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Ban This Book: A Novel

Ban This Book: A Novel

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Ban This Book: A Novel

4.5/5 (48 peringkat)
227 pages
3 hours
Aug 29, 2017


Written by Scribd Editors

Author of a series of award-winning books, Alan Gratz, writes Ban This Book: A Novel, the story of a young fourth-grader who fights back against censorship in the education system.

Amy Anne is a shy girl in the fourth-grade who adores reading. Her favorite book of all time is From The Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. One day, Amy goes to check her favorite book out of the school library when she cannot find it. The librarian tells her it has been pulled from the shelves due to being inappropriate for children.

This is just the beginning of a string of book bans on the school library thanks to a parent's forcefulness with the school board. Shy girl Amy has no other choice but to attend the next school board meeting to stand up for what she knows and loves.

The primary lesson Gratz is trying to impose upon readers is to stand up for what you believe in to be necessary, even if it goes against what you are supposed to think.

Aug 29, 2017

Tentang penulis

ALAN GRATZ was born in Knoxville, Tennessee. After graduating from the University of Tennessee, he began a succession of jobs—newsletter writer, high school teacher, university lecturer, bookseller, radio commercial writer, advertising copy writer, middle school teacher, library shelver—all the while working on various writing projects. In 2006, he published his first novel, Samurai Shortstop, an ALA 2007 Top Ten Book for Young Adults. Alan’s award-winning books include The Brooklyn Nine, Fantasy Baseball, Starfleet Academy: The Assassination Game, Prisoner B-3087, and The League of Seven, the first in a series of alternate history middle grade fantasy novels. When he’s not writing, he’s usually reading other people’s books or creating an awesome new costume for science fiction/fantasy conventions. He lives with his family in North Carolina.

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Ban This Book - Alan Gratz


The Mystery of the Missing Book

It all started the day my favorite book went missing from the library.

I didn’t know it was missing. Not yet. In my mind, it was still sitting there all alone on the shelf like a kid in the cafeteria waiting for her one and only friend to come and find her. Waiting for me to find her. All I wanted to do was run to the library and check out my favorite book before homeroom, but Rebecca, my one and only real-life friend, was still talking about trademarking our names.

Have you ever thought about registering AmyAnneOllinger.com? Rebecca asked me.

No, Rebecca, I have never thought about registering AmyAnneOllinger.com. I am nine years old. Why in the world would I bother to register a Web site with my name on it when my parents won’t even let me use Facebook yet?

That’s what I thought about saying. What I said instead was, No.

You should, Rebecca told me. You’ve got a unique name, but even so, somebody could register it, and then what would you do? RebeccaZimmerman.com is already gone! I’m ten years old, and already my future intellectual property is being snapped up! Jay Z and Beyoncé trademarked their baby’s name less than a month after she was born. You’d think my parents would have known enough to do the same.

Rebecca’s parents were both lawyers, and she wanted to be one too when she grew up. I couldn’t imagine a more boring job.

Instead I said, Yeah.

I was still itching to get to the library and check out my favorite book. I opened my locker to stuff my backpack inside and gave my mailbox a quick look. Nobody knows how it got started, but everybody at Shelbourne Elementary has these cardboard boxes taped to the inside door of their lockers, just below the little vents they put on there in case you get stuffed in your locker by a bully. If you want to leave a note for somebody you just slip the piece of paper in the slot and it falls right into the little cardboard box. It’s such a tradition that Mr. Crutchfield, the custodian, just leaves the boxes in the lockers from year to year.

As usual, my mailbox was empty. Which I’d expected. My one and only friend doesn’t believe in writing notes. Never leave a paper trail, Rebecca says. More advice from her lawyer parents.

Did you hear about Morgan Freeman, the actor? Rebecca asked. "Somebody who wasn’t named Morgan Freeman registered his name at morganfreeman.com, and he had to sue them to get it back! Now that’s an interesting case—"

"I can’t imagine anything less interesting, Rebecca! I don’t care anything about trademarks or registering domain names. I have to go check out my favorite book before somebody else does!"

That’s what I wanted to tell her. Instead I held up a handful of books like a shield and said, I have to return these books to the library before class! and backed away before she could tell me more about the court case. I’ll see you in homeroom! I called.

Normally I would already have my favorite book checked out and in my backpack, but our librarian, Mrs. Jones, has a rule that you can only renew a book two times in a row, and then it has to sit on the shelf for five whole school days before you can check it out again. She says it’s to make sure other people get a chance to read it, but I think she made that rule up just to make me read other books, which I would have done anyway.

I dumped last night’s books in the book return and waved good morning to Mrs. Jones on the way to the fiction shelves.

Amy Anne, Mrs. Jones called. Honey, wait—

Just let me grab my book, I called back. I turned into the H–N shelves and hurried to where I knew my favorite book would be waiting for me.

Only it wasn’t there.

I looked again. It still wasn’t there. I looked behind the books, in case it had gotten pushed back and was hidden behind the others like they sometimes do, but no. It really wasn’t there. But my favorite book was always on the shelf. Could somebody else really have checked it out?

I was about to go and ask Mrs. Jones when she turned down the row. Mrs. Jones is a big white lady with short brown hair and rhinestone granny glasses that hang around her neck on a chain when she isn’t reading. Today she was wearing a red dress with white polka dots. Polka dots are her thing.

Where’s my book? I asked her.

That’s what I was trying to tell you, honey, Mrs. Jones said. I knew you’d come in for it first thing.

It’s been five days, I told her. I marked it down on my calendar. I get to check it out again after five days. You said so. Did somebody—did somebody else check it out?

No, Amy Anne. I had to take it off the shelf.

I frowned. Take it off the shelf? What did she mean, take it off the shelf?


Mrs. Jones sighed and wrung her hands. She looked like she was about to tell me my dogs had died. Because some parents got together and said they didn’t think it was appropriate for elementary school, and the school board agreed with them.

Wasn’t appropriate? What does that mean?

"It means I can’t check it out to you, honey, or to anybody else. Not until I talk to the school board and get this nonsense overturned.

It means, Amy Anne, that your favorite book was banned from the school library.

Did I Just Say That?

I felt like the carpet under my feet was turning into quicksand, and I was sinking fast. I grabbed hold of the bookshelves so I wouldn’t fall over. But—it isn’t inappropriate! It’s very appropriate! It’s a great book! It’s my favorite book!

I know, honey. I agree. Nobody but your parents has the right to tell you what books you can and can’t read. I promise you, I’m going to fight this. But in the meantime I have to abide by what the school board decides, or I could lose my job.

All I could do was nod. I felt like crying, which was stupid. It was like somebody had come into my bedroom and taken my stuff without asking. Which was even more stupid, because it was a library book. Library books belong to everybody.

You can help get it back, Amy Anne, Mrs. Jones said.

I wiped a tear from my cheek. How?

There’s going to be a school board meeting Thursday night, and I’m going to be there to tell them all how wrong they are. It’d be even better if they heard it from you.

My eyes went wide. Me?

Just to hear why you like that book so much would mean a lot.

I swallowed hard. Are you crazy, Mrs. Jones? Me, get up in front of a bunch of adults and tell them why that book is my favorite book? Do you have polka dots on the brain? I can’t do that!

That’s what I wanted to say.

Instead what I said was, Okay.

My Favorite Book (And Why)

The late bus dropped me off in my neighborhood and I stood by the curb, looking down the street at my yellow house. Inside that house right now were Thing 1 and Thing 2, my two annoying little sisters. I closed my eyes and shuddered at the thought of having to spend one more minute with them. You haven’t met them yet, but trust me—if there was a prize for Worst Siblings of the Century, Alexis and Angelina would rank right above Fudge Hatcher, Stink Moody, and Edmund Pevensie—and Edmund Pevensie basically sold his brothers and sisters out to the White Witch for a plate of desserts.

Right then and there I thought about running away from home, just like the main characters in my favorite book.

Did I tell you what my favorite book is? The one that got banned from the Shelbourne Elementary Library? The one I said I would go to a school board meeting and talk about? Out loud? In front of other people? It’s From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E. L. Konigsburg. I like a lot of other books too, especially Island of the Blue Dolphins, Hatchet, My Side of the Mountain, Hattie Big Sky, The Sign of the Beaver, and Julie of the Wolves. Basically any story where the main character gets to live alone. Indian Captive is pretty great too, even though Mary Jemison has to live in an Indian village. But I would rather live with Indian kidnappers than live with my two stupid younger sisters.

I turned away from my house and looked down the road that led out of my subdivision toward the four-lane. Papa Taco, our favorite Mexican restaurant, was just fifteen minutes away by car. I could run away to there. How long would it take me to walk it? I shook my head. Even if I made it, what was I going to do?

In From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, Claudia and her little brother Jamie run away to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City and hide out every night in the bathrooms so the security guards don’t find them. I could hide out in the Papa Taco bathroom until they locked up for the night, but then I’d just be stuck in a Mexican restaurant all night. Now, if I could somehow get to the library …

My dreams of running away died as my mom’s car turned into the subdivision and came my way. I waited until she stopped alongside me and rolled down her window.

Hey, stranger. Thinking about running away?

Of course I was thinking about running away. Every day I stand here and think about how I could fill my backpack with a change of clothes and all the money I have—which isn’t much, because you don’t give me enough allowance—and ride the late bus until it dropped me off somewhere closer to the mall, where I could sleep every night on the beds in the department store.

That’s what I wanted to say. But of course I didn’t. Instead I said, No.

Mom was lighter-skinned than me, with frizzy hair and big dimples in her cheeks when she smiled, like she was now. Hop in, she said. How was school? she asked as we cruised the thirty seconds to our driveway.

I wanted to say, It was awful! My favorite book got banned and Mrs. Jones asked me to come to a school board meeting and talk about it and I said yes and I don’t know how I’ll ever do it! But instead I just said, Fine.

Don’t put your braids in your mouth, Mom told me for the millionth time. My whole head is covered in braids, some of them with little beads at the bottom. I suck on them when I get nervous. Which is a lot.

Mom pulled in beside Dad’s truck. I got out and stood by the car, reluctant to go inside.

Oh, come on, Mom said. It’s not that bad.

Oh yes it is, I wanted to say. But of course I didn’t.

Ponies and Pink Tutus

Our two huge rottweilers, Flotsam and Jetsam, met us at the door to lick my face. They were so tall they came up to my armpits.

Off. Off, I said, trying to pet them so they knew I had said hello. They barked and wagged their tails, squirming around in front of us so much I couldn’t move. I had to follow my mother like she was an icebreaker ship, pushing past the dogs into the kitchen. Dad was there stirring two pots on the stove and baking something in the oven and making a salad. Dad was tall and thin, with skin as dark as mine and muscular arms from laying bricks all day. He had his opera music playing loud again, some Italian lady singing like somebody was shaking her by the shoulders the whole time.

Spaghetti in fifteen minutes, he told us. Alexis! he yelled. Come set the table! I’ve asked her three times.

I can’t! Alexis called from our room down the hall. I’m changing for ballet!

Amy Anne, will you do it, honey? Dad asked.

No. Alexis always has some excuse not to do what she’s told. Make her do it. That’s what I wanted to say. But I knew from experience it didn’t make any sense to argue. It never had. It was easier for everybody concerned if I just went ahead and did it. I dumped my backpack on the floor and went to the cabinet for the plates. Mom disappeared down the hall to change out of her work clothes.

How was chess club? Dad asked me, and I cringed a little. I took the late bus home every day because I told my parents I was staying late for different clubs, but I wasn’t really in the chess club, or the anime club, or the robotics club. I wasn’t in any club. I just sat in my favorite corner of the library and read books until I had to leave. It was the only time I ever got any peace and quiet.

Fine, I lied.

Angelina, my youngest sister, came galloping into the kitchen on all fours. She was a pudgy five-year-old with Mom’s dimples, Dad’s darker skin, and her hair pulled back into a fuzzy ponytail on the back of her head. Angelina had decided she was going to grow up to be a pony, and for the past few weeks she’d been practicing all day. She made a pbpbpbpb sound with her lips and nudged me with her head.

Hello, Angelina, I said.

Rainbow Sparkle! she told me. Rainbow Sparkle was her pony name. I was definitely not calling her Rainbow Sparkle.

The dogs thought Angelina was playing with them, and they started hopping around and barking at her right where I was walking. I had to hold the plates up high not to drop them as I squeezed back and forth. Angelina and the dogs got under Dad’s feet, and he stepped back from the stove with a

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  • (4/5)
    Charming treatment on the topic of school library censorship. There are no true villains here. The lesson is that everyone usually is acting from the best of motives, but the ends do not justify the means. But there are real heroes: sometimes a person has no choice, if they are to live with themselves, other than to stand up for what he or she knows to be important.A quiet student best known for repressing her emotions becomes furious when her favorite book has been banned from her library. Her sole refuge in a world with annoying siblings and misunderstanding parents has been violated, and she finds herself taking steps to undue the damage. The value of books and reading wins the day! A good recruitment tool for future librarians!
  • (5/5)
    This book! This book! Oh heavens – okay, so told from the first person pov of Amy Anne, an avid 9-year-old bibliophile, this books explores what makes us ourselves, where we find courage, and mostly, what censorship is and how it works. When her favorite book (From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler is a novel by E. L. Konigsburg) is banned from her school library, Amy Anne is cut to the heart. Why would someone ban her favorite book? With a little digging and some help from her friends, Amy Anne learns than many books are banned, books that she loves, that others love. And she makes a choice – she’s going to run a Banned Book Library from her locker, freely giving out books, sharing her love of reading, with her classmates. But this takes courage – what if she gets caught? And as more books disappear from the library shelves, Amy Anne has to decide if she can overcome her fear to speak out against this wrong. Although meant for late-elementary, early middle-school reader, this book will appeal to all ages. If you are looking to explain censorship to young readers, this book is an excellent way to help them understand. Note for Parents: Sex is mentioned (in relationship to why some books are banned, in particular, Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret by Judy Blume). While censorship is explained, the book also encourage parental involvement and activie engagement in the reading life of their kids, essentially saying that parents should be the one to guide their child’s reading. I will recommend this book to kids and adults alike.
  • (4/5)
    Ban This Book is a middle grade novel about censorship, friendship and family dynamics. Amy Anne is a shy 4th grader who loves to read. Her favorite book is From The Mixed-Up Files of Mrs Basil E Frankweiler. One day Amy Anne heads to the school library to check out the book and discovers it missing. The school librarian tells her it has been pulled from the shelf as being inappropriate for children. A parent at the school has gotten the school board to ban the book without going through the proper channels. Soon this parent has many more books banned from the school library. Amy Anne goes to the next school board meeting to protest but her incredible shyness makes it impossible for her to speak in public. Instead Amy Anne starts collecting the banned books. She brings her own copies to school. She has her classmates bring in their copies of the banned books. Amy Anne gathers the books in her school locker and starts a secret banned books lending library. What will happen when school authorities find out about the secret library?I enjoyed this book. Everyone who loved books as a child will probably love this book. All the books discussed in the story have actually been banned somewhere in the United States. My only issue with the book was that often the characters seems more like 6th graders than 4th graders.
  • (4/5)
    A timely well written book. I immediately fell in love with Amy Anne and her fight over banned books. Amy Anne's growth in courage made this a refreshing story. As a school librarian this story resonated with me, and I feel that Gratz did a great job covering the reasons why certain books are challenged. I would definitely put this book on the shelves of my library .
  • (4/5)
    I really wanted to be able to give this book 5 stars, based on its portrayal of a courageous 4th grader who takes a stand against books being banned from her school library, and its top-notch discussions of the First Amendment and censorship. When Amy Anne's favorite book (From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil Frankweiler) is banned, along with several others, normally shy and reserved Amy Anne starts to stand up for what she believes in. She and her friends start gathering copies of the banned books to share with their fellow students from the "Banned Books Locker Library". Their efforts get more ingenious the more books are banned, and the conversations that are engendered because of the controversy are spectacular. This is a great book to teach about civil liberties, without having students feel like the lessons are being shoved down their throats.Unfortunately, as good as it is in those areas, it is equally bad in others. Amy Anne's parents are completely oblivious to her feelings of frustration at home (her two little sisters are always right and she is always in the wrong), and whereas the First Amendment is very strong, due process seems not to exist at all. The portrayal of the motivations of the parent behind the book banning was weak, and those of the school board non-existent. These flaws really brought down an otherwise excellent book.
  • (5/5)
    Censorship has reared its ugly head in the elementary school library , that Amy Anne uses to quietly read and to escape from her siblings and her chaotic home. One parent has presented a list of 10 books she wants removed from the library. The school board lets this happen without using the procedure in place for book consideration before removal.On that list of 10 books is Amy Anne's favorite book, "From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler". Amy Anne is fortunate in that her parents buy her a copy of her own. Amy's friend has another title from the list, and then someone has another. The books are passed around from student to student and a Banned Books Library is set up in Amy Anne's school locker. The library grows, bake sales earn money to buy additional books. Another student designs alternative covers for the banned books as camouflage.Then the parent picks out more books to be removed from the library. Resulting in the Banned Books library growing even more.This is a librarians' perfect book. The school librarian in the story is an example of the very best. Most of the titles used for the list are older books that students today may not know (but should). The well known Julie B Jones series and Captain Underpants series are on the list, making it relevant for most children.The reasons a book can be censored are highlighted when the children need alternative titles for their camouflaged book covers. Lots of good classroom discussions can come from that segment. A good read aloud at home or in the classroom. Always a topic that we all need to be aware and on guard against.Read as an ARC from LibraryThing. Thank you. A book this retired librarian is proud to own.
  • (1/5)
    This book started out okay, but the author took it to far.
  • (5/5)
    I loved this book! It was so good I couldn't stop reading it till I finished! Alan Gratz sure has a gift of writing!! I loved the main character and the way she thinks about things and how her house is absolutely chaos and how she forms her secret library with a great name! I definitely recommend this book for 4th graders and up!
  • (5/5)
    The PTA president of an elementary school decides to ban fourth grader Amy Anne's favorite book (and my childhood favorite too!), From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, among others. She and her friends mobilize to both covertly and overtly fight against the removal of a growing list of books from their school's library. I really enjoyed this title. It not only gives fantastic mini-reviews of some great books which are banned in this story (I'm tempted to re-read these staples of childhood literature), this juvenile novel also is about friendships and a young girl finding her voice both in her family and in her school life. Ban This Book is a 2020 North Carolina Children's Book Award Junior Books nominee.
  • (5/5)
    After Unbound, this was the second of the 2020 Nutmeg nominees I read. Without rehashing everything I said in our Blackboard thread, I felt it was an enjoyable book. Throughout it, I kept thinking how shameful it is that a book on censorship is still topical in 2020. If I could suggest a change, however, it would be that Gratz should have written it in a way that did not make it feel like it was geared more towards librarians than kids. Still, this is a book that I would surely revisit as a practicing professional.
  • (5/5)
    Why I Read This:
    1) I was in a reading slump and wanted a children's book that would spark my reading love again.
    2) It's about books. ( ̄▽ ̄)

    In General:
    Fantastic! (☆ω☆) I know I often say this but, I want a physical copy!

    This, is one of those books that I will recommend throughout my life. In fact, I will be checking out the other books that the children in this story enjoyed. As they're all real existing books.
    Mentioning that though, there are (mild) spoilers for the banned books that the children read if you haven't read them already for yourself.

    My Experience:
    Oh I breezed through this. (b ᵔ▽ᵔ)b It had me hooked.
    It only took me a few days. In fact, the only reason the end/finished reading date on this is two months later, is because I didn't have my subscription to Scribd (and I struggled with the free chapter from The League of Seven at the end).

    A very necessary book (on censorship, learning, critical thinking, speaking up, creativity, freedom of expression, etc,) that is well written for a young audience.
    I think any librarian would enjoy this, and benefit to have it in their library. Especially if they ever have a banned book period or lesson.
  • (5/5)
    I love how the author really showed how she felt. She described how books leave a wonderful imprint in your life, and without books, one is not left in peace. I am proud to say this has made it to my favorites list!
  • (5/5)
    I don’t read too many thrillers, but this was recommended for fans of “Ready Player One”. It’s kinda longish, but it does involve some interesting concepts. Far-fetched concepts to be sure (a dead software developer somehow has the wherewithall to turn the world into an AR game, control all the world’s money, and make autonomic cars with ninja swords. It’s like Dr. Light in Mega Man X, who despite being a hologram in a buried capsule, knows who Zero is–this guy ain’t dead).However, like most thrillers, interesting characters get less screentime for the sake of suspense. People become talking heads for explaining and furthering the plot via investigations and news updates. They don’t have much personality.It’s a techno-thriller, so there’s going to be a lot of focus on IT stuff. It’s not terrible writing, but it’s not great. It’s like Stephen King minus the New England color. Meant to be a bestseller thriller. I’m not sure I’d put this on a list of “If you like Ready Player One, you’ll like…” — the mood is completely different: bleak and noir — but I was intrigued enough to put the sequel on my “to read” list (but that’s because the book just ends with no resolution/the bad guys win).
  • (5/5)
    The book is set in Wake County, NC in a K-6 school. A very involved parent, has gone to the school board with a number of titles from the library she feels are inappropriate for children to read. There is a challenged book reconsideration policy in place but for some reason the board takes the opinion of the parent who says she had read none of the books but knows they are bad, instead of going through proper channels currently in place. The board tells the licensed and certified librarian to remove the books from the collection immediately. She has no recourse and complies. They have removed Amy Ann's favorite book, From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. Involved parent says that book encourages children to lie, steal, cheat and runaway from home. Amy Ann is not the only student upset with this wrong doing. The story evolves to Amy Ann's Locker being turned into a lending library for banned books, called the Banned Books Library Locker. Some other books That have been banned are are available in The BBLL, are Wait Till Helen Cones, Captain Underpants, Scary Stories Go Tell in the Dark, the Egypt Game, Junie B Jones, Goosebumps and other titles frequently challenged and banned in schools. This goes on for awhile as the BBLL gets quite popular. One day Amy Ann is called to the principal's office and it's all over. But really it's just started. Now many, many students get behind the movement to get the books put back in the library. All this is surrounded with Amy Ann's struggle with home life, school relationships and everyday life of nine and ten year olds. Amy Ann gets suspended from school, grounded at home, the librarian loses her job even though she complied with the school board. When Amy Ann returns to school, following her suspension, there is a new plan to get the board to reinstate the books. This is a good plan but is plagued with road blocks. Weaknesses with the story is the school board so readily ignoring the book banning policy. The involved parent is highly respected in the community as she chairs many charitable foundations and was the key player in getting the little kid playground replaced with new and safer equipment. Her name is even on a plaque! The visiting author, Dav Pilkey was a fun part of the story, but not likely. And I don't think the librarian would have gotten away with it.But this is a great read. At about page 160, you will be seething mad. Yet, the story has a satisfying and clever ending. And it is agreed, by most, that simply reading a book won't make a kid lie, steal and cheat or worship false gods. In the last chapter, Amy Anne brings a book home from the school library, Her father exercises his parental right that has been his daughter's mantra throughout the whole ordeal. "Nobody has the right to tell you what books you can and can't read except your parents." He suggests she wait a couple years to read the book and says she'll probably enjoy it more when she's older. I loved this book Mr. Gratz! It's a bit different from your usual writing.
  • (3/5)
    Banned books. An important topic! The story was good and I'll recommend it to my fourth and fifth grade library students. I especially liked that characters jumped to conclusions about other people and their motives without fully understanding their intentions—something we should all consider. And, it's good for readers to see that not everything is black or white. Speaking of black and white, though, I'm not sure why Gratz had to identify characters as black or white. Also, I get that the main character thought things but rarely expressed those thoughts, but I was tired of the "I thought, but I said . . ." approach by the 3rd time, let alone the 50th. Still, the biggest draw for me is that KIDS are empowered and decide to stand up to authority when it's needed.
  • (4/5)
    This book was delightful and very cleverly written. Amy Anne loves books but especially the classic From the Mixed up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg. Right off the bat I was hooked since this was a childhood favorite of mine. But in this day of helicopter parenting we find that one parent in particular is on a mission to ban this and several other books and series she finds inappropriate for their Elementary School Library. Amy Anne learns to take action, work with others and stand up for what she believes in even if it might mean getting in a little bit of trouble. This book can open up discussion about the bill of rights, free access, the library as a protector of our rights and the power of children to fight for what they believe in.
  • (4/5)
    Fourth-grader Amy Anne Ollinger is stunned when she tries to check out her favorite book from the library, only to find it missing. Someone else must have checked it out after she returned it yesterday. So, she askes Mrs Jones, the school librarian, if she can put a hold on that title. That’s when she learns that the book has been removed because another student’s parent complained it was “inappropriate.” And this is just the beginning. The mother has a list of books she wants removed from the school library’s shelves. Amy Anne, together with her friends Rebecca and Danny, decide to form the BBLL – Banned Books Locker Library. They get a copy of every book on the list and put in in Amy Anne’s locker, loaning them out to all the kids at school.I loved Amy Anne. I loved how she starts out a quiet, shy girl who virtually never voices her concerns out loud, but who takes action to right a wrong. I like how she ultimately gathers her courage and marshals all her friends in the school – even those she didn’t previously know she had – to help bring the issue to a head and formulate a satisfying conclusion. After all, “for all the amazing things that books can do, they can’t make you into a bad person.” Brava, Amy Anne!Perfect read to celebrate Banned Books Week!
  • (3/5)
    School Library Books are being banned by the school board at the behest of one parent, a very influential PTA Mom. Although there is a School Board policy in place by which to review a book in question by the faculty & Librarian, it is ignored.After the Librarian is fired and Amy Anne suspended for keeping the banned books in her locker & checking them out to her classmates, the students take things into their own hands in order to save their right to read.A very interesting premise & solution to a very common problem.
  • (5/5)
    Loved this one!
  • (5/5)
    I LOVED this book!! When fourth grader Amy Anne finds her favorite book has been banned from the library, she goes on a mission to figure out what happened and why. Her path brings her to many other banned books and ultimately she devises a plan to help kids have access to these books, despite the over-protective parents who want to ban a wide variety of books from the elementary school library. All of the banned books mentioned in Ban This Book are real titles that have really been banned in areas across the country. This is a great book to get kids thinking about censorship and who has the right to decide what books kids can read. If you're looking for a similar story for middle school readers, check out Property of the Rebel Librarian, by Allison Varnes. It's a similar censorship story with an older cast (7th and 8th graders) and more extreme censorship.
  • (5/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    Read in one sitting. Fantastic, invigorating, lovable, skillfully written.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (4/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    ALAN GRATZ is a New York Times bestselling author of a number of novels for young readers. This newest book, BAN THIS BOOK introduces young (and older readers) to award winning books that have been challenged or banned in libraries. The book will be released in time for the 2017 American Library Association's Banned Books Week slated for September 24 - 30.BAN THIS BOOK opens with the 9 year-old avid library lover, Amy Anne, racing to her school library to check-out her favorite book for the umpteenth time. This day, Amy Anne discovers the book, From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler is not on the shelf. After a complaint by a concerned parent about the moral messages several books in the library teach readers, the local library board skips protocol and has ordered the books, including From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, removed from the library shelf. The library board will hear public comment about the pros and cons of permanently banning the books at their next meeting.But - it isn't inappropriate! . . . It's a great book! It is my favorite book!I know, [says the school librarian]. . .Nobody but your parents has the right to tell you what books you can and can't read. I promise you, I'm going to fight this. . .You can help get it back, Amy Anne. . . .[Tell the library board] why you like that book so much. . .Amy, a shy and reluctant public speaker, attends the board meeting but fails to summon the courage to speak up.The librarian reminded the library board they had approved the Request for Reconsideration form and specific procedures for considering the merits of a book but they chose to sidestep the rules. The highly influential community matron's highly emotional speech won the day.Amy Anne take matters into her own hands and begins an underground effort to keep the books available to other students. She is caught and suspended from school for three days. The librarian, having had no part in the deception, was fired. Mrs. Spenser, emboldened, goes on a rampage stripping more books off the library shelves.Mrs. Spenser's own son devises a way to outsmart his mother and to show the library board the need to follow rules. It takes bravery and courage on the part of all the students to pull it off. As expected, all ends well.There are many lessons  for children here. Reading exposes situations in a non-threatening way that prepares their own life crisis as they grow up.  They learn that even adults break rules but that rules are necessary and failing to follow them have consequences. Amy Anne shows that finding your own voice and standing up to what you believe in is important. And most importantly, free speech is a guaranteed by the First Amendment and no one but your parents should have the right to stop you from reading something.Recommended.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (5/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    Ban This Book is a great story for quiet, shy kids. Amy Anne is a fourth grader who likes to read but who rarely tells people what she is feeling. Her favorite book is From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. One day when she is in the library to check it out again, she finds that it is missing from the shelf. The librarian tells Amy Anne that a parent asked that it be removed from circulation because it is unsuitable for kids. After more books are removed from circulation, Amy Anne starts a lending library from her locker. The book makes a stand against censorship. As Amy Anne says, "Nobody has the right to tell you what books you can and can't read except your parents." All of the books mentioned in the novel have been challenged in real life. The novel examines a variety of ways in which books influence kids at certain times in their lives, and argues that while all books are not suitable for kids at all ages, they should remain available. Even Amy Anne doesn't like or isn't interested in all of the books that were pulled from the shelves, but she champions other kids' rights to read them.The novel shows how kids with little in common can come together and make a difference. In the process, they may find unlikely friends. Amy Anne, who starts the novel unable to stand and speak, finds her voice and makes a difference. She just had to find her passion. This is a great novel for young readers.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (5/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    I love it so much I would keep it, but I love it so much I'm immediately giving it to a child. This book does an amazing job of showing WHY BOOKS. empathy, escape, spite at being told we can't. Parents, relax, it also does a wonderful job of walking the line of respecting PARENTS being able to choose what their kids can't read. I love that she's not alone. I love that the kids are all distinct and have their own goals and their own humor. I love that it's about community and rebellion."The next day, Mr Vaughn started a session on the Bill of Rights" I was cheering. I am cheering. I could love this book forever just for the parents respecting things they know are hard for her, for apologizing when they mess up.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (5/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    Alaz Gratz has written a short, powerful novel for 3rd-6th graders about censorship. Amy Anne, a quiet, shy fourth-grader, depends on the school library to for inspiration and escape. She lives in a small house with two busy parents, two dogs, and two younger sisters clamoring for attention and who are constantly in her space, to the point that she retreats to the bathroom or the garage to do homework.One day she arrives at school to find her favorite book, From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, missing from the library shelf. The librarian informs her that the book (and several others) have been removed from circulation because of complaints by a concerned parent about the morals presented in those books, without even going through the district process. She attempts to speak out at a school board meeting but fails.Amy Anne sets out to read all of those challenged books, and begins circulating those volumes among friends and classmates. She gains new friends and learns to speak up for herself because she believes so passionately in the power of literature.All books mentioned have indeed been challenged or formally banned in libraries in the United States, and Amy Anne comes to see that even if she personally isn't interested in a book, it may be valuable to someone else and they should have the right to read it. Only one's parents can tell you what you can and can't read.It was a joy seeing Amy Anne and her friends struggle to outwit the school bureaucracy and how parents can learn from their children. Highly recommended.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (5/5)
    A great book, Alan Gratz is a good book writer.