July 19, 2014
And….they’re off! Check out the nominees (so far) for 2015-2016.

The first sixteen nominated titles have been posted to the 2015-2016 list for CSUN’s Freshman Common Reading.

Share your opinion—or nominate an additional title—using the “Submit your opinion” link on this blog.

January 9, 2014
"It was the grim reaper, with his scythe plunged straight through his own back, impaling him and leaving him dangling in midair" (Magary 24).

"It was the grim reaper, with his scythe plunged straight through his own back, impaling him and leaving him dangling in midair" (Magary 24).

(Source: us.penguingroup.com)

January 7, 2014
The Other Wes Moore: opinion

I’m finding Moore’s book important for our students—the idea of how similar two people can be. Also his research focus and determination are a wonderful model for our students.

A 5* read!!

Submitted by Marlene Pearson.

January 7, 2014
"The Postmortal"

I highly recommend “The Postmortal: A Novel” by Drew Magary as the 2014-2015 Common Reading book. The novel hooked me with its dystopian elements, and Magary’s excellent storytelling kept me coming back for more. (I ended up reading it in a single day, I couldn’t bear to put it down until I reached the end) The first-person perspective in the form of a journal gives just the right amount information, and allows readers to fill in the blanks with their own ideas and interpretations. Magary’s use of timeskips seems smooth and effortless, creating a shorter and to-the-point story without compromising the overall narrative. I believe “The Postmortal” has the potential to really speak to incoming freshmen, many of whom may be facing the idea of adulthood and the realities of aging for the first time. This novel is a rewarding and thought-provoking read from beginning to end, and would be a great starting point for new college students.

Submitted by Sylvia Stoker

December 4, 2013

I’d like to put my vote in - for Drew Magary’s Postmortal. I’ve been a fan of Magary’s writings for a few years now. He approaches most subjects with a dark sense of humor, a lot of passion, and a modern take on a lot of issues that speak to younger audiences without treating them like children.

Submitted by Matthew A. Jackson, CSUN.

October 23, 2013
"CSUN’s Common Reading: Opinions?" turned 4 today!

"CSUN’s Common Reading: Opinions?" turned 4 today!

May 31, 2013
Postmortal by Drew Magary

Postmortal, written in the form of a diary, takes place in the not too distant future. A cure for aging is discovered. It doesn’t make one immortal, just stops the aging process. This book calls into question issues of ethics, morality, overpopulation, mortality, the environmental effects, families, birth, marriage and interpersonal relationships. A fun read, but also really is quite thought provoking

Submitted by Kimberly Embleton

April 16, 2013
Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult

With all of the recent tragedies such as the Newtown shooting and the recent Boston Marathon bomb, “Nineteen Minutes” is a good insight on what causes people to do these sort of things. It’s a very thought provoking novel, and is written so that you see multiple sides of the story; a victim’s side, the judge’s side, even the accused’s side. I think this book will really make incoming freshmen think about what is going on in the world around us, and maybe what we can do to stop events such as Columbine and others from happening. If nothing else, it’s an engaging story that is worth the read. 

Submitted by Nicole Dickson

February 7, 2013

saturday, january 19, 2013

Garbology Goes to College
Terrific news: Cal State University Northridge has selected Garbology as this fall’s common read for incoming freshmen — with the book nominated and chosen by faculty, staff and students. I’m looking forward to speaking with the 4,000 freshmen at the university convocation in September.

This is what Learning Resource Center staffer Debbi Mercado wrote in nominating Garbology:

"I think the book could result in a number of interesting campus projects and leave us all with a sense of empowerment and a desire to make some changes in our daily lives… . it provides great fodder for classroom discussions and even personal reflections about consumerism, waste, environmental issues, values, the daunting math of it all, and how we might each change our trash habits."



January 11, 2013
The Winner for 2013-2014: “Garbology”

We have a winner for 2013-2014: Garbology: Our Dirty Love Affair with Trash by Edward Humes (262 pp.; 2012). Faculty and staff can look forward to spring book groups and opportunities to work with colleagues on ways of teaching and discussing this terrific nonfiction text at AFYE workshops. Among the many possibilities for Garbology: a field trip to the Puente Hills Landfill; connections to CSUN majors and programs including Sustainability (the new minor), Anthropology, Business and Business Law, Environmental & Occupational Health, Political Science, Family & Consumer Sciences, Biology, Math, Economics, Music, Art, and (of course) freshman writing/Stretch Composition as well as University 100.

On a possibly related note, there will soon be a documentary about the “Landfill Harmonic”: musicians who make musical instruments out of trash in Paraguay: see http://www.treehugger.com/culture/orchestra-paraguay-makes-beautiful-music-trash.html and also http://wosu.org/2012/classical101/paraguays-recycled-orchestra-turns-trash-into-musical-treasure/.

Of interest to us at CSUN: the book has a substantial local (SoCal) focus and is considered highly teachable by selection committee members, who also talked about how it changed their perspective on trash and how its engaging style and subject surprised them: “It makes you think’; “It’s a call to action!”; “It makes us take personal responsibility for our trash in our ‘disposable society’ and requires us to consider what we too often don’t: our garbage.” Faculty are confident that it will lead to wonderful projects and assignments. Look for additional information about the book in the coming months. Or start now with this NPR story: “Following Garbage’s Long Journey around the Earth” (http://www.npr.org/2012/04/26/150735732/following-garbages-long-journey-around-the-earth)

6:45pm  |   URL: http://tmblr.co/Z0YVUybYGGd4
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