Jennifer Pickrell

YA Writer

The Classically Banned Book List


It’s September!!! Which means cooler weather and creativity and all things baked goods!

And a new month means a new reading list! And more exclamation points!!!

Okay, calming down, here’s what I have on tap for this month (all descriptions/covers from Goodreads):

A new classic*:

The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold

This has been on my bookshelf for years, so it’s like 2 birds with one stone. And I can finally watch the movie, which I’ve been putting off until after I read the book.

…The story of a family devastated by a gruesome murder — a murder recounted by the teenage victim…The details of the crime are laid out in the first few pages: from her vantage point in heaven, Susie Salmon describes how she was confronted by the murderer one December afternoon on her way home from school. Lured into an underground hiding place, she was raped and killed. But what the reader knows, her family does not. Anxiously, we keep vigil with Susie, aching for her grieving family, desperate for the killer to be found and punished.

A Banned Book** (since Banned Books Week 2012 is September 30-October 6)

Fat Kid Rules the World by K.L. Going

This is also on my bookshelf

Troy Billings is seventeen, 296 pounds, friendless, utterly miserable, and about to step off a New York subway platform in front of an oncoming train. Until he meets Curt MacCrae, an emaciated, semi-homeless, high school dropout guitar genius, the stuff of which Lower East Side punk rock legends are made. Never mind that Troy’s dad thinks Curt’s a drug addict and Troy’s brother thinks Troy’s the biggest (literally) loser in Manhattan. Soon, Curt has recruited Troy as his new drummer, even though Troy can’t play the drums. Together, Curt and Troy will change the world of punk, and Troy’s own life, forever.

Book I’ve never finished

Sorry, War and Peace, 2012 will not be your year. Better luck next time. The honor instead goes to *drum-roll*

On the Road by Jack Kerouac!

I may or may not eventually watch the movie. It depends on how much hair I pull out while making my 3rd attempt to get through this book.

On the Road chronicles Jack Kerouac’s years traveling the North American continent with his friend Neal Cassady, “a sideburned hero of the snowy West.” As “Sal Paradise” and “Dean Moriarty,” the two roam the country in a quest for self-knowledge and experience. Kerouac’s love of America, his compassion for humanity, and his sense of language as jazz combine to make On the Road an inspirational work of lasting importance.

Since I expect it will take me much time to get through my never-finished book, I’m keeping my other options open. I’ll, of course, be reading whatever is up for YA Book Club and anything else that strikes my fancy.

Plus, I’m aiming for 20k on a new WIP and hoping my paying work contract gets another renewal. I’m looking forward to sweater days and the smell of wood smoke – what are you up to this month?

*based on this EW list that lists great books that came out between 1983-2008

**based on the ALAs list of top 100 banned/challenged books between 2000-2009


Author: Jennifer Pickrell

I write YA contemporary filled w/ romance, angst & family drama. Things I like: cats, snacks, baseball, green tea, taking pictures of trees & movies so bad, they’re good.

13 thoughts on “The Classically Banned Book List

  1. I’ve always meant to read ON THE ROAD. Just curious, what foiled past attempts?
    A confession is it took me four tries to read PRIDE AND PREJUDICE. I know, I know. I wound up loving it on that fourth try, but for whatever reason I struggled before.

    • The first time I tried was high school – it was supposed to be what the “cool” kids read. After the first rambling page, I was like, yeah…maybe I’ll read this later. I tried again in my 20s, thinking I just didn’t get it before b/c I wasn’t old enough. Nope, still couldn’t get past the first few pages.

  2. Ugh, I hated ON THE ROAD! It took me forever to read and when I finished I was mad that I even read it, haha…

    FAT KID and LOVELY BONES are both fantastic, though. They should make up for the long slog that is ON THE ROAD 🙂

  3. I enjoyed On The Road but never understood the cult fanaticism. Fat Kids Rule The World sounds so awesome. I’m putting that on my to-read list. Can’t wait to hear your thoughts. 🙂

  4. I tried reading On the Road twice and couldn’t finish it.

    I read the first book and will look into the second.

  5. Thanks for reminding me that I need to read The Lovely Bones!

  6. FAT KID RULES THE WORLD sounds fantastic, and I’ve been curious about ON THE ROAD for awhile now. My husband is a fan, so I feel like I should at least give it a shot.

    This month, I’m finishing my revision and taking a week-long trip to WA. Yay!

  7. Fat Kid reminds me of SKINNY (which I just finished) and BUTTER which I think comes out soon or is out (or something). And considering I loved SKINNY and I really want to read BUTTER, this one sounds like something I need to read. Also, 20K! Love that goal! I think once I’m few a few revision rounds, I want to start my shiny new ms and make a goal like that. Good luck!

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