UCSB Reads is an award-winning campus-wide and community-wide “one book” program started by the UCSB Library and Executive Vice Chancellor Gene Lucas in 2007. Each year, a committee of faculty, staff, students, and community partners convene to select an intellectually stimulating, interdisciplinary book by a living author that appeals to a wide range of readers and can be incorporated into the UCSB curriculum.

The program kicks off on at the start of the winter quarter with the Chancellor, Executive Vice Chancellor, and University Librarian distributing free books to UCSB students in the Library. A variety of UCSB Reads events (book clubs, film screenings, exhibitions, and faculty panel discussions) exploring the book and its themes are held on the UCSB campus. The program culminates in a live appearance by the author. Events are generally free and open to the public.

In 2019, we will be reading The Best We Could Do" by Thi Bui. Learn more about UCSB Reads 2019.

UCSB Reads is presented by the University Library, the Office of the Executive Vice ChancellorAssociated Students, and additional campus and community partners. If you are interested in finding out more about sponsoring the Reads program, contact Rebecca Metzger, Associate University Librarian for Research, Learning & Engagement at (805) 893-2674 or rmetzger [at] ucsb [dot] edu. For more information about UCSB Reads, or to participate in campus or community programming or support the program, contact Alex Regan, events and exhibitions librarian, at (805) 893-3605 or write to ucsbreads [at] library [dot] ucsb [dot] edu

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To suggest a UCSB Reads 2020 title please use our online form.  

UCSB Reads Books:

2018: Lab Girl by Hope Jahren
2017: Into the Beautiful North by Luis Alberto Urrea
2016: Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption by Bryan Stevenson
2015: Orange Is the New Black: My Year in a Women's Prison by Piper Kerman
2014: The Big Burn: Teddy Roosevelt and the Fire That Saved America by Timothy Egan
2013: Moonwalking With Einstein: The Art and Science of Remembering Everything by Joshua Foer
2012: Moby Duck: The True Story of 28,000 Bath Toys Lost at Sea, and of the Beachcombers, Oceanographers, Environmentalists, and Fools--Including the Author--Who Went in Search of Them by Donovan Hohn
2011: The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot
2010: Enrique's Journey by Sonia Nazario
2009: Ethics for the New Millennium by Dalai Lama
2008: The Travels of a T-shirt in the Global Economy by Pietra Rivoli
2007: Field Notes from a Catastrophe by Elizabeth Kolbert

UCSB Reads 2019 Advisory Committee:

Kristin Antelman University Librarian
Rebecca Baker Graduate Student, English
Roman Baratiak Associate Director, UCSB Arts & Lectures
Stephen  Bigelow Faculty, Math
Elizabeth  Bowman Director, Santa Barbara City College, Luria Library
Miroslava Chavez-Garcia Faculty, History
Jane  Faulkner UCSB Library
Katie Feerst UCSB Undergraduate Student
Kathy  Foltz Faculty, Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology
Zaveeni Kahn-Marcus Director, UCSB MultiCultural Center
Shelly Leachman UCSB Office of Public Affairs
John  Lofthus Associate Director, UCSB Alumni Association
Malire  Lozada UCSB Undergraduate Student
Don Lubach Associate Dean of Students & Director, First Year & Graduate Student Initiatives; Faculty, Education
John  Majewski Dean, College of Letters & Sciences, Humanities & Fine Arts; Faculty, History
Rebecca  Metzger UCSB Library
Kathy Patterson Faculty, Writing Program
Katherine Peterson UCSB Undergraduate Student
Alex Regan UCSB Library
Heather  Silva UCSB Arts & Lectures
Chryss Yost Office of International Students & Scholars
Xiaojian  Zhao Associate Dean, Undergraduate Education; Faculty, Asian American Studies
Emily  Zinn

Associate Director, Carsey-Wolf Center



UCSB Chancellor Yang giving away books to students during UCSB Reads
Chancellor Henry Yang distributed free copies of the UCSB Reads 2018 book, "Lab Girl" to UCSB students in the Library.
College of Creative Studies Students meet Hope Jahren during UCSB Reads
Author Hope Jahren joins students from the College of Creative Studies as they celebrate the final day of UCSB Reads 2018.
UCSB Library staff give away t-shirts to students
UCSB Library staff give students attending the author talk a First Edition UCSB Reads T-Shirt.