Banned Books 2013

Banned books week of 2013 started September 22 and ended September 28. I am posting this a week late. I am very ashamed. But better late than never!

This list comes from the American Library Association website. Last year the top ten challenged books are:

  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

I think only The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian was on last year’s list, too. Last year, it was number five on the list and this year it is number two. It moved up three spots. That’s quite an accomplishment!

The others are all newly challenged! Well, challenged enough to make this year list. I’ve never read any of these stories, so I can’t comment.

I will note 7 out of ten books were challenged because they are sexually explicit. 6 out of 10 books have been challenged because they are “unsuited for age group”. 6 out of 10 were challenged because of “offensive language”.

Also, I never imagined The Kite Runner has homosexuality in it.

I am not surprised someone challenged Fifty Shades of Grey. It was published in 2011 and right at the moment it’s the fourth most challenged book. Maybe next year it will number one. Maybe the other books in the series will make the top ten challenged books, too. It could happen.

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