From last week's Indie bestseller lists, available at IndieBound.org, here are the recommended titles, which are also Indie Next Great Reads:
Lanny: A Novel by Max Porter (Graywolf Press, $24, 9781555978402). "The genius of Max Porter is that he can write a village in its entirety--a mother's love for her son, a brilliant artist's loneliness, a young boy's whimsical adventures, a mythological creature's inner monologue, a whole village worth of secrets and wishes and terrible thoughts--and make it into a bizarre but highly enjoyable little novel. You'll find yourself thrilled by the dark humor Porter captures in his story of one village and its characters, both real and mythologized, as Lanny follows the eponymous young boy and the lives he impacts around him." --Erin Mazza, BookBar, Denver, Colo.
Out East: Memoir of a Montauk Summer by John Glynn (Grand Central, $27, 9781538746653). "I absolutely loved Out East. It kept me up until 2:30 in the morning because I needed to read one more scene, one more chapter, to find out what happened with all of the characters. As I read, I was able to put myself into the Hive along with the rest of the housemates. The sensory details--music, food, descriptions of the people who populate Montauk--allowed me to step into this world as if I were a housemate myself. The emotional experience, too, was vivid and relatable, and brought me back to my own roller-coaster experiences of first love, longing, and heartache." --Chris Klim, Buffalo Street Books, Ithaca, N.Y.
The Bride Test: A Novel by Helen Hoang (Berkley, $15, 9780451490827). "This follow-up to The Kiss Quotient is an incredibly diverse and fun story about Khai, Michael's cousin from the previous novel. He is Vietnamese-American, autistic, and believes himself to be incapable of the emotions that matter. I would recommend this to those who enjoyed The Rosie Effect and Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine. Hoang is making important waves, one sweet, sexy romance novel at a time." --Stephanie Csaszar, Books Around the Corner, Gresham, Ore.
For Ages 4 to 8
Camp Tiger by Susan Choi and John Rocco (Putnam, $17.99, 9780399173295). "Camp Tiger is an amazing picture book. Perfect text and gorgeous art combine harmoniously to offer readers an incredible, unforgettable adventure. This story of a friendship between a young boy and a very real tiger is improbable, but through the immense talents of Choi and Rocco it becomes believable, compelling, and beautiful. Camp Tiger is a story of growth and passage that is original, unique, and important." --Christopher Rose, The Spirit of '76 Bookstore, Marblehead, Mass.
For Ages 9 to 12
Planet Earth Is Blue by Nicole Panteleakos (Wendy Lamb, $16.99, 9780525646570).
"It's 1986, and Nova is eagerly awaiting the launch of the space shuttle Challenger. She loves astronomy, plus her sister, Bridget, promised she'd be back for the launch, no matter what. Nova is autistic and nonverbal, and navigating a new foster family and a new school alone is extra tough; no one but Bridget has ever fully understood that she's a whole, intelligent person. As Nova counts down to the launch, we share in her excitement, her worries, her grief, and her joys. Panteleakos, who is on the spectrum herself, has crafted a compelling, compassionate debut." --Madeline Shier, Powell's Books, Portland, Ore.
For Teen Readers
There's Something About Sweetie by Sandhya Menon (Simon Pulse, $18.99, 9781534416789). "There's Something About Sweetie is a warm story about loving yourself and opening yourself up to others. I instantly wanted to become best friends with Sweetie; not only is she aptly named and open-hearted, she's hilarious, brilliant, and determined to better herself and the lives of everyone around her. As he falls for Sweetie, Ashish's player-style humor quickly transforms into something sweet, a little self-conscious, and ultimately endearing. They're a perfect match, and their struggles with image, perfectionism, and the everyday difficulty of being a teen strikes true." --Sami Thomason, Square Books, Oxford, Miss.
[Many thanks to IndieBound and the ABA!]