13 Most Challenged Books in 2022

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Top Ten Tuesday

Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl invited us to share reading goals we would like to accomplish before the end of the year this week. I have so many of those, I can’t possibly accomplish them all. But since this is Banned Books Week, I decided to share a list of the 13 most challenged books in 2022 according to the American Library Association (there are a few ties). The charts below, also from the ALA, show that challenges or bans were brought against 2571 books last year, up 38% from 2021. Most horrifying, that’s a 1053% increase from 2020.

Most of the challenged books are written by racial or ethnic minorities and/or members of the LGBTQ+ community. We cannot silence the voices of people whose life experiences are different from ours. We need their stories so that we can make societal changes and gain empathy and understanding. Sure, parents have a right to monitor what their children read, but no one has the right to restrict what everyone can read. It’s that simple. I don’t know why we as a society are making this so difficult.

Don’t make the mistake of thinking that banning books doesn’t affect you if you mostly read mainstream bestsellers. A couple of books by some very popular authors have gotten caught up in the wide net of book bans recently. If we continue as we are, it will affect all of us sooner or later.

So let’s get down to the actual list now. I haven’t read any of these but I have read other books by some of these authors and some have been on my to-read list for a while.

1. Gender Queer by Maia Kobabe

2. All Boys Aren’t Blue by George M. Johnson (I read We Are Not Broken by this author in 2021 and rated it 4 stars)

3. The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison (This one has been on my Classics Club list since 2021)

4. Flamer by Mike Curato

5. (tie) Looking for Alaska by John Green (I’ve owned a copy of this for at least a decade but haven’t gotten around to reading it yet)

5. (tie) The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

7. Lawn Boy by Jonathan Evison

8. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie

9. Out of Darkness by Ashley Hope Pérez

10. (tie) A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas (I read Throne of Glass in 2021)

10. (tie) Crank by Ellen Hopkins

10. (tie) Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews

10. (tie) This Book is Gay by Juno Dawson

That’s the list! Have you read any of these? Did any of them surprise you? Link up every Tuesday at That Artsy Reader Girl!

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  1. I feel like the only reason people push so hard to *ban* books in today’s world, is because they don’t want to put in the time to pay attention to what their kids are reading. I was reading Stephen King at 10 years old… would I recommend that to most parents? No. But I don’t think putting a blanket “NO KID” should read this this this and this because “MY kid is not mature enough for it” is not the answer. I have read many of these, and more not listed, banned books–they’re only banned because they make people uncomfortable, and people don’t like being (or having) uncomfortable (conversations).
    Either way–love this post! Thank you for sharing!

  2. I went through an Ellen Hopkins phase back in the day, so I *think* I’ve read CRANK. Her books are definitely mature and I, personally, would not hand them to my 14-year-old, but I think that’s a matter for parents to decide or, even better, parents and kids together.

    Happy TTT!


  3. We have a new bookstore that opened near us and they have a section for banned books. I was REALLY surprised by some of the books in there (like Hop on Pop by Dr. Seuss).

  4. A Court of Mist and Fury was my favourite ACOTAR book! Coming from the UK where to my knowledge only one book is banned (and that was written in the 1700s and was likely to have been forgotten about unbanning 🤣) these statistics shock me. I am lucky that we don’t have book banning. I am sure it won’t be long though 🙄

    Have a good rest of the week!

    Emily @ Budget Tales Book Blog
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