Banned Book Week Begins

I found some amazing statistics over at the American Library Association Web site:
Over the past nine years, American libraries were faced with 4,312 challenges.


Further, 109 materials were challenged because they were “anti-family,” and an additional 269 were challenged because of their “religious viewpoints.”
1,502 of these challenges (approximately 34%) were in classrooms; 33% were in school libraries; 23% (or 1,032) took place in public libraries.  There were 100 challenges to college classes; and only 29 to academic libraries.  There are isolated cases of challenges to materials made available in or by prisons, special libraries, community groups, and student groups.  The majority of challenges were initiated by parents (almost exactly 48%), while patrons and administrators followed behind (10% each).
Find out if your favorite book has been banned or challenged by exploring the top ten lists of the 21st century.
Top 10 11 most challenged books this decade: (and a good reading list for Banned Books Week)
  1. The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier  [6 years on top 10]
  2. The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky [5 years on top 10]
  3. And Tango Makes Three, by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell  [4 years on top 10]
  4. Alice (series), by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor  [4 years on top 10]
  5. TTYLTTFNL8RG8R (series), by Lauren Myracle  [3 years on top 10]
  6. The Catcher in the Rye, by J. D. Salinger  [3 years on top 10]
  7. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, by Maya Angelou [3 years on top 10]
  8. Captain Underpants (Series), by Dav Pilkey [3 years on top 10]
  9. Harry Potter, by J.K. Rowling  [3 years on top 10]
  10. Fallen Angels, by Walter Dean Meyers  [3 years on top 10]
  11. Of Mice and Men, by John Steinbeck  [3 years on top 10]
Top 10 most challenged books of 2009:

  1. TTYLTTFNL8RG8R (series), by Lauren Myracle
  2. And Tango Makes Three by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson 
  3. The Perks of Being A Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky  
  4. To Kill A Mockingbird, by Harper Lee 
  5. Twilight (series) by Stephenie Meyer 
  6. Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger 
  7. My Sister’s Keeper, by Jodi Picoult 
  8. The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big, Round Things, by Carolyn Mackler 
  9. The Color Purple, Alice Walker 
  10. The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier 
2008:
  1. And Tango Makes Three, by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell 
  2. His Dark Materials trilogy, by Philip Pullman 
  3. TTYLTTFNL8RG8R (series), by Lauren Myracle 
  4. Scary Stories (series), by Alvin Schwartz 
  5. Bless Me, Ultima, by Rudolfo Anaya 
  6. The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky 
  7. Gossip Girl (series), by Cecily von Ziegesar 
  8. Uncle Bobby's Wedding, by Sarah S. Brannen 
  9. The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini 
  10. Flashcards of My Life, by Charise Mericle Harper 
2007:


  1. And Tango Makes Three, by Justin Richardson/Peter Parnell 
  2. The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier 
  3. Olive’s Ocean, by Kevin Henkes 
  4. The Golden Compass, by Philip Pullman 
  5. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain 
  6. The Color Purple, by Alice Walker 
  7. TTYL, by Lauren Myracle 
  8. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, by Maya Angelou 
  9. It’s Perfectly Normal, by Robie Harris 
  10. The Perks of Being A Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky 
2006: (Toni Morrison made the list twice in one year!)


  1. And Tango Makes Three, by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell 
  2. Gossip Girls (series), by Cecily Von Ziegesar 
  3. Alice (series), by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor 
  4. The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big Round Things, by Carolyn Mackler 
  5. The Bluest Eye, by Toni Morrison 
  6. Scary Stories (series), by Alvin Schwartz 
  7. Athletic Shorts, by Chris Crutcher 
  8. The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky 
  9. Beloved, by Toni Morrison 
  10. The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier 
2005: (clearly the year of sex-education & I love that Captain Underpants made the list!)


  1. It’s Perfectly Normal: Changing Bodies, Growing Up, Sex, and Sexual Health, by Robie H. Harris 
  2. Forever, by Judy Blume 
  3. The Catcher in the Rye, by J. D. Salinger 
  4. The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier 
  5. Whale Talk, by Chris Crutcher 
  6. Detour for Emmy, by Marilyn Reynolds 
  7. What My Mother Doesn’t Know, by Sonya Sones 
  8. Captain Underpants (Series), by Dav Pilkey 
  9. Crazy Lady!, by Jane Leslie Conly 
  10. It’s So Amazing! A Book about Eggs, Sperm, Birth, Babies, and Families, by Robie H. Harris 
For more lists and statistics on banned or challenged books, and to see why these books were banned, visit the ALA Web site, and challenge yourself to read a banned book.

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