From last week's Indie bestseller lists, available at IndieBound.org, here are the recommended titles, which are also Indie Next Great Reads:
Uprooted by Naomi Novik (Del Rey, $25, 9780804179034). "In this incredible fantasy, a young woman is taken from her village to serve a magician and finds out that she too possesses unknown gifts. Fans of Robin McKinley, Shannon Hale, and Novik's own Temeraire series will find themselves pulled into Agnieszka's world to face the dangers of the malevolent Wood, the follies of a kingdom, and the pulsing thread of magic woven into every living thing. Both exotic and familiar, Uprooted reads like a long-lost Grimms' fairy tale written in rich, delicious detail. I absolutely devoured this book!" --Jennifer Oleinik, University Book Store, Seattle, Wash.
The Travels of Daniel Ascher by Déborah Lévy-Bertherat (Other Press, $22.95, 9781590517079). "Hélène, a young French girl, comes to Paris to study and is curious about her great-uncle, Daniel, who travels the world and writes adventure stories. As she seeks to discover who Daniel is, Hélène is drawn into a mystery involving his childhood years in war-torn Paris. This mesmerizing narrative gives a unique insight into what one man will do to live with the pain of the past. What is the true story of Daniel Ascher? Beautifully written and a riveting read." --Stephanie Crowe, Page & Palette, Fairhope, Ala.
The Bees: A Novel by Laline Paull (Ecco, $15.99, 9780062331175). "This book is completely amazing. Paull uses real bee behavior as the basis for a tale of complex hive society, complete with a religion, a caste system, and threats from the outside world. The heroine, Flora 717, is an abnormally large and intelligent bee. Her size and strength give her opportunities to work at a variety of jobs, and as she begins to uncover the dark secrets of the hive, Flora makes a decision that could change the future of her entire hive. Well-crafted and filled with intrigue and action, this is a brilliant, thought-provoking, and completely original debut that does for bees what Richard Adams did for rabbits in Watership Down." --Flannery Fitch, Bookshop Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, Calif.
For Teen Readers
The Wrath and the Dawn by Renée Ahdieh (Putnam, $17.99, 9780399171611). "In this reimagining of The Arabian Nights, Shahrzad's best friend has been killed by the vicious boy-king who takes wives and orders their death the following dawn. When Shahrzad volunteers to be next so that she can avenge her friend's murder and end the king's treachery once and for all, she stays her own execution by telling him a story and convincing him to keep her alive until it ends. In the meantime, she begins to discover that the king is not what he seems--he is burdened by a dark secret. Mesmerizing and perfect for fans of Cruel Beauty, The Winner's Curse, or Shadow & Bone, this tale will knock readers off their feet with its romance, magic, and beautiful use of language." --Paige Mushaw, Northshire Bookstore, Manchester Center, Vt.
Miss Hazeltine's Home for Shy and Fearful Cats by Alicia Potter, illustrated by Birgitta Sif (Knopf, $16.99, 9780385753340). "There are lots of cats who are too scared to be proper cats--cats scared of mice, of birds, of pouncing and climbing. So, Miss Hazeltine opens her home to them and gives them lessons in how to be brave. One night, when Miss Hazeltine leaves to get milk and doesn't return, it's up to Crumb, the most shy and fearful cat of all, to lead the others on a quest to rescue their rescuer. This is a story for anyone who needs help conquering their own fears." --Melissa Oates, Fiction Addiction, Greenville, S.C.
For Ages 9 to 12
Book Scavenger by Jennifer Chambliss Bertman (Holt, $16.99, 9781627791151). "Garrison Griswold is Emily's idol. The developer of 'Book Scavenger,' a wildly popular online game for book lovers, Griswold is a rock star in the book world. But when Emily's family moves to Griswold's hometown on the very day he has an unfortunate accident, Emily finds herself in possession of a valuable book that might be the first clue in a new game, or may well be the first clue in discovering who is behind Griswold's accident. With elements of travel, adventure, mystery, famous authors, codes, online games, books, and two book-loving 12-year-old friends, Book Scavenger has just the right ingredients for the perfect middle-grade novel." --Angie Tally, the Country Bookshop, Southern Pines, N.C.
[Many thanks to IndieBound and the ABA!]