Previous Selection

Common Reading Program selections from the past.

Belonging by Nora Krug

Academic Year: 
2021

The Common Reading Program at Appalachian State proudly announces the 2021-2022 book selection: Belonging: A German Reckons with History and Home by Nora Krug. The book has received a number of awards, most notably the 2018 National Book Critics Circle Award for Autobiography.

Rising by Elizabeth Rush

Academic Year: 
2020

The book was a 2019 Pulitzer Prize Finalist in General Nonfiction. According to the Pulitzer Prize website, Rising is a "rigorously reported story about American vulnerability to rising seas, particularly disenfranchised people with limited access to the tools of rebuilding."

Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson

Academic Year: 
2019

Just Mercy details the injustices of a broken criminal justice system that punishes poor people, and Stevenson’s work to improve that system.

Appalachian will welcome the author to campus on Tuesday, September 17, 2019, when he will give an address at the Holmes Convocation Center at 7:00 p.m.

The Laramie Project by Moisés Kaufman

Academic Year: 
2018

The Common Reading Program at Appalachian State is pleased to announce the 2018-19 book selection: The Laramie Project by Moisés Kaufman and the Members of Tectonic Theater Project. The Laramie Project is a play about the community of Laramie, Wyoming in the aftermath of the 1998 tragic murder of Matthew Shepard, who was a gay student at the University of Wyoming. The murder was denounced as a hate crime and sparked a national debate.

One Amazing Thing by Chitra Divakaruni

Academic Year: 
2017

The Common Reading Program at Appalachian State is pleased to announce the 2017-18 book selection: One Amazing Thing by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni. One Amazing Thing is a fictional story about nine people from different backgrounds who become trapped together by an earthquake for days, using storytelling to help them survive while they hope and pray for rescue.

So You've Been Publicly Shamed by Jon Ronson

Academic Year: 
2016

Born in Wales in 1967, Ronson is a journalist and the author of several highly acclaimed and best-selling books, including "The Men Who Stare at Goats" and "The Psychopath Test."

"So You've Been Publicly Shamed" is Ronson's most recent book. It begins with the author's surprising discovery that a Twitter account had been created under his name without his knowledge and that the account was active. The book goes on to explore a number of questions arising from the public dimensions of social media and how it reflects other forms of social control.

Clapton's Guitar by Allen St. John

Academic Year: 
2014

In 1994, Eric Clapton came across a Wayne Henderson guitar in a recording studio and decided on the spot that he had to have one. Rarer than Stradivarius violins, these musical works of art are built from near-extinct Brazilian Rosewood, Appalachian spruce, black ebony, and fine mother-of-pearl. With Henderson's keen ear for the vibrations of each piece of wood he uses, each note that comes out of them has the power of a cannon and the sweetness of maple syrup. In "Clapton's Guitar," Allen St.

American Dervish by Ayad Akhtar

Academic Year: 
2013

American Dervish has been selected for the 2013 Summer Reading Program.

Hayat Shah is a young Pakistani-American who wrestles with his religious identity, tumultuous feelings for his mother's friend, Mina, that he can't explain, and his own sense of himself in Ayad Akhtar's American Dervish.

Farm City by Novella Carpenter

Academic Year: 
2012

Farm City: The Education of an Urban Farmer has been selected for the 2012 Summer Reading Program.

Novella Carpenter chronicles her efforts to live off the land on the fringes of an urban ghetto. Her efforts to have a sustainable source of food for herself–with some for friends and neighbors as well-- sends her down a path inspired by Henry Thoreau, Euell Gibbons and her mother. The experiment to eat exclusively from her urban squat farm tries her will and ingenuity while bolstering her spirit with a sense of connection with all around her.