Brevity is the soul of wit.

Must run, have to get ready for a wedding. Was stunned to read the announcement in the paper and see that the bride graduated from high school in 2006. I didn't realize she was that young, although truthfully to me she'll always seem about 13 years old. What can you do?

So anyway, must go spend hours grooming and possibly get Botox beforehand. Also The Preciouses are coming up as well and will be staying at my house so I need to go toddler-proof some stuff. My habit of leaving half-filled water bottles laying around didn't go over so well last time when they found them in my room and dumped them all over their blankets when they were supposed to be going to sleep.

In the meantime, I could use your help. Turns out my library has never really celebrated Banned Books week, which is one of my favorite weeks of all time. So I asked if we could please do some stuff and got the go-ahead. (Edgy, I'll be picking your brain on this one!) I'll need to be pretty low-key this time around because hi, small conservative town where a lady complained that we had Harry Potter temporary tattoos sitting out for kids to take. (She objected to the tattoos more than to Harry.) So it's going to be more about "Hey, Celebrate Your Freedom to Read" rather than "Hey, Read Subversive Literature Because You Can!" That'll be the subtext, though.

My plan so far is to do posters, some book displays, the "100 most frequently banned or challenged" list, and some drawings. I'd like to give away as prizes some books that have been challenged or that are to do with censorship (like The Giver or The Landry News or Fahrenheit 451). Can you take a look at this list and tell me which books you'd like to get as a prize, especially if you were a kid or young adult? Or if there are other good ones please feel free to add those too.

Thank you!


Jenny said... [reply]

If it were me, I would want 'Whats happening to my body'. That would be awesome. I would also want
the witches
the giver
the anastasia books
wheres waldo
harry potter
a wrinkle in time
a light in the attic

and a bunch more. but those mainly if I were a kid

Liz Johnson said... [reply]

I would want...

"I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings" which is my all-time favorite book.
"To Kill a Mockingbird"
"Are you there God? It's me, Margaret."

Also, I would LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE "Uncle Remus Stories." That is my favorite banned book, filled with happy non-racist childhood memories.

Nerd Goddess said... [reply]

Anything Roald Dahl would be great. I think they had on there The Witches and James and the Giant Peach.

Suzie1 said... [reply]

Am I the only one who is confused about why at least 1/3 of those books are on the protested list???

TheMoncurs said... [reply]

Ya know, I've never seen that list before (or, really, been aware of its existence). But some of those really surprised me..I never thought of Bridge to Terabithia as having anything to challenge or object to! It was a childhood favorite! Along with quite a number of others.

At my elementary school we had something call the "1000 Page Club" and when you read 1000 pages you got to pick a prize. I was constantly picking prizes and I always picked books (don't need no stinkin' pencils or rulers!). I picked The Giver once and it kind of changed my life. So I vote The Giver. And A Light in the Attic, because I feel like Shel Silverstein narrated my growing up years.

Shawn Econo said... [reply]

If you need any help or would like to swap ideas, let me know. I plan on doing a few things on my bookmobile, even though my display space is at a premium. Maybe a few libraries in the valley could cooperate to sponsor or host an event or two. Hmmmmm....brainstorm time...

kristen said... [reply]

suzie1--I was thinking the same thing! But more like 2/3. Hmmm, can't imagine why those sex books are on there....that should be a given and they should be banned altogether.

But, if I were a kid/teenager I would like to receive-
anything by Judy Blume
Of Mice and Men
To Kill a Mockingbird

JaneFan said... [reply]

The ones that stood out most for me as a child/young adult were:
*A Wrinkle in Time
*The Witches
*The Outsiders
*Bridge to Terabithia
*To Kill a Mockingbird

I think it's great that you are encouraging reading of these books and that the library is backing you :) Best of luck!

Janssen said... [reply]

To Kill a Mockingbird is just a fantastic book. The fact that it's banned in some areas makes me crazy - why do we let kids read total garbage and take away the really great stuff.

I also loved The Giver, which I didn't read until I was in college. So excellent!

And WHY is James and Giant Peach on there? I clearly need to reread it because I can't comprehend why it might be banned.

Azúcar said... [reply]

The Witches!

Who wouldn't love a copy of A Light in the Attic?

By small conservative town, do you mean The New Joy of Gay Sex is out?

Jér said... [reply]

5. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
9. Bridge to Terabithia
10. The Agony of Alice
12. My Brother Sam Is Dead
17. A Day No Pigs Would Die
22. A Wrinkle in Time
25. In the Night Kitchen
27. The Witches
29. Anastasia Krupnik
38. Julie of the Wolves
47. Flowers for Algernon
70. Lord of the Flies
84. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
88. Where's Waldo?
89. Summer of My German Soldier

The sex-ed books on that list are all fairly good, but I wouldn't hand them out as prizes. I also would not ban them, though.

Cicada said... [reply]

I, too, am confused at the sex books being on the list. I can understand why some crazy people get all worried about random books that they don't want their children reading in school, but it's not like they're really passing out the New Joy of Gay Sex in fifth grade, are they?

Azúcar said... [reply]

No, they don’t pass them out in fifth grade, at least here. They usually wait for sixth grade.

N.F. said... [reply]

"How To Eat Fried Worms" would be my very first choice. If I were a kid, or an adult, er...

You know.

Jimmy said... [reply]

Well Harry Potter is a sure winner, but I wouldn't mind such classics as Catcher in The Rye, and Of Mice And Men. Looking over that list, it's unbelievable that some I consider classics are on there, lumped in with such books as Sex by Madonna.

Makes my choices look very tame.

Th. said... [reply]


Roald Dahl, obviously.

Anonymous said... [reply]

Great blog, Nemmy. My intellectual juices are flowing!


Holly, Trevor, Max, and Annika said... [reply]

The Giver is an amazing book, especially for those at an age where they are trying to figure themselves out (Do we ever grow out of that stage?). I think it played an important role in my life and am glad I read when I was younger.

Angie said... [reply]

You might want to try checking the LM_Net archives. Yes, you know they are geared toward school libraries. But BBW is always a hot topic and there have been some fun suggestions for displays, contests, etc.

PS Ditto on The Giver, A Wrinkle in Time, Harry Potter, Roald Dahl, A Light in the Attic, and The Outsiders.

Anonymous said... [reply]

Howard Stern has a book? I think he should be banned from writing.


Kimberly Bluestocking: said... [reply]

To Kill A Mockingbird is one of the best books I've ever read. I'd also suggest Huck Finn for young adults and Where's Waldo for kids.

I've never read The Giver - looks like I better add that to my list.

Nemesis said... [reply]

Okay. Wonderful. Thank you, everybody!

daltongirl said... [reply]

I already have (or at least have read) most of those books. And the ones I don't have, I don't really want. But I recommend "The Stupids Step Out" as a prize. One of the all-time best books EVER. Right after "Catcher in the Rye."

And what the crap about Anastasia Krupnik?

The "What's Happening to My Body" books are awesome. I have them both, and have used them frequently. If there's some material you object to because of personal beliefs, the good news is you can just hack it out of the middle of the book, and no harm done--but don't discount the overall value of the book.

chosha said... [reply]

Fun fact on Fahrenheit 451: did you know that Bradbury never intended it to be a story about censorship? He was writing a book about how TV destroys people's love of books and literature and thereby creates ignorance. Although the government was burning books, his point was that the people had first given up on literature, and that they had thereby allowed the powers that be to use that opportunity to control their information. Although there's no denying that it's become a very important story about censorship, in spite of his protests, it's interesting that it began as a story about apathy.

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