Sep 25

In this show we focus on Booktopia Santa Cruz titles Swim Back to Me, Murder in the Marais, South with the Sun, Girlchild, and Silver Sparrow.

Booktopia Santa Cruz Books We Can’t Wait For You to Read

In this episode we talk about the five Booktopia Santa Cruz books we haven’t discussed on the podcast yet. Don’t forget to reacquaint yourselves with the titles we’ve already discussed (titles link to those previous episodes): Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend by Matthew Dicks, The Baker’s Daughter by Sarah McCoy, and The Orphan Master’s Son by Adam Johnson. Speaking of Orphan Master, you owe it to yourself to check out this wonderful video review sent to us by BOTNS listener Caleb. Also, if you aren’t attending Booktopia Santa Cruz, remember that you can order books through Bookshop Santa Cruz’s website, have them signed that weekend, then mailed to you. The sooner, the better, so order right away!


Swim Back to Me by Ann Packer – An emotional collection of stories that begins with a novella set in California in the 80’s and ends with a story that revisits one of the characters from the novella.

Murder in the Marais and Murder at the Lanterne Rouge by Cara Black – These are books #1 and #12 (I misspoke in the podcast, calling it #13) in the Aimee Leduc mystery series set in Paris. Each book explores a mystery in a different Paris neighborhood.

South with the Sun by Lynne Cox – As a young girl, reading about Roald Amundsen inspired Lynne’s own love of the polar regions, a love which led her to become one of the most celebrated cold-water swimmers. In this book she explores both Amundsen’s life and her own.

Girlchild by Tupelo Hassman – This is a book that truly blew me away. Uncomfortable and unbearably sad at times, this story of young trailer park resident Rory Dawn Hendrix features writing unlike anything I’ve read before.

Silver Sparrow by Tayari Jones – “My father, James Witherspoon, is a bigamist.” From that stunner of a first sentence, Tayari Jones tells the tale of two young girls who meet, but only one of them knows they have the same father.


In addition to these eight wonderful authors, we are thrilled to be also welcoming celebrated audiobook narrators Grover Gardner and Simon Vance to Booktopia. Because their work is all about their voices and skilled narration, we hope to record their hour-long session at Booktopia, in addition to their talk on Saturday night, and play it as a future podcast episode.

  • Thank you so much for mentioning my The Orphan Master’s Son review! I’ve been listening to you two for quite a while, so the nod is especially cool. Keep up the great podcast!

  • So jealous of all the Santa Cruz Booktopia attendees. Girlchild was one of the best books I’ve read this year!

  • Sharon in Michigan

    I want to encourage you to record the session at Santa Cruz on audiobooks…I rely on them to keep up with new books and I love listening to Simon Vance. I think libraries need more credit for downloadable collections of audio and ebooks!

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