It seems we're all ready for a full-on embrace of summer after two years of cautious living because of COVID-19. People are ready to enjoy all the wonders of the season: diving into the ocean, feeling sand under their toes at the beach, taking lazy naps in the hammock, and slowly swinging on the porch — not to mention long, uninterrupted hours of reading. Summer readers, grab your book bags! Three local librarians return with recommendations from 2022’s best books from historical fiction and young adult stories to science fiction and romance. It’s our annual summer reading special.


Susannah Borysthen-Tkacz, senior librarian at the Cambridge Public Library.

Robin Brenner, teen librarian at the Public Library of Brookline.

Veronica Koven-Matasy, reader services specialist at the Boston Public Library.


Book recommendations

Callie's picks:

  • "Finding Me: A Memoir" by Viola Davis
  • "Walking In My Joy in These Streets" by Jenifer Lewis
  • "Admissions: A Memoir of Surviving Boarding School" by Kendra James
  • "Shine Bright: A Very Personal History of Black Women in Pop" by Danyel Smith
  • "The Violin Conspiracy" by Brendan Slocumb
  • "The Trayvon Generation" by Elizabeth Alexander
  • "Two Wheels Good: The History and Mystery of the Bicycle" by Judy Rosen
  • "She’s Nice Though: Essays on Being Bad at Being Good" by Mia Mercado
  • "The Love Songs of W.E.B. Du Bois" by Honorée Fanonne Jeffers
  • "Don’t Cry for Me" by Daniel Black
  • "Black Cake" by Charmaine Wilkerson
  • "Horse" by Geraldine Brooks
  • "A Killer Sundae" by Abby Collette, another Ice Cream Parlor Mystery
  • "To Catch a Raven" by Beverly Jenkins
  • "The Accidental Pinup" by Danielle Jackson
  • "Yinka, Where Is Your Husband?" by Lizzie Damiola Blackburn
  • "Dele Weds Destiny" by Tomi Obaro
  • "The Hotel Nantucket" by Elin Hilderbrand
  • "Required Reading for the Disenfranchised Freshman" by Kristen L Lee
  • "No Filter and Other Lies" by Crystal Maldanado
  • "Love Radio" by Ebony LaDelle
  • "10 Blocks to the Big Wok" by Ying-Hwa Hu
  • "Nibi’s Water Song" by Sunshine Tenasco
  • "Show the World" by Angela Dalton
  • "Be A Bridge" by Irene Latham and Charles Waters
  • "The World Belonged to Us" by Jacqueline Woodson
  • "Lulu & Zooey: A Sister Story by Carrie Finison
  • "Does a Bulldozer Have a Butt? by Derick Wilder
  • "Miss Quinces by Kat Fajardo

Veronica's picks

  • "Portrait of a Thief" by Grace D. Li
  • "Book of Night" by Holly Black
  • "A Caribbean Heiress in Paris" by Adriana Herrera
  • "I Kissed Shara Wheeler" by Casey McQuiston
  • "Kaikeyi" by Vaishnavi Patel
  • "The Cartographers" by Peng Shepherd
  • "A Lady for a Duke" by Alexis Hall
  • "The Stardust Thief" by Chelsea Abdullah
  • "Delilah Green Doesn't Care" by Ashley Herring Blake
  • "The Daughter of Doctor Moreau" by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Susannah's picks

  • "The Town of Babylon" by Alejandro Varela
  • "Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow" by Gabrielle Zevin
  • "Rainbow Rainbow: Stories" by Lydia Conklin
  • "Yerba Buena" by Nina LaCour
  • 'Messy Roots: A Graphic Memoir of a Wuhanese American" by Laura Gao
  • "Seven Steeples" by Sarah Baume
  • "You Made a Fool of Death with Your Beauty" by Akwaeke Emezi
  • "Our Wives Under the Sea" by Julia Armfield
  • "Crying in the Bathroom: A Memoir" by Erika L. Sanchez
  • "All This Could Be Different" by Sarah Thankam Mathews

Robin's picks

  • "If This Gets Out" by Sophie Gonzales and Cale Dietrich
  • "All My Rage" by Sabaa Tahir
  • "I Kissed Shara Wheeler" by Casey McQuiston
  • "The City Beautiful" by Aden Polydoros
  • "Queen of the Tiles" by Hannah Alkaf
  • "My Dearest Darkest" by Kayla Cottingham
  • "Drawn That Way" by Elissa Sussman
  • "Red Palace" by June Hur
  • "Great or Nothing" by Caroline Tung Richmond, Joy McCullough, Jessica Spotswood, Tess Sharpe
  • "Lakelore" by A M McLemore
  • "Little Thieves" by Margaret Owen
  • "Love Radio" by Ebony Labelle
  • "Nothing Burns as Bright as You" by Ashley Woodfolk
  • "Don't Hate the Player" by Alexis Nedd
  • "Firekeeper's Daughter" by Angeline Bouley
  • "Heartstopper volumes 1-4" by Alice Oseman
  • "Huda F are You" by Huda Fahmy
  • "Squire" by Nadia Shammas and Sara Alfageeh