About PBS Utah's Book Club in a Box

PLEASE NOTE: Next Box Shipment TBA

Book Club in a Box is a great way to connect with your family and friends during social distancing! Host your book club virtually through Zoom or other conferencing software. Zoom is free for up to 40 minutes of discussion. If you have questions about setting up Zoom, email ldurham@pbsutah.org and she can help you.

PBS Utah’s "Book Club in a Box" pairs a novel with a PBS documentary that is sure to generate a lively discussion. Everything you need as a host is included: one book and one DVD (for the host), discussion questions written by a respected Utah scholar, recipes to enhance the experience, and more. PBS Utah offers resources as to where your group might check out or purchase a copy of the book, and where the film can be streamed for free.

Partner Discounts for Your Book Club

King's English Bookshop in Salt Lake City is offering a 10% discount to all of our book club participants. If your book group members are interested in purchasing books as part of this program, all they have to do is mention the magic words: PBS Utah Book Club! when they visit King's English.

The Book Bungalow in St. George is offering a 10% discount on listed books bought in the store. Please say, "PBS Book Club" to the cashier. If the books are ordered online, select the "Pick up in store" option rather than shipping, and enter "PBS Book Club Discount" in the comments section of the order form.

Are you a member of PBS Utah? You get special benefits!

(Become a PBS Utah Member)

1.) You may register for more than one box within a calendar year

2.) Members receive 2 limited edition tea towels with our tag line, printed by Copper Palette Press

3.) Receive access to supporting films and documentaries only available to PBS Utah Passport members

Questions? Email Laura Durham ldurham@pbsutah.org


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This project is made possible by a generous grant from Utah Humanities and the Bastian Foundation.

NEW BOXES for Fall 2020

A Home of Their Own | Evicted by Matthew Desmond

It’s clear that housing, healthcare, education, and justice are all interconnected. Access to safe, clean, and affordable housing provides a multitude of benefits: better nutrition, physical safety, less stress, the ability to save money, and the stability to take few days off once in a while. The stories in Evicted and A Home of Their Own will illustrate how most Americans are one check away from financial disaster. Because landlords will not accept partial payment, many low-income renters who are short $100 or $200 are evicted from their homes. Having an eviction on record has long, negative effects, which often result in debt collection, garnishment of wages, and not being able find a place to live.

Housing is no longer simply a shelter – it is an investment in someone’s portfolio. Your book group will discover the inequalities that take place in the rental market from high rents controlled exclusively by developers and big apartment complexes to accessing rental assistance and housing close to work. Many renters pay high rent to live in inhabitable places with absentee landlords. Your awareness of these issues will increase your capacity to best help those in crisis, challenge detrimental mentalities, and build inclusive communities.

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A Home of Their Own, a PBS Utah Documentary
Evicted, by Matthew Desmond

FRONTLINE: Coronavirus Pandemic | Various Articles (provided in box)

Frontline’s Coronavirus Pandemic documents how we first encountered and responded to COVID-19 in the U.S. It tells the story of people and place; a President, a Governor, and a Mayor, physicians and patients, Washington State and Washington D.C. It’s a narrative that reveals contrasting personal and policy responses to the tension between fear and responsibility, trust and distrust, urgency and uncertainty. The four complementary texts, by award-winning journalists, authors, and historians, put the present pandemic in the historical context of the plagues that preceded it. They focus on how epidemics differ, the common public and political responses they engender, and the profound social changes they may leave as their legacy. Watched, read, and discussed together, these stories reveal that the disturbing responses we see are not unprecedented or unpredicted. They offer the opportunity to learn lessons from the past and acknowledge unresolved problems revealed by the present. They show that pandemics can leave an unexpected legacy. They enable us to make better preparedness and better health, safety, and opportunity for everyone the legacy of our current pandemic.

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FRONTLINE: Coronavirus Pandemic

Finding Home: Utah’s Refugee Story | The Best We Could Do: An Illustrated Memoir* by Thi Bui

The current political discourse around immigration is divisive not only in America but worldwide. Both Bui’s story and Finding Home: Utah’s Refugee Story movingly puts a human face to new arrivals in our country, illuminating the background of their lives and their struggles. It explores immigration and the many effects it has on people who are displaced. Their stories address relatable universal struggles, including family sacrifices, difficulties in communication in a new country and between parents and children, personal failings, and the importance of identity and belonging.  These stories remind us that we all share a common goal: to seek a better future for ourselves and our families. Refugees are not a statistic nor are they “the other” but part of our society as a whole. These stories prompt us to ponder what it means to be a refugee now in America. What hardships does a person suffer that force one to flee home for a better life in the United States and what is it like to assimilate in a new country when some of its citizens don’t want you here?

*This book is a graphic novel, appropriate for both teens and adults.

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Learn More About the Book

Finding Home: Utah’s Refugee Story
The Best We Could Do, by Thi Bui

What Book Groups are Saying...

“I realized that being uncomfortable about the things I accept as normal is a good step to being more aware and sensitive to reform.”

“I learned to look at things as they are and not as we expect them to be.”

“I learned that education is the key to a better life. We have made progress on equal opportunity and treatment under the law, but there is more work to be done.”

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Important Information

  • By registering for a box, you are entering an agreement with PBS Utah that you will host a book club discussion that involves the accompanying film and that you will provide meaningful feedback about your discussion.
  • Please research the book and documentary before you reserve a box (descriptions are at the bottom of this page).
  • Do not register until this box is agreed upon by your book club members and is on your book club's schedule.
  • These boxes are for Utah residents. If you are not a Utah resident, you can request PDF copies of the discussion questions via email.
  • Boxes ship at the beginning of each month.
  • PBS Utah members may register for more than one box in a calendar year.

Request a Box!

NOTE: Only PBS Utah members may request more than one box within a 12 month period

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