Cuesta College’s Book of the Year program for 2018 is set to kick off in October. This year’s book is the popular memoir Life, Animated: A Story of Sidekicks, Heroes, and Autism. Marking its 10-year anniversary, the Book of the Year program will bring Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and author Ron Suskind to Cuesta College in March 2018 to discuss his memoir. The book tells the story of his son, Owen Suskind, who struggles with autism and learned how to communicate with the outside world through his love of Disney films.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, autism affects one in 100 children in the United States.

“This book speaks to the current issue of autism,” said Book of the Year Program Coordinator Carina Love. “It delves into Owen’s deep connection - or ‘affinity’ - with Disney movies, how they helped him communicate and cope with the world, and how those with autism can use affinities as tools for personal and social growth.”

Suskind will appear for a presentation and book-signing event on March 19, 2018, from 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. at the Cuesta College Cultural and Performing Arts Center (CPAC). Tickets will go on sale in February 2018 at cpactickets.cuesta.edu. Details on program events leading up to March 19 will be released in the coming months.

Kicking off the 2018 program is a special author event on October 26, 2017, featuring award-winning writer Brando Skyhorse in a discussion and book signing of his novel The Madonnas of Echo Park. The event will be held in the CPAC from 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. Winner of the prestigious 2011 PEN/Hemingway Award, The Madonnas of Echo Park is written as a set of interconnected short stories exploring the Latino and Southeast Asian immigrant communities of Echo Park in central Los Angeles where Skyhorse grew up. General Admission tickets are $10 and available online at cpactickets.cuesta.edu. Cuesta College students can attend free by registering with cuestabook@gmail.com.

About author Ron Suskind: Suskind is an American journalist and author. He was the senior national affairs writer for The Wall Street Journal from 1993-2000, where he won the 1995 Pulitzer Prize for feature writing four articles that became the starting point for his first book, A Hope in the Unseen. His other books include The Price of Loyalty, The One Percent Doctrine, The Way of the World, Confidence Men, and his memoir Life, Animated: A Story of Sidekicks, Heroes, and Autism. Suskind has written about the George W. Bush Administration and the Barack Obama Administration. For more information on Suskind’s memoir, visit his website at www.ronsuskind.com.

The Book of the Year Program is a project of Cuesta College’s Academic Senate in partnership with San Luis Obispo County Public Library SLO Reads. For more information, please visit library.cuesta.edu/book/, follow the Book of the Year program on Facebook and Twitter or contact Carina Love at clove@cuesta.edu.