What They're Reading at ... San Francisco State U.

June 26, 2011
1. Leche
by R. Zamora Linmark

2. Bossypants
by Tina Fey

3. A Life in Motion
by Florence Howe

4. Water for Elephants
by Sara Gruen

5. The Different Dragon
by Jennifer Bryan

6. The Sissy Duckling
by Harvey Fierstein

7. Howl and Other Poems
by Allen Ginsberg

8. Street Art San Francisco: Mission Muralismo
edited by Annice Jacoby

9. And Tango Makes Three
by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell

10. Infinite City: A San Francisco Atlas
by Rebecca Solnit

Ken White, general-books manager of the bookstore at San Francisco State University, describes this month's list as "event driven." He notes that the university's top-selling books for May included three children's books: Sissy Duckling, And Tango Makes Three, and Different Dragon.

"The reason is that a group of master's students collected and read all this LGBTQ material for children, and out of that literature created an hourlong theatrical piece which was performed several times around campus," Mr. White writes via e-mail. "We partnered with them, in some cases, helping to secure the rights for perform­ance, and sold books at each event."

He also points out a bit of civic pride contained in the list: "Howl is a San Francisco classic, which we never stop selling, but there has been renewed interest because of the James Franco movie of the same name last fall."

Of the others, Street Art San Francisco has obvious local appeal, and Mr. White calls Infinite City "Rebecca Solnit's highly imaginative, cartographical meditation on the life of San Francisco as a city that's always changing."

The Chronicle invites managers of campus bookstores to submit their top-10 best-selling books lists each month to and to include notes about why certain books have gained in popularity.