Stories unite us; books go beyond borders and break barriers. Banned books mean that people—individuals, parents, schools, and groups—censor these titles because they feel the need to protect readers, especially children, from what they consider offensive themes, tropes, or languages. Oftentimes, it is also because of religious and political reasons.
This year, as Fully Booked celebrates Banned Books Week, we focus on the benefits of unrestricted reading and the harms of censorship. Here are some modern and historically challenged book suggestions in celebration of our freedom to read.
A dystopian novel written in 1985 by Canadian author Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid’s Tale is set in a near-future New England known with a new leadership that has overthrown the United States government. The Republic of Gilead is a strongly patriarchal, totalitarian theonomic state—handmaids, the average women in the society, have no free will or individualism.
Why is The Handmaid’s Tale a banned book?
The Handmaid’s Tale is challenged for its descriptions of sexual encounters, profanity, violence, and for "vulgarity and sexual overtones."
Since The Kite Runner’s publication in 2003, it has met with numerous challenges. This book is set against a backdrop of tumultuous events, from the fall of Afghanistan’s monarchy through the Soviet invasion. An unusual and powerful novel, The Kite Runner is a sweeping story of family, love, and friendship.
Why is The Kite Runner a banned book?
The Kite Runner is challenged for its offensive language, religious viewpoints, and fear that the novel would inspire terrorism and “promote Islam.”
George Orwell’s ninth and final book completed in his lifetime is a rare work that offers the author’s vision on the consequences of totalitarianism and a repressive regimentation. 1984 was published in 1949, a work that grows more haunting as its futuristic purgatory becomes more real.
Why is 1984 a banned book?
1984 is challenged for its social and political themes, as well as for sexual content.
A coming-of-age epistolary novel that is centered on what it’s like to grow up in high school. More than an intimate diary, Charlie’s letters are singular and unique, hilarious and devastating. The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a world of first dates and mixtapes, family dramas, and new friends.
Why is The Perks of Being a Wallflower a banned book?
The Perks of Being a Wallflower has been challenged at least 11 times since its publication for drugs and alcohol and smoking, offensive language, and homosexuality.
A modern classic, Carrie is a horror novel that was first published in 1974. Author Stephen King tells the story of misunderstood high school girl Carrie White, her extraordinary telekinetic powers, and her violent rampage of revenge. With its astounding storytelling, this thriller remains one of the most barrier-breaking and shocking novels of all time.
Why is Carrie a banned book?
Carrie is challenged for its violence, cursing, underage sex, and negative view of religion.
J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye is a classic novel of teenage angst and rebellion. Holden Caulfield struggles with growing up and sees everything around him—his parents, school, adults, the society—as meaningless and fake. It’s been lauded as one of Time’s 2005 list of 100 best English-language novels written since 1923 and named as one of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century by the Modern Library and its readers.
Why is The Catcher in the Rye a banned book?
The Catcher in the Rye is challenged for its profanity, obscenity, violence, and sexual content.
Written more than 70 years ago, 1984 was George Orwell’s chilling prophecy about the future. And while 1984 has come and gone, his dystopian vision of a government that will do anything to control the narrative is timelier than ever...
A startling and haunting novel, 1984 creates an imaginary world that is completely convincing from start to finish. No one can deny the novel’s hold on the imaginations of whole generations, or the power of its admonitions—a power that seems to grow, not lessen, with the passage of time.
Get 1984, 60th Anniversary Edition (Paperback) by Gorge Orwell and other contemporary fiction books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
J. D. Salinger
The "brilliant, funny, meaningful novel" (The New Yorker) that established J. D. Salinger as a leading voice in American literature--and that has instilled in millions of readers around the world a lifelong love of books.
The hero-narrator of The Catcher in the Rye is an ancient child of sixteen, a native New Yorker named Holden Caufield. Through circumstances that tend to preclude adult, secondhand description, he leaves his prep school in Pennsylvania and goes underground in New York City for three days.
Get The Catcher in the Rye (Paperback) by J. D. Salinger and other contemporary fiction books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
The critically acclaimed debut novel from Stephen Chbosky follows observant “wallflower” Charlie as he charts a course through the strange world between adolescence and adulthood. First dates, family drama, and new friends. Sex, drugs, and The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Devastating loss, young love, and life on the fringes. Caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it, Charlie must learn to navigate those wild and poignant roller-coaster days known as growing up.
Get The Perks of Being a Wallflower 20th Anniversary Edition (Hardcover) by Stephen Chbosky and other fiction books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
#1 New York Times bestseller
An instant classic and eerily prescient cultural phenomenon, from “the patron saint of feminist dystopian fiction” (New York Times). Now an award-winning Hulu series starring Elizabeth Moss.
In Margaret Atwood’s dystopian future, environmental disasters and declining birthrates have led to a Second American Civil War. The result is the rise of the Republic of Gilead, a totalitarian regime that enforces rigid social roles and enslaves the few remaining fertile women. Offred is one of these, a Handmaid bound to produce children for one of Gilead’s commanders.
Get The Handmaid's Tale (Paperback) by Margaret Atwood and other science fiction books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More
Stephen King's legendary debut, the bestselling smash hit that put him on the map as one of America's favorite writers
Unpopular at school and subjected to her mother's religious fanaticism at home, Carrie White does not have it easy. But while she may be picked on by her classmates, she has a gift she's kept secret since she was a little girl: she can move things with her mind. Doors lock. Candles fall. Her ability has been both a power and a problem.
Get Carrie (Paperback) by Stephen King and other fiction books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.Learn More