Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Banned Books Week-Why I think it matters

If all mankind minus one were of one opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind. ~John Stuart Mill, On Liberty, 1859

I'm a huge believer in not censoring books.

I'll clarify by saying, if parents want to forbid or make a child wait to read a book until they are older, I don't have a problem with it. I've made that decision on books. My youngest wanted to watch the Twilight movies. I've told her she needs to be a little bit older. Once upon a time, I checked out Blubber by Judy Blume but decided my children needed to be a little older before they read it. I'd not let oldest read Stephen King at 11 but she's getting to the age where I discovered him. If they strongly objected to my decision, we'd probably talk it over and maybe agree to read and discuss together.

However, I do not agree with people deciding if their child won't read that book now or until later, than no child should read that book now or forever. That I do have a problem with. Decide for your own children but don't decide for mine.

I have a problem with a person deciding because the book idea is different than what they believe, that no one should read that book.

The other thing is who decides what books are objectionable? I might object to Twilight because I feel the protagonist is weak. Someone else may think she's not weak but object to it for another reason. Just about every book in the universe is going to have something that someone finds objectionable. So do we ban them all?

Books are ideas. Where do we go from banning books? We ban all the books that we object to. What's to stop us from banning people? After all, people have ideas, too.

Wherever they burn books they will also, in the end, burn human beings. ~Heinrich Heine, Almansor, 1823

This quote was on the fake fireplace in the banned books reading room last night. I had to explain it to both kidlets.

One of the first things Hitler did in his takeover was go after books. Dictators do not want ideas floating around because they are dangerous. They make people think. And a dictator doesn't want people who think for themselves. What did he do after going after books? He went after people he didn't like or objected to.

Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Banned Books Week, the Banned Books Reading room

The library I primarily go to does a Banned Books reading room every year. Basically people sit in this display room and read books that have been challenged.

I'm so excited. My oldest and I are going to read in there for the next three Tuesdays. My youngest may join us but I'm not sure she can read for an hour.

Oldest plans to read Harry Potter tonight. She's appalled that HP makes the list of challenged books. My plan is to read Stephen King. I'd love to read Salem's Lot. I'll tell you why in a later post...

May the muses have good libraries

Banned Books Week: Why are books challenged?

Top Three Reasons for challenging a book:

the material was considered to be "sexually explicit"
the material contained "offensive language"
the materials was "unsuited to any age group"


Monday, September 27, 2010

Banned Books Week: The 20 most challenged books the decade 2000-2009

1 Harry Potter (series), by J.K. Rowling

2 Alice series, by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor

3 The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier

4 And Tango Makes Three, by Justin Richardson/Peter Parnell

5 Of Mice and Men, by John Steinbeck

6 I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, by Maya Angelou

7 Scary Stories (series), by Alvin Schwartz

8 His Dark Materials (series), by Philip Pullman

9 TTYL; TTFN; L8R, G8R (series), by Myracle, Lauren

10 The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky

11 Fallen Angels, by Walter Dean Myers

12 It’s Perfectly Normal, by Robie Harris

13 Captain Underpants (series), by Dav Pilkey

14 The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain

15 The Bluest Eye, by Toni Morrison

16 Forever, by Judy Blume

17 The Color Purple, by Alice Walker

18 Go Ask Alice, by Anonymous

19 Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger

20 King and King, by Linda de Haan

Source. You can see the top 100 here.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Banned Books Week: The 10 most challenged books of 2009

The list also gives why the book was challenged.

1. “TTYL; TTFN; L8R, G8R (series), by Lauren Myracle Reasons: Nudity, Sexually Explicit, Offensive Language, Unsuited to Age Group, Drugs

2. “And Tango Makes Three” by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson Reasons: Homosexuality

3. “The Perks of Being A Wallflower,” by Stephen Chbosky Reasons: Homosexuality, Sexually Explicit, Anti-Family, Offensive Language, Religious Viewpoint, Unsuited to Age Group, Drugs, Suicide

4. “To Kill A Mockingbird,” by Harper Lee Reasons: Racism, Offensive Language, Unsuited to Age Group

5. Twilight (series) by Stephenie Meyer Reasons: Sexually Explicit, Religious Viewpoint, Unsuited to Age Group

6. “Catcher in the Rye,” by J.D. Salinger Reasons: Sexually Explicit, Offensive Language, Unsuited to Age Group

7. “My Sister’s Keeper,” by Jodi Picoult Reasons: Sexism, Homosexuality, Sexually Explicit, Offensive Language, Religious Viewpoint, Unsuited to Age Group, Drugs, Suicide, Violence

8. “The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big, Round Things,” by Carolyn Mackler Reasons: Sexually Explicit, Offensive Language, Unsuited to Age Group

9. “The Color Purple,” Alice Walker Reasons: Sexually Explicit, Offensive Language, Unsuited to Age Group

10. “The Chocolate War,” by Robert Cormier Reasons: Nudity, Sexually Explicit, Offensive Language, Unsuited to Age Group


Saturday, September 25, 2010

Banned Books Week starts

As an avid reader, I post on Banned Books Week every year. Today marks the kickoff. I'll try to post something every day about this important issue. I'll post lists so you can see what books are being challenged and also a bit about why I think it's important to have the freedom to read.


Friday, September 24, 2010

Friday Five

First up, Happy belated birthday to Melissa, my friend, writing partner, critique partner. Hope it was very happy!

Now onto Friday Five!

1. I've been writing on Code Monkey and have started a brand new project, that I didn't expect to write *G*. It's good news. I don't usually work on two things at once but I might be for a while. Either that or just work on one, write it fast, and then finish the other. I'm excited about the new project! And Code Monkey!

2. I blogged at Loose Ends on Letting go.

3. Had two school open houses this week so didn't get a lot done at night. Both were good. I liked a lot of oldest's teachers (she's in middle school) and liked both of youngest's teachers. We are getting into a routine again, which is nice.

4. My latest distraction? Geek Mom. I subscribe to a lot (read: too many) RSS feeds but I really only check out a few daily, Jill Shalvis, Chickens in the Road, Dear Author, EREC blog. Geek Mom has quickly become one I check out all the time.

5. TV has been a big distraction, too. I'm watching too many shows! Eek. However, Warehouse 13 just had its season finale. Now they will make me wait months to know how this resolves. *pout*. But I loved the finale. It was really good. Claudia and Artie have such good rapport. Love them interacting together. Castle was excellent on Monday night as was Chuck. But the best premiere of the week? Big Bang. OMG. I've never laughed so hard in my life. If you didn't see it, you must watch. Robot hand on penis. Sheldon on a date. That's all I'm saying.

May the muses have off buttons

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Friday Five

1. I do live! I know I missed a couple of Fridays but am back now. Moving has been....hectic. Very hectic. We had to get enough stuff out of our house for the movers and carpet people. Then we had to get our old house ready to go on the market. Cross your fingers it sells quickly. Combine that with starting school and things have been CRAZY.

2. I blogged at TRS Blue on Bad Boys.

3. I have been writing. Not nearly fast enough but I'm getting there. I love Code Monkey and I have a dragon story that's yelling to be written. I hope to get both done over the next couple of months and submitted.

4. Chickens in the Road is a blog I've read for many years. They are celebrating a new baby calf! I have calf envy. LOL think my new subdivision would freak if I got a cow. But Glory Bee sure is cute.

5. I've been absorbed by Warehouse 13. Have really enjoyed their summer season. They had a cliffhanger this week and the season finale is next week. We also just started watching Eureka. Pretty good. May have to go watch the previous seasons. I can't wait for Big Bang to premiere next week. I need to see when Castle comes back too!

May the muses have envy

PS I'm camping this weekend on with other Girl Scout leaders/assistant leaders/volunteers. Next weekend I go camping with oldest. Oh well, least it is cabins.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The Rogue has escaped

And life will never be the same!

Yes, the Rogue released last night at Loose Id! Yay!

Princess Arianna's brother is missing, lost in the dangerous brothels on Batuck. She can't find him alone so she hires a legend to help. When they meet, their heartstones glow. The legend -- the Rogue, a man called McTavish -- is her mate.

Decker's been studying McTavish from behind a desk for years. Catching him is his chance to earn a much-desired promotion in the Union Alliance. Then the Queen, Arianna's stepmother, who is responsible for the prince's disappearance, contacts him with a deal: find her son before McTavish does and use him as bait, and she'll make sure he gets that promotion. Except...

Decker can't stand her actions against her son and turns on the Queen. He contacts McTavish and Arianna to make a deal. The biggest surprise when they meet isn't that he plans to go through with it. It's that his quarry and the princess are his mates.

On the run from a vicious queen, the three must learn what can bond a princess, a law man, and a order to save their lives and the throne.

To read an excerpt:

I'm snoopy dancing!