Jennifer Pickrell

YA Writer

I wanna be on the banned books list

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So I should be working at my paying job right now, but I felt like taking a look at the ALA’s 2009 Top Ten list of most frequently challenged books.  I’ve only read 6/10, so I’m a little behind.  

*adds banned books to list of books to read*

The Twilight Series is on the list, one of the reasons being that it’s “sexually explicit.”  Huh?  Out of about a trillion words, there were maybe two lines that implied sex.  The rest was a lot of mooning and longing looks with some occasional making out.  Oh, and vampires.  Lots of vampires.

Same with “Catcher in the Rye.”  I don’t recall Holden having sex, just thinking about it a lot, probably because he was a teenage boy.  What I got from the book was that Holden was on the verge of a breakdown, it was sad, not offensive.

Sad, not offended, was also how I felt about “The Perks of Being a Wallflower.”  I bought it years ago at a library book sale because I liked the title and the cover.  I’m sure I read it in one sitting, it still sticks with me.  The main character was so authentic to me – quirky, sweet, uncertain…a real teenager.

“And Tango Makes Three” – really?  Like a little kid will read this and say, “Oh no, those penguins are gay…down with penguins!”  Little kids aren’t born with prejudices, they’re taught them.  A kid would read this and think, “Hey, I want to go to the zoo.”  This is one of those “teaching” books, a reason for parents to sit down with their kids and teach them that love comes in all forms.    

“To Kill a Mockingbird” for racism.  Um…it wasn’t like Harper Lee just made up segregation and racism.  

“The Chocolate War.”  It’s been awhile since I read this, but I don’t recall being offended.  I remember some of the kids at the school being jerks, even to the point of cutthroat – did the people who demanded the banning actually attend high school, did they somehow escape those snarky teenage years?

I just checked out the Top 100 Banned/Challenged Books: 2000-2009 – is anyone else amused that “Fahrenheit 451” is on there…guessing the point of the book was lost on some people.

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Author: Jennifer Pickrell

I write YA contemporary filled w/ romance, angst & family drama. Currently in the query trenches. My faves include: cats, snacks & green tea.

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