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January's Bookseller Picks

January's Bookseller Picks

Libro.fm offers recommendations from real people: the dedicated indie booksellers working in our 1,600+ partner bookstores! Below, find the audiobooks that booksellers are loving this month!

Playlist Tags: topic: nonfiction bookseller picks bookseller recommended topic: fiction

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How High We Go in the Dark

A Novel

By Sequoia Nagamatsu
Narrated by: Julia Whelan, Brian Nishii, Keisuke Hoashi, MacLeod Andrews, Jeanne Sakata, Greg Watanabe, Kurt Kanazawa, Matthew Bridges, Kotaro Watanabe, Brianna Ishibashi, Joe Knezevich, Micky Shiloah, Stephanie Komure & Jason Culp
Length: 9 hours 20 minutes

If you enjoyed Once Upon a River, then you’ll love How High We Go in the Dark.

“Interlinked short stories comprise this novel in the same way gears and levers make an astronomical clock. Many of the stories are heartbreaking, and others seed hope; each has either a narrator in the midst of a journey, or a narrator stuck in one place (literal or figurative) while events explode around them. The two types of characters provide two poles of a perspective; in this book, a plague and emerging environmental catastrophe force the characters to think about what they thought they wanted and what, in the end, they can actually have. The audio producers wisely chose a diverse company of narrators; the book is a sort of Decameron, and the variety of voices helps you keep each story vividly in mind so that you catch all the interconnections. (Reader, keep track of the crystal pendant! Trust the author. It will answer your questions.)”

The Haunted Bookshop image Nialle, The Haunted Bookshop
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Beasts of a Little Land

A Novel

By Juhea Kim
Narrated by: Sue Jean Kim & Raymond Lee
Length: 13 hours 29 minutes

Beasts of a Little Land

“Juhea Kim's debut novel is at once massive in breadth and intimate in scale. Upending Dickens and Tolstoy by setting some of their themes in Japanese occupied Korea, Kim delves into the depths of her characters - social outcasts all - and builds an ensemble of unique voices that speak to today's world nearly a century on from her setting. Parallels are exposed between the imperialism and revolution of early-twentieth-century Korea and early-twenty-first-century America, Britain, Brazil, Venezuela, Myanmar - take your pick - proving that we have not yet learned from history and are still dooming ourselves to repeat the horror of our past. The setting not only allows for a political backdrop that reverberates to modern readers, but also allows Kim to center her characters in a society shift as well; one where mysticism is giving way to harsh reality; where prior social mores are becoming popular entertainment; and where social outcasts can become leaders of industry. This is a thrilling read, and brought to mind the best of Merchant-Ivory films while also exploring the racist and colonizing effects of the aristocracy.”

Odyssey Bookshop image Jesse, Odyssey Bookshop
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1000 Years of Joys and Sorrows

A Memoir

By Ai Weiwei
Narrated by: David Shih
Length: 13 hours 7 minutes

The “intimate and expansive” (Time) memoir of “one of the most important artists working in the world today” (Financial Times), telling a remarkable history of China over the last hundred years while also illuminating his artistic process
 
“Poignant . . . An illuminating through-line emerges in the many parallels Ai traces between his life and... Read more »

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For a limited time, when you sign up for a new monthly membership with code CHOOSEINDIE, we’ll give you a bonus audiobook! That means you’ll have 2 audiobook credits to redeem from the start.

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Brown Girls

A Novel

By Daphne Palasi Andreades
Narrated by: Tashi Thomas
Length: 4 hours 26 minutes

If you enjoyed Red at the Bone, then you’ll love Brown Girls.

“What an absolutely gorgeous debut. The audiobook, narrated by Tashi Thomas, was more of a breathtaking performance than a mere narration. I highly recommend listening to this book and getting swept up in the life Thomas gives it. This book follows a female friend group from Queens over the course of their lives, taking us through the different paths they travel and the common experiences shared. Told in first person plural and present tense, Palasi Andreades brings an urgency to their story, a universality to their experience. By having a whole group of girls as the protagonist, we the readers are able to meander through multiple lives, always feeling allied with each."”

Pocket Books Shop image Julie, Pocket Books Shop
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The How

Notes on the Great Work of Meeting Yourself

By Yrsa Daley-Ward
Narrated by: Yrsa Daley-Ward
Length: 2 hours 56 minutes

The How

“A brilliant and beautiful work. The author invites a reader to join an internal dialogue. True, Daley-Ward targets a specific age group and gender, but I want to say, she got the attention of this male approaching seventy and held it. Many fine quips and quotes, but the chapters “Why We Write It Down” and “Not the End of the Day” stood out for me. Personable, warm, truthful and encouraging. And with a phrase to live by: “Only you know How.””

Bookstore1Sarasota image Doug, Bookstore1Sarasota
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To Paradise

A Novel

By Hanya Yanagihara
Narrated by: Edoardo Ballerini, Catherine Ho, BD Wong, Feodor Chin & Kurt Kanazawa
Length: 28 hours 46 minutes

To Paradise

“Expansive, wholly original, and utterly engrossing, To Paradise is a masterpiece. Fans of Yanagihara’s A Little Life will find themselves making a little more room in their hearts for this marvelous, emotional, and brilliant story.”

Loyalty Bookstores image Christine Bollow, Loyalty Bookstores
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Little Thieves

By Margaret Owen
Narrated by: Saskia Maarleveld
Length: 13 hours 59 minutes

Little Thieves

“Vanja wants just one thing. She wants enough money to escape the life of servitude her godmothers, Death and Fortune have promised her. She has stolen many things, jewelry, clothes, money, and the identity of her former lady, the Princess Giselle. Cursed by a low god, Vanja only has a fortnight to return what she’s stolen before the jewels growing on her body will take over and kill her...a lifetime of isolation, Vanja knows that she’s the only person she can count on. Perfect for fans of Six of Crows, this Bavarian-inspired fantasy is a delightful adventure with found family, thrilling mysteries, and is full of heart. Maybe Vanja wants more than one thing, after all.”

Wellesley Books image Cassie, Wellesley Books
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The Dawn of Everything

A New History of Humanity

By David Graeber & David Wengrow
Narrated by: Mark Williams
Length: 24 hours 2 minutes

If you enjoyed Guns, Germs, and Steel, then you’ll love The Dawn of Everything.

“In this brilliant and sometimes funny reexamination of human history, the authors argue that we are less free than our ancestors, and that it was not inevitable "progress" that brought us here. Using evidence from the last few decades of archeology, the authors contend that the centralization of power in the hands of a few was often avoided in prehistory. This analysis is a hopeful one of a world where we could again have three basic freedoms: the freedom to disobey, the freedom to go somewhere else, and the freedom to create new social arrangements.”

A Great Good Place for Books image Michael, A Great Good Place for Books
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If This Gets Out

A Novel

By Sophie Gonzales & Cale Dietrich
Narrated by: Ramon de Ocampo
Length: 12 hours 57 minutes

If This Gets Out

“This book absolutely blew me away! I couldn't put it down. For boy band fans, for those who can recite the words to every Camp Rock song, and for anyone who knows hard, complex, and beautiful it is to come out as queer whether you're famous or not - this is our book. Ramon de Ocampo, who also read Red White and Royal Blue, did an excellent job with the narration and truly brought Ruben, Zach, and their bandmates Angel and Jon to life.”

Phoenix Books image Miriasha, Phoenix Books
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Olga Dies Dreaming

A Novel

By Xochitl Gonzalez
Narrated by: Almarie Guerra, Armando Riesco & Inés del Castillo
Length: 11 hours 22 minutes

Olga Dies Dreaming

“Olga and her brother Pedro 'Prieto' Acevedo had a rough start—their activist mother left them to lead a militant group in Puerto Rico; their father died young from AIDS—but they've both found success, Olga as a high-end wedding planner and Prieto as a congressman. Olga Dies Dreaming follows the pair (and some of their loved ones) as they navigate their careers, dreams, responsibilities, and loyalties in the rapidly gentrifying Sunset Park neighborhood of Brooklyn. It's a story about family and boundaries, and doing the painful but rewarding work of discovering one's purpose. I fell in love with Olga so quickly, and that's due in large part to Inés del Castillo's narration.”

P&T Knitwear image Arianna, P&T Knitwear
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The Last House on the Street

A Novel

By Diane Chamberlain
Narrated by: Susan Bennett
Length: 12 hours 10 minutes

The Last House on the Street

“When Kayla's husband is killed in a terrible accident while their house is being built, she's reluctant to move into the house, especially after being threatened. A little romance, a little mystery, and civil rights in the South all lead to a beautifully told story told in multiple voices, from the present to the past. Definitely recommend.”

Bank Square Books image Sherry, Bank Square Books
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The Hidden

By Melanie Golding
Narrated by: Penelope Rawlins
Length: 12 hours 13 minutes

The Hidden

“I love anything involving Selkie lore, but this book went way beyond my expectations. Chock full of twists, each one hinting at a darker secret than the last, I was left gasping with each reveal. I highly recommend the audio book on Libro.fm for a full submersion in the tale. ”

Bright Side Bookshop image Amy, Bright Side Bookshop
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Hitched To The Gunslinger

How to Marry a Gunslinger: Book #1

By Michelle McLean
Narrated by: Holly Adams
Length: 9 hours 18 minutes

Hitched To The Gunslinger

“This delightful romance made me laugh from beginning to end...There was plenty of banter, sarcasm, and chemistry. All the secondary characters were entertaining as well. Give me more? an easy 5 out of 5 stars.”

Inklings Bookshop image Anne , Inklings Bookshop
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Lamentations

A Novel of Women Walking West

By Carol Kammen
Narrated by: Rosemary Benson
Length: 10 hours 41 minutes

Lamentations

“Historian Carol Kammen creates a moving, lyrical dramatization of the events of the first wagon train to set out for Oregon in 1842, told in the voices of the women in the company. From various backgrounds and different parts of what was then the United States, young and old, the girls and women bring us along on the long trek through unknown territory, noting their fears and hopes, through hardship and joy. A fictional sister to Isabella Bird’s classic A Lady’s Life in the Rocky Mountains, this is a lovely historical novel.”

Bookstore1Sarasota image Nora, Bookstore1Sarasota
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I'm Not Hungry But I Could Eat

By Christopher Gonzalez
Narrated by: Christian Barillas, Tony Chiroldes & Anthony Medina
Length: 2 hours 47 minutes

I'm Not Hungry But I Could Eat

“It’s wildly delightful to have such a slender short story collection provide a full course meal of emotion: savory, salty, sour, sweet, tender and all-around charming. These are portraits of hungry men--craving touch, love, and acceptance--and finding it in friends and family (and food). True to the title, I found myself satisfied by the end of the book, but excited for what Gonzalez will serve up next.”

Avid Bookshop image Luis, Avid Bookshop
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Small Things Like These

By Claire Keegan
Narrated by: Aidan Kelly
Length: 1 hours 56 minutes

Small Things Like These

“A small moving book about generosity, history, family and religion. Perfect for the holiday season when gratitude is on our minds. Bill Furlong didn’t come from much, but he had a benefactor. As he learns what is really happening in the “laundry” where young women end up, his memories of kindness move him to action. A quiet read that shows the power of a moral compass.”

Bookstore1Sarasota image Andrea, Bookstore1Sarasota
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You Can't Be Serious

By Kal Penn
Narrated by: Kal Penn
Length: 9 hours 43 minutes

You Can't Be Serious

“Reading Kal Penn’s memoir is like getting a visit from that friend you always look forward to seeing for his well spun hilarious tales. From his humble New Jersey upbringing to his acting in comedies such as National Lampoon’s Van Wilder to his work as Associate Director of the Office of Public Engagement during the Obama Administration, Penn certainly has the fodder for truly engaging stories.”

Bookstore1Sarasota image Roxanne, Bookstore1Sarasota
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The Secret Next Door

By Rebecca Taylor
Narrated by: Libby McKnight
Length: 10 hours 23 minutes

The Secret Next Door

The Secret Next Door is a suspenseful story about a young couple who move to an affluent neighborhood which seems perfect to live and raise a family. They quickly learn otherwise, so they question if they made the right decision. The story is engaging and will hold your interest from beginning to end! The narrator's voice makes it great for audio listening.”

We Are LIT image Crystal, We Are LIT
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