Skip to main content Skip to navigation
WSU Undergraduate Education WSU Common Reading

Common Reading Homepage

Upcoming & Recent Common Reading Lectures

View our complete calendar.

Recent News

Browse all of our news headlines.

Faculty: Want a Desk Copy to Consider?

If you’re considering Soonish for use in your classes in spring, submit an online form to request a desk copy of the book.

About Our Program

What Is a Common Reading?

A common reading is one way to create community connections among students, and between students and their professors, residence hall staff, and others. Topics in a selected book are examined throughout the year by members of the university community. They spark discussions and intellectual conversations in and beyond classrooms, highlight WSU research and the diversity of ideas across disciplines, and introduce different ways to explore complex issues from a variety of perspectives.

Learn more about the Common Reading program >>

Soonish challenges students to contemplate the future

Think Big Picture: What’s coming next, in terms of life-altering technologies? 3D printing of food or body parts? Elevators to take us into space? Robotic construction? And, will they improve, or ruin, everything?

First-year, and other, WSU students will explore facts and scenarios such as these in the 2018-19 Common Reading book, Soonish, by Kelly and Zach Weinersmith. Discussions in classrooms and residence halls will spark from topics raised in the book. Out-of-class lectures by experts and special programming will answer questions—or generate more.

While the book focuses on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) advances, the topics lend themselves to discussions and presentations from fields across the university, including the humanities and social sciences. Students in all majors will extract nuggets that apply to their interests.

Published in October 2017 by Penguin Press, Soonish covers 10 possibilities for scientific advancements that will be possibly “coming soon.” The book also looks at the current status, concerns, and impact of those techologies. The authors are uniquely qualified; Kelly is an adjunct faculty researcher at Houston’s Rice University in parasitology, and Zach is a cartoonist whose drawings add humor and give some dimension to the text.

Soonish is the twelfth Common Reading book in as many years at WSU. Be sure the check the calendar on this website to learn about upcoming events and lectures. Learn from the experts at WSU what the future may bring!