Suggested Books for 2017-2018 Reading Program

1- Al Conetto, The Hump: The 1st Battalion,503 Airborne Infantry, in the First Major Battle of the Vietnam War

2- Marty Brownstein, Two Among the Righteous Few: A Story of Courage in the Holocaust  

3- John Lewis, March, Book 1

4- Colson Whitehead, The Underground Railroad

5- Viet Thanh Nguten, The Sympathizer

6-Ken Ilgunas, Trespassing Against America

7- Mitch Albom, Tuesday with Morrie

8- J. D. Vance, Hillbilly Elegy

9. Ta-Nehesi Coates, Between the World and Me

10- Janisse Ray, Ecology of a Cracker Childhood

11- Peter Wohlleben, The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate–Discoveries from a Secret World

12- Robert H. Schindler, Hot Dogs and Hamburgers

13- Peter Wilcox with Ronald P. Weiss, Greenpeace Captain: My Adventures in Protecting the Future of Our Planet

14- Ken Corbett, A Murder Over A Girl

15- Paul Beatty, The Sellout


  • Must be well written and engaging,
  • Must offer topics and themes conducive to stimulating thoughtful discussion, calling for critical thinking about ideas, issues, practices, values, traditions, relationships, or beliefs.
  • Must speak in a meaningful manner to our target audience (the entire campus community, but also newly entering freshmen we wish to win over to participating in and supporting a culture or reading).
  • Must provide connecting opportunities for cross- and interdisciplinary corollary lectures, activities, presentations, and/or performances to encourage integration across wide and diverse sections of the SJSU community (and perhaps into a range of different class assignment possibilities).
  • Must have received some critical praise or acclaim, with some evidence of popularity or the potential for popularity.
  • Must be published within the last five years.
  • Must be available in paperback by the time book orders for Summer Orientation sessions are due.
  • Must not be made into a film before or during the year of its selection.
  • Must not exceed 300 pages.
  • Might speak to a significant “hot topic” current social issue, might have a special or particular tie to our campus history or local city and area culture and history.

(NOTE– On issues such as date of publication or page length, if the selection is extremely strong in other areas and gets very positive support from a majority of the committee, these criteria can be waived.)