Category Archives: Giveaways

A Conversation with Kenji Yoshino, author of Speak Now: Marriage Equality on Trial

35472_yoshino_kenjiIn this post, Kenji Yoshino discusses his forthcoming book Speak Now: Marriage Equality on Trial (Crown, April 2015).  The renowned legal scholar’s newest work tells the definitive story of Hollingsworth v. Perry, the trial that will stand as the most potent argument for marriage equality.  Advanced copies are available, please email commonreads@penguinrandomhouse.com (limited to first ten respondents).

Q. SPEAK NOW revisits the much-publicized Hollingsworth v. Perry federal trial, which overturned Proposition 8, California’s ban on same-sex marriage. Why did you feel this case warranted closer examination?
A. When I read the 2010 decision in the case striking down Prop 8, I noticed that it was different in kind from other decisions on same-sex marriage. The 136-page opinion was encrusted with facts, which were drawn from the twelve-day Hollingsworth v. Perry trial, the first federal trial ever on this topic. Then, when I read the 3,000-page transcript of the proceedings, I had the experience of many readers—perhaps the experience that defines us as readers—of “falling into” the text and not emerging into everyday life until I had turned the final page. It was a shining civil rights document—more thorough, rigorous, and dramatic than any debate I had ever encountered on the subject of same-sex marriage. Because the trial was not televised, I became obsessed with bringing the proceedings to the general public. Continue reading

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Chasing Chaos: A Decade of Social Activism

CHASING CHAOS_TRWe are thrilled to present the debut of JESSICA ALEXANDER, who has spent the last ten years traveling the globe as a humanitarian aid worker. Her eye-opening memoir, CHASING CHAOS: My Decade In and Out of Humanitarian Aid (Broadway Books; On Sale October 15, 2013), sheds light on this all-consuming, extraordinary line of work, which most people know little about.

Disillusioned with her marketing job after college, Alexander dove into the humanitarian aid community, hoping to find a sense of purpose that the corporate world could not offer. She arrived in Rwanda in the aftermath of the 1994 genocide as an eager intern, ready to contribute, but unsure of what to expect. The world that Alexander encountered in the field was dramatically different than anything she could have imagined. It was messy, chaotic, and difficult—but she was hooked. This honest and compelling memoir introduces readers to the realities of life as an aid worker. Continue reading

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Random House Currently Offering 10 Free Galley Copies of The Dinner

Random House is currently offering free galley copies of Herman Koch’s The Dinner, coming out February 12, to the first 10 requestors.The Dinner HC

Since its initial publication in Holland in 2009, Koch’s psychologically astute and philosophically challenging The Dinner has become a vehicle for classroom debate.   The book starts when two couples meet for dinner at a high-end restaurant in Amsterdam to address a tragic event.  Over the course of the meal, and the novel, civility and friendship disintegrate, as the partners make clear what they are willing to do to protect their children from the consequences of their actions.

This controversial tale of families struggling to make the hardest decision of their lives exposes philosophical and social hypocrisies in which we are all, to a degree, complicit.  The Dinner is currently one of the most popular books among teenagers in Holland, perhaps because they can relate to the ethical dilemmas that result from the senseless crime committed by a member of their own peer group.  The book is also relevant to adolescent readers in that it explores the dark side of connectivity, including YouTube and texting, as well as the generation gap between young people and their parents

The book ultimately forces the reader to confront his or her own deeply held convictions and moral values.

Please email rhacademic@randomhouse.com to request a free copy.

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Random House Offering Free Copies of Chip and Dan Heath’s Decisive

Decisive eBook jacketRandom House is currently giving away free advanced copies of Chip and Dan Heath’s upcoming book Decisive: How to Make Better Choices in Life and Work.  Scheduled to be released on May 23, Decisive tackles the thorny problem of how to overcome our natural biases and irrational thinking to make better decisions, about our work, lives, companies and careers.

Please email rhacademic@randomhouse.com to request a free copy.

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Random House Currently Offering Free Galley Copies of A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra

A Constellation of Vital PhenomenaRandom House is currently giving away free advanced copies of A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra.  A Constellation of Vital Phenomena takes place in Chechnya, and tells the story of eight-year-old Havaa, her neighbor Akhmed who rescues her after her father’s disappearance, and Sonja, the doctor tending to her, as the three ruminate on their pasts and confront the tragedy and hope that mark them and their war-ravaged land.

Marra, who is currently a Wallace Stegner Fellow in Creative Writing at Stanford, was recently awarded a 2012 Whiting Writers’ Award, a prestigious prize that honors 10 young writers with great potential.  Click here to read about Marra’s Whiting Writers Award.

Please email rhacademic@randomhouse.com to request a free copy.

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Which Common Reading Book Best Suits You?

Common Reads has just launched our new book personality quiz! Does your school or library have a common reading program? Take this fun, interactive, and free quiz to find out which book best fits your community.

Click here to take the quiz and find out “Which Common Reading Book Best Suits You.” We’d love to have you share your results and let us know what you think of your match!

  • Special launch offer: Common Reads is offering a limited-time FREE BOOK GIVEAWAY to the first five people to comment here on this blog post and include:
  1. The book title you were matched with
  2. What you think of your match and/or how you might incorporate the themes of the book to your common reading program
  3. E-mail your street address for shipping to: rhacademic@randomhouse.com

The first five individuals to respond will receive a confirmation email and a free copy of the book they were matched with through the quiz. Full rules of the giveaway are provided below. Continue reading

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A Message from My Orange Duffel Bag Author Sam Bracken

Abandoned at age 15, Sam Bracken battled homelessness, poverty, and abuse to successfully earn a full-ride football scholarship to the Georgia Institute of Technology. When he left for college, everything he owned fit in an orange duffel bag. Now, in this illustrated memoir and road map to personal transformation, Sam shares his story as well as everything he’s learned about overcoming the odds.

When I was 13-years-old and in eighth grade, a caring teacher discovered that I needed glasses. Up until that point, I’d always been in special education classes. I grew up in Las Vegas in a family that was like a whacked out version of The Brady Bunch on an episode of Cops. I suffered every kind of abuse imaginable and started drinking and doing drugs at age 9. Mobsters and motorcycle gang members were my role models. As an eighth grader I decided I didn’t want to be like my family. I stopped drinking and doing drugs and with encouragement from my teachers and lots of hard work, I went from a C and F student in special education to a straight A student. My mother suffered a mental breakdown when I was 15 and abandoned me. I kept my homelessness secret Continue reading

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