riveting and well-written." --Barbara Rodean, A Likely Story, Sykesville, MD

Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay
(St. Martins Griffin, $13.95 paper, 9780312370848 / 0312370849)
"Sarah's Key is told from both the perspective of an 10-year-old girl whose family is rounded up during the Vel D'Hiv in France in 1942 and an American who presently lives in Paris. The heartbreak is real, the love is true, and the need to find out how their two lives are connected made this one of my absolute favorites!" --Sarah Galvin, The Bookstore Plus, Lake Placid, NY

The Book of Murder by Guillermo Martinez
(Viking, $23.95, 9780670019946 / 0670019941)
"Things are not what they seem as two writers face the same intriguing woman from their past -- and, as deaths occur in her family, novels become a haunting mirror of death. Guillermo Martinez knows just how to manipulate your thoughts, and to throw a twist at you when you least expect it. An awesome read!" --Linda Grana, Lafayette Book Store, Lafayette, CA

The Toss of a Lemon: A Novel by Padma Viswanathan
(Harcourt, $26, 9780151015337 / 0151015333)
"This book so wonderfully captures the life of one Indian woman and her family living through all the changes India undergoes in the first half of the 20th century. Padma Viswanathan has created characters you will care about, and gives fantastic descriptions of the food. Plan to eat Indian during your reading of this highly recommended book." --Lisa Sharp, Nightbird Books, Fayetteville, AR

The Flying Troutmans: A Novel by Miriam Toews
(Counterpoint, $24, 9781582434391 / 1582434395)
"Is it OK to laugh out loud at the misadventures of an earnest but clueless aunt steaming ahead on a road trip with her niece and nephew in a quest to rescue them from their mentally unstable mother and to track down their long-absent father? These are characters with a great sense of humor, and, so, I decided the answer was 'yes.' Miriam Toews mines the darkly comic while exposing the poignant truths in family relationships." --Cheryl McKeon, Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park, WA

The Blue Cotton Gown: A Midwife's Memoir by Patricia Harman
(Beacon, $24.95, 9780807072899 / 0807072893)
"Here is an intimate account of a woman, both her career as a midwife and her life as the wife of a doctor in West Virginia. Her patients' lives are stories of hope and loss; her marriage is a story of love and faith accompanied, too by debt and tension. Well written and heartfelt." --Annie Philbrick, Bank Square Books, Mystic, CT

The English Major: A Novel by Jim Harrison
(Grove, $24, 9780802118639 / 0802118631)
"No one compares to Jim Harrison when it comes to capturing the unique voices and attitudes of the Midwest in fiction. When 60-year-old Cliff's wife leaves him for another man and sells their farm, his life suddenly opens up in new directions, both exhilarating and terrifying. The English Major is charming from start to finish!" --Carol Schneck, Schuler Books & Music, Okemos, MI

The Whiskey Rebels: A Novel by David Liss
(Random House, $26, 9781400064205 / 1400064201)
"David Liss has always written incredible historical novels, but The Whiskey Rebels is his best yet. Beginning in 1792, the story features a former Revolutionary War spy, with action that moves between New York, Philadelphia, and the western frontier of Pennsylvania, involving Alexander Hamilton and the establishment of the Bank of the United States. No American history buff, or lover of a well-crafted novel, should miss this one." --Deal Safrit, Literary Book Post, Salisbury, NC

The Killing Circle: A Novel by Andrew Pyper
(St. Martin's Minotaur, $24.95, 9780312384760 / 0312384769)
"On a downward spiral after the loss of his wife, Patrick Rush decides to attend a Writer's Circle. It is there that he first hears the story of a 'terrible man who does terrible things.' When the author of the novel dies, Patrick decides to write and publish it as his own. That's when bizarre things begin to happen, friends die, and he begins to fear for his life." --Andra Tracy, Out Word Bound, Indianapolis, IN

White Nights: A Thriller by Ann Cleeves
(St. Martin's Minotaur, $24.95, 9780312384333 / 0312384335)
"When Shetland Island police detective Jimmy Perez investigates the murder of an outsider, he knows that even though the handful of residents have known each other all their lives they still have their secrets. Two more murders follow, and it's up to Perez to identify the killer. Cleeves is a master at creating memorable characters in this unforgettable series." --Karen Spengler, I Love A Mystery, Mission, KS

The October 2008 Indie Notables


The Gone-Away World by Nick Harkaway (Knopf, $24.95, 9780307268860 / 0307268861)

Hannah's Dream by Diane Hammond (Harper Paperbacks, $13.95 paper, 9780061568251/ 0061568252)

Two Marriages by Phillip Lopate (Other Press, $24.95, 9781590512982 / 1590512987)

Suzy, Led Zeppelin, and Me by Martin Millar (Soft Skull, $13.95 paper, 9781593762001 / 1593762003)

Reclaiming Paris by Fabiola Santiago (Atria, $24.95, 9781416551126 / 1416551123)


Bacardi and the Long Fight for Cuba: The Biography of a Cause by Tom Gjelten (Viking, $27.95, 9780670019786 / 067001978X)

Blue Genes: A Memoir of Loss and Survival by Christopher Lukas (Doubleday, $24.95, 9780385525206 / 0385525206)

Finding Beauty in a Broken World by Terry Tempest Williams (Pantheon, $24, 9780375420788 / 0375420789)

Resistance: A Frenchwoman's Journal of the War by Agnes Humbert (Bloomsbury, $24, 9781596915596 / 1596915595)

The Road of Lost Innocence: The True Story of a Cambodian Heroine by Somaly Mam (Spiegel & Grau, $22.95, 9780385526210 / 0385526210)

Razor-Wire Dharma: A Buddhist Life in Prison by Calvin Malone (Wisdom Publications, $15.95 paper, 9780861715633 / 0861715632)

State by State: A Panoramic Portrait of America, edited by Matt Weiland and Sean Wilsey (Ecco, $29.95, 9780061470905 / 0061470902)

Titanic's Last Secrets: The Further Adventures of Shadow Divers John Chatterton and Richie Kohler by Brad Matsen (Twelve, $27.99, 9780446582056 / 0446582050)

This I Believe II: More Personal Philosophies of Remarkable Men and Women, edited by Jay Allison and Dan Gediman (Holt, $23, 9780805087680 / 0805087680)

We Bought a Zoo: The Amazing True Story of a Young Family, a Broken Down Zoo, and the 200 Wild Animals That Changed Their Lives Forever by Benjamin Mee (Weinstein, $24.95, 9781602860483 / 1602860483)


Blood Alone: A Billy Boyle World War II Mystery by James R. Benn (Soho, $24, 9781569475164 / 1569475164)

Crime by Irvine Welsh (Norton, $24.95, 9780393068191 / 0393068196)

Exit Music by Ian Rankin (Little Brown, $24.99, 9780316057585 / 0316057584)

Red Knife: A Cork O'Connor Mystery by William Kent Krueger (Atria, $24, 9781416556749 / 1416556745)

Stuff Dreams Are Made Of by Don Bruns (Oceanview, $24.95, 9781933515168 / 1933515163)