Mind Pollution for Reading Rebels

Lindsay Beyerstein has started a Banned Books meme. Here are the books from the ALA’s Top 100 Challenged Books that I have used to dirty my delicate brain.

1. Scary Stories (Series) by Alvin Schwartz
2. Daddy’s Roommate by Michael Willhoite
3. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou

4. The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier
5. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
6. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

8. Forever by Judy Blume
9. Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
10. Alice (Series) by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor

12. My Brother Sam is Dead by James Lincoln Collier and Christopher Collier
13. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
14. The Giver by Lois Lowry

16. Goosebumps (Series) by R.L. Stine
17. A Day No Pigs Would Die by Robert Newton Peck
18. The Color Purple by Alice Walker

19. Sex by Madonna
20. Earth’s Children (Series) by Jean M. Auel
21. The Great Gilly Hopkins by Katherine Paterson

22. A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle
23. Go Ask Alice by Anonymous
25. In the Night Kitchen by Maurice Sendak

26. The Stupids (Series) by Harry Allard
27. The Witches by Roald Dahl
29. Anastasia Krupnik (Series) by Lois Lowry

32. Blubber by Judy Blume
33. Killing Mr. Griffin by Lois Duncan
35. We All Fall Down by Robert Cormier

37. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
38. Julie of the Wolves by Jean Craighead George
39. The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison

40. What’s Happening to my Body? Book for Girls: A Growing-Up Guide for Parents & Daughters by Lynda Madaras
41. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
42. Beloved by Toni Morrison

43. The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton
44. The Pigman by Paul Zindel
45. Bumps in the Night by Harry Allard

46. Deenie by Judy Blume
47. Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes
49. The Boy Who Lost His Face by Louis Sachar

51. A Light in the Attic by Shel Silverstein
52. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
53. Sleeping Beauty Trilogy by A.N. Roquelaure (Anne Rice)

55. Cujo by Stephen King
56. James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl
57. The Anarchist Cookbook by William Powell

59. Ordinary People by Judith Guest
60. American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis
62. Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume

64. Athletic Shorts by Chris Crutcher
65. Fade by Robert Cormier
66. Guess What? by Mem Fox

67. The House of Spirits by Isabel Allende
68. The Face on the Milk Carton by Caroline Cooney
69. Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut

70. Lord of the Flies by William Golding
71. Native Son by Richard Wright
72. Women on Top: How Real Life Has Changed Women’s Fantasies by Nancy Friday

73. Curses, Hexes and Spells by Daniel Cohen
76. Where Did I Come From? by Peter Mayle
77. Carrie by Stephen King

78. Tiger Eyes by Judy Blume
83. The Dead Zone by Stephen King
84. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain

85. Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison
88. Where’s Waldo? by Martin Hanford
95. Girls and Sex by Wardell Pomeroy

96. How to Eat Fried Worms by Thomas Rockwell
100. Jump Ship to Freedom by James Lincoln Collier and Christopher Collier

Being a pre-service teacher and voracious reader with an interest in Young Adult Fiction makes this list an odd one. I count 68, but I’m tired.

Chuck’s list is complete with interesting commentary on challenged books.

13 comments for “Mind Pollution for Reading Rebels

  1. September 28, 2005 at 4:48 pm

    Heather Has Two Mommies is less challenged than Daddy’s Roomate and I have read both. Heather Has Two Mommies talks more specifically about invitro fertilization and body parts etc. which is why I would have thought more parents would have had a hayday with it. I know they did, but it is strange that one is more censored than the other. You would think they would go hand in hand.

  2. September 28, 2005 at 4:54 pm

    I bought “What’s Happening to my Body?” (#40) for my nieces when they hit their preteen years. I gave them to my sisters so they could give them to their daughters when they thought the girls would be ready. It’s a great, detailed book with good illustrations that handles everything embarassing about the teen years quite factually and matter-of-factly.

  3. piny
    September 28, 2005 at 4:59 pm

    Scary Stories is why I’m an aspiring artist. The illustrations in those books are perfect.

    Darn. Now I’m depressed.

  4. September 28, 2005 at 5:15 pm

    I gave them to my sisters so they could give them to their daughters when they thought the girls would be ready.

    This is your body.
    (Okay, yeah, I’ve got those.)

    This is your body on estrogen.
    (Jesus H. Christ, what the hell is that?!)

  5. September 28, 2005 at 5:16 pm

    For people like Lauren, I suggest they reverse the meme and only post the books they haven’t read, maybe with hypotheses about why those books are so evil; why they should not only be banned but burned, etc.

    And also maybe so I don’t feel quite so inadequate. :)

  6. September 28, 2005 at 5:18 pm

    The sad thing is that this semester has cut my reading down to only two books a week. I’m usually around four or five. ;)

  7. September 28, 2005 at 6:24 pm

    It’s amazing how many of them have women’s sexuality as themes–especially young women’s sexuality. Just goes to show you that we are much more hung up on sex (as it pertains to young women); than violence.

  8. September 28, 2005 at 6:46 pm

    Uh….”Where’s Waldo??”

    Did they say why???

  9. Julie
    September 28, 2005 at 7:41 pm

    Is it too late to de-lurk? I’ve been reading for awhile so I thought I would pop on and say hi.
    Anyway, I’ve read 19 of them. I’m also a voracious reader so I was a little disappointed in myself, but I have now made it my goal to read as many as possible in the coming weeks.

  10. Lo
    September 28, 2005 at 8:54 pm

    Supposedly, one of the pictures in “Where’s Waldo,” a beach scene, includes a miniscule exposed breast which is less than a milimeter long and renders the entire book the tool of satan.

    Or something like that.

  11. PrincessTamTam
    September 28, 2005 at 10:39 pm

    Yippeeee! I finally found someone who’s beat me at the ‘Challenged’ game. (and i’m emailing the list to all my friends) Here’s my observation:

    I’ve read 59 and i’m feeling fine! As the child of an educator, and a student/teacher, avid reader, and everyone’s favorite aunt … the list is an excellent example of a diverse collection of literature (both popular and common) that has achieved a certain (deserved or not) quality of ‘timelessness’ due to the nature of the material’s HONESTY: The honesty of the characters; their voices, situations, and perspectives on life (historical, adolescent transitions, fears, adventures, values, racism, sexism, classism, humanitarian-ism (?, is that an ism?), and ‘first person’ honest exploration into known (S.King-Cujo, M.Bloom-Everything) and creepy unknown (R.Wright-Native Son, M.Attwood-Handmaiden, The Outsiders, T.Morrison, M.Angelou, A.Walker-Everything, and Where Did I series) aspects of LIFE. I guess living a ‘reality-based’ life is ‘challenging’ for some.

    Note: The ONLY reason Dr. Seuss and more of S. Silverstein are not on the list is because your children have been ‘dumbed down’ and those authors are no longer a threat. Leave No Child Behind (the wall of critical thinking)

  12. PrincessTamTam
    September 28, 2005 at 10:44 pm

    My final observation:

    The only thing EVERY book has in common is that is Orwell’s world, the warning label read:


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