The American Library Association announced its banned book list for 2008 this week and in it were details of the 513 cases were books were attacked in bids for censorship and the 74 cases where these attacks were to some extent successful.
While the most common complaints levelled at books tend to focus on offensive language or explicit sex scenes, Tango Makes Three, a story about day penguins at central Park Zoo in New York and based on true events, garnered the most complaints. Good to know that people are accepting of all sexual preferences eh?
Perhaps surprisingly (or perhaps not depending how cynical you’re feeling) it’s the popular fantasy trilogy His Dark Materials – from bestselling and much lauded author Philips Pullman – that’s in second place. Something to do with an anti Christian message?
Sad times, that’s all I can say. A quick look at my bookshelves and I can see plenty of classics that people have attempted to ban at one point or another over the years – the thought I might have never been able to read some of them is a horrible one. Oh well, maybe you should take it as an accolade when your bestselling book attracts calls for censorship?