Welcome to Week Twenty-One of Flashback Fridays where the old and new collide on everything from books to movies to first loves to favorite vacations. This week we're discussing banned books for Banned Books Week.
Catcher in the Rye, The Diary of Anne Frank, Of Mice and Men, The Wizard of Oz, Forever...all of these are banned books. What are your favorite or treasured banned books? Want to know if yours is on a banned or challenged list? Then check out ALA'S list.
The most treasured banned book for me has to be To Kill a Mockingbird. My first experience with TKAM came in 8th grade when I first read the novel. Sure, I didn't gain the literary appreciation for it then, but I do remember loving the characters, feeling the
injustice of what happened to Tom Robinson, and sympathizing with Boo Radley. I also remember the culminating project I did: a Southern cookbook filled with TKAM inspired recipes(I'll admit
my Grammy, a master of Southern cooking, helped me a bit!)
The next time I read TKAM was in my second undergrad when I was adding a teaching degree to my English degree. It was then that I truly grasped the full mastery that is the book.
I got to teach TKAM for the first time the following year. I remember feeling the responsibility of covering not only all the
beautiful figurative language, the themes, etc, but to truly convey the character's triumphs and tragedies. I taught TKAM for five years. The first year I moved up to high school, I was saddened to not be teaching it anymore. I haven't read it in awhile, and I plan on rereading it soon.
Each time I do, I find some other literary gem within its pages or some turn of a phrase that I, as a writer, marvel at. The film adaptation, though considerably different, stands alone in its mastery. The very final scene of "Neighbors bring food and flowers with death...." has me weeping every time, especially since it is adult Scout reflecting back, and you realize when she thinks of Atticus, he is probably deceased, and of Boo Radley(I'm seriously choking up right now!)!!!!
When I started out writing, I began with a Southern Literary Fiction--very much inspir
ed by TKAM as well as Fried Green Tomatoes at the WhistleStop Cafe and Cold Sassy Tree. I have a Southern YA Historical that's itching to be written....not sure when it will happen though.
So, want to support Banned Books week besides buying or reading banned books? How about sporting some Banned Books jewelry? I have the Banned Books Bracelet myself!
Cafe Press has some awesome Banned Books posters for sale.
Or you can go to ABFFE or the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression for some downloadable posters.
Now it's your turn. Tell us what your favorite Banned Book is and why?
*Congrats to Sammi for winning Gotya's copy of Speak. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to redeem it!