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The Vanishing Half

A Novel

By Brit Bennett
Narrated by: Shayna Small
Length: 11 hours 33 minutes

The Vanishing Half

“This is an intriguing story, part family saga, part social commentary, about twin sisters whose lives diverged into two very different directions. Desiree and Stella grew up in Mallard, Louisiana, a place that didn't show up on any map and a community that in the 1960s was racist in a peculiar way: the population was almost exclusively very light-skinned African Americans, many of whom could pass for white. Fourteen years before the story begins, Desiree and Stella suddenly left home together to find work in New Orleans. Shortly afterwards, Stella disappeared without a trace. Desiree married, had a child, and in 1968 decided to return to Mallard to her mother's house to escape an abusive husband. Skipping ahead ten years to 1978, we meet Stella, who has also married and had a child, and now lives in California in an exclusively white upscale neighborhood where not even her husband knows about her African American blood. In a coincidence that the author makes seem believable, the twins' daughters meet, and Stella's secret is in danger of being exposed. Bennett's characters are well-developed and provide a clearly-drawn portrait of race, gender, and the ties that hold families and relationships together.”

Blue Willow Bookshop image Alice, Blue Willow Bookshop
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A Burning

A novel

By Megha Majumdar
Narrated by: Ulka Simone Mohanty, Vikas Adam, Priya Ayyar, Deepti Gupta, Soneela Nankani & Neil Shah
Length: 7 hours 21 minutes

A Burning

“A Burning tells the all-too-believable story of Javin, a teen-age girl in India who has left school, despite being an excellent student, to get a job and help her struggling family. After a comment against the government on facebook, she is accused of a crime she didn’t commit, largely because she is a Muslim. Her story is the central of three comprising the novel. PT Sir is Javin’s physical education teacher who, largely through chance, becomes involved with the leading nationalist political party. And Lovely is a trans woman aspiring to be a film star whom Jivan is tutoring in English. As Jivan’s arrest and trial unfold, the stories of all three characters develop in alternating chapters told from each of their points of view. This novel is not only a compelling tale of each of the characters’ lives and the impact of PT Sir’s and Lovely’s actions on Jivan’s fate, but it is a critical examination of nationalism in India today – and thus a cautionary tale about nationalist extremism anywhere in the world.”

Raven Book Store image Nancy, Raven Book Store
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Exciting Times

A Novel

By Naoise Dolan
Narrated by: Aoife McMahon
Length: 6 hours 55 minutes

“This debut novel about an Irish expat millennial teaching English and finding romance in Hong Kong is half Sally Rooney love triangle, half glitzy Crazy Rich Asians high living—and guaranteed to please.” —Vogue 

AN ANTICIPATED BOOK FROM:
Vogue * Elle * O, the Oprah Magazine * Esquire * Harper's Bazaar * PopSugar * LitHub

An intimate, bracingly... Read more »

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Pizza Girl

A Novel

By Jean Kyoung Frazier
Narrated by: Jeena Yi
Length: 5 hours 33 minutes

Pizza Girl

“Pizza Girl, set in a Los Angeles neighborhood, explores the tangled mess of a young pregnant girl’s life. While this charming 18-year-old pizza delivery driver has a devoted mom and a committed boyfriend, she grieves her dad, a complete loser, and mucks through her existence with no direction or motivation. Meeting a bizarre array of customers on any given night is the norm. One night, an unusual request by suburban mom Jenny for a pickle-topped pizza sparks an obsessive relationship. A fast-paced, fresh story with smart observations of a completely screwed up situation, a modernly tragic girl, and witty, yet flawed characters... Jean Kyoung Frazier delivers a satisfying read.”

Blue Willow Bookshop image Liz, Blue Willow Bookshop
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The Lightness

A Novel

By Emily Temple
Narrated by: Brittany Pressley
Length: 9 hours 56 minutes

"The Lightness could be the love child of Donna Tartt and Tana French, but its savage, glittering magic is all Emily Temple’s own." —Chloe Benjamin, New York Times bestselling author of The Immortalists 

A Most Anticipated Novel by Marie Claire • Elle • WSJ. Magazine • Glamour • Vulture • Bustle • Buzzfeed • The Millions • The Philadelphia... Read more »

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Death in Her Hands

A Novel

By Ottessa Moshfegh
Narrated by: Ann Marie Lee
Length: 7 hours 50 minutes

Death in Her Hands

“Ottessa Moshfegh is a modern-day Camus. A woman finds a note in the woods that proclaims someone is dead. Murdered, in fact. She investigates between dog walks and early evening naps but soon facts, memories, and suppositions entwine and overlap until the simple act of asking a question can unravel the thread of an entire life. Ponderous, violent, forgetful, and deft, Death in Her Hands is a genre-bender that teases you into asking, Is this noir? Horror? A whacked-out farce? Or a sly literary trick? I’ll tell you what it is — absolutely brilliant.”

Chris Lee image Chris Lee, Boswell Book Company
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After the Last Border

Two Families and the Story of Refuge in America

By Jessica Goudeau
Narrated by: Soneela Nankani
Length: 13 hours 21 minutes

"Simply brilliant, both in its granular storytelling and its enormous compassion" --The New York Times Book Review

The story of two refugee families and their hope and resilience as they fight to survive and belong in America


The welcoming and acceptance of immigrants and refugees have been central to America's identity for centuries--yet America... Read more »

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Hamnet

A novel

By Maggie O'Farrell
Narrated by: Ell Potter
Length: 12 hours 42 minutes

Hamnet

“Fans of A. S. Byatt, Penelope Fitzgerald, or Barbara Gowdy... are probably really tired of retellings of Shakespeare's life. Why read another? Because it so breathtakingly captures emotion. Because the opening sequence is one of the best expositions and descriptions of Shakespeare's Stratford you'll ever hear. Because the reimagining of Shakespeare's wife as a half-wild greenwitch sounds absurd, but in fact is compelling and captivating. Because it is not a charming puzzle box of references to multiple plays: it's the history of Shakespeare's depth of feeling, renewed in a story every strong and imaginative woman will find core-shaking and inspiring.”

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Join the movement and #ShopLocalBookstores.

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You Exist Too Much

A Novel

By Zaina Arafat
Narrated by: Zehra Jane Naqvi
Length: 7 hours 53 minutes

You Exist Too Much

“Zaina Arafat’s You Exist Too Much is one of my favorite books of the year. This debut novel blew me away. Arafat’s narrator is confident in her vulnerability; her desire to be seen and understood is visceral and uncomfortably familiar. The intoxication of unrequited love and the disconcerting feeling that can accompany settling down are recognizable, yet in Arafat’s capable hands, I was transported. This book is for anyone who has struggled to fit into society’s neat boxes, who has been frustrated when emotions don’t follow a logical path, or who has been disappointed to find that sometimes the love of others isn’t enough.”

Dotters Books image Margaret Leonard, Dotters Books
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Afterlife

English Edition

By Julia Alvarez
Narrated by: Alma Cuervo
Length: 6 hours 26 minutes

The author of In the Time of the Butterflies, with more than one million copies in print, is back with a tour de force. Antonia Vega, the immigrant writer at the center of Afterlife, has had the rug pulled out from under her. She has just retired from the college where she taught English when her beloved husband, Sam, suddenly dies. And then... Read more »

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All Adults Here

A Novel

By Emma Straub
Narrated by: Emily Rankin
Length: 11 hours 4 minutes

All Adults Here

“The Strick family: dysfunctional people just trying to navigate life. Astrid is a quirky, uptight mother of three adult children. She recently witnessed a woman get hit by a bus, triggering her to explore her life and act before it's too late. Meanwhile, her three children Porter, Nicky & Elliot are making mistakes in their own lives. All Adults Here explores friendships, family, morality, sexuality and most importantly love. I always enjoy a book with some family dysfunction, because whose family isn't a little dysfunctional? Listening to this book was pretty entertaining and found myself chuckling throughout. This book covered many topics without feeling pushy or forced. The characters came off like a real family, that should be on a sitcom. The growth of the family was really well thought out. This book was a win for me, and I will be recommending it to all of my dysfunctional friends.”

Birdy's Bookstore image Alexandra, Birdy's Bookstore
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I Hold a Wolf by the Ears

Stories

By Laura van den Berg
Narrated by: Amy Landon
Length: 5 hours 37 minutes

I Hold a Wolf by the Ears

“Laura van den Berg’s new collection of stories, one of the most unique I’ve read in recent years, navigates a space between the outer and inner world and takes unexpected turns that, like her novel, The Third Hotel, seem to bring in aesthetics of literature outside our time and place to tell stories that are very much grounded in our present. These stories are thrilling, timeless, and get better when you reread them. I’ve read ‘Hill of Hell’ more than five times by now.”

Fernando Flores image Fernando Flores, Malvern Books
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The Glass Hotel

A novel

By Emily St. John Mandel
Narrated by: Dylan Moore
Length: 10 hours 28 minutes

The Glass Hotel

“In this ghostly story of ignoring what’s right in front of you, a group of characters try to grapple with what seems like inevitable choices. Mandel’s book is like the glass in the title: her language glitters while offering clarity and reflection, and her characters are like broken shards, mesmerizing in one light and dangerously ordinary in another. Combining the humanity and structure of Station Eleven with the brutal realism of her earlier works, The Glass Hotel is an exceptional novel.”

Porter Square Books image Marika McCoola, Porter Square Books
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How Much of These Hills Is Gold

A Novel

By C Pam Zhang
Narrated by: Joel de la Fuente & Catherine Ho
Length: 9 hours 8 minutes

How Much of These Hills Is Gold

“If ever a book could be compared to a vegetable, this book is an onion. Starting from its center; a Chinese-American family is living and working in a mining town when teenagers Sam and Lucy have to leave when their father dies. Layers upon layers ensue with beautiful narration to tell the story of a family that spent their life searching for a place and a feeling to call HOME.”

The Yankee Bookshop image Nichole, The Yankee Bookshop
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Little Eyes

A Novel

By Samanta Schweblin
Narrated by: Cassandra Campbell
Length: 7 hours 3 minutes

LONGLISTED FOR THE 2020 MAN BOOKER INTERNATIONAL PRIZE

A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK OF THE YEAR

"Her most unsettling work yet — and her most realistic." --New York Times

Named a Best Book of the Year by The New York TimesO, The Oprah Magazine, NPR, Vulture, Bustle, Refinery29, and Thrillist

A visionary novel about our interconnected present,...
Read more »

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Writers & Lovers

A Novel

By Lily King
Narrated by: Stacey Glemboski
Length: 8 hours 13 minutes

Writers & Lovers

“I have had this book since last fall, but have been *saving* it for the right time and I am so thrilled I waited. Quarantine is the perfect time to allow Lily King to bring you gently into the world she creates in Writers & Lovers. A young woman who has recently lost her mother is waiting for the world to make itself known to her. Stuck in a dead end job while trying to finish her novel and find love, KC makes the reader not just feel FOR her, but feel WITH her. A beautifully written story that shows Lily King is at the top of her game.”

Anderson's Bookshop image Mary, Anderson's Bookshop
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My Dark Vanessa

A Novel

By Kate Elizabeth Russell
Narrated by: Grace Gummer
Length: 16 hours 2 minutes

My Dark Vanessa

“In this gripping debut novel, a teenage girl falls into an affair with her English teacher, who is 30 years her senior. The voice of Vanessa, the narrator, is unparalleled in its honesty, and her emotions are fiercely conveyed with unrelenting realness. This novel is a timely and important read, sometimes difficult, but ultimately an unforgettable experience. You will be left astonished and transformed. Vanessa is formidable and so is her story; you won’t be able to put down this powerhouse of a novel.”

Luisa Barbano image Luisa Barbano, Oblong Books & Music
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Perfect Tunes

By Emily Gould
Narrated by: Candace Thaxton
Length: 6 hours 56 minutes

Perfect Tunes is an intoxicating blend of music, love, and family from one of the essential writers of the internet generation.” —STEPHANIE DANLER

Perfect Tunes is a zippy and profound story of love, loss, heredity, and par­enthood. I gulped it down, as will all mothers, New Yorkers, music fans, and lovers of quick-moving novels that are both... Read more »

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Shiner

A Novel

By Amy Jo Burns
Narrated by: Catherine Taber
Length: 7 hours 51 minutes

NAMED A BEST BOOK OF 2020 BY NPR

“Amy Jo Burns writes a version of Appalachia that is one step removed from magic – all strychnine and moonshine and powerful wonder.”NPR 

 
“[A] wrenching testament, told in language as incandescent as smoldering coal. . . This is not a despairing book, but a hopeful one, of Appalachian women taking back their...
Read more »

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These Ghosts are Family

A Novel

By Maisy Card
Narrated by: Karl O’Brian Williams
Length: 9 hours 55 minutes

Longlisted for the 2020 Center for Fiction First Novel Prize

A “rich, ambitious debut novel” (The New York Times Book Review) that reveals the ways in which a Jamaican family forms and fractures over generations, in the tradition of Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi.

*An Entertainment Weekly, Millions, and LitHub Most Anticipated Book of 2020 Pick and... Read more »

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