The books Southern indie booksellers are recommending to readers everywhere!
Christina Soontornvat’s graphic memoir depicts the challenges & joys of middle school life as a Thai-American in Texas centering around her dream of making the school’s cheer squad. For fans of Victoria Jamieson’s Roller Girl, Jerry Craft’s New Kid or any of Raina Telgemeier’s many graphic novels.
The Tryout by Christina Soontornvat (List Price: $24.99, Graphix,, 9781338741308, November 2022)
Reviewed by Elese Stutts, Flyleaf Books in Chapel Hill, North Carolina
Surya Bonaly is an amazing Olympic ice skater who astounded the world with her abilities on ice. Fearless Heart tells her story with beautiful illustrations that shows Surya’s life, her challenges, and her triumph. Fearless Heart will inspire the reader to work hard to follow their dreams, and stand up for what they believe in.
Fearless Heart by Frank Murphy, (List Price: $17.95, Triumph Books, 9781629379340, January 2022)
Reviewed by Gretchen Shuler, Fiction Addiction in Greenville, South Carolina
Dave Zirin pulls off a masterful piece of journalism in this book, always letting these courageous young men and women’s stories, words, and calls to action take center stage without judgment or editorialism. Throughout these expertly collected testimonials, Zirin educates the reader on the intertwined histories of sports activism and US structural racism. The accounts of young athletes following the lead of Colin Kaepernick’s famous national anthem protest range from harrowing and angering to heartwarming, but are always inspiring and educational. For anybody with even a passing interest in the world of sport and how it’s been changing in the wake of renewed Black Lives Matter activism, this is a must-read!
The Kaepernick Effect by Dave Zirin, (List Price: 25.99, The New Press, 9781620976753, September 2021)
Reviewed by Akil Guruparan, Fountain Bookstore in Richmond, Virginia
A love poem to water and the many things one can do with it, this fun title screams of summer and sun and fun but also of Self-confidence and empowerment. This picture book from “Lemonade War” author Davies is an absolute must for summer reading.
Bubbles . . . Up! by Jacqueline Davies, Sonia Sánchez (Illus.) (List Price: $17.99, Katherine Tegen Books, 9780062836618, 5/4/2021)
Reviewed by Angie Tally, The Country Bookshop in Southern Pines, North Carolina