The Midtown Reader team is just back from the 2017 SIBA fall conference, where Southern indie booksellers gather each fall to meet with authors and exchange ideas on a wide variety of bookselling topics. This year Jill Hart and I traveled to New Orleans for three days, and in addition to discovering some great new reads, we toured some terrific indie stores in the Big Easy, including Garden District Books(@gardendistrictbooks) and Octavia(@octaviabooks). We loved running into our neighbor Annie Jones of the Bookshelf in Thomasville(@bookshelftville), too. How is it that we have all been so busy we had to travel all the way to New Orleans to see her?!
Rick Bragg(The Best Cook in the World), Kristin Hannah (The Great Alone) and Mary Alice Monroe(Beach House for Rent)all have great new books coming out this winter or next spring. We’re also intrigued by Ft. Lauderdale writer Dawn Davies and her moving soon-to-be read Mothers of Sparta, Jacksonvillian Laura Lee Smith’s Ice House and Jamie Quatro’s Fire Sermon. And FSU MFA grad Kent Wascom is releasing The New Inheritors. Called “one of the most exhilarating historical novelists in the country” by the Washington Post, Kent is sure to please our historical fiction addicts with this tale set in New Orleans, Mississippi, Cuba and Nicaragua in 1915 as the world prepares for war. On the Kidtown front, Nic Stone’s Dear Martin promises to be a moving and unusual read about a young boys' letters to Dr. King, and we loved hearing from Scott Reingten (NYXIA), a former middle grade teacher who is determined to make certain all children see themselves in his books. Now we’re back home and in withdrawal from po'boys, pralines and all things NOLA. We can’t wait to gear up for the fall season, and "laissez les bon livres rouler" at Midtown Reader!