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SWC College Book Program

Each Spring semester the College focuses on one book, selected the previous October, which can be used across the curriculum. Instructors are provided with suggested classroom and extra-credit activities.  Staff Development offers films, discussions, and related activities. The Friends of the Library sponsor a student essay contest.


Help us choose the next College Book!

The College Book Committee is soliciting nominations for the book which will be designated College Book for the following Spring semester. Nominations can be fiction or non-fiction and should be appealing to students, faculty, and staff.

Previous choices have been: Tortilla Curtain, Into Thin Air, Daughter of Fortune, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime, Year of Wonders, Kite Runner, Tuesdays with Morrie, Lucky and Enrique’s Journey, Motorcycle Ride on the Sea of Tranquility.

Please send your nominations to Diane Gustafson at during April and May.

Would you like to serve on the committee which will read some of the nominated books this summer and make recommendations? Notify Diane.

lf you have questions, call Diane Gustafson, 482-6433, or email


R2 is suspended until further notice
R2: Reading & Reflecting Program

R2: Reading and Reflecting Program is designed to encourage the campus community to view reading as an opportunity to broaden their perspective, explore diverse views on today's society and to enjoy a good read that promotes intellectual and emotional stimulation.

How to Get Started:

  • Review the approved book list.
  • Select and read one to three books per academic school year (16 hours/1 unit per book).  The books can be found at the SWC Library, major bookstores or online at, Barnes and Noble, or
  • Register by contacting the Staff Development Program at exts. 5675 or 5676.


  • Read one book
  • Reflect on what you have read
  • Respond to three specific questions:

    1)  What were the most appealing ideas by the author(s)?
    2)  How can you incorporate the main themes of the book into the educational community?
    3)  Which ideas of the author would you challenge?  Why?

Reading List


  • The Art of the Infinite-the Pleasures of Mathematics, Robert and Ellen Kaplan, Oxford University Oxford Press, 2003

  • Math Charmers: Tantalizing Tidbits for the Mind , Alfred S. Pasamentier, Prometheus Books, 2003

  • The Sacred Balance-Rediscovering our Place in Nature , David Suzuki, Greystone Books, 2002

  • The Pony Fish's Glow , George C. Williams, Basic Books, 1997

Social Science

  • Red Azalea-Life in China Under Mao , Anchee Min, Berkley Books,1995

  • Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee , Dee Brown, Henry Holt & Company, 1970

  • Cultural Literacy - What Every American Needs to Know , E.D. Hirsch, Jr., Vintage Books, 1988

Cultural Awareness

  • The Spirit Catches You And You Fall Down, Anne Fadiman, Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1997

  • A Framework for Understanding Poverty, Ruby K Payne, RFT Publishing Co, 1998

  • The Art of Happiness, A Handbook for Living , Dalai Lama and Howard C. Cutler, Riverhead Books, 1998

Personal Growth

  • Fast Food Nation, Eric Schlosser, Houghton Mifflin, 2001

  • Anger, Thich Nhat Hanh, Riverhood Books, 2001

  • My Grandfather's Blessings: Stories of Strength, Refuge and Belonging , Rachel Naomi Remen, Riverhead Books, 2000

  • Hope Meadows: Real Life Stories of Healing and Caring from an Inspired Community , Wes Smith, Berkley Publishing Group, 2001

  • The Lost Art of Listening - How Learning to Listen Can Improve Relationships , Michael P. Nichols, the Guilford Press, 1995

  • Emotional Intelligence , Daniel Goleman, Bantam Books, 1995

  • The Road Less Traveled , M. Scott Peck, Simon & Schuster, 1986

  • The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People , Stephen Covey, Fireside Books, 1989


  • The Flickering Mind, The False Promise of Technology in the Classroom and How Learning Can be Saved , Todd Oppenheimer, Random House, 2003

School to Home

  • The Myth of Laziness, Mel Levine, M.D., Simon & Schuster, 2003

  • Driven to Distraction - Recognizing and Coping With Attention Deficit Disorder , Edward Hallowell and John Ratey, Touchstone Book, 1995

Call numbers are given for books available in the SWC Library. Publishing information is given for the others. To get more information about any book, go to

DIversity in Sexuality

Boylan, Jennifer Finney
She's Not There: A Life in Two Genders Broadway, 2003

Duberman, Martin
Cures: A Gay Man's Odyssey
HQ75.8 D82 A3 2002

Eugenides, Jeffrey
Middlesex Paperback 2754

Loffreda, Beth
Losing Matt Shepard: Life and Politics in the Aftermath of Anti-Gay Murder
HV6250.4 H66 L63 2000

O'Keefe, Tracie and Katrina Fox
Finding the Real Me: True Tales of Sex and Gender Diversity
HQ77.7 F56 2003

Walters, Suzanna Danuta
All the Rage: The Story of Gay Visibility in America
PN1992.8 H64 W35 2001


Albom, Mitch
Tuesdays with Morrie
LD571 B418 S383 1997

Coburn, D.L.
The Gin Game
PS3553 O233 G5

Cooney, Eleanor
Death In Slow Motion: My Mother's Descent into Alzheimer's
RC523.2 C665 2003

Ellison, George Vernon
She Never said Goodbye: My Wife's Disappearance Down a Road of No Return ( Alzheimer's)

Esquivel, Laura
Swift as a Desire, a Novel New Book Shelf
PQ7298.15 S638 T3613 2001

Guterson, David
East of the Mountains
PS3557 U846 E22 1999

Lancaster, Lynne C.
When Generations Collide: Who They Are, Why They Clash, How to Solve the Generational Puzzle at Work Reserve
HF5549.5 M5 L36 2002

Marcell, Jacqueline
Elder Rage, or Take My Father . . .Please!
HQ1063.6 M37 2001

Ethnic and Religious Diversity and Awareness

Abanes, Richard
One Nation Under Gods: A History of the Mormon Church
BX8645 A23 2002

Achebe, Chinua
Things Fall Apart (Pre-Christian Tribal Life in Africa )
PR9387.9 A3 T445 1959

Blumenfeld, Laura
Revenge: A Story of Hope
BJ1490 B58 2002

Boyle, T.C.
Tortilla Curtain
PS3552 O932 T67 1995

Brooks , Geraldine
Nine Parts of Desire
HQ1170 B76 1995

Brown, Dee
Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee : An Indian History of the American West
E81 B75 1971

Bstan-dzin-rgya-mtsho, Dalai Lama XIV
The Art of Happiness, A Handbook for Living Riverhead Books, 1998

Da Chen
Colors of the Mountain Anchor Books, 2001

Davidds-Garrido, Yasmin
Empowering Latinas: Breaking Boundaries, Freeing Lives
E184 S75 D35 2001

Fadiman, Anne
The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down
RA418.5 T73 F33 1997

Frank, Anne
The Diary of a Young Girl
DS135 N6 F73513 1995 also paperback 2559

Gaines, Ernest J.
A Lesson Before Dying paperback 2288

Garcia, Cristina
Monkey Hunting
PS3557 A66 M66 2003

Harrer, Heinrich
Seven Years in Tibet
DS785 H273 1996 (also in Spanish)

Hirsch, E.D. Jr.
Cultural Literacy: What Every American Needs to Know
LC149 H57

Hobson, Laura Keane Zametkin
Gentleman's Agreement
PS3575 O1515 G4

Kingsolver, Barbara
Poisonwood Bible New Book Shelf
PS3561 I496 P65 1998

My Forbidden Face: Growing Up Under the Taliban
HV1735.6 L38 2001

Lee, Harper
To Kill a Mockingbird
PS3562 E44 T6 1999 (also in Spanish)

Levi, Primo
Survival in Auschwitz : the Nazi Assault on Humanity
D805 P7 L4413 1996

McBride, James
Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to his White Mother
F130 N4 M38 1997

Min, Anchee
Red Azalea: Life in China Under Mao, Berkley Books, 1995

Morrison, Terri
Kiss, Bow, or Shake Hands: How to do Business in Sixty Countries
HF5389 M67 1994 (one copy in Reference, one in stacks, three on Reserve)

Payne, Ruby K.
A Framework for Understanding Poverty, RFT Publishing, 1998

Richter, Conrad
Light in the Forest (In Colonial America, a White Boy Captured and Raised by Indians Must Return to his Original Family.) Fawcett (reprint), 1994

Rose, Mike
Lives on the Boundary: The Struggles and Achievements of America 's Under-Prepared
LC4823 R67

See, Lisa
Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, Random House, 2006

Silko, Leslie
PS3569 I44 C4

Tsukiyama, Gail
Samurai's Garden
PS3570 S84 S26 1996

Twain, Mark
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
PS1305 A1 1961 also an e-book

Walker, Alice
The Color Purple
PS3573 A425 C6 1982

Personal Growth

Covey, Stephen
The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People
RJ506 H345 1994

Goleman, Daniel
Emotional Intelligence
BF561 G65 1995

Nhat Hanh, Thich
Anger Riverhead Books, 2001

Nichols, Michael P.
The Lost Art of Listening: How Learning to Listen Can Improve Relationships Guilford Press, 1995

Peck, M. Scott
The Road Less Traveled: A New Psychology of Love, Traditional Values, and Spiritual Growth
BF637 S4 P43

Remen, Rachel Naomi
My Grandfather's Blessing: Stories of Strength, Refuge, and Belonging Riverhead Books, 2000

Schlosser, Eric
Fast Food Nation
TX945.3 S355 2001

Smith, Wes
Hope Meadows: Real Life Stories of Healing and Caring from an inspired Community
Berkley Publishing Group, 2001


Hallowell, Edward and John Rayer
Driven to Distraction: Recognizing and Coping with Attention Deficit Disorder
RJ506 H9 H345 1994

Kaplan,. Robert and Ellen
The Art of the Infinite: The Pleasure of Mathematics
QA295 H85 2003

Levine, Mel
The Myth of Laziness Simon & Schuster, 2003

Oppenheimer, Todd
The Flickering Mind: The False Promise of Technology in the Classroom and How Learning can be Saved Random House, 2003

Pasamentier, Alfred S.
Math Charmers: Tantalizing Tidbits for the Mind Prometheus Books, 2003

Suzuki, David
The Sacred Balance: Rediscovering Our Place in Nature Greystone Books, 2002

Williams, George
The Pony Fish's Glow, and Other Clues to Plan and Purpose in Nature
QH546 W556 1997

Supplement to the R2 List


Pollan, Michael
Botany of Desire
QK 46.5 H85 P66 2001

Schlosser, Eric
Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal
TX 945.3 S355 2001

Ethnic and Religious Diversity

Allende, Isabel
Portrait in Sepia
PQ 8098.1 L54 R4813

Cisneros, Sandra
PS 3553 I78 C37 2002

Momaday, N. Scott
House Made of Dawn
PS 3563 O47 H687 1994

Personal Growth

Albom, Mitch
Five People You Meet in Heaven
PS 3601 L335 F69 2003

Bstan-dzin-rgya-mtsho, Dalai Lama XIV
Dalai Lama, A Policy of Kindness

Santiago Baca, Jimmy
A Place to Stand: The Making of a Poet
Paperback 2789

Vogel, Erhard
Journey into Your Center
BF 637 S8 V534 2000



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