Monthly Archives: April 2013

Virginia Commonwealth University selects Salt Sugar Fat for 2013 Summer Reading Program

Salt Sugar Fat HC

Virginia Commonwealth University, the first school to adopt The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks in 2010, has selected Pulitzer Prize–winning investigative reporter Michael Moss’ Salt Sugar Fat for their 2013 Summer Reading Program.  All incoming VCU freshmen are expected to read the book prior to Welcome Week in August.  Throughout the year students will engage in small group discussions lead by faculty to exchange ideas and distil key themes.

Salt Sugar Fat investigates how some of the most recognizable and profitable companies and brands of the last half century—including Kraft, Coca-Cola, Lunchables, Kellogg, Nestlé, Oreos, Cargill, Capri Sun, and many more—use salt, sugar, and fat to addict consumers.

Click here to view Michael Moss’s website.

Click here to read more about the VCU Summer Reading Program.

Click here to read an excerpt from SALT SUGAR FAT.


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View New Playlists on the Common Reads YouTube Page


Author videos from previous First-Year Experience® Conferences (2009-2012), featuring prominent authors such as Tracy Kidder (MOUNTAINS BEYOND MOUNTAINS), Warren St. John (OUTCASTS UNITED) and Blake Mycoskie (START SOMETHING THAT MATTERS), are now accessible via the Common Reads YouTube page.  Just check the Playlists tab.

Click here to view the Common Reads YouTube page.

Click here to view the Common Reads Facebook page.

Click here to view the Common Reads twitter handle.

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Follow the Common Reads Twitter Handle


The Common Reads Twitter handle, featuring the latest news for common reading programs in schools, universities and communities, is now live.  The handle contains links to author videos, adoption news and author essays from.  Tweets also connect followers to the Common Reads Facebook and YouTube pages.

Click here to visit the Random House Academic webpage.

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Sam Bracken Speaks at Brigham Young University

My Orange Duffel Bag HC

On April 18, Sam Bracken, author of My Orange Duffel Bag and My Roadmap, spoke at Brigham Young University’s Rollins Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology at its Spring Founders conference.  Bracken’s book, which was released in June of 2012 from Harmony, an imprint of Crown Publishers, has been selected as common reading at Louisburg College.

Initially self-published in 2010, the book won the 2011 Outstanding Book of the Year for Young Adult’s/Children from the American Society of Journalists and Authors.  It was the first time a self-published book had won the award in the organization’s 60-year history.

Sam Bracken is the general manager of FranklinCovey Media Publishing and spokesperson for the My Orange Duffel Bag Foundation.

Click here to read a message from the author.


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View Author Videos Now: the First-Year Experience® 2013 Conference

Random House hosted two author events at the recent First-Year Experience® 2013 Conference in Orlando, Florida from February 23-26.  Video from the event is now posted to the Common Reads YouTube channel.  For your convenience, individual author videos are below:

Sunday, February 24th, 6:30pm-7:30pm


*CHARLES DUHIGGauthor of The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business

*BEN CASNOCHA, co-author of The Start-Up of You: Adapt to the Future, Invest in Yourself, and Transform Your Career

Monday, February 25th, 11:45am-1:30pm


*SUSAN CAIN, author of Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking

*DONOVAN CAMPBELL, author of The Leader’s Code:  Mission, Character, Service, and Getting the Job Done

*ERNEST CLINE, author of Ready Player One: A Novel

*KRISTEN IVERSEN, author of Full Body Burden: Growing Up in the Nuclear Shadow of Rocky Flats

*JERRY MCGILL, author of Dear Marcus: A Letter to the Man Who Shot Me


The Power of Habit HCThe Start-Up of YouQuiet PBThe Leader's Code HCReady Player One TPFull Body Burden HCDear Marcus TP


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St. Bonaventure University Chooses Full Body Burden For 2013 Common Read

Full Body Burden HCSt. Bonaventure University, a private, Catholic university, in New York, has selected Kristen Iversen’s Full Body Burden as their 2013 Common Reader.

Click here to view Kristen Iversen’s website.

Click here to read an expert from Full Body Burden.


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Virginia Wesleyan College Chooses The Power of Habit as 2013 Common Read

978-0-385-66974-0Virginia Wesleyan College has chosen Charles Duhigg’s The Power of Habit as their 2013 Common Reading book, which is part of VWU’s First Year Experience program.  “We chose The Power of Habit as our freshmen 2013 summer read because the book is engaging, relevant to students and can be viewed from many disciplinary perspectives, which allows students to better understand the liberal arts,” says Denise Wilkinson, Professor of Mathematics and Director of First Year Experience.  VWC has developed a reading and resource page for faculty and students.

Already selected as Common Reading at Babson College in Wellesley, Massachuesetts, The Power of Habit takes students to the edge of scientific discoveries that explain why habits exist and how they can be changed.  At its core, The Power of Habit argues that the key to losing weight, raising exceptional children, building revolutionary companies, and achieving success is understanding how habits work. Continue reading

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