The American Booksellers Association has named Jason Reynolds as the 2017 official spokesperson for Indies First, a national campaign of activities and events in support of independent bookstores that takes place on Small Business Saturday, the weekend after Thanksgiving.

Jason Reynolds is the author of the critically acclaimed and award-winning novels When I Was the GreatestBoy in the Black Suit, and co-author of the New York Times bestselling All American Boys. His As Brave As You was a Time Book of the Year, and Ghost, the premier book in his middle grade “Track” series, was a National  Book Award finalist. Jason is also a Kirkus Award winner, a Walter Dean Myers Award winner, an NAACP Image Award Winner, and the recipient of multiple Coretta Scott King honors. He has two books coming in Fall 2017: Patina, the next installment of the “Track” series and Long Way Down, a YA novel, being published by Caitlyn Dlouhy Books/Atheneum Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing, in addition to the recently published Miles Morales: Spider-Man, a YA novel from Marvel. You can find his ramblings at JasonWritesBooks.comIndies First Jason Reynolds

On Small Business Saturday (November 25)—a day dedicated to supporting the local businesses that help create jobs, boost the economy, and preserve neighborhoods—independent bookstores will host authors as honorary booksellers to celebrate Indies First, to help handsell their favorite titles, sign books, give readings, and more.


In a video to authors, readers, and booksellers, Reynolds calls to join in his support of independent bookstores. Reynolds, who will spend Indies First day at East City Bookshop in Washington, D.C., says in the video: “Bookstores aren’t just for selling books, they’re also community spaces and we need that…Make sure you show up, that we’re there, that we’re communing with one another, that we’re buying books but also that we’re talking to our neighbors, that we’re giggin’ on other people. Booksellers are heroes.”

Indies First was created by author Sherman Alexie in 2013; other authors and celebrities who have spearheaded the campaign include Kate DiCamillo, Neil Gaiman and Amanda Palmer, Daniel Handler (aka Lemony Snicket), Cheryl Strayed, and Lena Dunham. Fans can follow Indies First on Facebook and Twitter, as well as the hashtag #IndiesFirst, and search for store events nationwide on An Indies First social media sweepstakes for readers will be announced in the coming weeks. Inquiries about Indies First can be directed to

Jason Talks About Indies First

About the American Booksellers Association (

Founded in 1900, the American Booksellers Association is a not-for-profit trade association devoted to meeting the needs of its core members—independently owned bookstores with storefront locations—through education, information dissemination, business products and services, and advocacy. ABA exists to protect and promote the interests of independent retail book businesses, as well as to protect the First Amendment rights of every American. The association actively supports free speech, literacy, and programs that support local and independent retail shops. A board of 10 booksellers governs the Association. ABA is headquartered in White Plains, New York