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Physical Distancing? Check out these Lesley reads.

If you’re looking for a good book, we recommend some books written by our esteemed MFA Writing faculty.

A time to catch up on your reading.

As we turn to the indoors and practice social distancing to lessen the impact of the Coronavirus, many people are catching up on their reading. To be sure, no matter what is happening in the world, literature can be a place to learn how to handle new situations and people, and how to think about what life means.

If you’re looking for a good book, we recommend anything written by our esteemed MFA in Creative Writing faculty, including these titles.


Jane Brox’s Silence charts the social history of the phenomenon and speaks to our increasingly quieted streets and lives.

Knitters might enjoy Kyoko Mori’s Yarn: Remembering the Way Home, which weaves her learning to knit with personal stories.


To escape into the historical past, try Rachel Kadish’s The Weight of Ink, set in 1660s London and described by critics as “electrifying and ambitious.” At nearly 600 pages it will keep you busy for a while.

Michael Lowenthal’s Charity Girl, focuses on a little-known WWI-era government campaign to imprison women who’d contracted “social diseases.” While some of the medical themes may feel eerily prescient, it reminds us that literature is a way of processing the present and how we live today.


Kevin Prufer’s In a Beautiful Country speaks to our sense of nation and citizenship, which also hits home as we temporarily mourn our social lives.

Children’s and Young Adult Literature

In light of current elections, we recommend Susan Goodman’s picture book, See How They Run: Campaign Dreams, Election Schemes, and the Race to the White House.

And if you’re missing your local librarian due to a shutdown, enjoy Michelle Knudsen’s “horror-humor-romance pastiche” Evil Librarian for young adult readers. And if you finish that, there are, you guessed it, book 2: Revenge of the Evil Librarian, and book 3: Curse of the Evil Librarian.

Cover art of an Embarrassment of Witches graphic novel
An Embarrassment of Witches by Jenn Jordan and Sophie Goldstein

Support Your Local Bookstores

As many small businesses close their brick-and-mortar storefronts to best practice social distancing, we encourage you to support your local bookstores virtually. Porter Square Books—a local independent bookstore and our neighbor in Cambridge—continues to serve the literary community during this time through their online store.