Sunday, September 19, 2010

Banned Book Week is Coming Up

January Magazine posted an interesting blog this week to let readers know that September 25 to October 2nd is Banned Book Week. As the author pointed out, there’s nothing like a banned book to generate interest in a book and boost sales. The purpose of this week is to celebrate books and, in particular, the freedom to read what we want. It celebrates intellectual freedom and as the American Library Association says, the freedom to express ideas even if they’re considered unorthodox or unpopular. The ALA states that plenty of books in the U.S. have been saved by banning thanks to the efforts of teachers, librarians, and booksellers. Many teachers use this week to teach their students First Amendment rights and the danger when a free society is prevented from having access to information. If you click on the ALA link in the article, you’ll find a list of books that have either been banned or challenged at one point. Here’s just a few of the classics:

1. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
2. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
3. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
4. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
5. The Color Purple by Alice Walker
6. Ulysses by James Joyce
7. Beloved by Toni Morrison
8. The Lord of the Flies by William Golding
9. 1984 by George Orwell
10. The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
11. Lolita by Vladmir Nabokov
12. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
13. Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White

Charlotte’s Web? Really? For crying out loud. There are many more listed, so go to the site and have a look. And read a banned book this week! To read (and I recommend subscribing) January Magazine go to Look for the article on Banned Books which will take you to the American Library Association links plus others. Happy reading!

My amateur sleuth, Vancouver-based, Alex Bellamy mysteries can be purchased at

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