Check out a Banned Book!
Banned Books Week
September 27 - October 3, 2020
Libraries across the country stand against censorship, the practice of suppressing or prohibiting books or film that are considered obscene, politically unacceptable, or harmful.
At Summit County Libraries, we believe in the intellectual freedom of all our patrons to decide what reading or viewing material is appropriate for them and their families.
But every year, books are challenged by members of the public and are often removed from library bookshelves. The American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom compiles a yearly list of the Top Ten Most Challenged Books to help the public understand what books were censored in libraries and schools.
You can find lists from previous years here.
We encourage you to check out one of these books, read it, form your own opinion, and continue to advocate for increased understanding and intellectual freedom in your spheres of influence.
Top Ten Most Challenged Books for 2019
1.George by Alex Gino
This middle reader book and Lambda Literary Award winner includes a transgender child, for which it has been challenged and banned.
2.Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out by Susan Kuklin
This book documents the stories of six teenagers, in their own words, who consider themselves transgender or gender neutral. It was challenged for LGBTQIA+ content, for “its effect on any young people who would read it,” and for concerns that it was sexually explicit and biased.
3. A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo by Jill Twiss, illustrated by EG Keller
This 2018 children's book details a fictional day in the life of Marlon Bundo, pet rabbit of Vice President of the United States Mike Pence. Challenged and vandalized for LGBTQIA+ content and political viewpoints, for concerns that it is “designed to pollute the morals of its readers,” and for not including a content warning.
4. Sex is a Funny Word by Cory Silverberg, illustrated by Fiona Smyth
This book is informational and written by a certified sex educator, but is controversial because it addresses sex education in a way some found uncomfortable.
5. Prince & Knight by Daniel Haack, illustrated by Stevie Lewis
This children's book tells the story of a young prince who falls in love with a knight after the two work together to battle a dragon threatening the kingdom. Challenged and restricted for featuring a gay marriage and LGBTQIA+ content; for being “a deliberate attempt to indoctrinate young children” with the potential to cause confusion, curiosity, and gender dysphoria; and for conflicting with a religious viewpoint.
6. I Am Jazz by Jessica Herthel and Jazz Jennings
I Am Jazz is autobiographical and has been challenged because it discusses gender identity in children.
7. Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
This is a dystopian novel by Canadian author Margaret Atwood set in a near-future New England, in a totalitarian state, known as Gilead, that has overthrown the United States government.This classic book has been banned and challenged for profanity and for “vulgarity and sexual overtones.”
8. Drama by Raina Telgemeier
This graphic novel is a Stonewall Honor Award winner, and was challenged for LGBTQIA+ content and for concerns that it goes against “family values/morals”.
9. Harry Potter Series by JK Rowling
Banned and forbidden from discussion for referring to magic and witchcraft, for containing actual curses and spells, and for characters that use “nefarious means” to attain goals.
10. And Tango Makes Three by by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson illustrated by Henry Cole
This children's book tells the story of two male penguins, Roy and Silo, who create a family together. It was challenged and relocated for LGBTQIA+ content