Here are some of the banned books I read in my pre-blogging days, with some of my thoughts on them. Most of these thoughts are very muddled by time :D This is by no means the full list of banned books I read in my pre-blogging list, but it turns out I’m quite subversive :D
Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank
I didn’t actually enjoy Anne Frank when I read it. Thirteen year old me found Anne whiney and shallow. This doesn’t mean that I don’t understand and appreciate its historical value, and I do think it should be read.
Hills Like White Elephants: The Complete Short Stories by Ernest Hemingway
I haven’t actually read the complete short stories but I have read Hills Like White Elephants and it is a short story that I have taught in the past and will continue to teach in the future as it is an excellent introduction to the iceberg principle in literature. Although I’m not Hemingway’s biggest fan I can see the value in this story.
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
This was one of the few assigned readings in school that I did not object to. I loved it. I loved the story, I loved the lessons, I loved the characters. I simply loved it and think everyone should have a chance to read it.
Merriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary
Oh. Come. On. Banning the dictionary is the most ridiculous thing EVER!! Okay, so who hasn’t spent at least some time looking up naughty words in it, but still (actually me and my college flatmates and two other friends spent a very very amusing evening looking up various words in the dictionary and thesaurus, some naughty, some not). I have Merriam-Webster Online on one my browser toolbar and consult it on at least a weekly basis. I recommended it to colleagues today as an excellent resource.
Twilight Series by Stephenie Mayer
Yes I’ve read it. Wasn’t the greatest bit of literature ever. Falls on the brain candy side of the scale and we all need brain candy.
The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman
It was an enjoyable enough book. I honestly didn’t see the religious issues, or when I saw them I didn’t see them as problematic, but then again I am not a religious person. All that said I personally think there are better fantasy books out there.
The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
I’ve made no secret of the fact that I didn’t exactly enjoy The Catcher in the Rye. I just found Holden Caufield to be whiney. But my brother loved the book so take my opinion with a grain of salt :D
The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown
Yeah I wan’t a fan. I finished the book but had no desire to read the rest. To me it felt very formulaic. Move from one mystery to the next without me really caring about it.
The Handmaid’s Tale by Margret Atwood
I really do love dystopian novels and this book was no exception. I read most of it on a transatlantic flight and was glad I had the excuse to just keep reading :D The ideas in the book felt eerily familiar. It felt spooky and like something that could happen.
Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
I actually read an excerpt of this book today. It was in my English students text book. I didn’t enjoy it when I read it in high school but now I can’t actually remember why. I think that indicates that it is time for a re-read.
A Time to Kill by John Grisham
I went through a period in high school when I read most of the Grisham novels. I know I’ve read A Time to Kill but I can’t actually tell you what happened or what I thought about it.
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
One of my favourite books. I love the imagery in this book. I also find the message very interesting. It is a book I will most definitely teach for many years to come.