Like a lot of bookworms, I am constantly struggling with the sheer number of books in my house and attempting to balance what I already have with my impossible need to support bookshops and acquire more books. (Note to interested parties - the way to kerb your book acquistion is not to organise two bookshop crawls per year...)
The aim of having a blog alongside the shop and other box-related things is to highlight as many fantastic independently published books as humanly possible. We're really feeling the difficulty of only being able to pick four books a year for the boxes, so along with the start of our monthly Indie Book Club we thought it would be cool to start doing TBR posts.
In these semi regular posts we'll be talking about 4-6 independently published titles that we're excited about reading soon. For our first post we've gone with a mix of books we're already reading and ones we're hoping to get to as soon as possible.
Dust by Mark Thompson was sent to use a while ago by the lovely folks at RedDoor Publishing and is really gorgeously produced - it's one of those books where the paper just feels very comforting to hold. It's the story of two friends in small - town New Jersey in the '60s and follows them through their formative years and all of the things that usually entails, as well as a road trip with one of the boys' fathers which reveals a darker side to life... This sounds like a great book for summer and I'm hoping to get to it a little later in the month!
Banking on Burlesque was sent by the author, Victoria Sadler, and is her story of how she found release from the high -pressured world of banking by becoming a burlesque dancer and it sounds like a really great story.
The other books in this feature are ones I'm already reading at the moment. Pictured above is The Wildings by Nilanjana Roy and published by Pushkin Press. This is a children's book set in Delhi and pretty much all of the characters are cats. We originally were sent this for consideration for the Summer Reading box but due to time constraints it ended up not going in. It is a really amazing and unique story though and extremely well written. I've never been a huge fan of stories told from the perspective of animals, but this is pretty perfect. The wildings are feral cats that rule the neighbourhood of Nizamuddin and have their world rocked by the arrival of a new and very different cat with strange abilities, and the growth of a sinister and mysterious darkness in an old abandoned house. It would be an awesome book to read with kids, although possibly not right next to bedtime depending how sensitive to nightmares your kids are. It's also brilliant to read as an adult, with the added bonus that Pushkin produce beautiful books.
The last book pictured is Protest: Stories of Resistance edited by Ra Page and published by Comma Press. Comma do this wonderful thing with some of their anthologies where they have a short story about a subject and then an essay by an expert on that subject and they've employed that to great effect with this collection. I've only read a couple of the stories so far but they're all about different protests throughout history and then have an essay from an expert or an eyewitness afterwards so you can read a great story and then find out the historical facts about the protest and how it all actually happened. Publication day for this was actually yesterday so you can get yourself a copy now!
Not pictured I'm finally diving into the world of ebooks and am reading both The Sewing Machine by Natalie Fergie (published by Unbound) and Emily Nation by Alec McQuay (published by Fox Spirit Books) both of which are so far absolutely brilliant and very, very different! The Sewing Machine is one of those multiple narratives throughout history type books that I love so much. It starts with Jean, about to join the strike at the Singer factory in 1911, and proceeds through history to the present day, where Fred is trying to piece together his family history from a treasure trove of documents he's uncovered.
Emily Nation is about an assassin in a post apocalyptic world. Pretty different, and so far really immersive. I'm loving the juxtaposition of Emily with the barren landscape around her in the first few pages.
Finally I'm reading The Clocks in This House All Tell Different Times by Xan Brooks for our Indie Book Club. I'm about five chapters in and it's just really good so far. There are some beautiful descriptive passages and I love the time period it's set in (1923). Anyone's welcome to join us for the book club - we're chatting in our forum and on twitter using #ninjabookclub.
I hope I've inspired you to add some new indie titles to your own TBR! Have you read any of these? Which was your favourite?