An epistolary novel set in Guernsey is up against a study of how music works on the brain; a Booker prize winner is competing with a memoir of old age. This is the Independent Booksellers book prize, featuring a line-up handpicked by hundreds of independent bookshops from their bestselling titles, and launching this week as part of a week-long celebration of the role of independents.

The award pits Mary Ann Shaffer’s novel The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society against Oliver Sacks’s Musicophilia, Diana Athill’s memoir Somewhere Towards the End against Aravind Adiga’s The White Tiger. “They’re not the supermarkets’ or the chains’ choices – they’re our choices,” said Vivian Archer of the Newham Bookshop in east London. “It’s a good, independent mix – and quite a literary mix, which is great.”

Also in the 10-book line-up are Sebastian Barry’s Costa-wining The Secret Scripture, Kate Summerscale’s Samuel Johnson winner, The Suspicions of Mr Whicher, and Clarissa Dickson-Wright’s memoir Spilling the Beans. “It reflects what independents have been selling well,” said Eleanor Lowenthal, owner of Pages of Hackney. “Patrick Gale won last year – he was a bestseller, and also critically acclaimed, and the list this year reflects that too. They’re all good quality titles, and very sellable.” Customers can vote for their choice at independent bookshops around the country until 28 August, with the winner to be announced in September.

More than 230 bookshops are taking part in Independent Booksellers Week, which runs until 22 June, with 180 authors lending a hand through talks and creative writing workshops.

The shortlist for the adult independent booksellers’ book of the year:

Child 44 by Tom Rob Smith

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer

Musicophilia by Oliver Sacks

The Secret Scripture by Sebastian Barry

Somewhere Towards the End by Diana Athill

Spilling the Beans by Clarissa Dickson-Wright

The Suspicions of Mr. Whicher by Kate Summerscale

A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini

When Will There be Good News? by Kate Atkinson

The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga

The shortlist for the children’s independent booksellers’ book of the year:

The Crossing of Ingo by Helen Dunmore

Running on the Cracks by Julia Donaldson

The Dragonfly Pool by Eva Ibbotson

Tiddler by Julia Donaldson

Mr Gum and the Dancing Bear by Andy Stanton

Skulduggery Pleasant: Playing with Fire by Derek Landy

Then by Morris Gleitzman

Artemis Fowl and the Time Paradox by Eoin Colfer

By Royal Command by Charlie Higson

Kaspar by Michael Morpurgo

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