Join the Conversation
Frequently Asked Questions
What should I do?
Read the book before the start of fall semester.
Think about overall themes in relation to current news or in historical context and jot down your thoughts or questions.
Discuss your opinion with classmates and professors.
Why should I read the book?
The book is part of the first-year experience at Penn State. It is required reading in some classes, is used at different events, and in conversations with students, staff, and faculty throughout the year.
The book provides an opportunity for the members of the incoming class to begin the year building common experiences.
How do I get a copy of the book?
A voucher is given to all first-year students at New Student Orientation. Take the voucher to the Penn State Bookstore on campus to redeem a complimentary copy of the book. Copies are also available at the Penn State libraries across the university system.
What are the goals of Penn State Reads?
Penn State Reads is designed to provide a shared experience among new students, encourage intellectual engagement within and beyond the classroom, stimulate critical thinking, and foster a deeper connection to Penn State’s mission and core values.
How is the book selected?
A steering committee reviews numerous books and then narrows the list of nominations to a short list of five or six titles. These books are then reviewed by faculty, staff, and students. Their responses to the book inform the final selection. Faculty, staff, and students can nominate books for consideration at any time by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. A call for nominations is extended through the Penn State University Newswire.
What if I don’t like the book?
We do not expect that everyone will like the book choices. Books should be provocative and should stimulate conversations and ideas, but we do not necessarily need to agree with or like everything we read.
Use the guide to learn about your digital footprint, online privacy, steps for creating great passwords, identity theft, and more!
Margaret Atwood, “When Privacy is Theft,” review of The Circle, by David Eggers, The New York Review of Books, November 21, 2013.
Graeme McMillan, “Dave Eggers’ The Circle: What the Internet Looks Like if You Don’t Understand It,” review of The Circle, by David Eggers, Wired, October 11, 2013.
Lee Konstantinou, “Dave Eggers Is Worried about America,” review of The Circle, by David Eggers, The American Prospect, October 30, 2013.
Ellen Ullman, “Ting of Power,” review of The Circle, by David Eggers, The New York Times, November 1, 2013, Sunday Book Review.
Jessica Winter, “All That Happens Must Be Known,” review of The Circle, by David Eggers, The Slate Book Review, October 3, 2013.