Check out a Banned Book!
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 2017
1.Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
This book has resurfaced as being controversial after Netflix aired the TV series. This YA novel was banned largely because it discusses suicide.
2.The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
This book touches on poverty, alcoholism, and sexuality, and even though it’s a National Book Award winner, it was challenged because it contained profanity and sexuality explicit situations.
3.Drama by Raina Telgemeier
This graphic novel is a Stonewall Honor Award winner, and was challenged and banned because of its LGBT characters and themes.
4.The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
Although critically acclaimed, this book contains sexual violence and has been criticized for pro-terrorism and pro-Islam themes.
5.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.
6.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.
7.To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
This classic has been challenged because of violence and its use of the N-word, despite being a Pulitzer Prize-winning novel. This book was Summit County Library Director Joyce’s favorite summer read of 2018.
8.The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
The Hate U Give was the most searched-for book on Goodreads.com during its first year, but it was challenged and banned for profanity, drug use, and offensive language.
This book was South Branch staff member Rose’s favorite book of 2017.
9.And Tango Makes Three by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson, illustrated by Henry Cole
Published in 2005, And Tango Makes Three has been challenged because it features a same-sex relationship.
10. I Am Jazz by Jessica Herthel and Jazz Jennings, illustrated by Shelagh McNicholas
I Am Jazz is autobiographical and has been challenged because it discusses gender identity in children.