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31 Standout Self-Published Books for Your TBR

"31 Eye-Catching Self-Published Books for Your TBR" is a literary listicle featuring some of the most intriguing books from self-published authors as curated by Independent Book Review founder Joe Walters.

“31 Standout Self-Published Books for your TBR”

Curated by Joe Walters

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Happy #IndieApril! Let’s talk about some eye-catching self-published books, shall we?

What kind of book are you looking for?

If you’re like some readers, you’re looking for a popular one. One in the literary canon. One that’s getting talked about in book clubs and talk shows. One that your friends have read and recommended.

But if you’re like other readers, all you’re looking for is something good. Something that can transport you to a fascinating new place, that can teach you something you didn’t know, that can captivate you from the first page to the last.

If you’re the second reader, I’ve got some great news for you: You’ve. Got. Options!

Not only can you turn to the shelves of your local bookstore for major publishers’ recent releases and popular classics, but you can also check out some amazing under-the-radar books that small presses and self-published authors are putting out.

In this blog post, I’ve put together a listicle of some of the standout self-published books that have come across my screen during my time with Independent Book Review. This list includes books that have been published by the authors themselves or by hybrid and vanity presses, proving to readers everywhere that there’s something worthwhile going on in the self-publishing world.

Please note that this list is in no particular order.

Without further ado, here’s “31 Standout Self-Published Books for Your TBR!”


General Fiction

Gathering Storm by Sherilyn Decter

Genre: Historical fiction

Author: Sherilyn Decter

Blurb:

She left criminal life behind. Will her new business venture send her to sleep with the fishes?

Florida Coast, 1932. Edith Duffy might be grieving her gangster husband’s death, but she’s no damsel in distress. Leaving the sordid world of Philadelphia bootlegging, she settles in a small town outside Miami and buys a speakeasy. But when she launches a lucrative rum-running operation, indignant locals conspire to destroy her.

Edith lands squarely back in gangland culture, with a Bible-thumping preacher campaigning to shut her down and smugglers resentful of her skill. And now she must forge alliances and make unlikely allies just to survive. Luckily, her mentor is none other than the wife of the notorious Al Capone…

Will Edith’s fondness for underworld profits lead her to a dead end?

All About the Benjamins by Zev Good

Genre: LGBTQ+ Literary

Author: Zev Good

Blurb:

It has been less than a year since Susan Benjamin succumbed to cancer and her family has yet to come to terms with her death—and their own secrets. Her daughter Amy, reeling from a divorce, struggles to parent her teenaged son without controlling him as her own mother had done. Her son Adam, thirtysomething and gay, feels untethered in his mother’s absence and drifts through a series of unrewarding jobs and relationships even though he craves love and stability. Her husband Joel, father of Amy and Adam, is fifty-eight and about to come out for the first time as a gay man.

Joel’s coming out is at the center of All About The Benjamins , Zev Good’s first novel, and is, ultimately, what forces the family to confront uncomfortable truths about themselves and each other while they try to accept what no one could have prepared for: their father is gay and was unfaithful to their mother for the course of their thirty-eight year marriage. As he did in his short story collection, A Map of the World, Zev Good offers a nuanced, tender, and often darkly comic view into loss, identity, and the unbreakable bonds of family.

Of Metal and Earth by Jennifer M. Lane

Genre: Linked short story collection, literary

Author: Jennifer M. Lane

Blurb:

Seven ordinary lives are changed by their extraordinary relationships with a little green Jeep in Of Metal and Earth, a tale of restoration and redemption.

James survives a fierce Vietnam battle by hiding beneath his Jeep. He loses his friends and returns home alone, surviving the town’s pity by hiding in the bar. Emotionally scarred, he only finds the determination to lift himself up when he realizes what remains to be lost. He buys a little green Jeep, like the one that gave him shelter in the war, and hopes it will lead to salvation again. But the fortune it brings tarnishes, and James is left to sacrifice the thing that gave him hope for the people who need him most.

Over the next thirty years, the Jeep changes hands, passing between friends, family, strangers, and lovers. A single mother who buys a car for her reckless son nearly destroys a friendship with a man who silently loved her for two decades. An insecure youth at the start of his career learns that the most important lessons are the ones you never set out to learn. A family torn apart by their differences finds that love can be the hardest road to take. And a city architect must choose between the easy way to restoration or a difficult path that could save more than a rusty old Jeep.

Twelve and a Half Hearts by Ian Cahill

Genre: Coming of Age

Author: Ian Cahill

Blurb:

She is perfect. She is beautiful. She has a secret.

Follow Sue Anderson and the relationships she forms along the way from high school valedictorian through her thirties as she attempts to overcome a devastating discovery. Hear her story through the eyes of those that cross her path. They share in her joys and pains as she pushes and pulls them in and out of her life.

No God Like the Mother by Kesha Ajose Fisher

Genre: Literary short stories

Author: Kesha Ajose Fisher

Blurb:

*A 2020 Oregon Book Award Finalist*

Kesha Ajọsẹ Fisher’s No God like the Mother follows characters in transition, through tribulation and hope. Set around the world—the bustling streets of Lagos, the arid gardens beside the Red Sea, an apartment in Paris, the rain-washed suburbs of the Pacific Northwest—this collection of nine stories is a masterful exploration of life’s uncertainty that will draw readers in and keep them riveted.

Mystery, Thriller, & Suspense

The Career Killer by Ali Gunn

Genre: Crime

Author: Ali Gunn

Blurb:

When young women are murdered and their bodies posed like marionettes in tourist hotspots around London without a single witness seeing the killer come and go, the case ought to go to a detective with decades of experience investigating serial murder.

Instead, newbie DCI Elsie Mabey lands the case, bringing with her a ragtag team of misfits and rejects. Rather than the Met’s finest, they’re the “not quite fired” of London policing.

She faces an impossible task: finding an invisible killer while fighting her own invisible illness.

Lying in Judgment by Gary Corbin

Genre: Legal Thriller

Author: Gary Corbin

Blurb:

Peter Robertson, 33, discovers his wife is cheating on him. Following her suspected boyfriend one night, he erupts into a rage, beats him and leaves him to die… or so he thought. Soon he discovers that he has killed the wrong man – a perfect stranger.

Six months later, impaneled on a jury, he realizes that the murder being tried is the one he committed. After wrestling with his conscience, he works hard to convince the jury to acquit the accused man. But the prosecution’s case is strong as the accused man had both motive and opportunity to commit the murder.

The pressure builds, and Peter begins to slip up and reveal things that only the murderer would know – and Christine, a pretty and intelligent alternate juror, suspects something is amiss.

As jurors one by one declare their intention to convict, Peter’s conscience eats away at him and he careens toward nervous breakdown, revealing details about the crime that had not been disclosed in court.

Ms. Never by Colin Dodds

Genre: Metaphysical mystery

Author: Colin Dodds

Blurb:

Farya Navurian seems like an ordinary young woman trying to get ahead in the city while struggling with depression. But her depression is anything but ordinary – it has the power to destroy time and space. Growing up the moody daughter of a space-faring hero of The Greater Anointed Imperial Ohioan Commonwealth, Farya annihilated most of that world and its history, leaving behind the husk-like Buckeye State.

One day at a record swap, she meets Bryan, a divorced telecom CEO. More than record collecting, what they share is that they each carry a howling secret. Bryan’s business is a cover for a bigger operation that buys human souls and sells luxury afterlives using shady terms of service in mobile-phone contracts.

The two of them fall in love, and as they start a life together, their secrets back them into a corner where they have to come clean – and take drastic steps – to save themselves, and possibly reality itself.
Ms. Never is a distinctly 21st-century vision of consent, memory, and the ways we create and destroy the world every day

Romance

The Wanderlust Diaries by Maria Martinico

Genre: New adult, travel romance

Author: Maria Martinico

Blurb:

Charlie has rarely left the concrete confines of Flint, Michigan before she steps on a plane with an around-the-world ticket. A hospice nurse with a lust for life, she hops across exotic South Pacific destinations leaving a wake of rescued elephants, spilled beers, broken surfboards and rejected flings behind her.

Her plans to remain unattached are tested on a remote Fijian island when she falls for Malakai, a handyman who gives the demigod Maui a run for his money. She finds herself in his surf spot (and in his shower) more often than she means to, but their cozy island bliss is torn apart by a natural disaster.

Held accountable for her crimes, she returns home and must decide whether to accept the familiar dysfunction of the life she tried to escape with an old love, or take a chance on returning to the devastated island to find Malakai and a new version of herself.

Weak for Him by Lyra Parish

Genre: Work romance

Author: Lyra Parish

Blurb:

I was made an offer I couldn’t refuse, one that would change my life forever.

Join the Elite, become one of Finnley’s girls. If I sign the contract, there are strict rules I must follow: Mainly I can never fall in love.

Unfortunately, I didn’t realize how hard that would be.

I find myself falling hard and fast for the man I can’t have, the man who’s deadset on giving me away to the highest bidder. And in the end, it might destroy me.

His Boy by Dean Cole

Genre: LGBTQ+ Romantic comedy

Author: Dean Cole

Blurb:

Charlie Stone has problems. He’s just found his boyfriend and his new BFF in bed together, and that’s only because he failed to show up for his fortnightly back, crack and sack wax. Furious, he speeds away from the gates of his luxury home into the unknown.

When he finds himself stranded on the side of the road in a remote village, his future looking bleak, his dreams wasted on a fairy tale that turned out to be a nightmare, he doesn’t expect the handsome but shaggy-looking bookshop owner, Nathan Marshall, to come to his rescue. A Divine Intervention if Charlie ever saw one.

A darkly comic look at love, death, dysfunctional family, emotional trauma and finding yourself. With a huge cast of characters, it’s more than a romance. It’s a story of self discovery.

Speculative

Duckett & Dyer: Dicks for Hire by G.H. Nair

Genre: Sci-Fi Comedy

Author: G.M. Nair

Blurb:

Michael Duckett is fed up with his life. His job is a drag, and his roommate and best friend of fifteen years, Stephanie Dyer, is only making him more anxious with her lazy irresponsibility. Things continue to escalate when they face the threat of imminent eviction from their palatial 5th floor walk-up and find that someone has been plastering ads all over the city for their Detective Agency.

The only problem is: He and Stephanie don’t have one of those.

Despite their baffling levels of incompetence, Stephanie eagerly pursues this crazy scheme and drags Michael, kicking and screaming, into the fray only to find that they are way out of their depth. They stumble upon a web of missing people that are curiously linked to a sexually audacious theoretical physicist and his experiments with the fabric of space-time. And unless Michael and Stephanie can put their personal issues aside and fix the multi-verse, the concept of existence itself may, ironically, no longer exist.

Necromancer Rising by Ashton Abbott

Genre: Paranormal vampire romance

Author: Ashton Abbott

Blurb:

The delicate balance of this world is threatened when Babd, goddess of war, is unleashed. With the help of other immortals drawn to her cause, she seeks to free her sisters and merge with them once more to form The Morrigan.

Adeline Verone was prophesied to be the Queen of the Dead, the most powerful necromancer to ever grace this earth. The problem? She can’t access her powers. A group of immortals make it their mission to capture her, forcing Adeline to run for her life…and when that doesn’t work; to trust a brooding werewolf that is hiding an agenda of his own.

William Flynn had his life turned upside down at the loss of his brother. When a witch falls under his protection he makes the choice to betray her in order to protect his pack. He didn’t realize how much he would regret that decision.

Can Adeline and William ally for the sake of defending the world against The Morrigan, goddess of war, fate, and death? Or will William’s betrayal and the uncontrollable lust they feel for one another be their downfall?

The Blighted City by Scott Kaelen

Genre: Dark Fantasy Horror

Author: Scott Kaelen

Blurb:

To challenge the gods is to invite their wrath. So it is written of Lachyla, the Blighted City, in the Codex of the Ages. But who reads codices? And who really believes the tall stories of the Taleweavers?

Dagra does. If it’s a story about the gods – even a dead god – he believes every word. When his sellsword team is offered a contract to cross the Deadlands and find a burial jewel in the crypts of the Blighted City, Dagra wants no part of it. His companions are undaunted by the legend; to them, the blurred divide between the living and the dead is superstitious nonsense.

Completing the contract would earn their guild’s failing reputation a much-needed boost and secure them the bounty of a lifetime. They’re going, with or without him. Torn between the convictions of his beliefs and the importance of his friendships, Dagra reluctantly journeys into the godless region in search of the fabled city. But the Deadlands are only the first challenge.

Affinity’s Window by Douglas L. Wilson

Genre: Dark Fantasy Horror

Author: Douglas L Wilson

Blurb:

Affinity Bell, a lonely child whose only companion is the threadbare doll she’s christened Mr. Moppet, roams the empty halls of Bell Manor attempting to escape the evil that pursues her. The Others, the horrifying creatures only she can see, attack young Affinity at every opportunity. But Mr. Moppet will protect her, he’s told her so, and Mr. Moppet knows magic.

Tanner Dann, a world-weary writer searching for proof that ghosts actually do exist, is being called by an unknown force to Bell Manor. Will the two powerful psychics he’s hired help him to discover the proof for which he’s been searching, or will they too be dragged down into the noxious pit that is Bell Manor?

Evil flows through the heart of Bell Manor, pulsing and ebbing like some hideous tide. Will it drag Tanner and his friends down into its gaping maw, or will they battle back at Affinity’s Window?

Sinister Magic by Lindsay Buroker

Genre: Urban Fantasy

Author: Lindsay Buroker

Blurb:

I’m Val Thorvald, and I’m an assassin. When magical bad guys hurt people, I take care of them. Permanently.

This doesn’t make me popular with the rest of the magical community—as you can tell from the numerous break-ins and assassination attempts I’ve endured over the years. But thanks to my half-elven blood, a powerful sword named Chopper, and a telepathic tiger with an attitude, I’ve always been able to handle my problems with aplomb. Maybe some cursing and swearing, too, but definitely aplomb.

That changes when my boss is afflicted with a mysterious disease, a government agent starts investigating me, and a godforsaken dragon shows up in the middle of my latest job. I’ve taken down vampires, zombies, and ogres, but dragons are way, way more powerful. And it doesn’t look like this one is going to like me. Worse than that, he wants to use his magic to compel me to do his bidding, as if I’m some weak-minded minion. That’s not going to happen. I’d die before being some dragon’s slave.

But if I can’t figure out a way to avoid him, save my boss, and get rid of the government spook, I’m screwed. Or dead. Or screwed and dead. And that’s never comfortable.

Nonfiction

I, Dragonfly by Kerrie Baldwin

Genre: Memoir, eating disorder

Author: Kerrie Baldwin

Blurb:

At thirty-three years old, Kerrie was managing a freelance career, her three young children, and a closeted battle with anorexia that had plagued the past ten years of her life. But once the mounting misery finally becomes too much, she embarks on a treacherous two-year journey to remission from this lethal and pervasive neurobiological condition.

I, Dragonfly chronicles the physical and psychological transformations of her recovery, including the panic of witnessing her body expand to unfamiliar proportions and the contention with exhaustion and pain in her limbs that last much longer than she anticipated, as well as the delight of responding to overwhelming hunger and the release of cultural fallacies around weight and health. As Kerrie learns to surrender to the recovery process, she cultivates the authentic self that had been arrested a decade prior, which eventually comes at an agonizing cost to her and her family.

Through the scientific evidence–based approach to recovery introduced in the foreword by Gwyneth Olwyn, author of Recover from Eating Disorders: Homeodynamic Recovery Method, Kerrie achieves a state of remission—a seeming impossibility to those trapped in starvation. Her brutal yet liberating path serves as a reassuring roadmap for millions of sufferers worldwide who seek to reclaim themselves. At the same time, her candid and inspiring story reflects a universal passage to self-actualization.

Tattle Tales by Brandy Isadora

Genre: Interviews & photography

Author: Brandy Isadora

Blurb:

Through photography and interviews Brandy Isadora’s book, Tattle Tales: Tattoo Stories & Portraits, presents the growing society of people who are getting tattooed and helping to bring this burgeoning art form into the mainstream. The popularity of tattoos has risen so dramatically that 40% of American households have at least one person with a tattoo. Tattle Tales is a collection of portraits and interviews of people from different backgrounds who have tattoos.

Teachers, lawyers, nurses and many others who work in professions, that until recently did not tolerate tattoos, explain why they have chosen to permanently ink their bodies. Many choose tattoos in memory of their loved ones, while others get tattoos because they love the art. Even though tattoos have increased in popularity and become mainstream, stereotypes and discrimination still exist. By sharing their stories, the people in the book humanize an art form that has long been stigmatized by society.

Mixed Nuts: or What I learned Practicing Psychotherapy in Plain English by Rick Cormier

Genre: Memoir of life in psychotherapy

Author: Rick Cormier

Blurb:

Speaking to the layperson and the practitioner alike, even Rick’s irreverent humor can’t hide his wisdom, his deep understanding of mental illness, his desire to help heal it quickly and effectively, and his pragmatic and often creative approach to treatment.

“Some people assume that all therapists are new-agey hand-holders who just listen and nod like bobbleheads, then suggest an astrology reading, a gluten-free diet, and your choice of complimentary love flower or polished healing stone on your way out the door.

“That’s not me. My job is to help fix what’s broken.”

Young Adult & Middle Grade Fiction

Get In My Head: Jared’s Story by S.M. Holland

Genre: Young Adult contemporary, mental illness

Author: S.M. Holland

Blurb:

Everyone at some point in their lives has to ask themselves if they are crazy. We all experience the world differently — but what if your thoughts and actions are too different? When people venture away from societal norms, those around them become afraid. They don’t understand. But what if you could understand? What if you could get in someone else’s head?

All Jared wants to know is what he did wrong. Abandoned by his family and made to live in a mental hospital that feels more like hell, Jared is forced to face the monster within.

On the outside he might seem like your average teenage boy, but on the inside, his mind is threatening to tear him apart.

What Are Friends For? by Sarah Sutton

Genre: YA Romance

Author: Sarah Sutton

Blurb:

A close, easygoing friendship can all change with just one kiss. Seventeen-year-old Remi Beaufort learns this the hard way when she plays a blindfolded kissing game at a party.

She thinks she’s kissing Jeremy, the totally hot basketball player she’s been crushing on. And the kiss…it’s amazing. Heart-stopping, world-changing, toe-curling. The kiss makes her forget about her overbearing mother, the next-door neighbor’s drama, and the probability that she’ll fail her senior year. The best kiss of her life makes all that fall away.

Until her blindfold falls off, and she realizes that instead of kissing her crush, she’s kissing Elijah, her best friend since third grade.

Though she manages to convince Elijah that he was kissing his girlfriend, Remi can’t get the thought of his lips on hers out of her head. As things between them grow more and more complicated—because it turns out her fantasizing about his mouth is more of a problem than it sounds—Remi has to make a choice: does she live the rest of her life loving her best friend in secret? Or does she tell the truth and risk ruining their friendship forever?

Sisters of the Perilous Heart by Sandra Vasher

Genre: YA Medieval Fantasy

Author: Sandra L. Vasher

Blurb:

What would you do to save a sister?

As the last mortal kingdom of Kepler resists the Immortal Empire, its young queen faces a devastating attack. Queen Vivian is two minutes into her reign when an arrow pierces her heart and infects her with the Immortality Virus. But she has too much magic to become immortal and not enough to survive. She must find more magic fast, or she’ll die.

Meanwhile, another young mortal faces an uncertain future of her own. Carina is fleeing for her life, but her magic is a tracking beam for immortals. She must learn to harness and control it, or she’ll be captured and killed. Then she meets the queen of South Kepler.

Vivian needs Carina’s magic, and she can offer safe haven in exchange. But can Vivian trust this common girl? Carina isn’t on the kingdom’s registry of magicians. What if she’s a Northern rebel? A spy for the Immortal Empire? And will the truth be revealed in time to save them both?

A Feather’s Force by Jacy Sellers & Nicole D’Arcangelo

Genre: YA Fantasy Action & Adventure

Authors: Jacy Sellers & Nicole D’Arcangelo

Blurb:

Sixteen-year-old high school track star, Ember, wants to run as far and as fast as she can, away from the pain of her father’s recent death. Instead, she’s hiding out in the basement of her dad’s coffee shop—at least now no one can ask her how she’s doing for the millionth time. She finds a doorway to Espereva, a magical world from her childhood bedtime story. There, she unlocks a power that has lain dormant in her blood for years.

Unfortunately, the more she learns about the world, the darker it becomes. The king captures and conducts gruesome experiments on the inhabitants in order to steal their powers. Espereva is being torn apart and her family is at the root of it all. Horrified at the atrocities but driven for the need to understand who and what she is, Ember joins and trains with a group of rebels plotting the king’s downfall. Still struggling with her grief and the secret her family has kept from her for years, Ember can barely control her new found abilities. But when one of her rebel friends is kidnapped and destined to be the king’s next victim, Ember must embrace all that she is and set aside her personal struggles to rescue her friend—because losing someone else is not an option.

The Lord of Long Shadows by M. Anderson

Genre: YA Sword & Sorcery Fantasy

Author: M. Anderson

Blurb:

Twenty-year-old orphan Alex Winters’ quiet life is shattered when a chance encounter transports her to a world beyond her imagination and into the adventure of a lifetime.

After saving an old man on her way home from work, Alex Winters finds herself abruptly teleported to the world of Aquillon, where humanity suffers at the hands of the Court of Hours, a group of malevolent demons who have ruled for a thousand years. Given only a single clue to find her way home, Alex sets out on a journey to discover her place in a world she barely understands.

Over the course of her adventure, Alex befriends brave allies and evades cunning and sinister enemies, all the while discovering more and more about a destiny she feels unprepared for, while facing challenges and dangers that will push her courage to the limit.

Filled with action, adventure, and humor, The Lord of Long Shadows is a thrilling young-adult fantasy adventure perfect for middle and high school fans of Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson novels, as well as fans of fast-paced adventure and fantasy of all ages. The Lord of Long Shadows is a page-turner that will leave readers laughing and excited to see what happens next as the adventure of Knights of the Fallen Realm unfolds.

Knightmare Arcanist by Shami Stovall

Genre: YA Pirate Adventure

Author: Shami Stovall

Blurb:

Gravedigger Volke Savan wants nothing more than to be like his hero, the legendary magical swashbuckler, Gregory Ruma. First he needs to become an arcanist, someone capable of wielding magic, which requires bonding with a mythical creature. And he’ll take anything—a pegasus, a griffin, a ravenous hydra—maybe even a leviathan, like Ruma.

So when Volke stumbles across a knightmare, a creature made of shadow and terror, he has no reservations. But the knightmare knows a terrible secret: Ruma is a murderer out to spread corrupted magic throughout their island nation. He’s already killed a population of phoenixes and he intends to kill even more.

In order to protect his home, his adopted sister, and the girl he admires from afar, Volke will need to confront his hero, the Master Arcanist Gregory Ruma.

Waypoint by Deborah Adams & Kimberley Perkins

Genre: YA Science Fiction Dystopia

Authors: Deborah Adams & Kimberley Perkins

Blurb:

In the blink of an eye, it was out. All the power on the planet…gone, and now society was hanging by a thread. Twin brothers Simon and West Harper lived very different lives, but when the key to fixing it all falls in their hands, they’ll team up and travel 500 perilous miles to fix it.

In a terrifying new world, can a brainy gamer and a high school jock actually survive the journey on their own? Alexandria Camden was just a girl who needed West’s help until feelings developed, and their secrets threatened to tear them apart. And when the street-smart girl of Simon’s dreams turns out to be the enemy he’s running from; will he be able to save his heart and the world?

With time running out, they have little choice but to get the key to Waypoint, because if they don’t, their failure will leave the world in darkness…

Animal Control by Travis Howe

Genre: Middle Grade Superhero Action & Adventure

Author: Travis Howe

Blurb:

Foster-child Jack Robberts lives in a grimy old attic, dreaming that one day he might join the league of heroes known as Animal Control. But this dream comes to a crashing halt when Jack’s decision to run away ultimately leads to a devastating tragedy – for which he blames himself.

Now Jack lives a quiet life in a quiet town, believing his adventures are over. But when a mysterious package arrives in the mail, and a gang of murderous wolves come looking for it, Jack will find himself at the heart of Animal Control’s most dangerous mission yet.

From the mind of animator Travis Howe comes a story about adventure, mystery, and the courage to follow your dream. From the peaks of the snowy Moledun Mountains to the depths of the ocean, Animal Control: The Hero’s Apprentice is “brimming with heart and excitement […] Readers will want to follow this endearing, courageous young rabbit anywhere he goes.” (Eliot Schrefer, New York Times Best Selling Author of “Endangered”).

Seed Savers Treasure by Sandra Smith

Genre: Middle Grade Dystopia, Agriculture

Author: Sandra Smith

Blurb:

It’s 2077. There’s no apocalypse, but some things are different. Things like the weather, the internet, and food. In twelve-year-old Clare’s world, blueberry is just a flavor and apples are found only in fairy tales.

Then one day Clare meets a woman who teaches her about seeds and real food. Ana tempts Clare with the notion that food exists other than the square, packaged food she has always known. With Ana’s guidance, Clare and her friends learn about seeds and gardening despite suspicions that such actions are illegal.

When the authorities discover the children’s forbidden tomato plant and arrest their mother, Clare and her brother flee. Clare has heard of a place called “The Garden State,” and with their bikes, a little money, and backpacks, the children begin a lonely cross-country journey that tests them both physically and spiritually. Will they succeed in their quest to find a place of food freedom? And can they, only children, help change the world?

Children’s Picture Books

Curlilocks and the Big Bad Hairbrush by Yolanda King

Age level: 3-7

Author: Yolanda King

Blurb:

When Curlilocks delivers pies to her aunties, she finds each pie tempting. The Big Bad Hairbrush warns Curlilocks about nibbling the Auntie’s pies. Will she listen?

The Dirt Girl by Jodi Dee

Age: 4-10

Author: Jodi Dee

Genre:

When Zafera goes to school for the first time, all the children laugh and tease. But, Zafera does not understand so she just smiles. A beautiful story about shining bright no matter what, because our differences are our greatest gifts. And if you do, others will eventually see. Now available on Amazon! Zafera is a normal, beautiful little girl, yet she often has dirt on her hands and twigs in her hair. When Zafera goes to school for the first time, all the children stare and tease. Find out how she becomes the most popular girl in school!

Ricky the Rock that Couldn’t Roll by Jay Miletsky

Age: 3-8

Author: Jay Miletsky

Genre:

When the rocks get together to play and roll around their favorite hill, they find that one of their friends, Ricky, can’t roll with them. Unlike all of the others, who are all round, Ricky can’t roll because he’s flat on one side.

His friends didn’t get it,
“Come Roll!” they would chant.
So Ricky tried, but replied,
“I’m sorry, I can’t.”

Determined not to leave their friend behind, the rock friend set out to help Ricky roll around – one way or another.


Happy #IndieApril! I hope you enjoyed this list and consider taking a shot on one of these standout self-published books. If you’re an author and would like to be considered for a list in the future, please consider submitting for review.


About the Curator

Joe Walters is the editor-in-chief of Independent Book Review. When he’s not doing promotional work, he’s working on his novel and trusting the process. He tweets @JoeWalters13.


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2 comments on “31 Standout Self-Published Books for Your TBR

  1. Pingback: Necromancer Rising Feature! – Ashton Abbott

  2. Many thanks for including The Blighted City in your list, Joe. Your review of the book is still among my favourites.

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