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Welcome to Utopia

Welcome to Utopia
Notes from a Small Town

Originally published by Spiegel and Grau and now available in paperback with a new afterword and reading group guide, this highly acclaimed book takes us into the richly complex life of a small town and shows us how universal its stories are, from sending loved ones to war to striving for self-fulfillment while honoring the ties of family and community.

Sales restrictions: Not for sale in the British Commonwealth except Canada
January 2012
256 pages | 6 x 9.125 |

In Welcome to Utopia, quintessential American stories—the mom anxiously sending her sons to Iraq and Afghanistan, teens longing to escape the familiar, old-timers trying to hold onto their roots while the world around them changes—come to life on every page. Karen Valby’s extraordinary capacity to observe and empathize helps us understand that whether we live in a small town like Utopia, Texas, or a large city, we confront the same fears and dream the same dreams. Welcome to Utopia celebrates the bonds that connect us, while proving that the only things that are small about small towns are our preconceptions of them.


Karen Valby is a senior writer at Entertainment Weekly, where she was originally given the assignment to go looking for an American town without popular culture. Welcome to Utopia is her first book.