The best new books this month chosen by us and other
independent booksellers across the country.

This Month's #1 Indie Next List Pick...

Magpie Murders

By Anthony Horowitz

(Harper 9780062645227, $27.99)

"Who better than the talented Anthony Horowitz to create this marvelous mystery within a mystery. Yes, we're treated to two mysteries for the price of one: One set in a peaceful village in England during the 1950s with the one and only Detective Atticus Pund taking the case, and the other set in contemporary times with a book editor who becomes an amateur sleuth. Horowitz pays tribute to the golden age of British crime with references to mysteries created by the likes of Dorothy Sayers and Agatha Christie. How many hidden gems can you come up with? A perfect book to read in a cushy chair with a cup of tea (hot or iced)."
--Ken Favell, Books & Company, Oconomowoc, WI

This Month's #1 Indie Next List Pick Author Interview

Booksellers across the U.S. have chosen Anthony Horowitz's Magpie Murders (Harper, June 6), a mystery novel within a mystery novel, as their top pick for the June 2017 Indie Next List.

Magpie Murders pays homage to the golden age of British crime fiction and the great detectives of literature, combining a whodunit set in a small village in 1950s England with a second mystery set in the contemporary book publishing world. The two stories mirror and reference each other throughout the novel, as Horowitz uses his command of the genre to ratchet up the suspense.

Horowitz has written more than 40 books, including Trigger Mortis, a James Bond novel commissioned by the estate of Ian Fleming, and two Sherlock Holmes novels commissioned by the estate of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle: The House of Silk and its sequel, Moriarty. He is also the author of the bestselling Alex Rider books, a series of spy thrillers for young adults. As a television screenwriter, Horowitz created the British crime dramas Midsomer Murders and Foyle's War, which are featured in the U.S. on the PBS series Masterpiece Mystery.

Here, Horowitz talks about his inspiration for writing two mystery novels in one, what he likes about the mystery genre, and what booksellers can say to hand-sell his new book.

Where did the idea to write two mystery novels in one begin?

It was inspired partly by my love of Sherlock Holmes and by the fact that Sir Arthur Conan Doyle created the greatest detective in fiction ever but disliked him and thought he wasn't worthy of his talents, and so he got rid of him by hurling him off the Reichenbach Falls. That gave me the idea of writing a story about a writer, Alan Conway, and a detective, Atticus Pünd, and exploring the relationship between them. From there, I immediately knew that it was going to be a book within a book. There would be the book that the writer was writing and the book that I was writing about the writer.

When you are writing a mystery, especially one as complex as this, how do you puzzle out the story? Do you have a system or use storyboards?

I don't use boards. I don't like them. I use notepads and I do doodles and drawings and diagrams. On my desk right now, I have a notebook which has, I think, 14 or 15 pages of squiggles, diagrams, notes, and questions to myself. I have to see the book--it has to be sort of drawn before I can begin writing it. The trick with Magpie Murders was to write a book that on one level is incredibly complicated but is also a very easy read. To me, a whodunit fails if you find yourself flipping back and forth wondering what's going on.

What do you like about mystery novels and what do you think makes for a good mystery story?

I don't really read a lot of mysteries anymore because it would interrupt my thinking processes and I worry that I would start taking ideas from other people. When I was younger, I read from the golden age of detective fiction: Agatha Christie, Dorothy Sayers, Margery Allingham, and other writers. Ellery Queen was a huge favorite of mine, and what I loved was the ingenuity of it, the chase, the sense of beguilement. I've always loved magic, illusion, secret passages, things that aren't quite what they seem. This has been my passion since I was a boy and that's what you get in a good murder mystery. I can't think of a genre of writing that offers such optimized pleasure.

To me, it's not enough to write a whodunit. I love whodunits, but my thinking is this: If you are going to read a mystery, you should get more out of the book than just "The butler did it!" in the last sentence. A whodunit can be an opportunity to do other things, and I've become very interested in the whole world of murder mystery and why there are so many murders in literature and in drama, why we have such an obsession with detectives, how whodunits work, how they are written, the nature of writing. This is something I've begun to explore in the book and I hope it's sort of an added bonus. Ideally you want more than just a series of clues and red herrings; you want some thought and introspection going on as well.

Would you say mysteries by British writers have a certain point of view or certain characteristics that distinguish them from mysteries of a different origin?

I think that the British do the murder mystery very well. Obviously, we have a great tradition: Agatha Christie, for one, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Ruth Rendell, and many others. One of the reasons for this, I guess, is that we tend as a race to be less emotional than maybe you are in America: we are less upfront with our emotions, we're more restrained, more secretive, we have more to hide. We are, in many ways, a more repressed nation. That is very helpful if you are writing about people who are hiding and who are hiding, possibly, murder. Also, villages are very peculiar places. They are small: everybody in an English village is linked, everybody knows everybody, and yet there are also a great many emotions seething around the village green and that can lead to extremes of violence and death. So I think there is something about the English character, the topography of our country that does lend itself very, very well.

How did you create the character of Atticus Pünd?

Obviously, he's influenced by Hercule Poirot. I found it quite difficult to escape from his shadow. There are elements of Holmes in him as well, and I felt at times he even had a bit of Father Brown in him. He's one removed from me because I had to create Alan Conway, the writer who had to create Atticus Pünd; he's like a character within a character, and he wasn't easy to draw.

I think the most successful aspect of him is the fact that because he had been in the camps in the Second World War and has this sort of acquaintanceship with the greatest evil that man can do, it gives him quite an interesting edge that I think other detectives might not have.

The character of Alan Conway is somewhat of a literary snob who values literary fiction above the mystery/thriller genre novels he actually writes. Were you attempting to explore this prejudice in Magpie Murders?

That begins with Doyle. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle had written Sherlock Holmes but he really wanted to write historical romance. He thought the books of his that people would be reading were The White Company and Micah Clarke. These were the books he thought were classics but which we now in the 21st century have completely forgotten. I understand that antipathy because other writers have had it, too. Ian Fleming and James Bond, Agatha Christie and Hercule Poirot. Christie had some quite cruel things to say about Poirot; she called him "a detestable, bombastic, tiresome, ego-centric little creep."

I think the relationship between an author and his or her creation is an interesting one. Look at me with Alex Rider, I've got a 14- or 15-year-old boy who is loved by millions of people, who saves the world time and time again, and I sit here in my London office at age 62 and sometimes I'm jealous of him, so I get it. But within Magpie Murders, I am not for one minute decrying crime fiction. I love crime fiction. Magpie Murders is not a book that is attacking the genre.

Booksellers voted Magpie Murders the number one Indie Next List pick for June. What advice would you give to booksellers when it comes to hand-selling your book?

I would say the headline is: It's two mysteries for the price of one. I have been told the book is very enjoyable because nobody has yet managed to guess either of the solutions, even though it is possible to guess the ending of one of them from the very first page. The clues are all there but people are being tantalized and puzzled and they are enjoying it. I would also add that I'm so happy to have a very handsomely produced book out there on the shelves. We live in a time when booksellers are at risk, independents in particular, and I said this before: a High Street without a bookseller is a High Street without a soul. So I am very hopeful that this book will bring profits and pleasure to booksellers and their customers. --by Liz Button for Indie Next List

More Indie Next List Great Reads

Do Not Become Alarmed

By Maile Meloy

(Riverhead Books 9780735216525, $27)

"All parents have had those moments when something happens and you think, 'This is it. The moment my life changes.' This is the story of two families that face the unimaginable: they lose their children in a foreign country. The tale alternates between characters, with each fully realized and fully drawn. Maile Meloy explores what happens to each family: the relationship between the wives, who are cousins and have been close since childhood, and between the children who are missing. The writing is incredible, and the story is such that you can't put it down. A satisfying read that makes you wonder about how you would react in the same situation."
--Kym Havens, An Unlikely Story, Plainville, MA

The Long Haul: A Trucker's Tales of Life on the Road

By Finn Murphy

(W.W. Norton & Company 9780393608717, $26.95)

"This memoir of a life spent driving trucks full of strangers' personal belongings across the country is the book I didn't know I needed. Finn Murphy writes engaging slice-of-life stories about his time as a long-haul truck driver while also showing the changes in the trucking industry and American life in the decades he's spent pulling thousands of pounds up mountains, through storms, and across plains. Trucking is a solitary life, but Murphy grabbed me like a friend and took me with him on his journey."
--Jamie Thomas, Women & Children First, Chicago, IL

Come Sundown

By Nora Roberts

(St. Martin's Press 9781250123077, $27.99)

"This is the story of the Bodine family, which runs a successful ranch resort. As you learn about Bodine Longbow, who helps to run the family business, and her new relationship, you also learn about Bodine's Aunt Alice, who took off when she was 18 and never came home. The family never learned what happened to Alice, so when she is found alive they have to find out to keep her from disappearing again. Come Sundown is suspenseful, slightly creepy, and also touching. I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys a mystery with some romance."
--Linda Keifer, Hockessin Bookshelf, Hockessin, DE

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo

By Taylor Jenkins Reid

(Atria Books 9781501139239, $26)

"Steeped in the glory of Hollywood when marriages were made for reasons other than love and could be slipped on and off like a fine dinner jacket, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo reveals the behind-the-scenes stories of lives full of hunger, self-pity, jealousy, and rage, as well as lost love. This is a story that could have been pulled from the pages of fan magazines of the '50s. It's so entertainingly real that you will be wondering why you can't remember the great star Evelyn Hugo and the movies she made famous. Read for pure pleasure, and you'll be tempted to play the game of, 'Who is this about, really?' What fun!"
--Linda Bond, Auntie's Bookstore, Spokane, WA

Sycamore

By Bryn Chancellor

(Harper 9780062661098, $26.99)

"Eighteen years after high school junior Jess Winters vanished without a trace from Sycamore, Arizona, human bones are found near where Jess was last seen alive. Everyone in the small community, from family to friends to teachers, was profoundly affected by the unsolved mystery. Told from multiple points of view, this deeply moving story explores the fateful events that led to Jess' disappearance and slowly reveals the mistakes, secrets, and regrets, but also the humanity and the good, that reside in each of the characters. Heart-wrenching and compassionate in the manner of Kent Haruf's stories, this is a flawless first novel."
--Pierre Camy, Schuler Books, Grand Rapids, MI

The Essex Serpent

By Sarah Perry

(Custom House 9780062666376, $26.99)

"If you love mystery, Victorian England, and exploring the tension between science and religion, you will love The Essex Serpent. Many contemporary authors manage to evoke for readers that experience of reading Jane Austen or Sir Arthur Conan Doyle for the first time. The real miracle of Sarah Perry is that she manages to do so with a completely fresh voice. With beautiful sentences and characters and landscapes so well-crafted you feel you've been there, The Essex Serpent captures the imagination and manages to deliver the sense of wisdom only good literature can."
--Tina Ontiveros, Klindt's Booksellers, The Dalles, OR

Dragon Teeth

By Michael Crichton

(Harper 9780062473356, $28.99)

"I worshipped Michael Crichton. I cried for two days when he died, in part because there would be no more novels. However, after all these years, Dragon Teeth is a true surprise, and a joyful one indeed! Although he's more associated with futuristic science, Mr. Crichton was a dab hand at the historic thriller, and this novel is deeply grounded in fact. At its heart are two feuding paleontologists, Edward Drinker Cope and Othniel Marsh, participants in the late-1800s Bone Wars, a period of frenzied fossil discovery. Add to the mix a fictional Yale student, friendly and unfriendly Native Americans, a heap of varmints and scoundrels, and a lady or two, and you've got a rollicking good story!"
--Susan Tunis, Bookshop West Portal, San Francisco, CA

So Much Blue

By Percival Everett

(Graywolf Press 9781555977825, $16, trade paper)

"The newest release from Percival Everett provides ample proof that he is one of the most underrated writers in American literature. So Much Blue jumps among three different points in protagonist Kevin Pace's life that have shaped his artistry as a painter and his misgivings as a man. These vignettes are sardonic, shocking, and sexy. Like life, Everett's latest doesn't give you an easy tie-it-up-in-a-nice-bow revelation--instead, it leaves you thinking about these characters days after you've closed the book, mulling over their futures as well as yours."
--Dante Bostic, Greenlight Bookstore, Brooklyn, NY

Stephen Florida

By Gabe Habash

(Coffee House Press 9781566894647, $25)

"Spanning a college wrestler's senior season, Stephen Florida is eerie, unsettling, and unlike anything else. It can be hard to live in Stephen's head, but it is impossible to stop reading or to forget what you find there. Stephen is unpredictable, sympathetic, focused, frenzied, cold, and tender. He is hard to love, yet I love him. We are lucky to have a new novel like this: something you haven't seen before, that makes you remember what good fiction is capable of."
--Tyler Goodson, Avid Bookshop, Athens, GA

Extraordinary Adventures

By Daniel Wallace

(St. Martin's Press 9781250118455, $25.99)

"We are all Edsel Bronfman. Or at least those of us who have spent a substantial portion of our lives as terribly awkward introverts with no social skills and a complete lack of romantic experience or opportunity are. Daniel Wallace's new novel had me cringing with recognition and laughing out loud as his 34-year-old protagonist is launched on an absurd and hilarious journey of self-discovery and transformation initiated by a mysterious phone call from a timeshare saleswoman. Extraordinary Adventures is a quirky, sweet, heartfelt, and offbeat romance that displays the imaginative playfulness Wallace is known for."
--Josh Niesse, Underground Books, Carrollton, GA

Touch

By Courtney Maum

(G.P. Putnam's Sons 9780735212121, $26)

"Sloane is a strong, independent businesswoman working as a trend forecaster. While at an innovative company, Sloane finds that the very technology that is supposed to connect people to one another is actually tearing them apart. The entire story is both hilarious and slightly terrifying as it tells of a future where we outsource intimacy to strangers and lead very isolated lives. Touch is a warning about what can happen if we become too attached to the technology in our lives and a great reminder to put the phone down and connect with others in person."
--Kristen Beverly, Half Price Books, Dallas, TX

The Fact of a Body: A Murder and a Memoir

By Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich

(Flatiron Books 9781250080547, $26.99)

"Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich didn't set out to investigate the murder of six-year-old Jeremy Guillory in Louisiana; it was the case she happened upon as a young law school intern in 1992. In a fascinating twist, this becomes not only the true story of a heinous crime for which the perpetrator is in prison, but also of the investigation that unlocks the author's memories of her own youth, a childhood in which she and her sisters were repeatedly sexually abused by their maternal grandfather. As Marzano-Lesnevich moves backward and forward in time between the young man who killed Jeremy and her own life, the reader is swept along on a current of dismay and awe: dismay that human beings can do these things to each other, and awe that the author could face such demons and move on. I've never read another book like this."
--Anne Holman, The King's English, Salt Lake City, UT

Blackout

By Marc Elsberg

(Sourcebooks Landmark 9781492654414, $26.99)

"Already a huge bestseller internationally, Marc Elsberg's Blackout is poised to be a sensation in the U.S. this June. In Blackout, hackers are able to take down all the electrical grids across Europe, resulting in a total blackout more far-reaching than anything previously thought possible. Once it becomes clear that this event is not a glitch and the depths of the crisis--no lights, no heat, no Internet, no cell service--become evident, chaos ensues. Piero Manzano is an activist and a former hacker whose investigation into the cause of the disaster soon makes him a prime suspect and forces him to run from the authorities. This is a taut, fast-paced thriller about a frighteningly plausible scenario."
--Cody Morrison, Square Books, Oxford, MS

Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore

By Matthew Sullivan

(Scribner 9781501116841, $26)

"Still reeling from witnessing a tragic event many years ago, Lydia is thrown headfirst into yet another tragedy after one of her favorite bookshop patrons commits suicide in the store and mysteriously leaves all his possessions to her. As Lydia follows the thread that he leaves her, she finds out more about him, her town, and even her own past. Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore is a great book that keeps you guessing. Highly recommended for fans of a good mystery."
--Will Bason, BookPeople, Austin, TX

Chemistry

By Weike Wang

(Knopf 9781524731748, $24.95)

"The unnamed narrator of Wang's winning and insightful novel is working on her PhD in synthetic organic chemistry, but the chemistry she really needs to learn is the one that makes relationships click. The prodigy daughter of high-achieving Chinese American parents, she's always strived to meet their demanding expectations. Then, suddenly, she just can't. Her lab work falters. She's unable to accept or decline her boyfriend's marriage proposal. But when she has a breakdown and loses in both academia and in love, she finally realizes how angry she is. Coming to terms with her past becomes her next project, and soon she can see her parents in a new light--and they aren't the fierce tiger couple they'd always seemed to be."
--Laurie Greer, Politics & Prose Bookstore, Washington, DC

Shadow Man

By Alan Drew

(Random House 9781400067800, $27)

"Shadow Man is supposed to be the story of a serial killer who was horribly abused as a child and the efforts of the police to track him down and keep him from killing others. However, this book is really about Ben Wade, one of the detectives on the case. While the victims of the serial killer greatly affect Wade, who gives his all to catch him, it is the apparent suicide of a young teenager that really shakes up his world. Much more than just a search for a killer, Shadow Man is about living in the shadows of what happened in the past. Shadow Man could be called a thriller, but it is really much more than that, with characters that are so real you can feel their pain."
--Nancy McFarlane, Fiction Addiction, Greenville, SC

Standard Deviation

By Katherine Heiny

(Knopf 9780385353816, $25.95)

"I was a fan of Single, Carefree, Mellow so it was a treat to read Katherine Heiny's latest release. Standard Deviation wryly delves into the complications and contradictions inherent in good, long-term love and parenting a slightly more challenging child. This is a laugh-out-loud, funny read with brains and heart, and a gentler world to spend time in for anyone who just needs a break."
--Sarah Bumstead, Vroman's Bookstore, Pasadena, CA

The Bright Hour: A Memoir of Living and Dying

By Nina Riggs

(Simon & Schuster 9781501169359, $25)

"This uplifting and affirming book will alter readers' views about books on death. Nina Riggs' memoir shares the story of both her ongoing battle against cancer and her mother's valiant fight against the same disease. Both women face the realities of their situation with wonderful humor and candor. Readers will find themselves laughing out loud and sharing passages with other book lovers. As a cancer survivor myself, I felt that I was reading the 'bright book' of the season. The hope, spirit, and determination exhibited in these pages will provide inspiration to all, whether dealing with this disease or not."
--Nancy Simpson-Brice, Book Vault, Oskaloosa, IA

Rise & Shine, Benedict Stone

By Phaedra Patrick

(Park Row Books 9780778319993, $24.99)

"The novels of Phaedra Patrick are good for what ails you! Rise and Shine, Benedict Stone is a charming novel about a dull British jeweler who finds new light in his life when his American niece springs a surprise visit on him. Gemma may only be 16 years old, but she is a catalyst for some much-needed change in Benedict's life and for the entire village. Readers would need a heart of stone to miss the joys of this delightful, feel-good novel. Book clubs are going to be taking a 'shine' to Benedict Stone."
--Pamela Klinger-Horn, Excelsior Bay Books, Excelsior, MN

The After Party

By Anton DiSclafani

(Riverhead Books 9780399573187, $16)

"The real star of The After Party is the novel's setting: 1950s Texas, where wealthy housewives and Junior League debutantes rule the social landscape. At the center is Joan Fortier, an unconventional bachelorette who is not content to sit on the sidelines--or to stay in Houston. Joan's attitude causes conflict with her childhood best friend, CeCe Buchanan, and their relationship falters, exposing insecurities in both women. Fans of DiSclafani's first novel, The Yonahlossee Riding Camp for Girls, will not be disappointed by this well-written, engaging new work."
--Annie B. Jones, The Bookshelf, Thomasville, GA

Another Brooklyn

By Jacqueline Woodson

(Amistad 9780062359995, $14.99)

"National Book Award-winning author Jacqueline Woodson has crafted a beautiful, heart-wrenching novel of a young girl's coming-of-age in Brooklyn. Effortlessly weaving poetic prose, Woodson tells the story of the relationships young women form, their yearning to belong, and the bonds that are created – and broken. Brooklyn itself is a vivid character in this tale--a place at first harsh, but one that becomes home and plays a role in each character's future. Woodson is one of the most skilled storytellers of our day, and I continue to love and devour each masterpiece she creates!"
--Nicole Yasinsky, The Booksellers at Laurelwood, Memphis, TN

Before the Fall

By Noah Hawley

(Grand Central Publishing 9781455561797, $15.99)

"When a private plane plunges into the ocean off Martha's Vineyard, the media and the government want answers. The two survivors--a middle-aged artist along for the ride and the 4-year-old son of a prominent and powerful family – have little to say. Before the Fall takes the reader on a thrilling ride through the past lives of the other passengers and the aftermath of the crash. As the deepest secrets of the wealthy and those who surround them surface, no one is safe. A brilliant and relentless thriller."
 --Geoffrey Jennings, Rainy Day Books, Fairway, KS

Hero of the Empire: The Boer War, a Daring Escape, and the Making of Winston Churchill

By Candice Millard

(Anchor 9780307948786, $17)

"No one was more certain that he was destined for greatness than Winston Churchill and he let nothing deter or discourage him from achieving that goal. The young Churchill saw his path to prominence and power through fearless exploits in the British Army and as a war correspondent. England's brutal war with the Boer rebels in southern Africa would prove to be his crucible. Millard's exciting chronicle of Churchill's experiences there, both daring and humbling, is a fitting tribute to a man whose early dreams of glory proved to be a self-fulfilling prophesy."
--Alden Graves, Northshire Bookstore, Manchester Center, VT

A House Without Windows

By Nadia Hashimi

(William Morrow Paperbacks 9780062449658, $15.99)

"Hashimi sets her layered and suspenseful novel at the crossroads of tradition and modernity in present-day Afghanistan. Her nuanced and well-paced tale tells the story of Zeba, who is accused of murdering her husband. In the Chil Mahtab prison, where Zeba awaits her trial and sentencing, she comes to know a colorful cast of female inmates, many of whom are ordinary women who have been snared in various traps of family honor and have been cast away by their families and by society. This is a compassionately written and moving page-turner."
--Marya Johnston, Out West Books, Grand Junction, CO

Lily and the Octopus

By Steven Rowley

(Simon & Schuster 9781501126239, $16)

"Lily and the Octopus is a profound book about all the important things in life--love, how to let go, how important it is to live in the moment, and how one big love can lead to another. And Lily, dear Lily, is at the center--a smart, movie-loving dog who would never pass up the chance at some good ice cream, tofurkey dinner, or beaming her unconditional love at her human companion, Ted. Told with humor, compassion, and a quirky sense of life's possibilities, Lily and the Octopus will hold you by the heart long after the final page is turned."
--Pam Cady, University Book Store, Seattle, WA

Mercury

By Margot Livesey

(Harper Perennial 9780062437518, $15.99)

"This riveting psychological novel delves into the lives of Donald and Vivian, a married couple whose stability is threatened and ultimately undermined when Vivian, whose former life as an aspiring equestrian was cut short, meets Mercury, a magnificent horse with a tragic history. What unfolds may seem like destiny to Vivian, but to Donald, a staid and deliberate ophthalmologist still mourning the death of his beloved father, it tests everything he's ever known, including his faculty for navigating the world. A truly remarkable study of human nature and the blindspots that hinder us all."
--Mary Cotton, Newtonville Books, Newton Centre, MA

Modern Lovers

By Emma Straub

(Riverhead Books 9781594634680, $16)

"Set in trendy Brooklyn, Straub's latest novel follows the lives of former bandmates Zoe, Elizabeth, and Andrew and their teenage children, Ruby and Harry. When Ruby and Harry begin a relationship, their parents are forced to face and reveal long-buried tensions and secrets. Straub's spot-on depictions of middle-age suburban life and teenage angst are alternatively searing and hilarious. This book is the ultimate literary beach read!"
--Angela Spring, Politics and Prose Bookstore, Washington, DC

The Muse

By Jessie Burton

(Ecco 9780062409935, $15.99)

"Burton's follow-up to The Miniaturist also takes place in the art world, but this time the settings alternate between London in the 1960s and pre-Civil War Spain in the 1930s. In 1967, a long-lost work by a dead Spanish painter turns up in London. Is it really an original Isaac Robles? Or is there a more complicated story behind the intriguing painting? A fun read with interesting meditations on the purpose and
making of art."
--Susan Taylor, Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza, Albany, NY

My Last Continent

By Midge Raymond

(Scribner 9781501124716, $16)

"Suspense and love intertwine against the starkly beautiful backdrop of Antarctica in this wonderful debut. Deb is a researcher devoting her life to the magnificent penguins that populate this remote corner of the world, where the ice-choked waters set the stage for the tragic collision of a supersized cruise liner and mountainous iceberg. When Deb discovers the man she loves is aboard the doomed ship, the poles of her world shift, as she must now focus on rescuing the one person who has saved her from her self-inflicted solitude. Raymond does a masterful job building the tension while the dramas of both the past and present unfold."
--Luisa Smith, Book Passage, Corte Madera, CA

The View From the Cheap Seats: Selected Nonfiction

By Neil Gaiman

(William Morrow Paperbacks 9780062262271, $17.99)

"I must be one of the few people to love Neil Gaiman most for his nonfiction. Over the years, I've scoured the shelves and online for his speeches, his introductions, his forewords, even his tweets and blog posts, so this book is a thing of wonder. Filled to bursting with his humor, wisdom, and hope, all articulated in the thoughtful, generous prose we know and love, The View From the Cheap Seats will keep you company, give you solace, and help you think deeper, smile harder, and breathe easier."
--Serena Longo, Harvard Book Store, Cambridge, MA

Wintering

By Peter Geye

(Vintage 9781101969991, $16)

"It is tempting to inhale Wintering in a great rush because it is such a suspenseful, wild, and dangerous survival story. That would be a mistake. Geye magically conveys the starkness, beauty, and despair of the northern Minnesota borderlands in prose that deserves to be savored. He gives us characters with deep, complex interior lives, who struggle with secrets, love, and damaged relationships. A powerful father-son story and a landscape revealed in breathtaking detail make this a novel to read with care and wonder."
--Tripp Ryder, Content Bookstore, Northfield, MN