Friday, September 27, 2013

Banned Books Week

I'm fairly certain that this is the first time in four years that I didn't participate in Banned Books Week. So I couldn't let it get away from me completely. I was hoping to have my son write a review of the Harry Potter books, which tend to be up on the banned books lists each year. But 4th grade homework takes up a lot of time so there wasn't much extra for writing reviews!

I did want to share an interesting perspective from a parent. I went out with some girlfriends on Saturday night, and one of them asked if any of our kids had read Twilight yet. Our kids are all in 4th grade. We all said absolutely not. She said that the school librarian had recommended it to her daughter, who is also in 4th grade. At that point, one of the moms said she was surprised it was even in the elementary school library. I immediately thought of Banned Books Week! After all, it's these sorts of experiences that cause parents to overreact and request that books be banned from libraries. Luckily, none of the moms said we should ban the book, but we all agreed that the librarian probably should not be recommending it to 4th graders.

Anyway, I thought that I'd share some of my previous Banned Books Week posts since I didn't have time to write up a new one this year.

Banned Books for Kids

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

Junie B. Jones by Barbara Park

Here's the 2012 list of frequently challenged books according to the American Library Association:
  1. Captain Underpants (series), by Dav Pilkey.
    Reasons: Offensive language, unsuited for age group
  2. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie.
    Reasons: Offensive language, racism, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group
  3. Thirteen Reasons Why, by Jay Asher.
    Reasons: Drugs/alcohol/smoking, sexually explicit, suicide, unsuited for age group
  4. Fifty Shades of Grey, by E. L. James.
    Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit
  5. And Tango Makes Three, by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson.
    Reasons: Homosexuality, unsuited for age group
  6. The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini.
    Reasons: Homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit
  7. Looking for Alaska, by John Green.
    Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group
  8. Scary Stories (series), by Alvin Schwartz
    Reasons: Unsuited for age group, violence
  9. The Glass Castle, by Jeanette Walls
    Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit
  10. Beloved, by Toni Morrison
    Reasons: Sexually explicit, religious viewpoint, violence
 You can see my reviews of a few of those, by clicking on the links above.

I hope you've enjoyed celebrating Banned Books Week. Let me know what banned books you've read and enjoyed!

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