Half the Sky by Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn is the 2014-2015 selection for the Common Reading Program at Agnes Scott College.
Global Weirdness by Climate Central is the 2014-2015 selection for the Brookhaven College Open Book Program.
Random House, Inc. publishes a broad selection of fiction and non-fiction books appropriate for first-year and Freshman Reading programs. The books suggested here should help initiate reflection and discussion among your incoming first-year students, who will begin their academic lives with a shared experience. They'll be prepared to discuss the stories of others and, thus, ready to share their own.
Many authors featured below are available to visit college campuses as part of a first-year program. Please email us for further information.
To order examination copies of any of these titles, please follow the instructions on our Examination Copy page.
the Beautiful Forevers
Life, death, and hope in a Mumbai undercity
Written by Katherine Boo
Format: Trade Paperback, 288 pages
On Sale: April 8, 2014
Now in Paperback
Selected for Common Reading at Concordia University, Michigan State University, Northeastern University, Skidmore College, University of Delaware, Montgomery Bell Academy
Winner of the National Book Award, Los Angeles Times
Book Prize, American Academy of Arts and Letters Literature Award,
and PEN/John Kenneth Galbraith Award
Finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award
"A beautiful account, told through real-life stories, of the sorrows and joys, the anxieties and stamina, in the lives of the precarious and powerless in urban India whom a booming country has failed to absorb and integrate. A brilliant book that simultaneously informs, agitates, angers, inspires, and instigates." —Amartya Sen, Professor of Economics and Philosophy at Harvard University, winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics
Selected for Common Reading by Pennsylvania State University; Earlham College; Duke University; Pomona College; Macalester College
One of The New York Times's Ten Best Books of
the Year and an NBCC Award Finalist
"[A] knockout of a novel about immigration, American dreams, the power of first love, and the shifting meanings of skin color. . . . A marvel." —NPR
"Adichie is uniquely positioned to compare racial hierarchies in the United States to social striving in her native Nigeria. She does so in this new work with a ruthless honesty about the ugly and beautiful sides of both nations." —The Washington Post
Coming Soon in Paperback
Foreign Gods, Inc. is a meditation on the dreams, promises and frustrations of the immigrant life in America; the nature and impact of religious conflicts; an examination of the ways in which modern culture creates or heightens infatuation with the "exotic". An exploration of the shifting nature of memory, Foreign Gods, Inc. is a brilliant work of fiction that illuminates our globally interconnected world like no other.
Selected for Common Reading by University of South Carolina;
Kent State University; Virginia Commonwelath University; Boston
College; Eckerd College; Loyola Marymount University; Babson College
"A vivid, roaring dissent to the companies that have coaxed us to disgorge every thought and action onto the Web. . . . Carries the potential to change how the world views its addicted, compliant thrall to all things digital. If you work in Silicon Valley, or just care about what goes on there, you need to pay attention." —Dennis K. Berman, The Wall Street Journal
"Fascinating. . . . Eggers appears to run on pure adrenaline, and has as many ideas pouring out of him as the entrepreneurs pitching their inventions in The Circle. . . . [A] novel of ideas . . . about the social construction and deconstruction of privacy, and about the increasing corporate ownership of privacy, and about the effects such ownership may have on the nature of Western democracy. . . . Like Melville’s Pequod and Stephen King’s Overlook Hotel, the Circle is a combination of physical container, financial system, spiritual state, and dramatis personae, intended to represent America, or at least a powerful segment of it. . . . The Circlers’ social etiquette is as finely calibrated as anything in Jane Austen. . . . Eggers treats his material with admirable inventiveness and gusto . . . the language ripples and morphs . . . It’s an entertainment, but a challenging one." —Margaret Atwood, The New York Review of Books