a few of my favorite things

2006 BBW; Read Banned Books: They're Your Ticket to Freedom
Warning: This is a participatory blog. Post a comment already.

For today's post honoring Banned Books Week, I thought I would go through the ALA's list of the 100 most frequently challenged books of the 90s. So, after you read my list, I want to hear yours. I want comments. Show me the love. You know you want to.

The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier. I know that this isn't necessarily a popular book. It's so bleak. But I just love Cormier's writing. And I love that he gets gritty.

Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling. I think it's safe to say that it's a given that I like Harry Potter.

Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson. Umm. Would someone please tell me why this is on the list? Also, could you explain to me how it made it to number 9 on the list? I love love love this book. Back in the days when I was going to write a thesis and I was selecting books to use in the analysis portion of my thesis, I skewed the selection criteria to ensure that this would be one of my books. And one day, I'm going to read it without crying at that one point. If you've read the book, you know what I'm talking about.

The Giver by Lois Lowry. Such a good book. And such contention about its ending in my adolescent lit class . . .

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. I remember reading this in the ninth grade. I remember it actually had an impact on me. I should reread it to remember what that impact was.

Brave New World by Aldous Huxley. Give me a good piece of dystopian literature any day of the week. Ahh. Such happiness.

Lord of the Flies by William Golding. Merciful heavens . . . Who knew that my ninth grade English teacher was such a rebel? We certainly had no idea when we drove her to the brink of her sanity and she left for a mission to Africa at the end of our school year. (Granted, if she had not hand-selected our ninth grade honors English class and placed in it 20 girls and 6 boys and then proceeded to always give the girls As and the boys Bs, the boys wouldn't have learned that they would get nothing better than a B and start writing and producing material that the boys found to be thoroughly enjoyable. Such as the radio drama that used every bodily noise we could find on the albums in the school library. Or that little ditty of a piece about a nuclear holocaust wherein I might have been a tad bit overly descriptive about what it would feel like to have your flesh eaten away layer by layer. But I digress.)

So that's a little list of some of my favorites. Your turn.


Desmama said...

Hey, EKB, you've gotta comment on our blogs, too! It's only fair!

I haven't read Chocolate War, some of the Harry Potters, Brave New World, or Lord of the Flies. But I've read the others and I heartily agree with you--they are completely powerful. The Giver and its subsequent sequels are among the best! I remember just bawling at the end of Messenger. I love books that make you look at the world in a different way. It's good to realize that the way you see it isn't necessarily the way everyone sees it.

Anonymous said...

After reading the list, I think that I am not as well read as I thought I was.

My favorite banned books are A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, and The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton.

I read A Wrinkle in Time in second grade, and identified so much with Meg, the main character that I wanted braces (because I thought that it would be romantic to have the moon flash on the metal when I was talking to a boy) and glasses.I got glasses, but never have needed braces. (Oh, the pain of unfulfilled dreams! :)) I still loved reading AWIT because it gives me hope that I can someday be a rocket scientist or a mathematician. Also it reminds me that most people feel like ugly ducklings in their own skin.

In high school I first read The Outsiders and was amazed that a girl my age could write a book. I think that the emotions and feelings that come across are very real, to the teenage experience. I was so disappointed by the movie. It completely ruined the Robert Frost poem scene and made it cheesy. But all the boys sure were pretty!

To Kill a Mockingbird still makes me cry. I don't read it often, but when I do, I always learn some new insight. I think it is one of the few perfect books ever written.

Th. said...


I did a whole unit on bookbanning with my freshmen last year.

Three of their favorites:

James and the Giant Peach
Disney's Christmas Storybook
Clifford the Big Red Dog

James is actually very often banned and we studied an essay on why.

Anonymous said...

Read Bridge to Terabithia in like... sixth grade and liked it. But now I don't remember it.

I think it's safe to say I'd cry if I suddenly was banned from reading To Kill a Mockingbird, though. Or from wathing the movie. I heart!!! And I even have some of it memorized!

Master Fob said...

Say, what ever happened to your alphabiography?

FoxyJ said...

I feel special--I've read everything on there except for Brave New World. I actually had to Lord of the Flies twice in high school (9th grade and then again in 12th at my new school). I was also the only person in my YA lit class that had read Forever. I was 12 and had decided to read everything by Judy Blume. My mom had a little talk about it with me. I'd probably ban that book from my own home--not just for the gratituitous sex, but also the bad writing.

Anonymous said...

Th: What did the essay say about James and the Giant Peach? I want to know?

Edgy: There are those of us who would like to join voices with Master Fob and encourage the alphabiography. Voices crying from west and south for alphabiography. :)

kirsa said...

I don't understand why Bridge to Terabithia is on that list. Though, truthfully, the last time I read it I was a lot more naive so it's entirely possible that it contained a lot more than I thought it did.