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August's Bookseller Picks

August's Bookseller Picks

Libro.fm offers recommendations from real people: the dedicated indie booksellers working in our 1,400+ partner bookstores! Below, find the audiobooks that booksellers are loving this month.

Playlist Tags: fantasy nonfiction science fiction memoir bookseller recommeded historical fiction literary fiction young adult romance topic: biography

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Intimacies

A Novel

By Katie Kitamura
Narrated by: Traci Kato-Kiriyama
Length: 5 hours 26 minutes

Intimacies

“A cool and precise portrait of a woman and system on the verge of breaking, this latest literary thriller from Kitamura quietly insinuates itself into readers’ consciousness with subtle and haunting force.”

Point Reyes Books image Stephen Sparks, Point Reyes Books
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Hola Papi

How to Come Out in a Walmart Parking Lot and Other Life Lessons

By John Paul Brammer
Narrated by: John Paul Brammer
Length: 4 hours 55 minutes

Hola Papi

Hola Papi was endearing and sweetly funny. I loved the structure of this memoir where Brammer is answering letters to his advice column with heart and empathy. The audio book is expertly narrated by John Paul Brammer himself which added to the listening experience. Highly recommend!”

Main Street Books Davidson image Jessica, Main Street Books Davidson
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The Startup Wife

A Novel

By Tahmima Anam
Narrated by: Tanha Dil
Length: 8 hours 59 minutes

The Startup Wife

“The concept of an app that offers custom-made rituals got me to pick up this new novel, but the fact that the protagonist is a woman of color leading a tech start up alongside her very charismatic husband got me to read it. A great summer read.”

Just One More Page Books image Amber Taylor, Just One More Page Books
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First Comes Like

A Novel

By Alisha Rai
Narrated by: Saira Ayers & Neil Shah
Length: 11 hours 10 minutes

First Comes Like

“The third installment of Alisha Rai's Modern Love series might just be her best. Jia is a practicing Muslim who has been communicating with soap star and son of Bollywood royalty, Dev Dixit. Dev has recently arrived in Hollywood with his niece and Uncle in tow to make his crossover attempt in the American television market and he has no idea who Jia is. Through a series of events that only Rai could conjur, the two go from a horrifying catfishing situation to fake dating as they attempt to live up to their family expectations. Only, might they be falling for each other? First Comes Like is an insanely steamy yet almost completely sex-free novel that somehow manages to seamlessly fit all the tropes -- from fake dating to arranged marriage to only one bed -- and I could not love it more.”

Page 158 Books image Faith, Page 158 Books
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The Black Flamingo

By Dean Atta
Narrated by: Dean Atta
Length: 3 hours 40 minutes

The Black Flamingo

“This beautiful novel in verse has a tender, loving lens on the toxic directions we're sometimes forced to grow in before we are able to come into our own. In that way, it reminds me of Moonlight. The epilogue is beautiful and stands on its own—I want to print it out and pin it up in every middle and high school.”

Phoenix Books image Miriasha, Phoenix Books
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Afterparties

Stories

By Anthony Veasna So
Narrated by: Jason Sean
Length: 6 hours 56 minutes

Afterparties

“These stories of the members of a compact Cambodian-American community, from the refugees to the business owners to the gay teenagers, seamlessly balance humor with hardships.”

Sofia Silva Wright image Sofia Silva Wright, Phoenix Books Burlington
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Bring Your Baggage and Don't Pack Light

Essays

By Helen Ellis
Narrated by: Helen Ellis
Length: 2 hours 49 minutes

If you enjoyed I Miss You When I Blink, then you’ll love Bring Your Baggage and Don't Pack Light.

“Dear Helen, Are you there? It’s me, Cori. Will you be my friend? I loved her last collection of essays, and this one was just as enjoyable with its mix of hilarity and (slightly) more serious contemplations on life and friendship. What made it even better is listening to Helen narrate her own stories because then I felt like she was telling them to me in person! Her Southern charm, combined with her wit and wisdom, makes it the perfect listen or read for women trying to navigate the indignities of aging and life with grace and humor. Helen - Thanks for being my slightly older friend who provides honest and unfiltered insight and advice. P.S. If you do agree to be my friend, let it be forewarned that you will not get any stories about my sex life, but I promise I can still be fun!”

Bright Side Bookshop image Cori, Bright Side Bookshop
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Chasing the Thrill

Obsession, Death, and Glory in America's Most Extraordinary Treasure Hunt

By Daniel Barbarisi
Narrated by: Daniel Barbarisi
Length: 11 hours

Chasing the Thrill

“This book makes you feel like you’re on an adventure! More than just a saga about one eccentric millionaire’s treasure hunt, Chasing the Thrill is a nuanced and highly addictive story about Forest Fenn, his now infamous hidden treasure, and all of the controversies, joys, and tragedies that ended up being irrevocably intertwined with it. Barbarisi deftly anchors his narrative with an unvarnished look at his own experiences hunting for Forest Fenn’s hidden riches, keeping the reader on the edge of their seat until the very last page.”

Copperfish Books image Lucile, Copperfish Books
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The Comfort Book

By Matt Haig
Narrated by: Matt Haig
Length: 3 hours 9 minutes

The Comfort Book

“As a fan of Matt Haig's fiction, I added The Comfort Book to my playlist but hadn't yet listened to it. 'The right book at the right time' was never truer for me than the day I did need support and comfort, and Matt's narration of his inspiring, uplifting perspectives was perfect. I pressed 'rewind' more than once, as his words were such a balm.”

Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza image Cheryl, Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza
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Once There Were Wolves

A Novel

By Charlotte McConaghy
Narrated by: Saskia Maarleveld
Length: 8 hours 27 minutes

If you enjoyed The Dog Stars, then you’ll love Once There Were Wolves.

“Inti has always relied on tough, talkative Aggie, whether they're with one parent surviving in the wilderness of North America or with the other, a tough cop in Australia. Her sense of security, constantly undermined by her rare neurological disorder - a tactile form of synaesthesia, is fragile at best. We can all relate to Inti's growing fears she faces a parent's illness, her sister's change from strong one to frail one, and the ecological fight of a lifetime. The murder that threatens to undermine her professional project makes Inti question all her certainties (and keeps us guessing until the end!). Like in Mandel's Station Eleven, Heller's The Dog Stars, and McConaghy's earlier novel Migrations, beautiful descriptions of landscapes and tough, edgy questions about ecology enrich a story of a main character searching for strength and trust in a world of disaster, and Inti's story, with its rich parallel themes (book clubs, listen up!) and thriller-speed plot twists, will appeal to a variety of readers.”

The Haunted Bookshop image Nialle, The Haunted Bookshop
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She Who Became the Sun

By Shelley Parker-Chan
Narrated by: Natalie Naudus
Length: 14 hours 36 minutes

If you enjoyed The Song of Achilles, then you’ll love She Who Became the Sun.

“Can you switch your fate with another’s? Can you seize the opportunity to become great when everything in the world is hell-bent on making you nothing? Zhu’s destiny was nothingness, a destiny that terrifies her. When her brother dies, she decides to take his destiny. Thus begins her journey through monasteries, cities, and wars. She encounters a Eunuch general who struggles with his identity and desire for revenge, a monk who bends the rules to survive, a woman whose strength is in her vulnerability, and a whole cast of amazing characters. This retelling of the establishment of the Ming Dynasty is exquisitely told. It has everything I love in a fantasy adventure: a trickster monk, a tortured warrior, fate, and lil’ bit of magic.”

Off the Beaten Path image Izzy, Off the Beaten Path
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The Chosen and the Beautiful

By Nghi Vo
Narrated by: Natalie Naudus
Length: 8 hours 52 minutes

The Chosen and the Beautiful

“A retelling of The Great Gatsby from the perspective of Jordan Baker, who in this concept is a Vietnamese adoptee raised in Louisville. In this version of the roaring 20s, alongside the usual speakeasies and flapper dresses, there’s a reality of demons, ghosts, mysteries, devilish bargains, and magic. Hell is quite literally another location from which beings can emigrate, and every culture has its own intriguing brand of magic. Jordan’s is paper cutting, and she can do wondrous, horrifying things with it. ...Refreshingly, instead of a fantasy plot that revolves around a character honing their powers, montage-style, to save the day, Vo focuses on Jordan’s personality instead. Jordan has always kept her heart aloof, entangling herself with men and women of the smart set, but this summer with Daisy, Gatsby, and quiet and observant Nick Carraway, will change her. is thoughtfully constructed, w/ Jordan’s expanded backstory informing and deepening the beats of the original. On a sentence level, the cadence and tone make you feel right at home in a 1920s classic, even when characters drink demon blood as an aperitif or discuss the troubling influence demons are beginning to have over US politics. And though you know exactly where the plot is headed, there are plenty of shocks and surprises for careful readers. Vo clearly loves and understands the original novel so well, and has accomplished not so much a retelling but a worthy companion piece, a fierce and powerful flip side to one of the great American novels.”

Magers & Quinn Booksellers image Annie, Magers & Quinn Booksellers
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Rise to the Sun (Unabridged edition)

By Leah Johnson
Narrated by: Lexi Underwood & Alaska Jackson
Length: 7 hours 33 minutes

Rise to the Sun (Unabridged edition)

“Leah Johnson is officially an auto-buy for me. I honest to goodness could not stop marking this book, nor did I realize just how much I needed it. From the off, Toni and Olivia's journeys were some sort of catharsis, healing my soul even after only two chapters. By the end, my eyes were run over and my cheeks were salty. This one's for the musicians. This one's for everyone who's been missing the way live music grabs you and won't let go. This one's for the lonely-hearted and those who've been told they're too big. And believe me when I say, you're going to want to shed tears while listening too.”

Second Star to the Right image Britt, Second Star to the Right
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If the Shoe Fits

A Meant to be Novel

By Julie Murphy
Narrated by: Jen Ponton
Length: 9 hours 51 minutes

If the Shoe Fits

“There simply aren’t enough words in my vocabulary to explain how beautifully Julie Murphy is able to craft such sweet stories. If the Shoe Fits is the Cinderella twist readers have been waiting decades for.”

Mystery to Me image Hannah Oxley, Mystery to Me
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The Thousand Crimes of Ming Tsu

By Tom Lin
Narrated by: Feodor Chin
Length: 9 hours 37 minutes

If you enjoyed How Much of These Hills Is Gold, then you’ll love The Thousand Crimes of Ming Tsu.

“Bold, brash, and uniquely unforgettable; the vivid wild West of Tom Lin’s The Thousand Crimes of Ming Tsu is a reading experience you won’t want to miss. Ming Tsu is on a quest for revenge, tearing his way across the wilderness of the old West–leaving a trail of bodies in his wake. Filled with colorful characters, hints of the magical, beautiful writing, and entrancing violence; Lin reimagines what the mythology of the American West can mean. With echoes of Cormac McCarthy and C. Pam Zhang’s How Much of These Hills is Gold but with a voice all its own, The Thousand Crimes of Ming Tsu is one of the best debut novels of the year. ”

Bookmarks image Caleb, Bookmarks
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Pop Song

Adventures in Art & Intimacy

By Larissa Pham
Narrated by: Cindy Kay
Length: 7 hours 30 minutes

Pop Song

Pop Song is an engaging blend of art criticism, memoir, and travelogue with the raw and confessional style of the microblogging generation. Larissa Pham’s prose bounces seamlessly and dexterously from looking outward to inward and back with equal attention, passion, and insight.”

Greenlight Bookstore image Matt Stowe, Greenlight Bookstore
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Clark and Division

By Naomi Hirahara
Narrated by: Allison Hiroto
Length: 8 hours 56 minutes

Clark and Division

Clark and Division is a propulsive mystery and a heart-wrenching examination of Japanese internment and relocation in the 1940s. Hirahara beautifully weaves history and injustice into this fascinating and compelling crime novel.”

Book Passage image Luisa Smith, Book Passage
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The Tangleroot Palace

By Marjorie Liu
Narrated by: Catherine Ho
Length: 9 hours 25 minutes

The Tangleroot Palace

“These small bites of fantasy and dark magic and even more dangerous characters are the best. Whether you devour it all at once or take those small bites and relish each short story, you will thoroughly enjoy this short story collection.”

The Book Dragon image Sandi Cararo, The Book Dragon
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Aftershocks

By Nadia Owusu
Narrated by: Nadia Owusu
Length: 8 hours 32 minutes

In the tradition of The Glass Castle, this “gorgeous” (The New York Times, Editors’ Choice) and deeply felt memoir from Whiting Award winner Nadia Owusu tells the “incredible story” (Malala Yousafzai) about the push and pull of belonging, the seismic emotional toll of family secrets, and the heart it takes to pull through.

“In Aftershocks, Nadia... Read more »

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The Forest of Vanishing Stars

A Novel

By Kristin Harmel
Narrated by: Madeleine Maby & Kristin Harmel
Length: 11 hours 21 minutes

The Forest of Vanishing Stars

“A little girl is kidnapped from her parents and raised in the wilderness. As a young woman, she uses her skills to help Jewish refugees survive in the forests of Poland. From the first page, I didn't want to put the book down.”

A Likely Story image Jill Gregory, A Likely Story
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