Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Banned Books Week - The Bluest Eye

By Toni Morrison

Number 4 most challenged book of 2014. *

Reason for challenge: sexually explicit, unsuited for age group, "contains controversial issues"

The Bluest Eye is Toni Morrison's first novel, a book heralded for its richness of language and boldness of vision. Set in the author's girlhood hometown of Lorain, Ohio, it tells the story of black, eleven-year-old Pecola Breedlove. Pecola prays for her eyes to turn blue so that she will be as beautiful and beloved as all the blond, blue-eyed children in America. In the autumn of 1941, the year the marigolds in the Breedloves' garden do not bloom. Pecola's life does change- in painful, devastating ways.
What its vivid evocation of the fear and loneliness at the heart of a child's yearning, and the tragedy of its fulfillment. The Bluest Eye remains one of Tony Morrisons's most powerful, unforgettable novels- and a significant work of American fiction.

* Source: American Library Association; Goodreads

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Banned Books Week - And Tango Makes Three

By Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell

Number 3 most challenged book of 2014*

Reason for challenge: anti-family, homosexuality, political viewpoint, religious viewpoint, unsuited for age group, "promotes homosexual agenda"

In the zoo there are all kinds of animal families. But Tango's family is not like any of the others. This illustrated children's book fictionalizes the true story of two male penguins who became partners and raised a penguin chick in the Central Park Zoo.

* Source: American Library Association; Goodreads

Monday, September 28, 2015

Banned Books Week - Persepolis

By Marjane Satrapi

Number 2 most frequently challenged book of 2014. *

Reason for challenge: gambling, offensive language, political viewpoint, "politically, racially, and socially offensive", "graphic depictions"

Wise, funny, and heartbreaking, Persepolis is Marjane Satrapi’s memoir of growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution. In powerful black-and-white comic strip images, Satrapi tells the story of her life in Tehran from ages six to fourteen, years that saw the overthrow of the Shah’s regime, the triumph of the Islamic Revolution, and the devastating effects of war with Iraq. The intelligent and outspoken only child of committed Marxists and the great-granddaughter of one of Iran’s last emperors, Marjane bears witness to a childhood uniquely entwined with the history of her country.

Persepolis paints an unforgettable portrait of daily life in Iran and of the bewildering contradictions between home life and public life. Marjane’s child’s-eye view of dethroned emperors, state-sanctioned whippings, and heroes of the revolution allows us to learn as she does the history of this fascinating country and of her own extraordinary family. Intensely personal, profoundly political, and wholly original, Persepolis is at once a story of growing up and a reminder of the human cost of war and political repression. It shows how we carry on, with laughter and tears, in the face of absurdity. And, finally, it introduces us to an irresistible little girl with whom we cannot help but fall in love.

* Source: American Library Association; Goodreads

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Banned Books Week - The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

By Sherman Alexie

Number 1 top ten most frequently challenged book of 2104*

Reason for challenge: anti-family, cultural insensitivity, drugs/alcohol/smoking, gambling, offensive language, sex education, sexually explicit unsuited for age group, violence, "depictions of bullying"

Bestselling author Sherman Alexie tells the story of Junior, a budding cartoonist growing up on the Spokane Indian Reservation. Determined to take his future into his own hands, Junior leaves his troubled school on the rez to attend an all-white farm town high school where the only other Indian is the school mascot.

Heartbreaking, funny, and beautifully written, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, which is based on the author's own experiences, coupled with poignant drawings by Ellen Forney that reflect the character's art, chronicles the contemporary adolescence of one Native American boy as he attempts to break away from the life he was destined to live.

Source: American Library Association; Goodreads

Banned Books Week

Banned books are books that, for one reason or another, have been banned from schools, libraries, book stores, etc. Books are generally banned for language, explicit content, witchcraft/supernatural, racial content and other controversial topic. In the past few years, banned books have almost become a genre of their own. I used to stake out the banned books shelves at my local book store when I was teen. Is there anything better than reading something you're not supposed to? 

Thursday, September 24, 2015

The Boundless by Kenneth Oppel

Here's my newest book trailer for "The Boundless" by Kenneth Oppel. It's a great read especially for those rascally boys AND it's a 2015-2016 Maryland Black-Eyed Susan Nominee for grades 6-9. I highly recommend this book. I am a SLOW reader and I read it in less than a month. THAT'S a good book! Enjoy!