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On a lively summer afternoon in Orlando, Anna Lillios is winding down for the day in Moscow. The UCF professor of English is in the middle of a month-long stay in Russia on a Fulbright-Hays project and, even though it’s bedtime, when she hears that someone back in Central Florida wants to talk about Zora Neale Hurston’s memoir Dust Tracks on a Road, Lillios hits the “on” switch.

“The book clicks with people,” she says.

It’s why all first-year UCF students will read Dust Tracks as part of the school’s Common Read program, providing a relevant topic for conversations and easing the transition into college life.

Read more about why Dust Tracks on a Road was selected as this year’s Common Read and about what makes local author Hurston so special at

Click here to download a reading guide for the book created by Lillios.