Monday, September 20, 2010

You Shouldn't Read That!

Well, Banned Book Week is almost here (September 25 - October 2).  We're less than a week away and some more books are being challenged. One of them is Laurie Halse Anderson's book Speak.  It's being challenged by a professor in Missouri because he thinks it's soft porn because of two rape scenes. I'm not going  into all of the details, but really....challenging a book because of rape scenes?  Yeah, the guy has the right to have his own opinions, like everyone else.  But I'm completely, totally, one hundred percent against someone trying to force their own opinions on other people.  Namely, trying to have a book banned and removed from school libraries because they don't think the content is appropriate.

As a parent, that ticks me off.  Nobody should have the right to tell me what my children should or should not read.  EVER!  Parents should have the right to decide for themselves what is appropriate for their OWN children.   In fact, I've never read Speak, but I plan to buy it now because of this.

Furthermore, I started thinking of other banned books.  I knew of some books that had been challenged (The Harry Potter series), but I was curious about others.  Boy was I surprised.  The following is just a few of the books I read when I was in middle/high school. I love all of these books, and all are on the banned/challenged books lists.

Are You There God?  It's Me, Margaret
Then Again, Maybe I Won't
To Kill a Mockingbird
The Handmaid's Tale
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
On My Honor
Lord of the Flies
The Color Purple
Bridge to Terabithia
The Dead Zone
How to Eat Fried Worms
The Goosebumps series
A Wrinkle in Time. (The book that made me think I could be a writer one day)

So what do you think about book censorship?  Are there any books on the banned/challenged lists that you love?

** If you have a Twitter account, you can follow more of this discussion with the tag #SpeakLoudly.


  1. It's so ridiculous. I'm amazed.

    I'm listening to A Wrinkle in Time with my children right now. And I've read just about every book on the banned list.

    I wrote a letter to the editor on behalf of Speak. The link is on Anderson's last post.

  2. I agree Mel. I also hadn't read the book, but because of this I'm buying it today. Have you been to the author's website? She has a video of herself reading a poem she wrote in response to her readers' reactions to Speak. The poem is called Listen. Listening to it made me cry.

  3. It's absurd! I love every book on that list and to think that someone wants to ban them???? No way! I haven't read Speak either, but like you, I plan on it now. Sounds to me like that Minister's plan backfired. :)

  4. LOL I think I've read every banned book on the list! I haven't read Speak. I tried getting it for my Kindle and they didn't have it available. I'm against censorship. I think the parent has a right to pre-read anything they want, but that's it.

  5. I read The Giver to my students often. It's a fabulous book and it's been on many banned/threatened lists. It's a great tool for discussing censorship with the kids. :)

  6. What an amazing list of books. It's unbelievable that they had ever been banned. Those books have helped shaped me.

  7. I totally agree. Half those books are on my top favorites of all time list. No one should be able to tell us what we can or cannot read about. Great post!

  8. There are many books on the list that I love. They were integral to me as a reader, writer, and high school/college student.

  9. It's so sad to see those books on that list. Excellent post! I'm linking to it on the Scribe Sisters blog today.