Freedom to Read Week: February 21-26, 2016

February 24, 2016 | M. Elwood

Comments (0)

My mother says that my love of words began when I was a baby and she held me while reading stories to my older sister. Three of my grandparents were teachers so I figure I was doomed from the start. Car trips always involved word and alphabet games. To this day, I spend subway rides rearranging the letters on the posters.

Everyone figured out pretty early that I was less annoying if they just left me alone with a book so no one tried to limit my reading except for one thing. My mother would not let me read comic books because she said they were full of spelling mistakes. Right. As an adult I have a dual love affair with graphic novels and spell check.   

I read whatever I could get my hands on; I managed to corrupt my entire grade 8 class with a Harold Robbins' book. I regret this only because the sex in the book, while graphic, was not particularly good from a female perspective. 

Essentially, my reading life was unimpeded until high school. In grade 10, one of the assigned novels was a book called Red Sky at Morning by Richard Bradford. Although I had yet to crack it open, we'd been discussing it for about a week when we were suddenly told to give it back. When pressed the teacher told us that a parent had complained about racial slurs in the book. This was when I discovered that although I resented assigned reading, it was even worse to be told you couldn't read something. 

Here are a few books that have been banned or challenged but that I love anyway:

Children's Books:

Captain underpants Stupids take off Thomas snowsuit

The Adventures of Captain Underpants: the Epic First Novel by Dav Pilkey

The Stupids Take Off by Harry Allard and James Marshall

Thomas' Snowsuit by Robert Munch    

Adult Books: 

Catch 22 Color purple Handmaid's tale

Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
Audiobook
eAudiobook
eBook
Talking Book (restricted to Print Disabled patrons)

The Color Purple by Alice Walker
eAudiobook
eBook

The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
Audiobook
eBook
Talking Book (restricted to Print Disabled patrons)

Persepolis Slaughterhouse five To kill a mockingbird

Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi

Slaughterhouse-Five, or, The Children's Crusade: a Duty-Dance with Death by Kurt Vonnegut
Audiobook
eAudiobook
eBook
Large Print

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Audiobook
eAudiobook
eBook
Large Print
Talking Book (restricted to Print Disabled patrons)

February 21-26 is Freedom to Read Week. Celebrate by reading anything you like!

Comments