Special Collections

ALA's Most Frequently Challenged Books of the 21st Century

Description: Explore the list of American Library Association's Most Frequently Challenged Books. Some titles are challenged multiple years. To learn more about challenges to books, visit ALA's website: http://www.ala.org/bbooks/frequentlychallengedbooks/top10 #teens


Showing 26 through 50 of 70 results
 

The Hunger Games

by Suzanne Collins

The book no one can stop talking about . . .

In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV. Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she is forced to represent her district in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that weigh survival against humanity and life against love.

New York Times bestselling author Suzanne Collins delivers equal parts suspense and philosophy, adventure and romance, in this searing novel set in a future with unsettling parallels to our present.

Winner of Pacific Northwest Library Association’s Young Reader’s Choice Senior Award

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2013

The Adventures of Captain Underpants

by Dav Pilkey

Meet Captain Underpants, a superhero with a true identity that is SO secret, even HE doesn't know who he is! Now with a full-color bonus chapter! George and Harold have created the greatest superhero in the history of their elementary school -- and now they've accidentally brought him to life! Read the first book in this bestselling series about two creative kids and the zany misadventures that follow when Captain Underpants leaps off the page to save the day! Acclaimed author and Caldecott Honor artist Dav Pilkey takes readers on a wild ride in this outrageously funny, action-packed, easy-to-read chapter book. With illustrations on every page, it's great for both beginning and chapter-book readers, and sure to turn even the most reluctant of readers into lifelong fans. This updated ebook edition now includes a bonus chapter in full-color that reveals the true origins of Captain Underpants! The critics are CRAZY about UNDERPANTS! "Irresistible." -- Entertainment Weekly "Call Pilkey... the savior of the 'reluctant reader.'" -- USA Today "So appealing that youngsters won't notice that their vocabulary is stretching." -- School Library Journal "Pilkey's sharp humor shines, and is as much fun for parents as their young readers." -- Parents' Choice Foundation "Combines empowerment and empathy with age-appropriate humor and action." -- Booklist "Celebrates the triumph of the good-hearted." -- The Educational Book and Media Association

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2013

The Adventures of Captain Underpants

by Dav Pilkey

George and Harold have created the greatest superhero in the history of their elementary school - and now they're going to bring him to life! Meet Captain Underpants! His true identity is so secret, even he doesn't know who he is!

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2013

Beloved

by Toni Morrison

Staring unflinchingly into the abyss of slavery, this spellbinding novel transforms history into a story as powerful as Exodus and as intimate as a lullaby.

Sethe, its protagonist, was born a slave and escaped to Ohio, but eighteen years later she is still not free.

She has too many memories of Sweet Home, the beautiful farm where so many hideous things happened.

And Sethe's new home is haunted by the ghost of her baby, who died nameless and whose tombstone is engraved with a single word: Beloved.

Filled with bitter poetry and suspense as taut as a rope, Beloved is a towering achievement.

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2012

The Glass Castle

by Jeannette Walls

Jeannette Walls grew up with parents whose ideals and stubborn nonconformity were both their curse and their salvation. Rex and Rose Mary Walls had four children. In the beginning, they lived like nomads, moving among Southwest desert towns, camping in the mountains.

Rex was a charismatic, brilliant man who, when sober, captured his children's imagination, teaching them physics, geology, and above all, how to embrace life fearlessly. Rose Mary, who painted and wrote and couldn't stand the responsibility of providing for her family, called herself an "excitement addict." Cooking a meal that would be consumed in fifteen minutes had no appeal when she could make a painting that might last forever.

Later, when the money ran out, or the romance of the wandering life faded, the Walls retreated to the dismal West Virginia mining town--and the family--Rex Walls had done everything he could to escape. He drank. He stole the grocery money and disappeared for days. As the dysfunction of the family escalated, Jeannette and her brother and sisters had to fend for themselves, supporting one another as they weathered their parents' betrayals and, finally, found the resources and will to leave home.

What is so astonishing about Jeannette Walls is not just that she had the guts and tenacity and intelligence to get out, but that she describes her parents with such deep affection and generosity. Hers is a story of triumph against all odds, but also a tender, moving tale of unconditional love in a family that despite its profound flaws gave her the fiery determination to carve out a successful life on her own terms. For two decades, Jeannette Walls hid her roots. Now she tells her own story. A regular contributor to MSNBC.com, she lives in New York and Long Island and is married to the writer John Taylor.

A New York Times Bestseller

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2012

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark

by Alvin Schwartz

The iconic anthology series of horror tales that's soon to be a highly anticipated feature film!Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark is a timeless collection of chillingly scary tales and legends, in which folklorist Alvin Schwartz offers up some of the most alarming tales of horror, dark revenge, and supernatural events of all time.Available for the first time as an ebook, Stephen Gammell’s artwork from the original Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark appears in all its spooky glory. Read if you dare!And don't miss More Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark and Scary Stories 3!

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2012

Gossip Girl

by Cecily Von Ziegesar

Welcome to New York City's Upper East Side, where my friends and I live and go to school and play and sleep - sometimes with each other. We're smart, we've inherited classic good looks, and we know how to party. It's a luxe life, but someone's got to live it. The Gossip Girl series is the ultimate in glamour and cool - set in New York's glamorous Upper East Side the narrative follows the thrills and spills (with Jimmy Choo shoes and shopping at Barneys mixed in along the way) of its richest and most beautiful teenage residents. The Gossip Girl series is the ultimate in sophistication, scandal and luxury - in fact if Carrie Bradshaw of Sex and the City had a younger sister, there is no doubt she would be 'Gossip Girl'! "A nasty, guilty pleasure. The book has the effect of gossip itself once you enter it's hard to extract yourself; teens will devour this whole." - Publishers Weekly. "A fast, easy reading that's both funny and sad ... high appeal for older teens." - School Library Journal

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2011

What My Mother Doesn’t Know

by Sonya Sones

Composed entirely of short poems in free verse, What My Mother Doesn't Know captures the ups and downs of Sophie's freshman year of high school and her first real romance.

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2011

Brave New World

by Aldous Huxley

Aldous Huxley's tour de force, Brave New World is a darkly satiric vision of a "utopian" future--where humans are genetically bred and pharmaceutically anesthetized to passively serve a ruling order.

A powerful work of speculative fiction that has enthralled and terrified readers for generations, it remains remarkably relevant to this day as both a warning to be heeded as we head into tomorrow and as thought-provoking, satisfying entertainment.

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2011

The Agony of Alice

by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor

Life, Alice McKinley feels, is just one big embarrassment. Here she is, about to be a teenager and she doesn't know how. It's worse for her than for anyone else, she believes, because she has no role model. Her mother has been dead for years. Help and advice can only come from her father, manager of a music store, and her nineteen-year-old brother, who is a slob. What do they know about being a teen age girl? What she needs, Alice decides, is a gorgeous woman who does everything right, as a roadmap, so to speak. If only she finds herself, when school begins, in the classroom of the beautiful sixth-grade teacher, Miss Cole, her troubles will be over. Unfortunately, she draws the homely, pear-shaped Mrs. Plotkin. One of Mrs. Plotkin's first assignments is for each member of the class to keep a journal of their thoughts and feelings. Alice calls hers "The Agony of Alice," and in it she records all the embarrassing things that happen to her. Through the school year, Alice has lots to record. She also comes to know the lovely Miss Cole, as well as Mrs. Plotkin. And she meets an aunt and a female cousin whom she has not really known before. Out of all this, to her amazement, comes a role model -- one that she would never have accepted before she made a few very important discoveries on her own, things no roadmap could have shown her. Alice moves on, ready to be a wise teenager.

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2011

My Mom's Having a Baby

by Dori Hillestad Butler and Carol Thompson

Elizabeth's mom is having a baby, and the whole family is involved. Elizabeth learns all about the baby's development, and she traces his growth, month by month. She learns how the baby got inside Mom, too. Finally the big day comes--Mom and Dad head off to the hospital, and soon there's a brand-new little person in the family!

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2011

TTYL

by Lauren Myracle

This book chronicles, in "instant message" format, the day-to-day experiences, feelings, and plans of three friends, Zoe, Maddie, and Angela, as they begin tenth grade.

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2011

Twilight

by Stephenie Meyer

The #1 New York Times bestseller is available for the first time in a mass market paperback edition, featuring a striking movie tie-in cover.

Bella Swan's move to Forks, a small, perpetually rainy town in Washington, could have been the most boring move she ever made. But once she meets the mysterious and alluring Edward Cullen, Bella's life takes a thrilling and terrifying turn.

Up until now, Edward has managed to keep his vampire identity a secret in the small community he lives in, but now nobody is safe, especially Bella, the person Edward holds most dear.

Deeply romantic and extraordinarily suspenseful, Twilight captures the struggle between defying our instincts and satisfying our desires.

This is a love story with bite.

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2010

Revolutionary voices

by Amy Sonnie

Revolutionary Voices celebrates the hues and harmonies of the future of gay and lesbian society, presenting not a collection of stories but a collection of experiences, ideas, dreams, and fantasies expressed through prose, poetry, artwork, letters, diaries, and performance pieces.

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2010

Nickel and Dimed

by Barbara Ehrenreich and Frances Fox Piven

The New York Times bestseller, and one of the most talked about books of the year, Nickel and Dimed has already become a classic of undercover reportage.

Millions of Americans work for poverty-level wages, and one day Barbara Ehrenreich decided to join them. She was inspired in part by the rhetoric surrounding welfare reform, which promised that any job equals a better life. But how can anyone survive, let alone prosper, on $6 to $7 an hour? To find out, Ehrenreich moved from Florida to Maine to Minnesota, taking the cheapest lodgings available and accepting work as a waitress, hotel maid, house cleaner, nursing-home aide, and Wal-Mart salesperson. She soon discovered that even the "lowliest" occupations require exhausting mental and physical efforts. And one job is not enough; you need at least two if you intend to live indoors.

Nickel and Dimed reveals low-wage America in all its tenacity, anxiety, and surprising generosity -- a land of Big Boxes, fast food, and a thousand desperate strategies for survival. Instantly acclaimed for its insight, humor, and passion, this book is changing the way America perceives its working poor.

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2010

Lush

by Natasha Friend

Natasha Friend is a Judy Blume for today -- clearly evident in this remarkable new novel about a girl whose father is an alcoholic and how she and her family learn to deal with his condition. It's hard to be a 13-year-old girl. But it's even harder when your father's a drunk. It adds an extra layer to everything -- your family's reactions to things, the people you're willing to bring home, the way you see yourself and the world. For Samantha, it's something that's been going on for so long that she's almost used to it. Only, you never get used to it. Especially when it starts to get worse...

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2010

Crank

by Ellen Hopkins

Kristina Georgia Snow is the perfect daughter: gifted high school junior, quiet, never any trouble.

But on a trip to visit her absentee father, Kristina disappears and Bree takes her place. Bree is the exact opposite of Kristina -- she's fearless.

Through a boy, Bree meets the monster: crank. And what begins as a wild, ecstatic ride turns into a struggle through hell for her mind, her soul -- her life.

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2010

The Chocolate War

by Robert Cormier

One of the most controversial YA novels of all time, The Chocolate War is a modern masterpiece that speaks to fans of S. E. Hinton's The Outsiders and John Knowles's A Separate Peace. After suffering rejection from seven major publishers, The Chocolate War made its debut in 1974, and quickly became a bestselling--and provocative--classic for young adults. This chilling portrait of an all-boys prep school casts an unflinching eye on the pitfalls of conformity and corruption in our most elite cultural institutions. "Masterfully structured and rich in theme; the action is well crafted, well timed, suspenseful."--The New York Times Book Review "The characterizations of all the boys are superb."--School Library Journal, starred review "Compellingly immediate. . . . Readers will respect the uncompromising ending."--Kirkus Reviews, starred review An ALA Best Book for Young Adults A School Library Journal Best Book of the Year A Kirkus Reviews Editor's Choice A New York Times Outstanding Book of the YearFrom the Trade Paperback edition.

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2009

The Color Purple

by Alice Walker

Alice Walker's masterpiece, a powerful novel of courage in the face of oppression

Celie has grown up in rural Georgia, navigating a childhood of ceaseless abuse. Not only is she poor and despised by the society around her, she's badly treated by her family. As a teenager she begins writing letters directly to God in an attempt to transcend a life that often seems too much to bear. Her letters span twenty years and record a journey of self-discovery and empowerment through the guiding light of a few strong women and her own implacable will to find harmony with herself and her home.

The Color Purple's deeply inspirational narrative, coupled with Walker's prodigious talent as a stylist and storyteller, have made the novel a contemporary classic of American letters.

This ebook features an illustrated biography of Alice Walker including rare photos from the author's personal collection.

Winner of the National Book Award

Pulitzer Prize Winner

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2009

The Earth, My Butt and Other Big Round Things

by Carolyn Mackler

Feeling like she does not fit in with the other members of her family, who are all thin, brilliant, and good-looking, Virginia tries to deal with her self-image, her first physical relationship, and her disillusionment with the people closest to her.

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2009

My Sister's Keeper

by Jodi Picoult

New York Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult tells the story of a girl who decides to sue her parents for the rights to her own body in this powerful family drama that tackles a controversial subject with grace and explores what it means to be a good person.Anna is not sick, but she might as well be. By age thirteen, she has undergone countless surgeries, transfusions, and shots so that her older sister, Kate, can somehow fight the leukemia that has plagued her since childhood. The product of preimplantation genetic diagnosis, Anna was conceived as a bone marrow match for Kate--a life and a role that she has never challenged...until now. Like most teenagers, Anna is beginning to question who she truly is. But unlike most teenagers, she has always been defined in terms of her sister--and so Anna makes a decision that for most would be unthinkable, a decision that will tear her family apart and have perhaps fatal consequences for the sister she loves. My Sister's Keeper examines what it means to be a good parent, a good sister, a good person. Is it morally correct to do whatever it takes to save a child's life, even if that means infringing upon the rights of another? Is it worth trying to discover who you really are, if that quest makes you like yourself less? Should you follow your own heart, or let others lead you? Once again, in My Sister's Keeper, Jodi Picoult tackles a controversial real-life subject with grace, wisdom, and sensitivity.

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2009

The Catcher in the Rye

by J. D. Salinger

The hero-narrator of THE CATCHER IN THE RYE is an ancient child of sixteen, a native New Yorker named Holden Caulfield. 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.

The boy himself is at once too simple and too complex for us to make any final comment about him or his story. Perhaps the safest thing we can say about Holden is that he was born in the world not just strongly attracted to beauty but, almost, hopelessly impaled on it.

There are many voices in this novel: children's voices, adult voices, underground voices--but Holden's voice is the most eloquent of all. Transcending his own vernacular, yet remaining marvelously faithful to it, he issues a perfectly articulated cry of mixed pain and pleasure. However, like most lovers and clowns and poets of the higher orders, he keeps most of the pain to, and for, himself. The pleasure he gives away, or sets aside, with all his heart. It is there for the reader who can handle it to keep.

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2009

Uncle Bobby's Wedding

by Sarah S. Brannen and Sarah Brannen

Bobby and Jamie are getting married, but Bobby's niece Chloe is worried that she won't be his favorite person anymore. Will Uncle Bobby still think she is special?

Sarah Brannen's warm story is set in an alternative family as Uncle Bobby marries his boyfriend. Uncle Bobby's Wedding embraces Bobby's relationship with Jamie, but keeps its focus where it truly belongs: on an uncle and niece's love for each other. Beautifully told and charmingly illustrated, this simple yet moving story begs to be read time and again.

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2008

His Dark Materials Trilogy (The Golden Compass, The Subtle Knife, The Amber Spyglass)

by Philip Pullman

Lyra and Will both come from a place called Oxford, but in different worlds. Dealing with the nature of the soul, parallel universes, original sin, angels, witches, fighting bears ... teenage or adult readers.

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2008

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Oprah Winfrey and Maya Angelou

Here is a book as joyous and painful, as mysterious and memorable, as childhood itself. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings captures the longing of lonely children, the brute insult of bigotry, and the wonder of words that can make the world right. Maya Angelou’s debut memoir is a modern American classic beloved worldwide.

Sent by their mother to live with their devout, self-sufficient grandmother in a small Southern town, Maya and her brother, Bailey, endure the ache of abandonment and the prejudice of the local “powhitetrash.” At eight years old and back at her mother’s side in St. Louis, Maya is attacked by a man many times her age—and has to live with the consequences for a lifetime. Years later, in San Francisco, Maya learns that love for herself, the kindness of others, her own strong spirit, and the ideas of great authors (“I met and fell in love with William Shakespeare”) will allow her to be free instead of imprisoned.

Poetic and powerful, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings will touch hearts and change minds for as long as people read.

Date Added: 04/03/2019


Year: 2007


Showing 26 through 50 of 70 results