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Second Star Staff Picks

Second Star Staff Picks

Looking for an escape? Need some hands-free reading while you're taking care of the kids? Try these Second Star to the Right staff favorites on for size!

Playlist Tags: Second Star to the Right booksellerfavorites topic: favorites staff picks bookstore-created

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The Anthropocene Reviewed

Essays on a Human-Centered Planet

By John Green
Narrated by: John Green
Length: 10 hours 3 minutes

The Anthropocene Reviewed

“A continuation of John Green's podcast of the same name, this audiobook is engaging, intriguing and hard to put down. Read by the author, this book resonated with me on so many levels and left me with food for thought. 5 stars.”

Rediscovered Books image Rebecca, Rediscovered Books
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Their Eyes Were Watching God

By Zora Neale Hurston
Narrated by: Ruby Dee
Length: 6 hours 44 minutes

“A deeply soulful novel that comprehends love and cruelty, and separates the big people from the small of heart, without ever losing sympathy for those unfortunates who don’t know how to live properly.” —Zadie Smith

One of the most important and enduring books of the twentieth century, Their Eyes Were Watching God brings to life a Southern love...

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Thornlight

By Claire Legrand
Narrated by: Billie Fulford-Brown
Length: 8 hours 42 minutes

Thornlight

“Claire has beautifully expanded this world (and magic system) into something even more fantastical than I could have imagined. I adored every single one of the characters and cameos from the old. I cherished the hints at romance between Thorn and Zaf (wlw!), so completely, beautifully innocent and wondrous. But most of all, I loved the lessons in self esteem, courage, and empathy, as each fought their own unseen battles. Thornlight is a testament to the different kinds of strength we each possess, especially those that are often disregarded as weakness. This is a story that's equally heartwarming and heartbreaking (though the kind of heartbreak that pushes you to keep fighting), the sum of its parts undeniably magical. Oh, and did I mention the sassy unicorns??? And Mazby the Grifflet?”

Second Star to the Right image Britt, Second Star to the Right
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Librofm App

Special offer

Free audiobook with membership

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.

Claim special offer

Vesper Flights

By Helen Macdonald
Narrated by: Helen Macdonald
Length: 10 hours 21 minutes

Vesper Flights

“These essays will stay with you long after you finish. They are beautiful and thought provoking. You will be awed by Macdonald's insights and by the natural world that inspired them. Macdonald's soothing, sophisticated voice, and creates something you can listen to over and over again.”

Buttonwood Books and Toys image Kristine, Buttonwood Books and Toys
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Beautiful Country

A Memoir

By Qian Julie Wang
Narrated by: Qian Julie Wang
Length: 9 hours 38 minutes

Beautiful Country

“In this brutally honest coming-of-age memoir, Qian Julie Wang comes to terms with the deprivations and struggles of her undocumented Chinese upbringing in New York City in the 1990s.”

Kayleen Rohrer image Kayleen Rohrer, InkLink Books
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Intimations

Six Essays

By Zadie Smith
Narrated by: Zadie Smith
Length: 1 hours 50 minutes

Intimations

“Zadie Smith’s slim but concentrated Intimations is just what I needed during a pandemic. Our current collective American reality is validated in her intelligent voice, and it’s comforting. She talks about the power writers have to create their own worlds. She talks about suffering—how it defies class and privilege—and how she experiences her own privilege. She talks about “the virus,” and about the virus of racism—how we’re willing to make societal changes to mitigate the spread of one, but not the other. And at the end, a love letter/gratitude list. Listen to the audiobook if you want to hear Zadie Smith sing (literally!).”

Raven Book Store image Mary, Raven Book Store
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Act Your Age, Eve Brown

A Novel

By Talia Hibbert
Narrated by: Ione Butler
Length: 10 hours 51 minutes

Act Your Age, Eve Brown

“Eve is sunshine and chaos, Jacob is all structure and self-reliance - they're both autistic (as is the author), hard-working, and absolutely obsessed with each other from the beginning. Equal parts significant, silly, and sexy, this finale to the Brown Sisters trilogy does not disappoint.”

Phoenix Books image Miriasha , Phoenix Books
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The City We Became

A Novel
The Great Cities: Book #1

By N. K. Jemisin
Narrated by: Robin Miles
Length: 16 hours 12 minutes

The City We Became

“What did I just listen to and why did I like it so much? Part of falling in love with this book was the listening experience, to be certain. The narration was stellar. The production was on point. But the story... the story itself is sublime. N.K. Jemisin has written a love letter to New York City - but not the one in bright, bold letters on the silver screen - the real city, and the real people who inhabit it and call it home, even if only temporarily. And it was beyond my wildest dreams (and nightmares). The City We Became is so incredibly layered and nuanced - diving into discussions of racism and sexism and the fallacy of good vs evil. I wanted nothing more than to steep in its long chapters, and get to know its boroughs as intimately as Jemisin would allow - not mere stereotypes but fully fleshed and brilliant, blinding avatars. Witty, subversive, imaginative, unbelievable. Get on this wild ride.”

Second Star to the Right image Britt, Second Star to the Right
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The Book of Two Ways

A Novel

By Jodi Picoult
Narrated by: Patti Murin
Length: 15 hours 47 minutes

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • From the author of Small Great Things and A Spark of Light comes a “powerful” (The Washington Post) novel about the choices that alter the course of our lives.

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY MARIE CLAIRE

Everything changes in a single moment for Dawn Edelstein. She’s on a plane when the flight attendant... Read more »

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Circe

By Madeline Miller
Narrated by: Perdita Weeks
Length: 12 hours 8 minutes

Circe

“This sweeping tale of the gods and heroes of Greek mythology as seen through the eyes of a minor goddess had me from the first chapter. I listened to this as an audiobook from our audio vendor, Libro.fm. The brilliant narrator was the 29-year-old Welsh film actress, Perdita Weeks.”

Changing Hands image Bob, Changing Hands
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Internment

By Samira Ahmed
Narrated by: Soneela Nankani
Length: 11 hours 17 minutes

Internment

“An emotionally charged, incredibly well written story of what it would be like if internment camps were brought back for this nation's Muslim citizens. Beautifully narrated, Internment is gripping and powerful, this is a must-listen for all ages.”

Anderson's Bookshop image Mary, Anderson's Bookshop
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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 a beautifully written, stunning, and scandalous story about two identical black twin girls, one who runs away from home at age 16. And then their lives completely shift, as one continues living her life as a Black woman, and the other that tries to pass herself off as white. This novel came at just the right time, in the middle of the Black Lives Matter protests and racial unrest in the United States. Brit Bennett has done a brilliant job with her novel! It is compelling and the audiobook on Libro.fm is exceptional!”

BookBar image Marilyn, BookBar
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Mythos

By author
Narrated by: Stephen Fry
Length: 15 hours 24 minutes

Mythos

“Stephen Fry has dusted off the Greek myths. Starting with the creation and going through all the infights, back-stabbings, and just plain stupid mistakes of the Greek pantheon, he breaths new life into these tales with his characteristic wry humor and witty asides. A great added feature of the video book is that Fry himself reads it, so sit back, turn on your LibroFM-playing device, close your eyes and be prepared to be entertained while learning or relearning the ins and outs of Greek mythology.”

Galiano Books image Jim, Galiano Books
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American Street

By Ibi Zoboi
Narrated by: Robin Miles
Length: 8 hours 34 minutes

A National Book Award Finalist with five starred reviews and multiple awards!

A New York Times Notable Book * A Time Magazine Best YA Book Of All Time* Publishers Weekly Flying Start * Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year * ALA Booklist Editors' Choice of 2017 (Top of the List winner) * School Library Journal Best Book of the...

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The Dutch House

A Novel

By Ann Patchett
Narrated by: Tom Hanks
Length: 9 hours 52 minutes

The Dutch House

“This is a wonderful story - well written, excellent character development, and interesting. A story of redemption for siblings. This novel hits an emotional chord on many levels - personal choice, the importance of being present in your everyday life, and letting others make life choices for you instead of you making them for yourself. The novel reinforces the importance of being engaged throughout our life not sleepwalking through it because that is easier. The Dutch House makes one look at your own life and wonders why you made the choices you did and how things could be drastically different with just a small twist of fate.”

The Willow Bookstore image Megan, The Willow Bookstore
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Legendborn

The Legendborn Cycle

By Tracy Deonn
Narrated by: Joniece Abbott-Pratt
Length: 18 hours 54 minutes

If you enjoyed Children of Blood and Bone, then you’ll love Legendborn.

“If you’ve been thinking about trying audiobooks, I recommend LEGENDBORN by Tracy Deonn as a great starting point! The reader, Joniece Abbott-Pratt, completely transported me to the Southern Gothic world of a secret society on the campus of UNC-Chapel Hill (down to the hot sauce on hash browns). With a complex magic system intricately tied to ancestry and world history, Arthurian legend, demon battles, and just enough romance, this was one of those books that I thought about when I couldn’t have it playing in my headphones! Deonn is a master, bringing Brianna, the main character, to name and disrupt white male supremacy while working through the grief of her own story and that of her mothers before her. I also loved the queer representation in secondary characters, including a squire with they/them pronouns. I can't wait for the sequel and to follow Deonn's career!”

Lark & Owl image Kim, Lark & Owl
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Boyfriend Material

By Alexis Hall
Narrated by: Joe Jameson
Length: 13 hours 10 minutes

Boyfriend Material

“An utterly delightful romance for those who love Red, White, and Royal Blue. Quirky, funny, and heartfelt, with stunning character development, the audiobook is stellar!”

Porter Square Books image Marika, Porter Square Books
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SHOUT

By Laurie Halse Anderson
Narrated by: Laurie Halse Anderson
Length: 3 hours 48 minutes

SHOUT

“Powerful. Hopeful. Honest. And funny as hell in all the right moments. A must read (or listen, as Laurie's own narration emphasizes her poignant verse) for the #MeToo era that makes you think, makes you feel, makes you reevaluate your shame, and step forward into the light.”

Second Star to the Right image Britt, Second Star to the Right
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Wishful Drinking

By Carrie Fisher
Narrated by: Carrie Fisher
Length: 3 hours 6 minutes

The bestselling author of Postcards from the Edge comes clean (well, sort of) in her first-ever memoir, adapted from her one-woman Broadway hit show. Fisher reveals what it was really like to grow up a product of “Hollywood in-breeding,” come of age on the set of a little movie called Star Wars, and become a cultural icon and bestselling action... Read more »

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A Closed and Common Orbit

Wayfarers: Book #2

By Becky Chambers
Narrated by: Rachel Dulude
Length: 11 hours 29 minutes

A Closed and Common Orbit

“Becky Chambers has built a dazzling and expansive science fiction universe and seems determined to introduce readers to every corner. The AI Sidra and young Jane provide swapping viewpoints between a bustling, multi-species city sprawling over a moon and a sterile factory among miles and miles of junkyard on a planet with extremely skewed priorities. Sidra's journey to understand who and what she really only becomes more poignant as you follow Jane struggle to escape the only home, the only planet, she has ever known. In the end, despite the fantastic setting and characters, Chambers manages to deliver a striking message about consciousness, survival, and family.”

The Cupboard Maker Books image Sam, The Cupboard Maker Books
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