Sunday, October 5, 2008

P.S.: Banned Books Week

Banned Books Week having ended, I looked through The American Library Association’s most recent long-list of banned and/or challenged books -- their top 100 of 2000-2007, compiled from 3,869 challenges*.

A number of the titles are familiar -- I’ve bolded those I’ve read (11) and italicized those I own but haven’t yet read (4) -- and others intrigue me anew. If I were in my twenties, they’d inspire me to activism; if I were a parent or grandparent, they’d inspire my reading for the next year. Heck, they inspire me anyway; I guess all publicity is good.

How about you?

1 Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling
2 Alice series by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
3 The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier
4 Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
5 I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
6 Scary Stories by Alvin Schwartz
7 Fallen Angels by Walter Dean Myers
8 It’s Perfectly Normal by Robie Harris
9 And Tango Makes Three by Justin Richardson/Peter Parnell
10 Captain Underpants by Dav Pilkey
11 The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
12 The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
13 Forever by Judy Blume
14 The Color Purple by Alice Walker
15 The Perks of Being A Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
16 Killing Mr. Griffin by Lois Duncan
17 Go Ask Alice by Anonymous
18 King and King by Linda de Haan
19 Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
20 Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
21 The Giver by Lois Lowry
22 We All Fall Down by Robert Cormier
23 To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee
24 Beloved by Toni Morrison
25 The Face on the Milk Carton by Caroline Cooney
26 Snow Falling on Cedars by David Guterson
27 My Brother Sam Is Dead by James Lincoln Collier
28 In the Night Kitchen by Maurice Sendak
29 His Dark Materials series by Philip Pullman
30 Gossip Girl series by Cecily von Ziegesar
31 What My Mother Doesn’t Know by Sonya Sones
32 Angus, Thongs, and Full Frontal Snogging by Louise Rennison
33 It’s So Amazing by Robie Harris
34 Arming America by Michael Bellasiles
35 Kaffir Boy by Mark Mathabane
36 Blubber by Judy Blume
37 Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
38 Athletic Shorts by Chris Crutcher
39 Bless Me, Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya
40 Life is Funny by E.R. Frank
41 Daughters of Eve by Lois Duncan
42 Crazy Lady by Jane Leslie Conly
43 The Great Gilly Hopkins by Katherine Paterson
44 You Hear Me by Betsy Franco
45 Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut
46 Whale Talk by Chris Crutcher
47 The Adventures of Super Diaper Baby by Dav Pilkey
48 The Facts Speak for Themselves by Brock Cole
49 The Terrorist by Caroline Cooney
50 Mick Harte Was Here by Barbara Park
51 Summer of My German Soldier by Bette Green
52 The Upstairs Room by Johanna Reiss
53 When Dad Killed Mom by Julius Lester
54 Blood and Chocolate by Annette Curtis Klause
55 The Fighting Ground by Avi
56 The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien
57 Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred Taylor
58 Fat Kid Rules the World by K.L. Going
59 The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big, Round Things by Carolyn Mackler
60 A Time To Kill by John Grisham
61 Rainbow Boys by Alex Sanchez
62 Olive’s Ocean by Kevin Henkes
63 One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey
64 A Day No Pigs Would Die by Robert Newton Peck
65 Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
66 Always Running by Luis Rodriguez
67 Black Boy by Richard Wright
68 Julie of the Wolves by Jean Craighead George
69 Deal With It! by Esther Drill
70 Detour for Emmy by Marilyn Reynolds
71 Draw Me A Star by Eric Carle
72 Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
73 Harris and Me by Gary Paulsen
74 Junie B. Jones series by Barbara Park
75 So Far From the Bamboo Grove by Yoko Watkins
76 Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison
77 Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes by Chris Crutcher
78 What’s Happening to My Body Book by Lynda Madaras
79 The Boy Who Lost His Face by Louis Sachar
80 The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
81 Anastasia Again! by Lois Lowry
82 Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume
83 Bumps In the Night by Harry Allard
84 Goosebumps series by R.L. Stine
85 Shade’s Children by Garth Nix
86 Cut by Patricia McCormick
87 Grendel by John Gardner
88 The House of Spirits by Isabel Allende
89 I Saw Esau by Iona Opte
90 Ironman by Chris Crutcher
91 The Stupids series by Harry Allard
92 Taming the Star Runner by S.E. Hinton
93 Then Again, Maybe I Won’t by Judy Blume
94 Tiger Eyes by Judy Blume
95 Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel
96 Nathan’s Run by John Gilstrap
97 Pinkerton, Behave! by Steven Kellog
98 Freaky Friday by Mary Rodgers
99 Halloween ABC by Eve Merriam
100 Heather Has Two Mommies by Leslea Newman

* Per the ALA: “Research suggests that for each challenge reported there are as many as four or five which go unreported.”

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