5 True Tales of Book Censorship and More Critical Linking

Every time there’s a fight over removing a book from a school classroom or a library, someone asks: “Wait, people are still trying to ban books?”

Yes. Even in 2015.

In the spirit of Banned Books Week, we bring you five stories from the field. A few of them will make shake your head, while the others will have you pumping your fist.

Banned Books Week kicks off today. Here are five stories of book censorship that have happened in the not-too-distant past.


Kay Marshall Strom, 65, was a high school senior when she saw a little blurb in the local San Francisco newspaper asking for a fortune writer. Intrigued, she sent an inquiry – she had been contemplating becoming a writer when she grew up and figured, why not start small? She got the job.

Inspiration for the fortunes was everywhere – movies, walks outside, time spent with friends – and Strom would jot down ideas as they occurred to her throughout the day. The job lasted an entire year, and every few weeks, she would send batches of new fortunes to the company for approval.

A totally fascinating story about the people who write fortunes for fortune cookies.


Books “for children” or “for teenagers” are books for all who are ready to listen to them. They are for all who recognize that art cannot be confined within such narrow labels. 

I love every single thing about this manifesto for reading children’s literature.


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