2017-2018 Common Read - Same Sun Here

Same Sun HereStudents and faculty in the Education Department participate in the Common Read. Our compelling books provide opportunities for discussion, critical analysis, and connections to school learning communities and practice, while engaging us in deeper questions such as what is social justice, inclusion, and cultural responsiveness. Held each fall, the Common Read is explored in individual courses, departmental gatherings, and campus-wide events.


Same Sun Here by Silas House & Neela Vaswani


In this extraordinary novel in letters, an Indian immigrant girl in New York City and a Kentucky coal miner’s son find strength and perspective by sharing their true selves across the miles.

Meena and River have a lot in common: fathers forced to work away from home to make ends meet, grandmothers who mean the world to them, and faithful dogs. But Meena is an Indian immigrant girl living in New York City’s Chinatown, while River is a Kentucky coal miner’s son. As Meena’s family studies for citizenship exams and River’s town faces devastating mountaintop removal, this unlikely pair become pen pals, sharing thoughts and, as their camaraderie deepens, discovering common ground in their disparate experiences. With honesty and humor, Meena and River bridge the miles between them, creating a friendship that inspires bravery and defeats cultural misconceptions. Narrated in two voices, each voice distinctly articulated by a separate gifted author, this chronicle of two lives powerfully conveys the great value of being and having a friend and the joys of opening our lives to others who live beneath the same sun.

-from Penguin Random House

Panel on Youth Activism
Tuesday, October 10, 2017, 7-8:30pm in McCarthy Recital Hall

Neela Vaswani, Author Talk
Monday, October 23, 2017 7-8:30pm in McCarthy Recital Hall

Exploring Same Sun Here  through the Arts
Wednesday, November, 15, 2017 4:30-6:30pm in Farrell Room, Saint Edmund's Hall



Aretha, D. (2014). Malala Yousafzai and the girls of Pakistan. Greensboro, NC: Morgan Reynolds Publishing.


Asim, J., & Lewis, E. B. (2016). Preaching to the chickens. New York, NY: Nancy Paulsen Books.


Capaldi, G., & Pearce, Q. L. (2011). Red Bird sings: The story of Zitkala-Sa, Native American author, musician, and activist. Minneapolis, MN: Carolrhoda Books.


Clinton, C., & Boiger, A. (2017). She persisted: 13 American women who changed the world. New York, NY: Philomel Books.


Downer, A. (2014). Wild animal neighbors sharing our urban world. Minneapolis, MN: Twenty-First Century Books.


Kidd, R. (2016). Night on fire. Chicago, IL: Albert Whitman & Company.


Kostecki-Shaw, J. S. (2015). Luna and me: The true story of a girl who lived in a tree to save a forest. New York, NY: Christy Ottaviano Books, Henry Holt and Company.


Levin, B. (1999). Look back, Moss. New York, NY: Morrow.


Levy, D., & Baddeley, E. (2016). I dissent: Ruth Bader Ginsburg makes her mark. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers.


O'Brien, A. S., & O'Brien, P. E. (2009). After Gandhi: One hundred years of nonviolent resistance. Watertown, MA: Charlesbridge.


Rappaport, D. (2009). Eleanor, quiet no more: The life of Eleanor Roosevelt. New York, NY: Hyperion Books for Children.


Rosenberg, M. (2013). Canary in the coal mine. New York, NY: Holiday House.


Rubin, S. G. (2014). Freedom summer: The 1964 struggle for civil rights in Mississippi. New York, NY: Holiday House.


Silvey, A. (2009). Everything I need to know I learned from a children's book: Life lessons from notable people from all walks of life. New York, NY: Roaring Brook Press.



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