Book in Common

Book in Common

Announcing the 2023-24 Selection:

Clint Smith, How the Word is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America

Clint Smith and Book Cover

Praise for How the Word is Passed:

“Clint Smith chronicles in vivid and meditative prose his travels to historical sites that are truth-telling or deceiving visitors about slavery. Humans enslaved Black people, and then too often enslaved history. But How the Word Is Passed frees history, frees humanity to reckon honestly with the legacy of slavery. We need this book.” ―Ibram X. Kendi, 2020-21 Chico State Book in Common author, and Director of the Boston University Center for Antiracist Research

“Sheds light on the contested narratives beneath the surface of our collective national identity, inviting us to dig a little deeper, reminding us never to take received histories for granted.” ― Eve L. Ewing, Associate Professor in the Department of Race, Diaspora, and Indigeneity at the University of Chicago

2022-23 Book in Common:

Thi Bui, The Best We Could Do

book image

Planning Team

About the Author

Thi Bui, the 2022-23 Book in Common author, is a Vietnamese American cartoonist whose work seeks to make sense of the stories that history leaves behind.

Thi’s debut graphic memoir, The Best We Could Do, is the story of her family in the years before, during, and after the Vietnam War. It was selected for an American Book Award, a Common Book for UCLA and other colleges and universities, a National Book Critics Circle finalist, and was an Eisner Award finalist. Her memoir was included in Bill Gates’ Top 5 Books of 2017, and was called, “A book to break your heart and heal it,” by Pulitzer Prize-winner Viet Thanh Nguyen.

A veteran illustrator, Thi’s short comics can be found online at The Nib, PEN America, and BOOM California. She is a contributor to Refugees Anthology, published by Abrams Press, and illustrated A Different Pond, a 2018 Caldecott Honor Book, with writer Bao Phi. With her son, Hien, she co-illustrated the children’s book, Chicken of the Sea written by Viet Thanh Nguyen and his son, Ellison.

Thi is currently researching and drawing a work of graphic nonfiction about immigrant detention and deportation, to be published by One World, Random House.

Book in Common Logo

We acknowledge and are mindful that Chico State stands on lands that were originally occupied by the first people of this area, the Mechoopda, and we recognize their distinctive spiritual relationship with this land, the flora, the fauna, and the waters that run through campus. We are humbled that our campus resides upon sacred lands that since time immemorial have sustained the Mechoopda people and continue to do so today.