Last month, we celebrated Mercer Mayer’s birthday! Well-known for the Little Critter and Little Monster series, we also recognize his books which used striking and frightening illustrations to engage young readers and teach them about courage.
David Sedaris was born on this day in 1956. He is an award winning author and comedian, and he is a regular, longtime contributor to The New Yorker and the National Public Radio (NPR) show This American Life. His essays are known for their satirical and self-deprecating humor, and read like diary entries (which many of them are), a window into Sedaris’ clever mind.
Author, poet, and artist Sandra Cisneros celebrates her birthday today.
Today is Jason Reynolds’ birthday. Reynolds, named earlier this year as the National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature, has had his books challenged for how they portray contemporary issues like police brutality and racism. This year, read a book by Reynolds — tell us what you think.
Today is both the late Kurt Vonnegut’s birthday and Veteran’s Day. Vonnegut himself was both a banned author and a veteran of World War 2. His most challenged, banned, and burned book is Slaughterhouse Five. This book in particular shares his World War 2 experience. And yet it, among many other books penned by veterans, remains on the frequently banned and challenged lists. Today, read a book by a veteran — maybe Slaughterhouse Five to start.
Not only is today Stephen King’s birthday, but Banned Books Week is also just around the corner! Throughout his entire career, King has been a frequently challenged and banned author. Let’s all take a moment to reflect on and celebrate the King of modern American horror.
I personally really enjoy (if “enjoy” can be considered the right word) the exploration of tough social justice issues through the lens of fantasy or science-fiction – often through the vehicle of anti-magic prejudice. I feel the fantasy context allows the reader to take a step back from the real world, while allowing the reader to think critically about equality and justice in a less personally challenging way.
Of the 377 challenges reported in 2019, there were 229 separate authors included. In this post I would like to highlight a couple of our “Banned Freshmen:” Jarrett J. Krosoczka and Meredith Russo.
Literature can provide youth and their teachers with meaningful tools for coping, discussing, and understanding. Library professionals have a duty to protect that access.
The ability to stymy humiliation, to withhold judgement about intellectual pursuits is a pillar of intellectual freedom. Hachette’s recent move to cancel Woody Allen’s memoir represents an irreparable crack in this pillar as it buckles to sentiments anathema to an adult’s right to read.