Including content specially written for the newest members of the Kingston University family, our KU Big Read for 2016 has now arrived, fresh from the printers.
The Humans by Matt Haig was chosen as this year’s novel for an annual initiative offering all new students the chance to settle in to university life by reading the same book. Launched last year, The Kingston University Big Read sees all new undergraduate and postgraduate students receive a special edition copy of a carefully chosen book to welcome them to the university. It helps bring the entire cohort together through a shared experience. We are the first university in the UK to establish such a scheme involving the whole institution as well as the wider community.
Thousands of copies will be posted out across the globe to students who have accepted a place at Kingston, from Brighton to Beijing, Norway to India, and all places in between (we have over 140 different nationalities within the student population at Kingston).
In 2015 more than 13,000 copies of the first KU Big Read book, Nick Hornby’s About a Boy, were given to students and staff, while a talk by the author at the University was quickly completely booked. For this year’s KU Big Read, almost 100 titles were suggested by staff and students, which were whittled down to a shortlist of six by a specially written algorithm. Months of reading, discussions and deliberations followed before a selection committee of various staff and students chose the winning title.
Much loved author, Matt Haig, will be joining us at Kingston University on Wednesday 28th September at 4.15pm for An Audience with Matt Haig – an interview followed by a discussion with the author who not only brought us The Humans, but also the much acclaimed Reasons to Stay Alive, A Boy Called Christmas and The Radleys,. The audience will be invited to ask questions of their own as well as having the opportunity to get their books signed by Haig afterwards. There will also be a Waterstone’s pop-up shop offering some of the author’s other titles for those who wish to purchase on the day.
As well as meeting Haig, this event will allow Kingston University staff and new students to meet their new local community members for the first time. We hope that some ties will be formed between local residents, both established and new – and a good time will be had by all. .
You can register for the event via Eventbrite and in the meantime, copies of The Humans can be purchased from most bookshops.
“I’m incredibly happy that The Humans has been chosen, it’s such an honour to be part of such an initiative. I’d have loved the idea of being part of something like The [KU] Big Read when I was at university.” Matt Haig
This is a guest post by Alison Baverstock, Associate Professor and Lecturer on the Kington Publishing MA. Along with a team of students, Alison co-ordinated the hugely successful KU Big Read.