Set in Denver in the early 1960s, my New York Times bestselling debut novel The Bookseller (HarperCollins, 2015) tells the story of Kitty Miller - a single woman in her late 30s who owns a bookshop with her best friend and begins to have nightly dreams of an alternative reality in which she's a married woman with children (and no more bookstore). The Bookseller explores the butterfly effect - how one small change of circumstance can set off a cascade of different events.  It's a fast, engaging read, great for discussion and introspection.

If you enjoy midcentury design, you'll love the 1960s clothes, music, architecture, and books that make up the backdrop of the story.

  • Learn about upcoming events here.
  • Media reviews of The Bookseller are here.
  • A reading group guide is here.


  • Winner - WILLA Award 2016 for Historical Fiction from Women Writing the West
  • Indie Next selection (March 2015)
  • 2015 Goodreads Choice Award nominee for Historical Fiction
  • MPIBA 2105 Reading the West Award nominee
  • Colorado Authors' League 2015 CAL Awards finalist
  • Women's Fiction Writers' Association 2015 Star Award finalist
  • High Plains Book Award 2016 finalist
  • Wisconsin Library Association Outstanding Achievement Award 2015

Translations: The Bookseller is being translated into more than a dozen languages. It's currently available in French, German, Italian, Portuguese, and Turkish. Others coming soon - stay tuned!


  • "Delivers on its fantasy scenario like a modern-day fairy tale...highly satisfying." (USA Today)
  • "A stunner of a debut novel, astonishingly tight and fast paced. The 1960s tone is elegant and even." (Library Journal, starred review)
  • "Dexterously traversing past and present, fact and fiction, Swanson's clever first novel ingeniously explores the inventive ways the human spirit copes with trauma." (Booklist)
  • "Will make you think about the paths you could have taken - but even more so, what you can learn from them to make your reality richer." (Redbook)
  • "Swanson masterfully crafts both Kitty's and Katharyn's worlds." (Publisher's Weekly)
#BookfaceFriday....image courtesy Samara Nicoll of Otter Books (nelson, bc)

#BookfaceFriday....image courtesy Samara Nicoll of Otter Books (nelson, bc)