Happy Banned Book Week!

Books, books, and books. Where would I be without them? WHO would I be without them? It’s an eerie thought.

There are only three kinds of people in this world who ban books.  Granted this theory may be slighted tainted by pop culture, but you’ll get the point.

  1. Crazy church going folk’s ala Footloose.
  2. Crazy Nazis ala Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (oh and World History 101)
  3. Crazy Fictional Governments ala Fahrenheit 451 (a book which I read in school but has ironically been banned in many districts over the years).

When you look at this list you may laugh. But it’s actually true. And a little scary. But that’s OK because it’s Banned Book Week, and luckily taking a stand against banning book is an easy thing to do. Go to the library and choose a book that has been banned or challenged somewhere some time and read it. Or, if you’re anything like me, you’ll probably have a few banned books on your own bookshelf somewhere.  Better yet, curl up with your kids and read them a banned book (Harry Potter anyone?).

Then take a picture of the banned book you read and post it to Facebook. Just to be a rebel.

You can visit the American Library Association’s website where they have lists of hundreds of books that have been banned at one time or another here in the U.S. over the last few decades. I wanted to make a list of my Top 10 favorite banned books, but I honestly couldn’t narrow it down. Too many beloved classics. So I chose form the list of the most banned during the 90s, which covers the four years I was in high school. Full disclosure though, none of these books were banned at my high school. Amen to the fact 70% of the books on all of these banned book lists I read IN SCHOOL. God Bless California.

So here are my most beloved 10 books that were banned during the 90s.

  1. Lord of the Flies – William Golding
  2. That Was Then, This is Now – S.E. Hinton
  3. Carrie – Stephen King
  4. The Harry Potter Series – J.K. Rowling
  5. To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
  6. The Outsiders – S.E. Hinton
  7. Blubber – Judy Blume
  8. Go Ask Alice – Unknown
  9. A Light in the Attic – Shel Silverstein
  10. A Wrinkle in Time – Madeline L’Engle

Each one of these books hold some special place in my heart for one reason or another, each deserving of its very own blog post. Each brings a smile to face as I remember the joy I found in their words.

And the idea that somewhere there was a place that any of these books were banned is one of the darkest things I could ever imagine.

Check out my list or the complete list of banned books and let me know what’s YOUR favorite banned book?


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Storyteller John Weaver
    Sep 27, 2010 @ 12:43:15

    Glad to hear that you’re celebrating the week, too!

    I started early, after hearing about the ridiculous school members in Stockton, MO, who voted UNANIMOUSLY to ban The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian from their schools. I, of course, immediately went out to an independent bookseller & purchased a copy. This book–which I’d never even HEARD of before–is wonderful, funny, realistic, and more than a little thought-provoking.

    So obviously, we don’t want our reluctant teen readers exposed to that type of material.

    Since reading that book, I’ve used the banned book lists as a guide to pick up more– yesterday I finished The Chocolate War (eh) and started Fahrenheit 451.

    There are hundreds of banned & challenged books, so I intend to celebrate for much longer than a week!


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