31 New & Upcoming Indie Book Picks from a Top Goodreads Reviewer

Posted by Marie on May 15, 2019
Lori Hettler is the founder and moderator of The Next Best Book Club, one of the most popular groups on Goodreads, and has been a reader and reviewer of independently published ("indie") literature for more than a decade. She also advocates for small presses as a freelance publicist. Here she shares her top indie picks that readers can plan to take with them on their next seasonal escape.

Whether you're hitting the road for a week-long family getaway or spending your weekends at the cabin, the beach, or curled up on the couch, if you're anything like me, you can't rest until you know which books will be accompanying you.

Fear not, dear reader, I’ve got you covered! I've searched far and wide and pulled together a list of some of the small press books I am most highly anticipating this season. There's a little something here for everyone this season—from literary fiction to translated short story collections that span across and combine multiple genres. Which ones will you be adding to your Want to Read shelf shelves?

Fiction

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Release: April 12

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Release: April 15

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Release: April 30

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Release: May 1

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Release: May 7

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Release: May 7

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Release: May 7

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Release: May 14

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Release: June 4

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Release: June 18

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Release: June 18

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Release: July 4

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Release: July 9

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Release: July 9

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Release: July 31

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Release: August 13

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Release: August 20

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Release: September 17



Story Collections

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Release: April 1

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Release: April 4

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Release: April 23

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Release: May 14

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Release: May 14
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Release: June 4
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Release: June 11


Poetry

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Release: March 5
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Release: April 1
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Release: June 4

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Release: July 9


Which indie books would you recommend? Share them with us in the comments!

Check out more recent articles:
The Hottest Books of Summer The Most Read Books on Goodreads in May
Goodreads Podcast: Elizabeth Talks with Melinda Gates
The Hottest Books of Summer

Comments Showing 1-30 of 30 (30 new)

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message 1: by Janine (new)

Janine I follow a lot of indie books, and heard nothing about any of these and don't find a lot of interest in these selections. As I said for the previous post, this feels more like super niche books. And no YA or MG indie selections?


Littlebookterror I have an arc of the bobycat and will start it next week. Very interested to see how it will be. The cover is already very promising.


message 3: by TraceyL (new)

TraceyL I almost never add books to my To Read shelf that haven't come out yet, but I added quite a few of these! I just hope I can get my hands on them when they do come out!


message 4: by Breanna (new)

Breanna I'm excited for "The Lightest Object in the Universe"! Instantly added it to my TBR.


message 5: by A.M. (new)

A.M. Geever I'm excited to see many of these books. Thank you for sharing!


message 6: by Celia (new)

Celia Not to be overly encouraging or anything, but my attitude toward indie books is similar to most clearance shelves: There's a reason those things are there.

Yeah, you might find a gem if you spend enough time digging, but there are so many certified amazing books I'd rather spend my time on.


message 7: by Lori (new)

Lori Janine wrote: "I follow a lot of indie books, and heard nothing about any of these and don't find a lot of interest in these selections. As I said for the previous post, this feels more like super niche books. An..."

Hi Janine! I am not a reader of YA or MG. But I'd love to hear which small presses are releasing the young adult or middle grade titles you're most excited to read this season.


message 8: by Lori (new)

Lori Littlebookterror wrote: "I have an arc of the bobycat and will start it next week. Very interested to see how it will be. The cover is already very promising."

I have this one in hand too and am looking forward to reading it! I'd love to hear what you think if you get to it before me : )


message 9: by Lori (new)

Lori Tracey wrote: "I almost never add books to my To Read shelf that haven't come out yet, but I added quite a few of these! I just hope I can get my hands on them when they do come out!"

Yay! You can always pre/order from amazon or direct from the publisher :)


message 10: by Lori (new)

Lori Breanna wrote: "I'm excited for "The Lightest Object in the Universe"! Instantly added it to my TBR."

I know, it sounds amazing, right?!


message 11: by Sheldon (new)

Sheldon Compton Thanks a ton, Lori!


message 12: by John (new)

John E.  Meredith Wow. So many books I've read, so many still unread on my shelves, and so many more I wanna add. Not to mention, about a hundred stories of my own yet to tell. I need to quit my job soon and get started, or maybe get paid to read books. Thanks for adding a few more to my burgeoning list.


message 13: by Rui Ning (new)

Rui Ning Aren't we going to talk about the fact that there's The Book of X and The Story of the Y? Erm... World War Z?


message 14: by Judi (last edited May 21, 2019 05:38AM) (new)

Judi Moore Celia wrote: "Not to be overly encouraging or anything, but my attitude toward indie books is similar to most clearance shelves: There's a reason those things are there.

Yeah, you might find a gem if you spend ..."


They may be poor. But it may be the only reason the author is self-publishing, or with a small press, is the laziness of big publishers. They want a name, a celebrity for preference, who can suddenly write fiction (Ann Widdicombe, Alan Titchmarsh immediately spring to mind) and these books may also be poor. They want great books to fall into their hands out of the sky. They do not want to read slush piles. They do not want to engage people to read slush piles. They want what they want via an agent. No agent will take a first time author. You do the bally math!


message 15: by Judi (new)

Judi Moore I found it a pity that no mention was made of who was issuing these books. As Goodreads is now aka Amazon, I suppose they just expect us to look them up there.


message 16: by Judi (new)

Judi Moore Rui Ning wrote: "Aren't we going to talk about the fact that there's The Book of X and The Story of the Y? Erm... World War Z?"

:-))


message 17: by Vivian (new)

Vivian Weaver I am an author, how do I get my book on goodreads?


message 18: by Jack (last edited May 21, 2019 09:21AM) (new)

Jack Janine wrote: "I follow a lot of indie books, and heard nothing about any of these and don't find a lot of interest in these selections. As I said for the previous post, this feels more like super niche books. An..."

Janine wrote: "I follow a lot of indie books, and heard nothing about any of these and don't find a lot of interest in these selections. As I said for the previous post, this feels more like super niche books. An..."

I can sympathize, Janine: As an indie author, myself, I find it hard to get folks to even know about my novel, even though it's, what I'd consider, a mainstream, seagoing, adventure-romance. It has eighteen 5 star reviews on Amazon.

If you'd like to read it, or just get more info, just go to the Amazon main page and, in the subject line, type in Distress Signal by Jack Comeau. There you will find a synopsis, the reviews as well as a way to buy the book.

All the best!

Jack Comeau


message 19: by Judi (new)

Judi Moore Vivian wrote: "I am an author, how do I get my book on goodreads?"

Are you selling on Amazon's sites? If so, putting your book's name, or your author name in the Goodreads' search engine should bring up your book. Potential readers can search for and find it in Goodreads. You could make yourself an author page in Goodreads and have a presence here, although I'm not sure it's very helpful. You should certainly have an author page on AmazonUK and AmazonUS.


message 20: by George (new)

George Garrigues One thing all these books have in common is TERRIFIC COVERS. You can tell that the author-publishers didn't just slide by but put some thought (and $$$) into their babies. You can't tell a book by its cover? I think maybe you can.


message 21: by Vivi (they/them) (new)

Vivi (they/them) Janine wrote: "I follow a lot of indie books, and heard nothing about any of these and don't find a lot of interest in these selections. As I said for the previous post, this feels more like super niche books. An..."

What indie books do you recommend?


message 22: by Sarah (new)

Sarah Ames-Foley Judi wrote: "I found it a pity that no mention was made of who was issuing these books. As Goodreads is now aka Amazon, I suppose they just expect us to look them up there."

The publishers are listed on each book's goodreads page!


message 23: by Melinda (new)

Melinda Fleming Added ten to my list. I’m very precise about what I read. High quality contained in this bundle.


message 24: by Judi (new)

Judi Moore Sarah wrote: "Judi wrote: "I found it a pity that no mention was made of who was issuing these books. As Goodreads is now aka Amazon, I suppose they just expect us to look them up there."

The publishers are lis..."


Fair point. Same as looking them up on Amazon really - a separate look-up for each book. O, lazy fingers, tip-tapping away all day that cannot spend so long in searching ten locations ... mea culpa!


message 25: by Judi (new)

Judi Moore George wrote: "One thing all these books have in common is TERRIFIC COVERS. You can tell that the author-publishers didn't just slide by but put some thought (and $$$) into their babies. You can't tell a book by ..."

Good point!


message 26: by Carol (new)

Carol DeuPree Mad Mischief by Susan St. John, a great read!


message 27: by Lori (new)

Lori Melinda wrote: "Added ten to my list. I’m very precise about what I read. High quality contained in this bundle."

Aww thanks Melinda! I took a lot of time with that list :)


message 28: by Lori (last edited Jun 02, 2019 07:54AM) (new)

Lori Just thought it might be worth pointing out that "indie" is not synomous with "self published", as that seems to be a common misconception. Indie is just short for independent. Which means not tied to or parented by a Big 5. The quality of these book is no less, and in many cases is quite greater, than those published by the Big 5. It typically comes down to a case of personal preference - as small press publishers prefer to sign on titles that are risker in nature, whether due to subject matter, genre, or writing style. Some authors prefer soliciting small press because, as they release less titles per year, they can afford to build a more personal relationship, and receive more one on one attention all the way through the process.

Just my two cents... which is why I'm so happy I have an opportunity like this one, to share some of the most amazing upcoming small press titles. Just the fact that you're engaging here, in this post, with these titles, is awesome!


message 29: by Lori (new)

Lori George wrote: "One thing all these books have in common is TERRIFIC COVERS. You can tell that the author-publishers didn't just slide by but put some thought (and $$$) into their babies. You can't tell a book by ..."

Right??!?!?!


message 30: by Vivi (they/them) (new)

Vivi (they/them) Vivian wrote: "I am an author, how do I get my book on goodreads?"

I hope this article helps you.

https://www.goodreads.com/author/program


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