News you can use from the Land of SIBA: October 3, 2019
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10/12: Deadline to Nominate for James Patterson Bookseller Bonuses (more)
10/16: B3! Webinar: Bringing Used Books into the Mix for Higher Sales and Profit (rsvp)
10/21: Deadline to apply for the Carla Gray Memorial Scholarship for Bookseller Activists (here)

11/6: B3! Webinar: Launching a Book Festival in Your Community (rsvp)

11/8 - 11/17: Love Your Bookstore Week (more info)

SIBA Office Hours: Wednesdays from 2:00 - 5:00 PM EST
In the Land of SIBA Blog

Did you attend the #SIBA19 Discovery Show? SIBA wants your feedback!


Announcing the 2019 Fall Okra Picks

Okra PicksSouthern indie booksellers have announced their 2019 Fall Okra Picks, a fresh harvest of great Southern books, Southern voices, and Southern stories hand picked by Southern independent booksellers. The Fall Okra Picks release in October, November, and December, and every book on the list has a Southern bookseller ready to put it in the hands of readers with that most exciting phrase in the English language, “You’ve got to read this!

Southern independent bookstores – we grow good books!

2019 Fall Okra Picks Edelweiss Collection

10 Blind DatesWatershedOrpheus Girl How We Fight For Our LivesThe Giver of StarsLifestyles of Gods and MonstersHolding On to NothingTell Me a StoryNothing to See HereThe Name of All ThingsWatch What You SayThe RevisionersThe Bromance Book Club

read more


SIBA and Matchbook Marketing are collaborating to offer a new website promotional program to highlight SIBA book prize winners. Matchbook Marketing will work with booksellers to incorporate these book prize promotions into their websites, and where possible, link them to online sales pages. The prize lists include the Southern Book Prize, Circle of Sites/Lady Banks, Okra Picks, Southern Indie Bestsellers List, and the Pat Conroy Legacy.

Once stores sign on to the program, the Shop South lists will be updated on their sites automatically.    Cost of the Program: $80 setup (this will be offset with 8,000 B3 SIBA points, which can be exchanged for SIBA dues, meal tickets to the SIBA Discovery Show, and even free travel and hotel accommodations) + $40/month maintenance. All participating booksellers will be required to have an active SIBA membership.    If you would like more website support (maintaining store specific content or website redesign), Matchbook Marketing is offering two additional program tiers as part of the Shop South promotion.

Contact for more information or for samples of website mockups that illustrate what the promotion would look like on your site.   To sign up, simply email Gwyn Ridenhour at Once 10 stores have signed on, Matchbook will launch the program.

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One of the highlights of last month's #SIBA19 was the Parapalooza event, held in the hotel bar -- for ambiance -- and by all accounts a riotously funny hour filled with authors reading short paragraphs from their books, WITH FEELING.

But for all its hilarity and deep-felt moments, the night was missing something, or rather, someone. T.J. Klume, author of the much-looked-for "The House in the Cerulean Sea" had been scheduled to read, but instead became the victim of a capricious set of circumstances when his flight was delayed because of mechanical problems (not the sort of thing a passenger wants to hear), making him late for his connecting flight, which after being rescheduled was also delayed...because of mechanical problems.

Since he couldn't be on site at the show, we asked him to record video so booksellers would have a chance to meet him (and his cat) and hear about his wonderful book:

TJ Klune

The House in the Cerulean Sea"1984 meets The Umbrella Academy with a pinch of Douglas Adams thrown in." (Gail Carriger)

A magical island. A dangerous task. A burning secret. An enchanting love story, masterfully told, The House in the Cerulean Sea is about the profound experience of discovering an unlikely family in an unexpected place—and realizing that family is yours. The House in the Cerulean Sea is Lambda Literary Award-winning author TJ Klune’s breakout contemporary fantasy.

TJ Klune is an ex-claims examiner for an insurance company. He has won the 2014 Lambda Literary Award for Best Gay Romance and the 2016 the Gold Medal from the Florida Publisher’s Association. Visit him online at, on Twitter at @tjklune or on Instagram as @tjklunebooks.

Next week on Lady Banks Pick of the Week:

Read more about SIBA's Circle of Sites Program (aka the "banner for dues" program) and find out whether your store is eligible to participate and receive free membership dues.


Who gets a bonus?
October 12 Deadline for James Patterson’s Holiday Bookstore Bonus Program

Booksellers, publishing professionals, authors, and bookstore customers are encouraged to nominate any current indie bookstore employee of an ABA member store to receive a bonus as part of author James Patterson’s 2019 Holiday Bookstore Bonus Program. This year’s campaign is open to all U.S. independent bookstore employees through October 12.

Learn more about the program here

On Lady Banks Bookshelf this month:


BESTSELLERS: September 22, 2019


Hardcover Fiction

1. The Water Dancer
Ta-Nehisi Coates, One World, $28, 9780399590597
2. The Testaments
Margaret Atwood, Nan A. Talese, $28.95, 9780385543781
3. The Dutch House
Ann Patchett, Harper, $27.99, 9780062963673
4. Where the Crawdads Sing
Delia Owens, Putnam, $26, 9780735219090
5. The Institute
Stephen King, Scribner, $30, 9781982110567

Hardcover Nonfiction

1. Talking to Strangers
Malcolm Gladwell, Little Brown, $30, 9780316478526
2. Know My Name: A Memoir
Chanel Miller, Viking, $28, 9780735223707
3. Year of the Monkey
Patti Smith, Knopf, $24.95, 9780525657682
4. Educated
Tara Westover, Random House, $28, 9780399590504
5. Call Sign Chaos
Jim Mattis, Bing West, Random House, $28, 9780812996838

Special to the Southern List
Books that appear on the Southern Bestseller List, but not on any other region's list

The Turn of the Key Ruth Ware, Gallery/Scout Press, $27.99, Quichotte Salman Rushdie, Random House, $28, The Yellow House: A Memoir Sarah M. Broom, Grove Press, $26, The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek Kim Michele Richardson, Sourcebooks Landmark, $15.99,
All the Light We Cannot See Anthony Doerr, Scribner, $17, On Tyranny Timothy Snyder, Tim Duggan Books, $8.99, Anthony Bourdain: The Last Interview Melville House, $16.99, The Last Castle: The Epic Story of Love, Loss, and American Royalty in the Nation's Largest Home Denise Kiernan, Touchstone, $17,

see all


Edelweiss+Some of the reviews submitted this week on Edelweiss+ from your fellow SIBA booksellers. SIBA members earn B3! points for every review if they join the SIBA community on Edelweiss. Email to be added.

Roll with It Get a Life, Chloe Brown Reputation Blitzed 

9781534442559 Roll with It 10/1/2019
"Ellie's voice makes this book un-put-down-able. She is complex, refreshingly honest, and sassy. She doesn't sugarcoat her experiences in a wheelchair or with cerebral palsy, and she is defined by those experiences either. Every person needs to read this book." -- Chelsea Stringfield, Parnassus Books, Nashville, TN

9780062941206 Get a Life, Chloe Brown 11/5/2019
"Get a Life, Chloe Brown is one of the best romances of the year. The humor and wit are spot on, and the romance will make your heart ache and your cheeks blush. Word of advice: don't read this in public - you'll be completely swept into Chloe Brown and Red's tempting romance and be blind to the world around you. If you're looking for a fun and flirty romance that will make you laugh and tug on your heartstrings, then Get a Life, Chloe Brown is the one for you!"-- Gennifer Eccles, Flyleaf Books, Chapel Hill, NC

9781524742904 Reputation 12/3/2019
"Elite Aldrich University is mired in controversy when a hacker releases the contents of every single person's email who is connected to the university. Many scandals come to light, but after Kit finds her husband Greg, who has a scandal of his own, dead in their kitchen, the action ramps up to an entirely new level.Shepard's books have so many plot twists, the reader is likely to suffer literary whiplash...and enjoy every minute of it. You'll suspect everyone in Reputation. And you just might be right." -- Jennifer Jones, The Bookmiser, Roswell, GA

9780451491992 Blitzed 12/3/2019
"This was another cute romantic comedy by Alexa Martin! I loved the inter-racial relationship and the world that Alexa Martin has created in this series. I also couldn't stop laughing at the way Brynn and her friends, the wives and girlfriends of the Denver Mustangs, interacted with one another. Not only was this an entertaining romance, it also was a great book of female empowerment of a woman owning her own business and also have strong supportive friends in her circle. Alexa Martin continues to write books that keeps me hooked! " -- Deanna Bailey, Story on the Square, McDonough, GA

More bookseller reviews

Important and useful links:

SIBA Office Hours: Wednesdays from 2:00 - 5:00 PM EST
In the Land of SIBA Blog
Southern Indie Bestsellers (HC | PB | Kids)

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Thank you for your interest in SIBA,

Nicki Leone

Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance
51 Pleasant Ridge Drive, Asheville, NC 28805
Fax: 309.410.0211


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