Library association names most ‘challenged’ children’s titles

The American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom this week released its annual listing of children’s book titles that parents sought to have banned from libraries in 2008.

The usual offenders — satanism, the occult, atheism, and sex in all its wild varieties — were cited as the most popular reasons given in the more than 500 times parents challenged books last year. (The Association offers 19 possible grounds for challenge in its online reporting form.)

Finding himself on the list for the second time in as many years was author Philip Pullman, whose fantasy trilogy “His Dark Materials” has often been pegged as overtly atheistic. The UK’s Guardian newspaper says Pullman “confidently expects to be back in the top 10 next year.”

At the top of the 2008 list for the third consecutive year was And Tango Makes Three by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson. Tango is the true story of Roy and Silo, a pair of male penguins at the Central Park Zoo who attempt to care for an egg-shaped rock until a sharp-eyed zookeeper gives them a real egg of their own to care for.

One blogger noted that ironically the film “The March of the Penguins” was touted as a triumph of family values. Oh well, he said: “I am willing to bet both sides have a penguin health care book in the works.”

Past Posts