lifelong learning

UW Alumni Book Club

Personal stories, timely topics, transformative fiction… Let’s dig into some amazing books together! All curious readers are welcome at the UW Alumni Book Club.

Together, we read a book about every two months. Choose just one or all five — whatever works for you.

The free online forum has suggested timelines and prompts for online discussion. Join us for special events that take the conversation to the next level!

“So often we think of reading as a solo activity, but with discussion it improves and elevates the experience.” —Marilyn Conover Watt, ’76, ’81

Now Reading:

Portrait of Anthony Doerr next to image of "Cloud Cuckoo Land" book cover

“Cloud Cuckoo Land” by Anthony Doerr

Reading period: Oct. 14–Dec. 17, 2021

From the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of “All the Light We Cannot See,” perhaps the most beloved literary fiction of our time, comes the highly anticipated “Cloud Cuckoo Land.” The characters include residents of fifteenth-century Constantinople, a library volunteer in present-day Idaho, and a little girl on a spaceship travelling between the stars — all of whom are connected by an ancient Greek fable.

“Cloud Cuckoo Land” is in the running for the 2021 National Book Award for Fiction!

“A wildly inventive novel that teems with life, straddles an enormous range of experience and learning, and embodies the storytelling gifts that it celebrates.” 
—New York Times

Get your copy:
Cloud Cuckoo Land is the October Book of the Month at University Book Store! Use this link to get an automatic 25% discount on the book. (Discount code BOTM1021)

Book events:

Storytelling Across Millenia

Tuesday, Dec. 7, 2021  |  5-6 p.m.

Portrait of Professor Chris WaldoUW Alumni Book Club is currently reading “Cloud Cuckoo Land” by Anthony Doerr, a story that weaves together three tales — one in historic Constantinople, one in present day Idaho and one in the future with a character who has never been to Earth. What connects them? The shared (albeit fictional) classic story of Aethon. Join UW Classics Professor Chris Waldo in a conversation about studying Classics in 2021. How are these stories and cultures still relevant today? What makes us come back to these tales for generations?

No spoilers! You don’t need to have finished Cloud Cuckoo Land to participate in this event.

“Cloud Cuckoo Land ” Book Chat

Wed. Dec. 15, 2021 | 5–6 p.m.

Join the UW Alumni Book Club for a conversation about this complex and energetic novel!

2021-2022 Reading List

When Justice Sleeps by Stacey Abrams

Reading Period:
Aug. 5–Oct. 7, 2021

Cloud Cuckoo Land by Anthony Doerr

Reading Period:
Oct. 14–Dec. 17, 2021

Interior Chinatown by Charles Yu

Reading Period:
Jan. 6–Mar. 10, 2022

Reading Period:
Mar. 17–May 19, 2022

Readers' Choice Book

Reading Period:
May 26–July 28, 2022


Plan Ahead:

Portrait of Charles Yu next to cover of "Interior Chinatown" book

“Interior Chinatown” by Charles Yu

From the author of “How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe” comes this darkly hilarious novel that explores how pop-culture stereotypes impact our identities.  Charles Yu will speak at a Seattle Arts & Lectures event on Tuesday, Feb. 15. UWAA members and UW Alumni Book Club participants get a 20% discount on tickets!

2021-2021 UW Alumni Book Club Archive

"While Justice Sleeps" book cover

From celebrated national leader and bestselling author Stacey Abrams, “While Justice Sleeps” is a gripping thriller set within the halls of the U.S. Supreme Court — where a young law clerk finds herself embroiled in a shocking mystery plotted by one of the most preeminent judges in America.

““[Abrams] displays her considerable talent for fiction in this gripping legal thriller. Shadowy figures… earth-shattering consequences… [a] deadly knot of deception…” —Booklist

Recorded Event

Share Your Book Ideas!

Have suggestions for upcoming book club titles?
Submit your ideas to our Book Club Suggestion Form.

Check out the books that have already been suggested.

The UW Alumni Book Club is a collaboration between UWAA, the UW Libraries, the University Book Store—and passionate readers like you.

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