This is the week that we celebrate books that have been banned or challenged. Usually, the books are banned from school libraries or from being taught in school. The reasons given seem valid–sexual content, dirty language, racism–but dig a little deeper and you’ll generally find that the true reason is that these books seem dangerous. Often the ideas they contain are challenging–to authority, to established institutions, to the status quo. Perhaps this is why so much effort is made to keep these books out of the hands of children. Yet, the very act of challenging these books brings them to our attention and creates a handy reading list full of dangerous ideas. Here is my recommended reading list of banned or challenged books, one for each month in the year. Share them with a child you know.
By the way, I haven’t linked to any outlet for buying these books. If you want to read them, I suggest getting them at your library or from your local independent bookstore.
- Animal Farm by George Orwell
- The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
- The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank
- Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
- To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
- Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
- The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien
- Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by JK Rowling
- Watership Down by Richard Adams
- Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl
- The Catcher in the Rye by JD Salinger
- The Giver by Lois Lowry