Summer is coming, and vacations for some (including me, thank God). So I thought I’d give a shout-out to some of the most enjoyable Indie published books I’ve read in the last few months. I’m including independently published books here only, because, well, I can. If you’re looking for a great summer read, consider picking up one or more of these. You can get in some great summer reading and help support independent artists at the same time!
Annie, The Doll, Its Thief and Her Lover by Jackie Trippier Holt
British author Jackie Trippier Holt‘s story of returning to a childhood home is filled with tension, ominous and incredibly vivid and beautiful evocation of the countryside. It made me want to head over the UK right now.
After twenty four years, Kate returns to her Lancashire home town to claim her inheritance, with a new name and a life she would never have had if she’d stayed.
She has two weeks to empty the farmhouse of her dad’s possessions and put it on the market so she can slot herself neatly back into London normality. Easy.
Except, her former friends insist on calling her Kathy, the family home is filled with ghosts, the Wild won’t stay where it should and it’s proving very difficult to return what she stole from Aunt Annie.
Flat-Out Love by Jessica Park
Flat-Out Love is a quirky story about a quirky family, whose 13 year old daughter carries around a life sized cardboard cutout of her big brother. But this family has secrets, and uncovering them ends up being the focus of this fabulous novel. Fun stuff. 3.99 on Kindle.
Something is seriously off in the Watkins home. And Julie Seagle, college freshman, small-town Ohio transplant, and the newest resident of this Boston house, is determined to get to the bottom of it. When Julie’s off-campus housing falls through, her mother’s old college roommate, Erin Watkins, invites her to move in. The parents, Erin and Roger, are welcoming, but emotionally distant and academically driven to eccentric extremes. The middle child, Matt, is an MIT tech geek with a sweet side … and the social skills of a spool of USB cable. The youngest, Celeste, is a frighteningly bright but freakishly fastidious 13-year-old who hauls around a life-sized cardboard cutout of her oldest brother almost everywhere she goes.
Dominion by JL Bryan
In the year 2036, the United States of America is ruled by a totalitarian regime controlling all information: education, religion, the mass media, and the internet.
Daniel Ruppert is a talking head for the most popular nightly news program in southern California. Restless and weary of reporting propaganda, Ruppert begins digging for the truth. His urge to know puts his career, life, and family at risk as he discovers the clandestine North Atlantic Psychological Command (PSYCOM) and how it manipulates the minds of the Western world.
He’s following the trail of PSYCOM’s darkest secret, and he’ll find it…if the truth doesn’t destroy him first.
Hollowland by Amanda Hocking
Amanda Hocking has become a bit of a sensation in the self-publishing real by selling approximately ten gazillion books, then landing a two million dollar conventional publishing contract. Most of her stuff is paranormal romance, which is generally not what I read. This one was right up my alley however: post-apocalypse, zombies. A short, fun, entertaining read. Zombies, a kick ass heroine and a tiger. Nothing profound, just good fun. Currently free on Kindle.
Easy by Tammara Webber
Miscategorized on Amazon as “Children’s Fiction”, Easy is a young-adult (emphasis on adult) romance that opens with an attempted assault and rape on a college campus. It deals with a lot of difficult issues, has strong, believable characters and is a hell of a good read.
When Jacqueline follows her longtime boyfriend to the college of his choice, the last thing she expects is a breakup. After two weeks in shock, she wakes up to her new reality: she’s single, attending a state university instead of a music conservatory, ignored by her former circle of friends, stalked by her ex’s frat brother, and failing a class for the first time in her life.
Easy was just released a few days ago, and it may be one of the best books I’ve read this year. 3.99 on Kindle.
The Butterfly and the Flame by Dana De Young
The Butterfly and the Flame is a post-apocalyptic novel with a twist: the main character, Emily La Rouche, is transgender in a world dominated by fire breathing Christian radicals. Touching, vivid, suspenseful.
In the year 2404, America is no more. In a land ruled by the oppressive theocracy known as the Dominion of Divinity, being gay is a capital offense, adultery is punished with the lash, women are forbidden to work, and forced marriages are common.
Fifteen-year-old Emily La Rouche faces an impossible choice. On her sixteenth birthday, she will be forced to marry Jonathan Marsh, the son of her landlord. If she refuses, her family will lose everything. If she takes his hand, it is certain that her life will end by a hangman’s noose in front of an angry mob. All because Emily has been hiding an enormous secret for years—she was born a boy. As the wedding approaches, Emily’s parents realize the only way that she will be safe is if she is to escape the Dominion.
The Last Pendragon by Sarah Woodbury
Equal parts fantasy and historical fiction, The Last Pendragon is the story of Cadwaladr ap Cadwallon (Cade), and his love, Rhiann, the daughter of the man who killed Cade’s father and usurped his throne. Thoroughly enjoyable read.
Sarah Woodbury has been dominating the alternate history category on Amazon for most of the last year, and I’ll be picking up more of her titles soon. The Last Pendragon is available on Kindle for 99 cents.
What Recommendations Do You Have?
So, I’m looking for books to read too. What recommendations do you have, especially for new or indie published authors? List ’em here, and thanks!