Twilight: #5 most-challenged book of 2009

Today, the American Library Association (ALA) released its top ten list of the most-challenged books of 2009 — and Twilight came in at #5 on the list. These are the books some parents or groups have tried to get banned. Of course, these bans don’t work. (It’s called the First Amendment, and to learn more visit the ALA’s Banned Books Week website).

Here’s more about Twilight‘s ranking from the Associated Press:

NEW YORK (AP) — Stephenie Meyer, the hottest author for young people since J.K. Rowling, has a new link to the creator of “Harry Potter”: a place high on the list of books most complained about by parents and educators.

Meyer’s multimillion-selling “Twilight” series was ranked No. 5 on the annual report of “challenged books” released Wednesday by the American Library Association. Meyer’s stories of vampires and teen romance have been criticized for sexual content; a library association official also thinks that the “Twilight” series reflects general unease about supernatural stories.

“Vampire novels have been a target for years and the `Twilight’ books are so immensely popular that a lot of the concerns people have had about vampires are focused on her books,” says Barbara Jones, director of the association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom.

Christian groups for years have protested the themes of wizardry in Rowling’s books, which don’t appear on the current top 10.

Topping the 2009 chart was Lauren Myracle’s “IM” series, novels told through instant messages that have been criticized for nudity, language and drug references. Last year’s No. 1 book, “And Tango Makes Three,” by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson, is now No. 2, cited again for its story about two male penguins adopting a baby. Third was Stephen Chbosky’s “The Perks of Being a Wallflower,” for which the many reasons include drugs, suicide, homosexuality and being antifamily.

Also cited were such perennials as J.D. Salinger’s “The Catcher in the Rye” (sexual content, language), Harper Lee’s “To Kill a Mockingbird” (language, racism), Alice Walker’s “The Color Purple” (sexual content, language) and Robert Cormier’s “The Chocolate War” (nudity, language, sexual content).

The ALA recorded 460 challenges in 2009, a drop from 513 the year before, and 81 books actually being removed. The ALA defines a challenge as a “formal, written complaint filed with a library or school requesting that materials be removed because of content or appropriateness.”

For every challenge tallied, about four or five end up unreported, according to the ALA.

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4 Responses

  1. […] Over at our sister site, Novel Novice Twilight, we also talk about how Twilight has made its way onto the list this year. […]

  2. You have no idea how excited I was to see this post. I’m working on my Master’s degree in Library Science and got the e-mail from ALA today. I have never seen another website that would consider this news. It justifies what I’m doing with my life.

  3. as a adult my daughter hooked me on the books. i see no problem for teens and pre teens reading it . i have read all 4 and took my daughter to the movies. the books were better but i will have to say i liked the first movie, that second was horrible. poor acting and that taylor kid looked like a 2 yr old kissing his sister. their were alot of fathers like me watching several fell asleep. im not kidding. they should bring the lady who directed twilight to do the fourth movie. i will take my daughter for both up coming but come on guys lets have a better showing.

  4. I don’t think these books are at all offensive. Have you seen the shows they play on MTV these days? They are WAY more offensive then Twilight will ever be!

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