Porter Square Books Staff Picks: August 2022

Porter Square Books: Boston Edition, located on the first floor of GrubStreet's Center for Creative Writing, is open and ready to fulfill all of your book-browsing desires! Staff Picks are 20% off, so you can add to your TBR pile guilt-free. Whether you want to read a whirlpool of a story about love and home, a retelling of "The Fall of the House of Usher," or a strong sibling dynamic, PSB has a pick for you. We're located on the southeast side of 50 Liberty, facing the Marina and the ICA. Come visit!


The Bodyguard by Katherine Center

This is my first Katherine Center book and it's certainly not going to be my last. Center writes with a chaotic, lighthearted, and humorous hand while at the same time not sacrificing the integrity of the storyline. This was a fun read that (1) totally subverted my expectations (2) made Jack Stapleton my new golden standard for fictional men. This is the perfect book for anyone who enjoys the charm of Emily Henry and the humor of Ali Hazelwood! — Cindy

Don't Call Me a Hurricane by Ellen Hagan

Ever since her home was ravaged by a hurricane, high school senior Eliza has found comfort and carthasis in vocalizing her passion for combating climate change in her hometown. However, her world is flipped dangerously and disastrously upside down a second time when a certain tourist named Milo enters her world and leaves a sandy footprint. Surely the volley of her heart can't be attributed to him...? Rich with resonance, Don't Call Me a Hurricane is a whirlpool of a story about love and home and the price of getting stuck in the riptide of feeling. — Cindy

I'll Take Care of You by Maria Loretta

For a picture book that just came out this year, this one already feels like a classic. The story is about community and paying it forward, and the art is absolutely gorgeous. This is a picture book you’ll read over and over again (and I may have already gifted it to several babies in my life). — Katherine

Get a Life, Chloe Brown by Talia Hibbert

The first in the Brown Sisters trilogy, I read this book and then both sequels in three days because I just couldn’t put them down. Chloe Brown is sarcastic and relatable and ready to start living her life—which of course requires the help of her surly super with a heart of gold, Red Morgan. A high heat romance that’s enemies to lovers, some truly fantastic banter, and a conflict at the center of the story that felt real and understandable. The perfect book to take with you to the beach this August, and the perfect book for fans of Book Lovers. — Katherine

Kunwinjku Counting Book by Gabriel Maralngurra

Reading this beautiful book, I certainly learned more about Australian wildlife, the Australian Aboriginal language Kunwinjku, and Bininj approaches to art. But I also feel like I learned more about the nature of counting?!? The way that Kunwinjku constructs the names for numbers is really neat, and a good intro to the concept of base-10 vs base-5, for example. — Piera

On Looking by Alexandra Horowitz

Horowitz takes a series of walks around her neighborhood accompanied by various experts: bug knowers, typeface designers, rockhounds; connoisseurs of sounds, spines, couches, crowds. How much can you learn about the world around you just by learning how to notice things? — Piera

What Moves the Dead by T. Kingfisher

If you’re a gothic literature enthusiast or one of Edgar Allan Poe’s many appreciators (maybe you’ve just had a few persistent lines stuck in your head because you were forced to read him in high school), you’ll definitely enjoy T. Kingfisher’s newest novella, a retelling of "The Fall of the House of Usher"! Quick but haunting, and full of details that’ll make you either yearn for more or run for the hills, this is perfect for readers of the subgenre I’ve lovingly dubbed, “Weird and Somewhat Difficult to Describe.” — Engel

The Stone Road by Trent Jamieson

Feeling like taking a side step from the usual fantasy? Trent Jamieson’s The Stone Road will deliver you into a delightfully creepy rural landscape where it’s the end of days and the dead speak. When Jean was born, corpses howled and smoke rose in the sky. When she was twelve, a man came to reveal secrets that her grandmother had kept to keep her safe. Looking to chase the high of The Raven Cycle, The Last Unicorn, and The Ten Thousand Doors of January, give this one a try. — Engel

Falling by T.J. Newman

Falling by T.J Newman is quite a wild ride! At cruising altitude, on a flight from LAX to JFK, a pilot learns his wife and kids are being held hostage in their own home by a terrorist. He is told: If he crashes the plane in NY his family lives…if he lands the plane, his family dies. There are plenty of twists, turns and suspense in this turbulent story. T.J Newman keeps you guessing on who to trust, in the air and on the ground. I’ll just say this: even though the price of gas these days is outrageous, road trips are looking A LOT more appealing! — Babbie

Interior Chinatown by Charles Yu

The narrator in Interior Chinatown is one of my favorites because he's a mixture of sassy, intelligent, wry, and melancholy about the state of the world. The author also pulls off a feat with the structure of the novel, which I was skeptical about at first, but once I saw how well it was applied, it worked all the way to the end for me. The story held my curiosity and kept me connected the entire way through. While I read the book many months ago, it has stayed with me. — Eson, GrubStreet

(This pick is discounted in Porter Square Books: Boston Edition exclusively.)

The Lesbiana's Guide to Catholic School by Sonora Reyes

This is a book that balances perfectly on the precipice between joy and heartache. It's a story about two siblings transferring to a new school, but it is also so much more than that. You will find discussion of depression/suicidality, sexuality, racism, transracial adoption, and religion all handled with sensitivity and care. But honestly, the sibling dynamics in this book are everything. Read it, then call your siblings. — Kendall

About the Author See other articles by Info
by Info


Grub News


Boston LGBTQ+ Reading

Rate this!

Currently unrated