Out of Darkness Named One of the Most Challenged Books of 2021

On April 4, during National Library Week, ALA released a list of the Top 10 Most Challenged Books of 2021. The YA novel Out of Darkness by Ashley Hope Pérez ranked at #4.

Previously on the Lerner blog, Ashley contributed a guest post ahead of Banned Books Week titled “The Right to Read.” In the post she detailed her experience as the author of a challenged book and offered ways educators, parents, and students can resist such challenges.

Since that post there have been more challenges against books in school and public libraries—but there has also been a growing effort to provide librarians, educators, parents, and students with resources to resist these bans. Below, we’ve collected recent coverage of challenges against Out of Darkness, articles on the subject from Ashley Hope Pérez, additional media coverage, and resources from the ALA and others on fighting book challenges in your community.

Click here to see the ALA’s full Top 10 list of banned books and to learn ways of resisting book challenges and embrace the freedom to read.

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Looking Forward to Summer Reading: Booklists for Your Program

The temperature may be hovering around zero, but our minds are elsewhere! With winter in full force, we’re already looking forward to summer reading in 2022. Whether you’re participating in the CSLP or iREAD program this year, we’ve got you covered. Read on for robust book lists of titles that support your library’s theme.

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Be Prepared: Censorship Resources

“If every individual with an agenda had his/her way, the shelves in the school library would be close to empty.”
― Judy Blume

Every year, there are dozens of challenges to literary works. If you are a student, educator, parent, author or librarian battling a censorship controversy, below are some resources for guidance:

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Go Beyond the Printed Page

Page Plus™ takes readers beyond the book and connects them to online multimedia content – photos, videos, audio, and augmented reality that add to the reading experience. Readers simply scan a QR code or type in a URL to listen to elephants communicating, watch videos of vehicles in action, get extra step-by-step instructions for makerspace and coding titles, see augmented reality demonstrations, and more!

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