littlemoose: A photograph of a vivd blue swallowtail butterfly against an orange stucco wall (Matilda (credit - notasecretagent))
Further to [livejournal.com profile] madscot's declaration and [livejournal.com profile] akhmed's musings on the subject, I decided to check out the list of the 100 most commonly challenged books in the American public library system. There were a couple where you sort of go 'well...' like Madonna's Sex for example, which has just about zero literary merit and minus 100 on any sort of porn scale, but how about these entries:

40: What’s Happening to my Body? Book for Girls: A Growing-Up Guide for Parents & Daughters by Lynda Madaras
54: Asking About Sex and Growing Up by Joanna Cole
58: Boys and Sex by Wardell Pomeroy
61: What’s Happening to my Body? Book for Boys: A Growing-Up Guide for Parents & Sons by Lynda Madaras
76: Where Did I Come From? by Peter Mayle
82: Mommy Laid An Egg by Babette Cole
95: Girls and Sex by Wardell Pomeroy

Yes... sensing a theme here... Stopping kids getting proper sex ed is not the best idea anyone ever had - they just go out and educate themselves, trust me; I'm a product of the Catholic school system. Our sex ed amounted to 'don't' and a pretty horrific video of an abortion being performed that a bunch of church-backed pro-lifers brought in. Half the girls in my leaving year were pregnant, or had given birth, when we did our exams. I'm only glad my parents gave me access to all these kinds of books from an early age. These are all American, so I don't know them, but I'm betting they're no worse than the ones I got handed (Of course, having parents who'll talk it all through with you is much better than any book, I know I was lucky to have both).

Hmm... onward:

56: James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl

Actually not the only Dahl on the list; The Witches is much higher up, at #27. I'm willing to bet this is an 'OMG magic' thing. Anyone claiming that it's about violence can feel free to direct me to a miliners for my main course. If that were the case I'd expect to see Matilda (The Trunchbull using a small girl with pigtails as a throwing hammer, doing unspeakble things to a boy with large ears, and locking Matilda in a dank cupboard with glass and nails embedded in all surfaces, known as the Chokey), Rotten Rhymes (Little Red Riding Hood shooting the wolf dead and skinning him for a new coat) and George's Marvellous Medicine (George cooking up such ingredients as shoe polish and paint in an attempt to poison Granny) on the list.

Finally, on a pure WTF note:

88: Where’s Waldo? by Martin Hanford

...The fuck? Where's Wally?! (For that is what it is known as here in brit-land) What conceivable reason would anyone have for wanting to ban that terribly gentle, mind-stimulating, kids puzzle book? The series livened up quite a few rotten rainy days for me.

*Shakes head, treasures memories of reading Huck Finn, The Witches, Lord of the Flies and To Kill a Mockingbird for the first time*
littlemoose: A photograph of a vivd blue swallowtail butterfly against an orange stucco wall (Matilda (credit - notasecretagent))
1)Total number of books owned?
Probably in excess of 200, I have no idea of the exact total. I'd say I have 80 to 100 of those currently in my room.

2) The last book I bought?
No Logo by Naomi Klein, on reccomendation from Kate.

3) The last book I read?
I reread The Hitchiker's Guide To The Galaxy before the movie came out. At the minute I'm about halfway through 5 or 6 different books, because I can never read just one.

4) 5 books that mean a lot to me?
Matilda By Roald Dahl, because when you're eight and you get picked on for actually liking to read, it helps to have a heroine whose main strengths are her love of books and her imagination.
The Melanie Pluckrose Effect by Roger Burt. I've said it before, and I'll say it again, would not have survived my teen years without this book. So pleased that I now actually own a copy, thanks to random secondhand shops on Amazon.
Guards! Guards! by Terry Pratchett - the book that introduced me to the Discworld.
The His Dark Materials trilogy by Phillip Pullman, because every time you read them it hits you just like the first. And the Mulefa are possibly the coolest literary invention of all time.
Round Ireland With a Fridge by Tony Hawks. I was at an all-time low when I read this, and it made me laugh, made me happy and made me see my country in a new light.

5) Tag 5 people and have them fill this out on their ljs:
[livejournal.com profile] romuska
[livejournal.com profile] visp
[livejournal.com profile] madscot
[livejournal.com profile] jamaisneutral
[livejournal.com profile] dirkledo
littlemoose: A photograph of a vivd blue swallowtail butterfly against an orange stucco wall (crumbs chief!)
Stolen from [livejournal.com profile] dracothelizard because I'm in a weird place and the idea amused me

1. Take five books off your bookshelf.
2. Book #1 -- first sentence
3. Book #2 -- last sentence on page fifty
4. Book #3 -- second sentence on page one hundred
5. Book #4 -- next to the last sentence on page one hundred fifty
6. Book #5 -- final sentence of the book
7. Make the five sentences into a paragraph:

The sewers were dark, oppressive and worst of all smelly. 'Danny,' he said. 'We're going back to East Fife.' Once they were in her office, a small room with a large, welcoming fire, Professor Mc Gonagall motioned Harry and Hermione to sit down. Albert looked around, and totally failed to see Susan. Life, what is it but a dream?


1. The Dark Portal, by Robin Jarvis (yes, that is where the domain in my email comes from, well done!)
2. Are YOU Dave Gorman? by Dave Gorman and Danny Wallace
3. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling.
4. Soul Music by Terry Pratchett.
5. Through the Looking Glass, and What Alice Found There by Lewis Carroll
littlemoose: A photograph of a vivd blue swallowtail butterfly against an orange stucco wall (gryffie)
[livejournal.com profile] dracothelizard reckons the only reson people do this meme is to show off the good books they've read... well, maybe that's part of the reason here too, but the main part is shaming myself into reading all the books on here I've wanted to read, but have never got round to...

Big read meme )

I'm really looking forward to class tomorrow night, oddly, even though I can't be arsed with just about anything right now. Got my 'magic box' poem done, and then an odd sort of half-rhyming thing came out of nowhere, so I might take it in too...
littlemoose: A photograph of a vivd blue swallowtail butterfly against an orange stucco wall (Default)
I'm doing the Friday Five this week, as it's all about my favourite things ;-)

1. What were your favorite childhood stories?
I owned and devoured a lot of the 'Coping With...' books, they were just my kind of off the wall humour. I picked up the newest one everytime we had a book fair in school. (I'm pleased to see Peter Corey's still writing them too!) I loved the local legends that my Uncle Frank used to tell me, he's a wonderful storyteller. The Children of Lír was a favourite... I loved anything by Roald Dahl, Matilda was my very favourite. I also loved the Alice stories, especially 'Through The Looking Glass, and what Alice found there.' I also remember a really disgusting book called "Wagstaffe the Wind-Up Boy" which was written like one of those morality fables, about a boy who was rebuilt to run on clockwork after being almost killed, but turned out to have no morals whatsoever, which pleased me ;-)

2. What books from your childhood would you like to share with [your] children?
I don't intend on having any, but a child raised on The Wind In The Willows, Roger McGough and Michael Rosen's poetry and a steady stream of Roald Dahl will never go far wrong!

3. Have you re-read any of those childhood stories and been surprised by anything?
I was a bit depressed when I re-read 'The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe' as an adult... Lewis kind of whacks you over the head with all the Christian allegory. Re-reading it as a cynical, athistic adult kind of tarnished the sense of wonder I had when I read it at eight. I dug out the 'Coping With...' books I own a while ago too, and I was surprised that they still make me laugh, I suppose that was the main reason I liked them so much as a kid - they weren't patronising in their humour.

4. How old were you when you first learned to read?
Two or three. I could read well before I weant to school, there were always books in the house, and there was always somone reading to me.

5. Do you remember the first 'grown-up' book you read? How old were you?
If the Discworld books count, which I don't think they do, then I was about 11 or 12, and I read "Better Than Life" which was one of the Red Dwarf novels, around the same time. The first really DARK adult book I read was "Getting Rid of Mr Kitchen" when I was 16. It took me 6 months to finish because everytime I got to a really sick bit I hid it behind the sofa until I could carry on! I kept it though, and I've re-read it since then!

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