ACHUKA Book of the Day 7 Sep 2021
“A thoughtful examination of the barriers young people may face when seeking “polemical” reading material, with high crossover appeal.” Publishers Weekly
“A calm, cohesive take on a hot-button issue.” KIRKUS
“Marcus’s interviews spotlight what is at stake when books are challenged.” New York Times
“Marcus provides welcome context in each author’s work and life as a whole, demonstrating that intellectual freedom is a right that permeates all creative work.” Horn Book
In frank and wide-ranging interviews, historian and critic Leonard S. Marcus probes the experience of thirteen leading authors of books for young people.
There are 13 authors interviewed:
Matt de la Peña
Robie H. Harris
Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell
R. L. Stine
A powerful photo essay on transgender teens is called anti-religious and anti-family. A meticulously researched primer on sex education stirs up accusations of pornography and child abuse. Picture books about two mommies (or two penguin daddies) set off a hue and cry. Two hugely popular children’s series run afoul of would-be censors, one for its scatological humor, the other because it’s deemed too scary. Kids’ books that touch on race, sex, LGBTQ matters, the occult, “coarse language,” and more have found themselves under the scrutiny of those who challenge First Amendment rights.