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Emily Hamm

Porter Square Books

25 White Street
Cambridge, MA 02140

United States

(617) 491-2220; infoportersquarebooks.com

Type: Bookstore — new books

Web site: http://portersquarebooks.com/

Events: http://www.portersquarebooks.com/event

Twitter account: @PorterSqBooks

Amenities: wifi, food/drink

Description: We love to talk about books and have plenty of perfect gift and great read suggestions. If you can't find the right book we also sell gift cards. We are happy to order books for you. We also offer shipping, complementary gift wrapping and audio book rental.

Porter Square Books also sells ebooks in a number of formats for a wide variety of reading devices. Read more here.

Cafe Zing inside Porter Square Books features products from local bakeries served alongside fair-trade coffee and organic espresso from Equal Exchange, as well as a free hour of wifi with every purchase!

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Upcoming events

Apr
27
Lori Goldstein, Becoming Jinn (Monday, April 27 at 7pm)
Azra Nadira's Jinn ancestry means magic has always been inside her. But the rules don't allow her to begin drawing upon it until the day she turns sixteen. The day she receives the silver bangle that releases her powers and transforms her into a genie.

It doesn’t have to be tight like a handcuff to achieve the same effect.

Her destiny is now controlled by the powerful Afrit who rule over the Jinn world, and she must keep her true identity a secret from all but the fellow Jinn who make up her Zar sisterhood.

Though she grew up with these five Jinn "sisters," they’ve always wanted the one thing Azra never has: to become a Jinn. This fact separates Azra from them now more than ever. When she reconnects with Henry, the human boy across the street she used to play with as a child, she finds in him the best friend her Zar sisters are supposed to be.

The more she uses her powers, the less she feels like a Jinn. Maybe that’s because her focus begins to shift to Nate, the lifeguard with the underwear model exterior and sweet, shy interior.

Her attachments to Henry and Nate and the human world begin to further strain her ties to her Zar and the Jinn. With her attention divided, she skirts the rules, and her genie mistakes begin to mount, along with the consequences.

As Azra uncovers the darker world of Becoming Jinn, she realizes when genies and wishes are involved, there’s always a trick.

Lori Goldstein was born into an Italian-Irish family and raised in a small town on the New Jersey shore. She earned her bachelor’s degree in journalism from Lehigh University and worked as a writer, editor, and graphic designer before becoming a full-time author. She currently lives and writes outside of Boston.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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Apr
28
Erika DeSimone and Fidel Louis, Voices Beyond Bondage (Tuesday, April 28 at 7pm)
Slaves in chains, toiling on master’s plantation. Beatings, bloodied whips. This is what many of us envision when we think of 19th century African Americans; source materials penned by those who suffered in bondage validate this picture. Yet slavery was not the only identity of 19th-century African Americans. Whether they were freeborn, self-liberated, or born in the years after the Emancipation, African Americans had a rich cultural heritage all their own, a heritage largely subsumed in popular history and collective memory by the atrocity of slavery.

The early 19th century birthed the nation's first black-owned periodicals, the first media spaces to provide primary outlets for the empowerment of African American voices. For many, poetry became this empowerment. Almost every black-owned periodical featured an open call for poetry, and African Americans, both free and enslaved, responded by submitting droves of poems for publication. Yet until now, these poems -- and an entire literary movement -- have been lost to modern readers.

The poems in Voices Beyond Bondage address the horrific and the mundane, the humorous and the ordinary and the extraordinary. Authors wrote about slavery, but also about love, morality, politics, perseverance, nature, and God. These poems evidence authors who were passionate, dedicated, vocal, and above all resolute in a bravery which was both weapon and shield against a world of prejudice and inequity. These authors wrote to be heard; more than 150 years later it is at last time for us to listen.

Erika DeSimone earned her undergraduate degree from Westfield State University (Massachusetts), where she engaged with poetry and other creative writing projects. She later earned a Certificate of Editorial Study from New York University’s School of Professional Studies. She is currently an editorial assistant at the Modern Language Association, where she has worked for more than a decade.

Fidel Louis attended New York University, where he earned both a bachelor’s degree in linguistics (1991) and a master’s degree in mass communications (1994). While in school, he wrote and edited newspaper articles for Haiti Observateur and The Alliance. He joined the New York Amsterdam News as a contributing writer and the Caribbean News Network as managing editor. He has also written several screenplays. He speaks five languages fluently and is certified as interpreter and translator for the New York state court system.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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Apr
29
Michael Gerhard Martin, Easiest If I Had a Gun, and Pablo Medina, The Weight of the Island (Wednesday, April 29 at 7pm)
Like his mentors Chuck Kinder and Lewis Nordan, Michael Gerhard Martin writes deeply textured stories that take you into the minds and souls of the people you see in discount stores, grocery aisles, and gas stations. In the tradition of Raymond Carver, Martin’s tales give dignity and grace to adults caught in the cold grip of poverty and to their children, who struggle mightily with broken homes, bullying, racism, and the constant hum of anger, violence, and resentment that is their lives.

In a voice ringing with emotion, the stories in Easiest If I Had A Gun will remind you what literature is for—that great project of taking us deeper into life, laying it bare, and transforming it with words into something we can hold in our hearts.

Michael Gerhard Martin grew up in rural Pennsylvania, and took his MFA from the University of Pittsburgh. He teaches at Babson College and for the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth Summer Programs. He is the winner of the 2013 James Knudsen Prize from the University of New Orleans for his story, "Shit Weasel Is Late For Class." His work has appeared in Junctures, Bayou Magazine, and The Ocean State Review. Easiest If I Had A Gun is his first book.

Dramatist, novelist, critic and poet Virgilio Piñera (1912-1979) was one of the greatest writers of twentieth-century Cuba. Little known outside the island, his poems have been called "feverishly tropical" and "champions against indifference." With a linguistic skill reminiscent of Borges and a gift for metaphor that rivals Neruda and García Lorca, Piñera's poems celebrate daily life in Cuba with brilliance and humor. Pablo Medina's remarkable translations from The Weight of the Island (La isla en peso), the first book-length collection of Piñera's work in English, now renew Piñera's gifts to the world.

Pablo Medina was born in Havana, Cuba, and moved with his family to New York City at the age of twelve. Medina's writing has been acclaimed as "lyrical and powerfully evocative" and "deserving a prominent spot in today's literature of exile." He teaches at Emerson College.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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Apr
30
Marge Piercy, Made in Detroit (Thursday, April 30 at 7pm)
A treasure trove of new poems by one of our most sought-after poets: poems that range from descriptions of the Detroit of her childhood to her current life on Cape Cod, from deep appreciations of the natural world to elegies for lost friends and relationships, from a vision of her Jewish heritage to a hard-hitting take on today’s political ironies.

In her trademark style, combining the sublime with the gritty, Marge Piercy describes the night she was born: "the sky burned red / over Detroit and sirens sharpened their knives. / The elms made tents of solace over grimy / streets and alley cats purred me to sleep." She writes in graphic, unflinching language about the poor, banished now by politicians because they are no longer "real people like corporations." There are elegies for her peer group of poets, gone now, whose work she cherishes but from whom she cannot help but want more. There are laments for the suicide of dolphins and for her beloved cats, as she remembers "exactly how I loved each." She continues to celebrate Jewish holidays in compellingly original ways and sings praises of her marriage and the small pleasures of daily life.

This is a stunning collection that will please those who already know Marge Piercy’s work and offer a splendid introduction to it for those who don’t.

Marge Piercy is the author of eighteen previous poetry collections and seventeen novels. Her work has been translated into sixteen languages and she has won many honors, including the Golden Rose, the oldest poetry award in the country. She lives on Cape Cod with her husband, Ira Wood, the novelist, memoirist, community radio interviewer, and essayist.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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May
1
Red Hen Press Presents Ellen Meeropol, Kate Gale, John Barr, and Dean Kostos (Friday, May 1 at 7pm)
Ellen Meeropol is the author of two novels, House Arrest (2011) and On Hurricane Island, (Red Hen Press 2015). A former nurse practitioner, a part-time bookseller, and a literary late bloomer.She holds an MFA from the Stonecoast Program, University of Southern Maine. Her short stories and essays have been published in Bridges, Pedestal, Rumpus, Portland Magazine, Shaking Magazine, Women’s Times, Off Our Backs and others. Her dramatic script, "Carry it Forward," tells the story of the Rosenberg Fund for Children; it was produced most recently June 2013 in Manhattan, starring Eve Ensler, Angela Davis, and Cotter Smith. Ellen lives with her husband in Western Massachusetts.

Kate Gale is managing editor of Red Hen Press, editor of the Los Angeles Review and president of the American Composers Forum, LA. She is the author of seven books of poetry, including Echo Light (Red Mountain Press), and The Goldilocks Zone, from the University of New Mexico Press in 2014, and six librettos including Rio de Sangre, a libretto for an opera with composer Don Davis, which had its world premiere October 2010 at the Florentine Opera in Milwaukee.

John Barr has taught in the graduate writing program of Sarah Lawrence College and has served on the boards of the Poetry Society of America, Yaddo, and Bennington College. He was also appointed the first president of the Poetry Foundation from 2004 to 2013. His collections include: The Hundred Fathom Curve (1997)—expanded and updated as The Hundred Fathom Curve: New & Collected Poems (2011)—and the mock-epic Grace: Book One of the Adventures of Ibn Opcit (1999, 2013) and Opcit at Large: Book Two of The Adventures of Ibn Opcit (2013). He lives in New York and Chicago.

Dean Kostos's collections include This Is Not a Skyscraper (recipient of the Benjamin Saltman Poetry Award, selected by Mark Doty, published by Red Hen Press in 2015), Rivering, Last Supper of the Senses, The Sentence That Ends with a Comma (taught at Duke University), and Celestial Rust. He edited Mama’s Boy: Gay Men Write about Their Mothers and Pomegranate Seeds: An Anthology of Greek-American Poetry (its debut was held at the United Nations). His work has appeared in leading journals, such as Boulevard, Chelsea, Cimarron Review, Cincinnati Review, Southwest Review, Western Humanities Review, and on Oprah Winfrey's website. Having taught at Wesleyan, the Gallatin School of NYU, and the City University of New York, he also wrote a libretto for Voices of Ascension, and his poem "Subway Silk" was translated into a short film, which was screened at Tribeca and at San Francisco's IndieFest.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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May
2
Independent Bookstore Day (Saturday, May 2 at 08am)
Celebrate reading, books, and community on May 2! Porter Square Books is one of more than 400 bookstores taking part in this nationwide book party.

The festivities will contine throughout the day, with demonstrations, activities, author appearances, giveaways, and more.

We'll also have special limited-edition posters, books, and broadsides produced especially for Independent Bookstore Day, featuring works by Roxane Gay, Alie Brosh, and Stephen King, and other favorite authors.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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May
4
Francine Prose will be promoting Lovers at the Chameleon Club, Paris 1932 (Monday, May 4 at 7pm)
Francine Prose will be promoting Lovers at the Chameleon Club, Paris 1932 (added from HarperCollins)
May
4
Ronald Rosbottom, When Paris Went Dark (Monday, May 4 at 7pm)
"A riveting account of one of the most resonant hostage-takings in history: the 1,500 days when a swastika flew from the Eiffel Tower. Ronald Rosbottom illuminates every corner of a darkened, heartsick city, exploring the oddities, capturing the grisly humor, and weighing the prices of resistance, accommodation, collaboration. The result is an intimate, sweeping narrative, astute in its insight and chilling in its rich detail."— Stacy Schiff, author of Cleopatra

On June 14, 1940, German tanks entered a silent and nearly deserted Paris. Eight days later, France accepted a humiliating defeat and foreign occupation. Subsequently, an eerie sense of normalcy settled over the City of Light. Many Parisians keenly adapted themselves to the situation-even allied themselves with their Nazi overlords. At the same time, amidst this darkening gloom of German ruthlessness, shortages, and curfews, a resistance arose. Parisians of all stripes-Jews, immigrants, adolescents, communists, rightists, cultural icons such as Colette, de Beauvoir, Camus and Sartre, as well as police officers, teachers, students, and store owners-rallied around a little-known French military officer, Charles de Gaulle.

When Paris Went Dark evokes with stunning precision the detail of daily life in a city under occupation, and the brave people who fought against the darkness. Relying on a range of resources -- memoirs, diaries, letters, archives, interviews, personal histories, flyers and posters, fiction, photographs, film and historical studies -- Rosbottom has forged a groundbreaking book that will forever influence how we understand those dark years in the City of Light.

Ronald C. Rosbottom is the Winifred L. Arms Professor in the Arts and Humanities and Professor of French and European Studies at Amherst College. Previously, he was the Dean of the Faculty at Amherst, Chair of the Romance Languages Department at The Ohio State University, and taught at the University of Pennsylvania. He lives in Amherst, Massachusetts.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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May
5
Megan Frazer Blakemore, The Friendship Riddle (Tuesday, May 5 at 7pm)
With nods to classic fantasy expertly woven into this surprising and emotionally-charged journey through the ups and downs of middle school, Megan Frazer Blakemore proves that even the bravest heroes need true friends by their side.

Ruth Mudd-O'Flaherty has been a lone wolf at her new middle school ever since her best friend, Charlotte, ditched her for “cooler” friends. Who needs friends when you have fantasy novels? Roaming the stacks of her town's library is enough for Ruth. Until she finds a note in an old book...and in that note is a riddle, one that Ruth can't solve alone. With a tantalizing set of clues before her, Ruth must admit she needs help, the kind that usually comes from friends. Lena and Coco, two kids in her class could be an option, but allowing them in will require courage, and Ruth must decide: Is embarking on this quest worth opening herself up again?

Megan Frazer Blakemore is the author of The Spy Catchers of Maple Hill and The Water Castle, which was listed as a Kirkus Reviews Best Book of the Year, a Bank Street Best Book of the Year, and as a New York Public Library Best Book for Reading and Sharing. She is also the author of the young adult novel Secrets of Truth And Beauty which received a starred review in Publishers Weekly and was on the ALA Rainbow list. A former middle-school librarian, Megan lives in Maine with her family.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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May
6
Lori Day, Her Next Chapter (Wednesday, May 6 at 7pm)
Mother-daughter book clubs are a great way to encourage reading, bonding, and socializing among mothers, daughters, and their friends. But these clubs can do more than that, suggests educational psychologist and parenting coach Lori Day. They can create a safe and empowering haven where girls can freely discuss and navigate issues surrounding girlhood.

In Her Next Chapter, Day draws from experiences in her own club and her expertise as an educator to offer a timely and inspiring take on mother-daughter book clubs. She provides overviews of eight of the biggest challenges facing girls today, such as negative body image, bullying, gender stereotypes, media sexualization, unhealthy relationships, and more, while weaving in carefully chosen book, movie, and media recommendations; thoughtful discussion questions; and group activities and outings that extend and enrich conversations and make clubs fun. Her Next Chapter outlines how mothers can use the magic of books to build girls' confidence and sense of possibility as leaders, allies, and agents of change. A list of further resources and reflections and observations from Day's now-adult daughter, Charlotte, round out this indispensible resource for anyone who cares about, teaches, or works with girls.

Lori Day is an educational psychologist, writer, and parenting coach.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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May
7
Lorrie Thomson (Thursday, May 7 at 00am)
Lorrie Thomson (added from Random House)
May
7
David McCullough, Jr. will be promoting You Are Not Special (Thursday, May 7 at 7pm)
David McCullough, Jr. will be promoting You Are Not Special (added from HarperCollins)
May
8
Mark Doty, Deep Lane (Friday, May 8 at 7pm)
Mark Doty's poetry has long been celebrated for its risk and candor, an ability to find transcendent beauty even in the mundane and grievous, an unflinching eye that, as Philip Levine says, looks away from nothing. In the poems of Deep Lane the stakes are higher: there is more to lose than ever before, and there is more for us to gain. "Pure appetite," he writes ironically early in the collection, "I wouldn't know anything about that." And the following poem answers: Down there the little star-nosed engine of desire at work all night, secretive: in the morning a new line running across the wet grass, near the surface, like a vein. Don t you wish the road of excess led to the palace of wisdom, wouldn t that be nice?

Deep Lane is a book of descents: into the earth beneath the garden, into the dark substrata of a life. But these poems seek repair, finally, through the possibilities that sustain the speaker aboveground: gardens and animals, the pleasure of seeing, the world tuned by the word. Time and again, an image of immolation and sacrifice is undercut by the fierce fortitude of nature: nature that is not just a solace but a potent antidote and cure. Ranging from agony to rapture, from great depths to hard-won heights, these are poems of grace and nobility.

Mark Doty's Fire to Fire: New and Selected Poems won the National Book Award for Poetry in 2008. His eight books of poems include School of the Arts and My Alexandria. He has also published four volumes of nonfiction prose: Still Life with Oysters and Lemon, Heaven's Coast, Firebird, and Dog Years, which was a New York Times bestseller in 2007. The Art of Description, a handbook for writers, appeared in 2011.

Doty’s poems have appeared in many magazines including The Atlantic Monthly, The London Review of Books, Ploughshares, Poetry, and The New Yorker. Widely anthologized, his poems appear in The Norton Anthology of Contemporary American Poetry and many other collections.

Doty's work has been honored by the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, a Whiting Writers Award, two Lambda Literary Awards and the PEN/Martha Albrand Award for First Nonfiction. He is the only American poet to have received the T.S. Eliot Prize in the U.K., and has received fellowships from the Guggenheim, Ingram Merrill and Lila Wallace/Readers Digest Foundations, and from the National Endowment for the Arts.Doty lives in New York City and on the east end of Long Island. He is Professor/Writer in Residence at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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May
10
Book Club (Sunday, May 10 at 11am)
Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
May
11
Book Club (Monday, May 11 at 4pm)
Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
May
11
Sydney Padua, The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage (Monday, May 11 at 7pm)
"Don’t be fooled by the word ‘comic.’ Sydney Padua tells a story that is tender, passionate, and true."—James Gleick, author of The Information, Chaos Genius, Faster, What Just Happened, and Isaac Newton.

A graphic novel debut that transforms one of the most compelling scientific collaborations into an unexpected, and hilarious, series of adventures.

A unique take on the unrealized invention of the computer in the 1830s by the eccentric polymath Charles Babbage and his accomplice, the daughter of Lord Byron, Ada, Countess of Lovelace. When Ada translated her friend Babbage's plans for the "Difference Engine," her lengthy footnotes contained the first appearance of the general computing theory—one hundred years before an actual computer was built. Sadly, Lovelace died of cancer a few years after publishing the paper, and Babbage never built any of his machines. But now Sydney Padua gives us an alternate reality in which Lovelace and Babbage do build the Difference Engine, and then use it to do battle with the American banking system, the publishing industry, their own fears that their project will lose funding, and a villainous street musician who will force the two friends to reevaluate their priorities—"for the sake of both London and science."

Sydney Padua is a graphic artist and animator. Her visual effects work includes both hand-drawn and computer-generated and appears in such films as The Iron Giant, Clash of the Titans, and John Carter. The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage has been featured on the BBC's Techlab, and in The Economist, The Times, and Wired UK. She is a Canadian living in London.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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May
12
Celeste Ng, Everything I Never Told You (Tuesday, May 12 at 7pm)
Lydia is dead. But they don’t know this yet . . .

So begins the story of this exquisite debut novel, about a Chinese American family living in 1970s small-town Ohio. Lydia is the favorite child of Marilyn and James Lee; their middle daughter, a girl who inherited her mother’s bright blue eyes and her father’s jet-black hair. Her parents are determined that Lydia will fulfill the dreams they were unable to pursue—in Marilyn’s case that her daughter become a doctor rather than a homemaker, in James’s case that Lydia be popular at school, a girl with a busy social life and the center of every party.

When Lydia’s body is found in the local lake, the delicate balancing act that has been keeping the Lee family together is destroyed, tumbling them into chaos. James, consumed by guilt, sets out on a reckless path that may destroy his marriage. Marilyn, devastated and vengeful, is determined to find a responsible party, no matter what the cost. Lydia’s older brother, Nathan, is certain that the neighborhood bad boy Jack is somehow involved. But it’s the youngest of the family—Hannah—who observes far more than anyone realizes and who may be the only one who knows the truth about what happened.

A profoundly moving story of family, history, and the meaning of home, Everything I Never Told You is both a gripping page-turner and a sensitive family portrait, exploring the divisions between cultures and the rifts within a family, and uncovering the ways in which mothers and daughters, fathers and sons, and husbands and wives struggle, all their lives, to understand one another. Celeste Ng is the author of the novel Everything I Never Told You (Penguin Press), which was a New York Times bestseller, a New York Times Notable Book for 2014, and Amazon's #1 Best Book of the Year 2014. She grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and Shaker Heights, Ohio, in a family of scientists. Celeste attended Harvard University and earned an MFA from the University of Michigan (now the Helen Zell Writers’ Program at the University of Michigan), where she won the Hopwood Award. Her fiction and essays have appeared in One Story, TriQuarterly, Bellevue Literary Review, the Kenyon Review Online, and elsewhere, and she is a recipient of the Pushcart Prize.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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May
13
Kenneth C. Davis, The Hidden History of America at War (Wednesday, May 13 at 7pm)
"With his trademark storytelling flair, Kenneth C. Davis illuminates six critical, but often overlooked battles that helped define America's character and its evolving response to conflict. This fascinating and strikingly insightful book is a must-read for anyone who wants to better understand our nation's bloody history of war."—Eric Jay Dolin, author of Leviathan and When America First Met China

Multi-million-copy bestselling historian Kenneth C. Davis sets his sights on war stories in The Hidden History of America at War. In prose that will remind you of "the best teacher you ever had" (People Magazine), Davis brings to life six emblematic battles, revealing untold tales that span our nation's history, from the Revolutionary War to Iraq. Along the way, he illuminates why we go to war, who fights, the grunt's-eye view of combat, and how these conflicts reshaped our military and national identity.

From the Battle of Yorktown (1781), where a fledgling America learned hard lessons about what kind of military it would need to survive, to Fallujah (2004), which epitomized the dawn of the privatization of war, The Hidden History of America at War takes readers inside the battlefield, introducing them to key characters and events that will shatter myths, misconceptions, and romanticism, replacing them with rich insight.

Kenneth C. Davis is the author of the Don't Know Much About series, with more than four million copies in print worldwide. Davis is a frequent media guest on national television and radio; he has written for the Op-Ed page of the New York Times, and been a commentator on NPR's All Things Considered. He posts regularly at DontKnowMuch.com and makes "virtual visits" to schools, libraries, and other audiences.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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May
14
Aline Ohanesian, Orhan's Inheritance (Thursday, May 14 at 7pm)
"Aline Ohanesian draws from her family's own dark history to create a tender, powerful story of love and reclamation. Orhan's Inheritance is a breathtaking and expansive work of historical fiction and proof that the past can sometimes rewrite the future." -- Christina Baker Kline, author of Orphan Train

When Orhan’s brilliant and eccentric grandfather Kemal—a man who built a dynasty out of making kilim rugs—is found dead, submerged in a vat of dye, Orhan inherits the decades-old business. But Kemal’s will raises more questions than it answers. He has left the family estate to a stranger thousands of miles away, an aging woman in an Armenian retirement home in Los Angeles. Her existence and secrecy about her past only deepen the mystery of why Orhan’s grandfather willed his home in Turkey to an unknown woman rather than to his own son or grandson.

Left with only Kemal’s ancient sketchbook and intent on righting this injustice, Orhan boards a plane to Los Angeles. There he will not only unearth the story that eighty-seven-year-old Seda so closely guards but discover that Seda’s past now threatens to unravel his future. Her story, if told, has the power to undo the legacy upon which his family has been built.

Moving back and forth in time, between the last years of the Ottoman Empire and the 1990s, Orhan’s Inheritance is a story of passionate love, unspeakable horrors, incredible resilience, and the hidden stories that can haunt a family for generations.

Aline Ohanesian was born in Kuwait and immigrated to So. Cal at the age of three. After getting her MA in History, she abandoned her PhD studies when she realized her heart belonged to the novel. Her writing was a finalist for the PEN Bellwether Award for Socially Engaged Fiction and the Glimmer Train Best New Writers Award. Orhan’s Inheritance is her first novel and is currently being translated into several languages. Aline is an alumni of the Bread Loaf and Squaw Valley writer's conferences. She lives and writes in San Juan Capistrano, CA with her husband and two young sons.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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May
15
Dimitry Elias Leger, God Loves Haiti (Friday, May 15 at 7pm)
Set during the 2010 earthquake, this formidable debut pays homage to the resilient people of Haiti.

At the heart of God Loves Haiti are the connected but divergent fates of its President, his wife, and her lover. The first lady has locked her paramour in the closet of her room at the National Palace, in an attempt to abandon him and to escape from her eternally godforsaken hometown of Port-au-Prince. She meets her husband, the soon-to-be ex-President, at the airport. Standing on the tarmac, she realizes that while she does not love him, she's grateful to him. It is at this moment that buildings "tumble on people as if they were made of cards."

In thirty-five seconds, more than 200,000 people are killed and 1.3 million are left homeless. An earthquake has struck, ravaging a land that is plagued by poverty and poor infrastructure. Yet in this stunning novel the amazing characters are never simply victims.

The world has fallen down around them, laying bare remorse, pain, isolation, and unalloyed grief now devastatingly realized through her interrupted plans, and irrevocably altering all their lives. The first lady is having second thoughts about choosing a glamorous life in Europe over a passionate love in a tropical paradise. Is her lover even still alive?

Anchoring this heartwarming and constantly surprising love story is its affectionate depiction of Haiti, in all its complexity--its proud past as the first nation established by a successful slave revolt, its entangled politics with France and the United States, and its efforts to rise from the ruins to build anew.

God Loves Haiti is an enthralling first novel that is as astonishing as it is entertaining.

Dimitry Elias Léger was born in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Educated at St. John's University and the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, he is a former staff writer at the Miami Herald, Fortune magazine, and the Source magazine, and also a contributor to the New York Times, Newsweek, and The Face magazine in the UK. In 2010 he worked as an adviser to the United Nations' disaster recovery operations in Haiti after the earthquake. This is his first novel. He lives with his family in France and the United States.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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May
18
Derrick Z. Jackson, Project Puffin (Monday, May 18 at 7pm)
The inspiring story of a young ornithologist who reintroduced puffins where none had been seen for a century. Project Puffin is the inspiring story of how a beloved seabird was restored to long-abandoned nesting colonies off the Maine coast. As a young ornithology instructor at the Hog Island Audubon Camp, Dr. Stephen W. Kress learned that puffins had nested on nearby islands until extirpated by hunters in the late 1800s. To right this environmental wrong, he resolved to bring puffins back to one such island—Eastern Egg Rock. Yet bringing the plan to reality meant convincing skeptics, finding resources, and inventing restoration methods at a time when many believed in "letting nature take its course."

Today, Project Puffin has restored more than 1,000 puffin pairs to three Maine islands. But even more exciting, techniques developed during the project have helped to restore rare and endangered seabirds worldwide. Further, reestablished puffins now serve as a window into the effects of climate change. The success of Dr. Kress's project offers hope that people can restore lost wildlife populations and the habitats that support them. The need for such inspiration has never been greater.

Derrick Z. Jackson, a Pulitzer Prize finalist for commentary and an accomplished photographer, is an associate editor and editorial board member of the Boston Globe. He lives in Cambridge, MA.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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May
19
Tina Packer (Tuesday, May 19 at 00am)
Tina Packer (added from Random House)
May
19
Janice Nimura, Daughters of the Samurai (Tuesday, May 19 at 7pm)
"Surprising and richly satisfying… In Nimura's skillful telling, Sutematsu, Shige, and Ume become ambassadors once again, bringing to life an era from which we can learn important lessons about intercultural understanding, conflict, and compromise, still vital to our survival in the global twenty-first century." — Megan Marshall, author of The Peabody Sisters and Margaret Fuller: A New American Life, winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize in Biography

In 1871, five young girls were sent by the Japanese government to the United States. Their mission: learn Western ways and return to help nurture a new generation of enlightened men to lead Japan.

Raised in traditional samurai households during the turmoil of civil war, three of these unusual ambassadors—Sutematsu Yamakawa, Shige Nagai, and Ume Tsuda—grew up as typical American schoolgirls. Upon their arrival in San Francisco they became celebrities, their travels and traditional clothing exclaimed over by newspapers across the nation. As they learned English and Western customs, their American friends grew to love them for their high spirits and intellectual brilliance.

The passionate relationships they formed reveal an intimate world of cross-cultural fascination and connection. Ten years later, they returned to Japan—a land grown foreign to them—determined to revolutionize women’s education.

Based on in-depth archival research in Japan and in the United States, including decades of letters from between the three women and their American host families, Daughters of the Samurai is beautifully, cinematically written, a fascinating lens through which to view an extraordinary historical moment. Janice P. Nimura is a book critic, independent scholar, and the American daughter-in-law of a Japanese family. She lives in New York City.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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May
20
Poetry by Ralph Pennell, Matthew Lippman, and Jennifer Jean (Wednesday, May 20 at 7pm)
Ralph Pennel is the author of A World Less Perfect for Dying In, published by Cervena Barva Press. His writing has appeared in The Cape Rock, Ropes, Open to Interpretation, Ibbetson Street, The Smoking Poet, Unbound Press, Monologues From the Road, Right Hand Pointing, and various other journals in the U.S. and abroad. He has also published reviews with Rain Taxi Review of Books. Ralph teaches literature for Bunker Hill Community College and poetry at Bentley University. He has been a guest lecturer at Emerson College and served as the judge for the 2013 WLP Dean’s Prize for Emerson. He is a founding editor and the fiction editor for the online literary magazine, Midway Journal, published out of St. Paul, Minnesota. Ralph Pennel lives and writes in Somerville, Massachusetts, and was a finalist for the Poet Laureate of Somerville in 2014.

Matthew Lippman’s latest collection of poems, Salami Jew, is an extended rumination on one man’s relationship with Judaism. In these poems Lippman grapples with and explores the power of being a Jew under the umbrella of observance/non-observance. The tension between the secular and the religious is the driving force behind these introspective, witty, and fiery poems. Salami Jew pulls no punches and does it with sensitivity, honesty, and aplomb. These poems illustrate a man struggling with his identity as a Jew, with his place in the world as a Jew, and with what it means, on a daily basis, to feel the spirit move him in this highly complex world.

Matthew Lippman is the author of American Chew, Monkey Bars, and The New Year of Yellow.

"The Fool takes us to this basic truth, that when we feel most unloved and unlovable, we enter the space of endings and beginnings, the space where we must decide whether or not to believe. This collection of poetry is thus an article of faith, poems that dare us — in unflinching terms — to believe. Jean's poetic emerges in twists of language that hurtle into dangerous places, steep falls and banked curves that bring us back to consider life's vital air and light." -- Afaa Michael Weaver

Jennifer Jean's most recent poetry collection is The Fool; other collections include: The Archivist, Fishwife, and In the War. Her work has appeared in Drunken Boat, Caketrain, Denver Quarterly, Tidal Basin Review, Poets/Artists, The Mom Egg, Naugatuck River Review, North Dakota Quarterly, Talking/Writing, and more. She's co-director of the Morning Garden Artist Retreats, poetry editor for the Compassion Project, and she teaches Free2Write poetry workshops at Amirah, a safe house for sex-trafficking survivors. Jennifer is on the advisory board for the Mass Poetry Festival, and she teaches writing at Pine Manor College.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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May
21
Paul Hoppe, The Curse of Van Gogh (Thursday, May 21 at 7pm)
"Hoppe offers a crime thriller about the difficulty of stealing famous art….an inviting story of a modern-day gentleman thief." -- Kirkus Reviews

Tyler Sears, art thief, just released from a federal prison, vows never again. Tyler slides into a simple life of bartending in New York City, living his life day-to-day. And then at the hottest art opening of the season he meets Kommate Imasu, a Japanese billionaire and famed art collector, who seems to know more about Tyler than his own mother does. With serious threats against his family and friends, Tyler has to decide how much risk he'll take to protect them. Tyler plunges headfirst into a world of art forgers, hit-men, Yakuza, a femme fatale named Chanel #5, and the legendary curse of Van Gogh, in order to pull off the greatest art heist in history.

Paul Hoppe worked as a lobbyist in Washington DC, a stockbroker on Wall Street, and a screenwriter in Hollywood before writing his first novel. He has lived on four different continents and currently splits his time between the High Sierras and the beaches of Australia. He is a graduate of Reed College.

Location: Street: Porter Square Shopping Center Additional: 25 White Street City: Cambridge, Province: Massachusetts Postal Code: 02140 Country: United States (added from IndieBound)
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