9780807083260Historical fiction as a genre is powerful in its ability both to educate and to provide insight into the voices and experiences of those who came before us. Ruthanne Lum McCunn’s novel Thousand Pieces of Gold (Beacon Press) does just that, tracing the tribulations of Polly Bemis, a nineteenth-century Chinese woman who is sold into slavery and prostitution in America and who struggles against all odds to claim her independence. In McCunn’s adaptation of this true story, Polly’s father refers to his daughter as his treasure, his “thousand pieces of gold,” and his decision to sell her reveals the desperation brought on by intersecting historical forces in China at that time. What follows is an exploration of the value and dignity of human life as Polly perseveres and pioneers across the American frontier. (more…)

For All of Us, One Today by Richard Blanco

Inaugural Poet Richard Blanco’s new book For All of Us, One Today  (Beacon Press, November 2013) just released and we are giving away 50 advanced reader copies! To win, be one of the first 50 people to send an email to Rhacademic@randomhouse.com with the subject line “Blanco.”

Please see below for terms and conditions.


On Friday, October 14th, 2011, Beacon Press and the Random House, Inc. Academic Marketing Department will co-host a unique and collaborative publisher-educator summit focused on the acclaimed “The King Legacy” series, a partnership between Beacon Press and the Estate of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.   

Editors and teachers participating in this intensive one-day workshop are tasked with developing new anthologies to make Dr. King’s own writings accessible for the 21st Century curriculum.  The summit is to be held in Random House, Inc’s headquarters in midtown Manhattan.  To learn more about “The King Legacy” series, go to: http://www.thekinglegacy.org/

Beacon Press is distributed by Random House Publisher Services.

Waiting for “Superman”, the new documentary from Davis Guggenheim, Academy Award-winning director of An Inconvenient Truth, examines the current state of public education in America, and, according to U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, “is going to create sense of outrage, and a sense of urgency” (“Schools, the Disaster Movie,” New York Magazine). Following the stories of five children from around the country, the film features interviews with luminaries at the forefront of education today, including: Geoffrey Canada (Fist Stick Knife Gun: A Personal History of Violence in America) and Bill Strickland (Make the Impossible Possible: One Man’s Crusade to Inspire Others to Dream Bigger and Achieve the Extraordinary). Canada is the founder of the Harlem Children’s Zone whose 1996 memoir Fist Stick Knife Gun will be released in October as a graphic adaptation from Beacon Press. Strickland is President and CEO of Manchester Craftsmen Guild and Bidwell Training Center, which offers programs in ceramics, photography, digital arts and painting to over 500 kids a year, as well as 3,400 additional students in the Pittsburgh inner-city school district; his book has been selected for common reading at several schools.

Read articles about the film in Education WeekNew York Magazine, and The New York Times. For more information, visit the film’s official website.

Waiting for “Superman” opens in select theaters on September 24.