Monthly Archives: February 2010

Dana Canedy speaks at Sixth Annual First-Year Experience Author Luncheon. See it here!

As promised, we are bringing you video of our Sixth Annual First-Year Experience Author Luncheon, which took place on Monday February 15th at the Sheraton Hotel in Denver, Colorado.

Dana Canedy (A Journal for Jordan), Thomas Mullen (Last Town on Earth), Carlotta Walls LaNier (A Mighty Long Way), Warren St. John (Outcasts United) and Bill Strickland (Make the Impossible Possible)  gave talks on their books, highlighting why each one would make an excellent adoption for your common reading program. If you were unable to make it to the conference, or if you’d like to experience each of these wonderful talks again, they will be posted in several posts in the upcoming weeks.

First we feature Dana Canedy whose memoir A Journal For Jordan was praised and discussed in this recent post and adopted for common reading at the University of Texas at Arlington.

For more information on bringing these speakers to your school or community e-mail


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UT Arlington shares why A Journal for Jordan is their OneBook.

At the First-Year Experience conference in Denver, the Random House Academic Marketing team had the pleasure of meeting Dana Canedy, New York Times journalist and author of the touching and incredibly timely memoir, A Journal for Jordan.

Selected by the University of Texas at Arlington’s OneBook program for the upcoming year, A Journal for Jordan tells the story of First Sargeant Charles Monroe King who, when deployed to Iraq in 2005, kept a 200-page journal he filled with words of wisdom for his unborn son in case he didn’t make it home from the war. The entries ranged from small instructions to hide money in his shoe while on vacation to larger topics of how to choose a wife. When First Sargeant King was killed on October 14, 2006, his son Jordan was seven months old.

Professor Christopher Conway, co-chair of the OneBook program at UT Arlington shed light on why A Journal for Jordan is such an important read saying:

… it’s a deeply moving and accessible book that lends itself to interdisciplinary conversations about politics, family, ethnicity and war. We also appreciated the way Canedy’s memoir values writing and memory, topics that are central to our educational mission of promoting critical thinking and engagement with society.

Share your thoughts with us! Comment or e-mail and let us know what you value in a common read.

Stay tuned! We will be posting video from Dana Canedy’s talk at our Sixth Annual Author’s Luncheon at the First-Year Experience Conference in Denver.


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Win a FREE copy of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks!

We’ve just returned from the annual First-Year Experience conference in Denver, CO and among the many other wonderful titles featured in the Random House, Inc. booth this year was a brand-new hardcover that made a big impression: The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot. 

Who is Henrietta Lacks? Perhaps you’ve heard of her. Scientists know her as HeLa. She was a poor Southern tobacco farmer who worked the same land as her slave ancestors, yet her cells–taken without her knowledge–became one of the most important tools in medicine. The first “immortal” human cells grown in culture, they are still alive today, though she has been dead for more than sixty years.

Already receiving tremendous buzz, this book has garnered many accolades and much attention from the common reading community. Says David J. Kroll, Professor and Chair of Pharmaceutical Sciences at North Carolina Central University:

What is The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks really about? Science, African American culture and religion, intellectual property of human tissues, Southern history, medical ethics, civil rights, the overselling of medical advances? . . . The book’s broad scope would make it ideal for an institution-wide freshman year reading program.

If you’d like to consider this book for your program, you’re in luck. Random House Academic is giving away five free copies! Comment for your chance to win! (Offer available only in the United States.)


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The 2010 Random House, Inc. First-Year Reading catalog is here! Get yours today!


The 2010 Random House, Inc. First-Year Reading catalog is hot off the presses!

The catalog features recommended titles for common reading programs within subjects such as Life Stories, Inspiration and Guidance, Going Green and Money Matters. This new resource also includes messages from select authors, excerpts from widely adopted books, letters from university administrators and information on new and upcoming books.  

Access the catalog online here.

Want a printed copy? E-mail to request one.

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Join Random House for the Sixth Annual Author Luncheon in Denver!

If you are headed to Denver next week for the annual First Year Experience Conference we invite you to join us for an afternoon of authors, their wonderful books, and food!

Click here to view the invitation!

WHEN: Monday, February 15th, 11:30AM-1:30PM
WHERE: Sheraton Denver Downtown Hotel Plaza, Ballroom – Salon F
WHY: To hear five authors speak about their books

DANA CANEDY: Journal for Jordan
THOMAS MULLEN: Last Town on Earth
WARREN ST. JOHN: Outcasts United

BILL STRICKLAND: Make the Impossible Possible

RSVP to to reserve your space.

See you in Denver!


Unable to attend? Order Exam Copies of these books!

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