Banned Books Week and Top Ten Tuesday

Thank you to Ava for recommending that I post about Banned Books Week.

This week, Sep. 21-Sep. 27, is Banned Books Week!

What is BBW?

Well, I didn’t know until I looked it up. Here is an overview, straight from their official website.

Banned Books Week is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read. Held during the last week of September, it highlights the value of free and open access to information. Banned Books Week brings together the entire book community –- librarians, booksellers, publishers, journalists, teachers, and readers of all types –- in shared support of the freedom to seek and to express ideas, even those some consider unorthodox or unpopular.

Banned Books Week was launched in 1982 in response to a sudden surge in the number of challenges to books in schools, bookstores and libraries. More than 11,300 books have been challenged since 1982 according to the American Library Association. There were 307 challenges reported to the Office of Intellectual Freedom in 2013, and many more go unreported.

This week celebrates the freedom of reading and, mostly, banned books.

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What types of books are considered banned?

Here are the top three reasons for banned books:

  1. Material considered to be sexually explicit.
  2. Material has offensive language.
  3. Material is “unsuited to any age group.”

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What can I do to celebrate BBW?

Most obviously, read! Read anytime you can, to show others that you can read and you are allowed to. No one can tell you not to. [Except maybe your teacher…] And read banned books. You can find a list of challenged authors from the 21st century, up to 2012, here. J. K. Rowling and John Green make the list! Basically, you can read almost any YA book. Because most contain “offensive language.”

You can also participate in some events. If you live in the USA, here is a list of states and their events.

And you can participate in a Virtual Read-Out. More information about that can be found here.

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For TTT, I decided it would be fun to make a list of [in my opinion] top ten books that should be/are challenged. This doesn’t mean I don’t like them; this is for fun!

TTT is a meme created by The Broke and the Bookish.

TTT is a meme created by The Broke and the Bookish.

My Top Ten Banned Books

1. Paper Towns by John Green

2. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

3. If I Stay by Gayle Forman

4. The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare

5. Ink by Amanda Sun

6. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

7. Where She Went by Gayle Forman

8. A Dark Sky by Giselle Rocha

9. The Princess and the Pauper by Kate Brian

10. Geek High by Piper Banks

Sorry I didn’t include pictures. I’m too lazy. XD

This post was extra-long!

[Added after a comment I saw.]

I find the whole concept of BBW to be a joke. These books are normal, everyday books that everyone reads. There’s no point of them being banned, in my opinion.

What are you doing to celebrate Banned Books Week? [BTW, I made up the acronym.] And what books are on your banned books list? Tell me in the comments below.

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Weekly Wrap-Up #2

On Saturday, I stacked my shelves, reviewed Number the Stars, and informed you about Marissa Meyer events. I’m still getting through my pile of books!

On Sunday, I reviewed Where She Went and talked about book reviews.

On Monday, I posted a school assignment for feedback and reviewed Eleanor and Park [a.k.a. how I suffered emotional trauma at the hands of a hardback].

On Tuesday, I recommended unknown books for TTT. Turns out, you’ve read some of them. ;)

On Thursday, I informed you about the 100 Words For 100 Days Challenge. Are you going to participate?

Going back to the beginning of the week, Engie @ Musings From Neville’s Navel posted about Rick Riordan’s last book in the Greco-Roman world. It was an interesting but sad post. It means the end of Percy and Annabeth and Leo!

Engie, for you, the tweet about the epilogue issue (and for anyone else):

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Ah, Uncle Rick. While your wit impresses us, it does not excuse the no epilogue issue. I adore epilogues! I want confirmation about what happens to them.

To wrap up this week, why not a poll?

Have a fantabulous weekend! I will be shopping for party supplies for my sister’s birthday, reading The Book Thief, and watching the Broadway play version Wicked. Which I am SO EXCITED ABOUT.

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Book Review: Where She Went by Gayle Forman

WARNING: Please only read this review if you’ve read If I Stay. It contains a major spoiler.

Where She Went by Gayle Forman

Title: Where She Went

Author: Gayle Forman

Number of Pages: 260

Genre: YA Contemporary

Overall Rating: 4/5 stars

Summary From Cover: It’s been three years since Mia walked out of Adam’s life.

And three years he’s spent wondering why.

When their paths cross again in New York City, Adam and Mia are brought back together for one life-changing night.

Adam finally has the opportunity to ask Mia the questions that have been haunting him. But will a few hours in this magical city be enough to lay their past to rest, for good – or can you really have a second chance at first love?

Discussion: Woah. Just, woah. This book has everything, just like If I Stay. I went back and reread my review of it, and I noticed that they are very similar. I do think I like the first book more, though.

Where She Went is told in the perspective of Adam, and it is three years after the accident. They’ve broken up and gone their separate ways, Adam with his band, and Mia to Juilliard. In three years, we can see right away that Adam has changed. He’s smoking, taking pills to prevent panic attacks, and touring with his band, which is now famous. And Mia? She’d out of the picture. Adam has a cliché, stereotypical, celebrity girlfriend, whom I despised from the beginning.

But back to Adam. Frankly, I really didn’t like him. As Mia puts so nicely, he’s become a guy. He’s a jerk, and definitely a celebrity I would think ugh at. I found his POV to be very whiny and annoying and bratty.

Enter Mia. This is when I really got into the book. Adam decides to go see one of Mia’s concerts, and they end up seeing each other afterword. Mia is now sophisticated and angry at Adam, and, like him, famous. Except in a totally different genre. I was disappointed with how edgy she’s gotten, less naïve. Which might be for the better, but I missed Old Mia.

So now I’ve just said a ton of negative things. And I actually like this book! It did a good job with feeling, just like If I Stay, and the plot was just as intriguing. But the ending. Just like the last one.

shocked animated GIFI’ll use the same GIF to make my point.

If you have read If I Stay, I do recommend reading the sequel. The storytelling is pretty amazing, and there are plot twists everywhere.

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Stacking the Shelves, Marissa Meyer Events, and Book Review of Number the Stars by Lois Lowry

I did some major stacking of shelves today. At Target! It was literally [almost] my entire TBR list. I had to take some off, though. :( The grand total was about $85.

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From top to bottom…

The Book Thief

Eleanor and Park

Fangirl

Dorothy Must Die

The Darkest Minds

Where She Went

I know, I’m behind on all of these! But I’m so excited to finally be able to read them. Since I [somewhat] recently read If I Stay, I’m reading Where She Went first.

I am subscribed to Marissa Meyer’s (the author of The Lunar Chronicles) blog, and today I got an email update of a post. There are a few things about it.

One. Marissa Meyer is releasing Winter in November 2015! Thought it would be sooner? Read on…

Two. She is releasing Fairest, the prequel to The Lunar Chronicles, will be released January 27. That is why! Are you stoked? I’m stoked!!!

Three. This is the greatest, in my opinion. Marissa Meyer is in the Fierce Reads Tour throughout the USA, visiting bookstores with Jessica Brody, Gennifer Albin, and Nikki Kelly! And she is coming to my state near me so I will probably see her!!!! I am sooooooooooooooooooooo happy about this!!!!!!!!!!!! Go here to see the dates for the tour.

Four. This doesn’t concern me, but I though you should know. There is an essay contest with the prompt “With all of the new forms of media appearing every day, how do you think the experience of reading books will change over the next ten years?” The winner will have dinner with Marissa Meyer during the Baltimore Boom Festival. I wish I could participate, but I don’t live near Baltimore. :( Go here for details.

Number the Stars by Lois Lowry

Title: Number the Stars

Author: Lois Lowry

Number of Pages: 132

Genre: Historical fiction

Overall Rating: 4/5 stars

Summary From Cover: Ten-year-old Annemarie Johansen and her best friend Ellen Rosen often think of life before the war. It’s now 1943 and their life in Copenhagen is filled with school, food shortages, and the Nazi soldiers marching through town. When the Jews of Denmark are “relocated,” Ellen moves in with the Johansens and pretends to be one of the family. Soon Annemarie is asked to go on a dangerous mission to save Ellen’s life.

Discussion: My English teacher recommended that I read this book, since I had just finished The Giver, which is by the same author. I honestly knew nothing about it. But I judged it by its cover (I know, I know!) and the summary and decided, well, I have nothing else to read–why not give it a try? And, boy, am I so glad I did! I really enjoyed this book.

The first thing I noticed about the book was that it was really short. A lot of Lowry’s books are, though. This can be a good thing or a bad thing. For this book, I was a little bit disappointed that it was this short. It didn’t have as much detail as I would have liked, and I feel like it glanced over some big parts.

It tells the story of Germans invading Denmark. I thought this was an original place to set it, since the Germans invaded so many places. My friend spent the past year in Denmark, so it was cool to learn about its past a little.

The first scene shows Annemarie, the MC, racing her friend Ellen along the street. They bump into some German soldiers, and the story takes off from there. The friendship between Annemarie and Ellen is very sweet and sister-like.

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Overall, I found this book to be very sweet (there it is again!) and heartfelt. Read it!

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