港澳台图库

Top 10 Most Challenged Books Lists

The 港澳台图库 condemns censorship and works to ensure free access to information. Every year, the Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF) compiles a list of the Top 10 Most Challenged Books in order to inform the public about censorship in libraries and schools. The lists are based on information from and sent to OIF from communities across the U.S.

The Top 10 lists are only a snapshot of book challenges. Surveys indicate that 82-97% of book challenges 鈥 documented requests to remove materials from schools or libraries 鈥 remain unreported and receive no media.

Click on the button to open the dropdown menu of Top 10 Most Challenged Books by year.

Top 13 Most Challenged Books of 2022

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The 港澳台图库Office for Intellectual Freedom tracked 1,269 challenges to library, school, and university materials and services in 2022. Of the 2,571 books that were targeted, here are the most challenged, along with the reasons cited for censoring the books:

  1. Gender Queer by听Maia Kobabe
    Reasons: Banned and challenged for LGBTQIA+ content and because it was claimed to be sexually explicit
  2. All Boys Aren鈥檛 Blue by George M. Johnson
    Reasons: Banned and challenged for LGBTQIA+ content and because it was claimed to be sexually explicit
  3. The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for depiction of sexual abuse, EDI content, and because it was claimed to be sexually explicit
  4. Flamer by Mike Curato
    Reasons:Banned and challenged for LGBTQIA+ content and because it was claimed to be sexually explicit
  5. Looking for Alaska by John Green (tie)
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for LGBTQIA+ content and because it was claimed to be sexually explicit
  6. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky (tie)
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for depiction of sexual abuse, LGBTQIA+ content, drug use, profanity, and because it was claimed to be sexually explicit
  7. Lawn Boy by Jonathan Evison
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for LGBTQIA+ content and because it was claimed to be sexually explicit
  8. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for profanity and because it was claimed to be sexually explicit
  9. Out of Darkness by Ashley Hope Perez
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for depictions of abuse and because it was claimed to be sexually explicit
  10. A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas (tie)
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged because it was claimed to be sexually explicit
  11. Crank by Ellen Hopkins (tie)
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for drug use and because it was claimed to be sexually explicit
  12. Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews (tie)
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for profanity and because it was claimed to be sexually explicit
  13. This Book is Gay by Juno Dawson (tie)
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for LGBTQIA+ content, providing sexual education, and because it was claimed to be sexually explicit

Top 10 Most Challenged Books of 2021

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The 港澳台图库Office for Intellectual Freedom tracked 729听challenges to library, school, and university materials and services in 2021. Of the 1,597听books that were targeted, here are the most challenged, along with the reasons cited for censoring the books:

  1. Gender Queer by听Maia Kobabe
    Reasons: Banned, challenged, and restricted for LGBTQIA+ content, and because it was considered to have sexually explicit images
  2. Lawn Boy by Jonathan Evison
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for LGBTQIA+ content and because it was considered to be sexually explicit
  3. All Boys Aren鈥檛 Blue by George M. Johnson
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for LGBTQIA+ content, profanity, and because it was considered to be sexually explicit
  4. Out of Darkness by Ashley Hope Perez
    Reasons:听Banned, challenged, and restricted for depictions of abuse and because it was considered to be sexually explicit
  5. The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for profanity, violence, and because it was thought to promote an anti-police message and indoctrination of a social agenda
  6. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for profanity, sexual references and use of a derogatory term
  7. Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged because it was considered sexually explicit and degrading to women
  8. The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged because it depicts child sexual abuse and was considered sexually explicit
  9. This Book is Gay by Juno Dawson
    Reasons:听Banned, challenged, relocated, and restricted for providing sexual education and LGBTQIA+ content.
  10. Beyond Magenta by Susan Kuklin
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for LGBTQIA+ content and because it was considered to be sexually explicit.听

Top 10 Most Challenged Books of 2020

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The 港澳台图库Office for Intellectual Freedom tracked 156听challenges to library, school, and university materials and services in 2020. Of the 273听books that were targeted, here are the most challenged, along with the reasons cited for censoring the books:

  1. George by Alex Gino
    Reasons:听Challenged, banned, and restricted for LGBTQIA+ content, conflicting with a religious viewpoint, and not reflecting 鈥渢he values of our community鈥
  2. Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You by Ibram X. Kendi and Jason Reynolds
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged because of author鈥檚 public statements, and because of claims that the book contains 鈥渟elective storytelling incidents鈥 and does not encompass racism against all people
  3. All American Boys by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for profanity, drug use, and alcoholism, and because it was thought to promote anti-police views, contain divisive topics, and be 鈥渢oo much of a sensitive matter right now鈥
  4. Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
    Reasons:听Banned, challenged, and restricted because it was thought to contain a political viewpoint and it was claimed to be biased against male students, and for the novel鈥檚 inclusion of rape and profanity
  5. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for profanity, sexual references, and allegations of sexual misconduct by the author
  6. Something Happened in Our Town: A Child鈥檚 Story About Racial Injustice by Marianne Celano, Marietta Collins, and Ann Hazzard, illustrated by Jennifer Zivoin
    Reasons:听Challenged for 鈥渄ivisive language鈥 and because it was thought to promote anti-police views
  7. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for racial slurs and their negative effect on students, featuring a 鈥渨hite savior鈥 character, and its perception of the Black experience
  8. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged for racial slurs and racist stereotypes, and their negative effect on students
  9. The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
    Reasons:听Banned and challenged because it was considered sexually explicit and depicts child sexual abuse
  10. The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
    Reasons:听Challenged for profanity, and it was thought to promote an anti-police message

Top 10 Most Challenged Books of 2019

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The 港澳台图库Office for Intellectual Freedom tracked 377 challenges to library, school, and university materials and services in 2019. Of the 566 books that were targeted, here are the most challenged, along with the reasons cited for censoring the books:

  1. George by Alex Gino
    Reasons: challenged, banned, restricted, and hidden to avoid controversy; for LGBTQIA+ content and a transgender character; because schools and libraries should not 鈥減ut books in a child鈥檚 hand that require discussion鈥; for sexual references; and for conflicting with a religious viewpoint and 鈥渢raditional family structure鈥
  2. Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out by Susan Kuklin
    Reasons: challenged for LGBTQIA+ content, for 鈥渋ts effect on any young people who would read it,鈥 and for concerns that it was sexually explicit and biased
  3. A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo by Jill Twiss, illustrated by EG Keller
    Reasons: challenged and vandalized for LGBTQIA+ content and political viewpoints, for concerns that it is 鈥渄esigned to pollute the morals of its readers,鈥 and for not including a content warning
  4. Sex is a Funny Word by Cory Silverberg, illustrated by Fiona Smyth
    Reasons: challenged, banned, and relocated for LGBTQIA+ content; for discussing gender identity and sex education; and for concerns that the title and illustrations were 鈥渋nappropriate鈥澨
  5. Prince & Knight by Daniel Haack, illustrated by Stevie Lewis
    Reasons: challenged and restricted for featuring a gay marriage and LGBTQIA+ content; for being 鈥渁 deliberate attempt to indoctrinate young children鈥 with the potential to cause confusion, curiosity, and gender dysphoria; and for conflicting with a religious viewpoint
  6. I Am Jazz by Jessica Herthel and Jazz Jennings, illustrated by Shelagh McNicholas
    Reasons: challenged and relocated for LGBTQIA+ content, for a transgender character, and for confronting a topic that is 鈥渟ensitive, controversial, and politically charged鈥
  7. The Handmaid鈥檚 Tale by Margaret Atwood
    Reasons: banned and challenged for profanity and for 鈥渧ulgarity and sexual overtones鈥
  8. Drama written and illustrated by Raina Telgemeier
    Reasons: challenged for LGBTQIA+ content and for concerns that it goes against 鈥渇amily values/morals鈥
  9. Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling
    Reasons: banned and forbidden from discussion for referring to magic and witchcraft, for containing actual curses and spells, and for characters that use 鈥渘efarious means鈥 to attain goals
  10. And Tango Makes Three by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson听illustrated by Henry Cole
    Reason: challenged and relocated for LGBTQIA+ content

Top 11 Most Challenged Books of 2018

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The 港澳台图库Office for Intellectual Freedom tracked 347 challenges to library, school and university materials and services in 2018. Of the 483 books challenged or banned in 2018, the Top 11 Most Challenged Books are:

  1. George by Alex Gino
    Reasons: banned, challenged, and relocated because it was believed to encourage children to clear browser history and change their bodies using hormones, and for mentioning 鈥渄irty magazines,鈥 describing male anatomy, 鈥渃reating confusion,鈥 and including a transgender character
  2. A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo by Jill Twiss, illustrated by EG Keller
    Reasons: banned and challenged for including LGBTQIA+ content, and for political and religious viewpoints
  3. Captain Underpants series written and illustrated by Dav Pilkey
    Reasons: series was challenged because it was perceived as encouraging disruptive behavior, while Captain Underpants and the Sensational Saga of Sir Stinks-A-Lot was challenged for including a same-sex couple
  4. The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
    Reasons: banned and challenged because it was deemed 鈥渁nti-cop,鈥 and for profanity, drug use, and sexual references
  5. Drama written and illustrated by Raina Telgemeier
    Reasons: banned and challenged for including LGBTQIA+ characters and themes
  6. Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
    Reasons: banned, challenged, and restricted for addressing teen suicide
  7. This One Summer by Mariko Tamaki, illustrated by Jillian Tamaki
    Reasons: banned and challenged for profanity, sexual references, and certain illustrations
  8. Skippyjon Jones series written and illustrated by Judy Schachner
    Reason: challenged for depicting stereotypes of Mexican culture
  9. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
    Reasons: banned and challenged for sexual references, profanity, violence, gambling, and underage drinking, and for its religious viewpoint
  10. This Day in June by Gayle E. Pitman, illustrated by Kristyna Litten
    Reason: challenged and burned for including LGBTQIA+ content
  11. Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan
    Reason: challenged and burned for including LGBTQIA+ content

Top 10 for 2017

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The 港澳台图库Office for Intellectual Freedom tracked 354 challenges to library, school and university materials and services听in 2017. Of the 416 books challenged or banned in 2017, the Top 10 Most Challenged Books are:

  1. Thirteen Reasons Why written by Jay Asher
    Originally published in 2007, this New York Times bestseller has resurfaced as a controversial book after Netflix aired a TV series by the same name. This YA novel was challenged and banned in multiple school districts because it discusses suicide.
  2. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian written by Sherman Alexie
    Consistently challenged since its publication in 2007 for acknowledging issues such as poverty, alcoholism, and sexuality, this National Book Award winner was challenged in school curriculums because of profanity and situations that were deemed sexually explicit.
  3. Drama written and illustrated by Raina Telgemeier
    This Stonewall Honor Award-winning, 2012 graphic novel from an acclaimed cartoonist was challenged and banned in school libraries because it includes LGBT characters and was considered 鈥渃onfusing.鈥
  4. The Kite Runner written by Khaled Hosseini
    This critically acclaimed, multigenerational novel was challenged and banned because it includes sexual violence and was thought to 鈥渓ead to terrorism鈥 and 鈥減romote Islam.鈥
  5. George written by Alex Gino
    Written for elementary-age children, this Lambda Literary Award winner was challenged and banned because it includes a transgender child.
  6. Sex is a Funny Word written by Cory Silverberg and illustrated by Fiona Smyth
    This 2015 informational children鈥檚 book written by a certified sex educator was challenged because it addresses sex education and is believed to lead children to 鈥渨ant to have sex or ask questions about sex.鈥
  7. To Kill a Mockingbird written by Harper Lee
    This Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, considered an American classic, was challenged and banned because of violence and its use of the N-word.
  8. The Hate U Give written by Angie Thomas
    Despite winning multiple awards and being the most searched-for book on Goodreads during its debut year, this YA novel was challenged and banned in school libraries and curriculums because it was considered 鈥減ervasively vulgar鈥 and because of drug use, profanity, and offensive language.
  9. And Tango Makes Three written by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson and illustrated by Henry Cole
    Returning after a brief hiatus from the Top Ten Most Challenged list, this 港澳台图库Notable Children鈥檚 Book, published in 2005, was challenged and labeled because it features a same-sex relationship.
  10. I Am Jazz written by Jessica Herthel and Jazz Jennings and illustrated by Shelagh McNicholas
    This autobiographical picture book co-written by the 13-year-old protagonist was challenged because it addresses gender identity.

Top 10 for 2016

Out of 323 challenges recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom

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  1. This One Summer听written by Mariko Tamaki and illustrated by Jillian Tamaki
    Reasons: challenged because it includes LGBT characters, drug use and profanity, and it was considered sexually explicit with mature themes
  2. Drama听written and illustrated by Raina Telgemeier
    Reasons:听challenged because it includes LGBT characters, was deemed sexually explicit, and was considered to have an offensive political viewpoint
  3. George听written by Alex Gino
    Reasons:听challenged because it includes a transgender child, and the 鈥渟exuality was not appropriate at elementary levels鈥
  4. I Am Jazz听written by Jessica Herthel and Jazz Jennings, and illustrated by Shelagh McNicholas
    Reasons:听challenged because it portrays a transgender child and because of language, sex education, and offensive viewpoints
  5. Two Boys Kissing听written by David Levithan
    Reasons:听challenged because its cover has an image of two boys kissing, and it was considered to include sexually explicit LGBT content
  6. Looking for Alaska听written by John Green
    Reasons:听challenged for a sexually explicit scene that may lead a student to 鈥渟exual experimentation鈥
  7. Big Hard Sex Criminals听written by Matt Fraction and illustrated by Chip Zdarsky
    Reason:听challenged because it was considered sexually explicit
  8. Make Something Up: Stories You Can鈥檛 Unread听written by Chuck Palahniuk
    Reasons:听challenged for profanity, sexual explicitness, and being 鈥渄isgusting and all around offensive鈥
  9. Little Bill听(series) written by Bill Cosby and听and illustrated by Varnette P. Honeywood
    Reason: challenged because of criminal sexual allegations against the author
  10. Eleanor & Park听written by Rainbow Rowell
    Reason:听challenged for offensive language


Top 10 for 2015

Out of 275 challenges recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom

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  1. Looking for Alaska, by John Green
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, and unsuited for age group
  2. Fifty Shades of Grey, by E. L. James
    Reasons: sexually explicit, unsuited to age group, and other (鈥減oorly written,鈥 鈥渃oncerns that a group of teenagers will want to try it鈥)
  3. I Am Jazz, by Jessica Herthel and Jazz Jennings
    Reasons: inaccurate, homosexuality, sex education, religious viewpoint, and unsuited for age group
  4. Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out, by Susan Kuklin
    Reasons: anti-family, offensive language, homosexuality, sex education, political viewpoint, religious viewpoint, unsuited for age group, and other (鈥渨ants to remove from collection to ward off complaints鈥)
  5. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, by Mark Haddon
    Reasons: offensive language, religious viewpoint, unsuited for age group, and other (鈥減rofanity and atheism鈥)
  6. The Holy Bible
    Reasons: religious viewpoint
  7. Fun Home, by Alison Bechdel
    Reasons: violence and other (鈥済raphic images鈥)
  8. Habibi, by Craig Thompson
    Reasons: nudity, sexually explicit, and unsuited for age group
  9. Nasreen鈥檚 Secret School: A True Story from Afghanistan, by Jeanette Winter
    Reasons: religious viewpoint, unsuited to age group, and violence
  10. Two Boys Kissing, by David Levithan
    Reasons: homosexuality and other (鈥渃ondones public displays of affection鈥)


Top 10 for 2014

Out of 311 challenges recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom

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  1. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman听Alexie
    Reasons: anti-family, cultural insensitivity, drugs/alcohol/smoking, gambling, offensive language, sex education, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group, violence. Additional reasons: 鈥渄epictions of bullying鈥
  2. Persepolis, by听Marjane听Satrapi
    Reasons: gambling, offensive language, political viewpoint. Additional reasons: 鈥減olitically, racially, and socially offensive,鈥 鈥済raphic depictions鈥
  3. And Tango Makes Three, Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell
    Reasons: anti-family, homosexuality, political viewpoint, religious viewpoint, unsuited for age group. Additional reasons: 鈥減romotes the homosexual agenda鈥
  4. The Bluest Eye, by Toni Morrison
    Reasons: sexually explicit, unsuited for age group. Additional reasons: 鈥渃ontains controversial issues鈥
  5. It鈥檚 Perfectly Normal, by听Robie听Harris
    Reasons: nudity, sex education, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group. Additional reasons: 鈥渁lleges it is child pornography鈥
  6. Saga, by Brian Vaughan and Fiona Staples
    Reasons: anti-Family, nudity, offensive language, sexually explicit, and unsuited for age group
  7. The Kite Runner, by听Khaled听Hosseini
    Reasons: offensive language, unsuited to age group, violence
  8. The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen听Chbosky
    Reasons: drugs/alcohol/smoking, homosexuality, offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group. Additional reasons: 鈥渄ate rape and masturbation鈥
  9. A Stolen Life, Jaycee听Dugard
    Reasons: drugs/alcohol/smoking, offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group
  10. Drama, by听Raina听Telgemeier
    Reason: sexually explicit


Top 10 for 2013

Out of 307 challenges recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom

  1. Captain Underpants (series), by Dav Pilkey
    Reasons: offensive language, unsuited for age group, violence
  2. The Bluest Eye, by Toni听Morrison
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group, violence
  3. The听Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman听Alexie
    Reasons: drugs/alcohol/smoking, offensive language, racism, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  4. Fifty Shades of Grey, by E.L. James
    Reasons: nudity, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  5. The听Hunger Games, by Suzanne听Collins
    Reasons: religious viewpoint, unsuited to age group
  6. A听Bad Boy Can Be Good for A Girl, by Tanya Lee听Stone
    Reasons: drugs/alcohol/smoking, nudity, offensive language, sexually explicit
  7. Looking for Alaska, by John听Green
    Reasons: drugs/alcohol/smoking, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  8. The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen听Chbosky
    Reasons: drugs/alcohol/smoking, homosexuality, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  9. Bless Me听Ultima, by听Rudolfo听Anaya
    Reasons: occult/Satanism, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit
  10. Bone (series), by Jeff听Smith
    Reason: political viewpoint, racism, violence


Top 10 for 2012

Out of 464 challenges recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom

  1. Captain Underpants (series), by Dav Pilkey
    Reasons: offensive language, unsuited for age group
  2. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie
    Reasons: offensive language, racism, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group
  3. Thirteen Reasons Why, by Jay Asher
    Reasons: drugs/alcohol/smoking, sexually explicit, suicide, unsuited for age group
  4. Fifty Shades of Grey, by E. L. James
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit
  5. And Tango Makes Three, by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson
    Reasons: homosexuality, unsuited for age group
  6. The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini
    Reasons: homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit
  7. Looking for Alaska, by John Green
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group
  8. Scary Stories (series), by Alvin Schwartz
    Reasons: unsuited for age group, violence
  9. The Glass Castle, by Jeanette Walls
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit
  10. Beloved, by Toni Morrison
    Reasons: sexually explicit, religious viewpoint, violence


Top 10 for 2011

Out of 326 challenges recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom

  1. ttyl; ttfn; l8r, g8r听(series), by Lauren Myracle
    Reasons: offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  2. The Color of Earth听(series), by Kim Dong Hwa
    Reasons: nudity, sex education, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  3. The Hunger Games听trilogy, by Suzanne Collins
    Reasons: anti-ethnic, anti-family, insensitivity, offensive language, occult/satanic, violence
  4. My Mom's Having A Baby! A Kid's Month-by-Month Guide to Pregnancy, by Dori Hillestad Butler
    Reasons: nudity, sex education, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  5. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie
    Reasons: offensive language, racism, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  6. Alice听(series), by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
    Reasons: nudity, offensive language, religious viewpoint
  7. Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley
    Reasons: insensitivity, nudity, racism, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit
  8. What My Mother Doesn't Know, by Sonya Sones
    Reasons: nudity, offensive language, sexually explicit
  9. Gossip Girl听(series), by Cecily Von Ziegesar
    Reasons: drugs, offensive language, sexually explicit
  10. To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee
    Reasons: offensive language, racism


Top 10 for 2010

Out of 348 challenges recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom

  1. And Tango Makes Three, by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson
    Reasons: homosexuality, religious viewpoint, unsuited to age group
  2. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie
    Reasons: offensive language, racism, sex education, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group, violence
  3. Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley
    Reasons: insensitivity, offensive language, racism, sexually explicit
  4. Crank, by Ellen Hopkins
    Reasons: drugs, offensive language, sexually explicit
  5. The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins
    Reasons: sexually explicit, unsuited to age group, violence
  6. Lush, by Natasha Friend
    Reasons: drugs, offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  7. What My Mother Doesn't Know, by Sonya Sones
    Reasons: sexism, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  8. Nickel and Dimed, by Barbara Ehrenreich
    Reasons: drugs, inaccurate, offensive language, political viewpoint, religious viewpoint
  9. Revolutionary Voices, edited by Amy Sonnie
    Reasons: homosexuality, sexually explicit
  10. Twilight, by Stephenie Meyer
    Reasons: religious viewpoint, violence


Top 10 for 2009

Out of 460 challenges recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom

  1. ttyl; ttfn; l8r, g8r听(series), by Lauren Myracle
    Reasons: drugs, nudity, offensive language, sexually explicit,听unsuited to age group
  2. And Tango Makes Three,听by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson
    Reasons: homosexuality
  3. The Perks of Being A Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky
    Reasons: anti-family, drugs, homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit, suicide, unsuited to age group
  4. To Kill A Mockingbird, by Harper Lee
    Reasons: offensive language, racism, unsuited to age group
  5. Twilight听(series) by Stephenie Meyer
    Reasons: religious viewpoint, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  6. The Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  7. My Sister's Keeper,听by Jodi Picoult
    Reasons: homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexism, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group, violence
  8. The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big, Round Things,听by Carolyn Mackler
    Reasons:听offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  9. The Color Purple,听by听Alice Walker
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  10. The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier
    Reasons: nudity, offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group


Top 10 for 2008

Out听of 513 challenges recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom

  1. And Tango Makes Three, by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell
    Reasons: anti-ethnic, anti-family, homosexuality, religious viewpoint, unsuited to age group
  2. His Dark Materials听trilogy, by Philip Pullman
    Reasons: political viewpoint, religious viewpoint, violence
  3. ttyl; ttfn; l8r, g8r听(series), by Lauren Myracle
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  4. Scary Stories听(series), by Alvin Schwartz
    Reasons: occult/satanism, religious viewpoint, violence
  5. Bless Me, Ultima, by Rudolfo Anaya
    Reasons: occult/satanism, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit, violence
  6. The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky
    Reasons: drugs, homosexuality, nudity, offensive language, sexually explicit, suicide, unsuited to age group
  7. Gossip Girl听(series), by Cecily von Ziegesar
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  8. Uncle Bobby's Wedding, by Sarah S. Brannen
    Reasons: homosexuality,听unsuited to age group
  9. The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  10. Flashcards of My Life, by Charise Mericle Harper
    Reasons: sexually explicit, unsuited to age group


Top 10 for 2007

Out of 420 challenges recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom

  1. And Tango Makes Three, by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell
    Reasons:听听anti-ethnic, anti-family, homosexuality, religious viewpoint, sexism, unsuited to age group
  2. The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, violence
  3. Olive's Ocean, by Kevin Henkes
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit
  4. The Golden Compass, by Philip Pullman
    Reason:听religious听viewpoint听
  5. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain
    Reason: racism
  6. The Color Purple, by Alice Walker
    Reasons: homosexuality, offensive language, sexually explicit
  7. ttyl, by Lauren Myracle
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  8. I听Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, by Maya Angelou
    Reason: sexually explicit
  9. It's Perfectly Normal, by Robie Harris
    Reasons: sex education, sexually explicit
  10. The Perks of Being听a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky
    Reasons: homosexuality, offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group


Top 10 for 2006

Out of 546 challenges recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom

  1. And Tango Makes Three, by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell
    Reasons: anti-family, homosexuality, unsuited to age group
  2. Gossip Girls听(series), by Cecily Von Ziegesar
    Reasons: homosexuality, sexually explicit, offensive language, unsuited to age group
  3. Alice听(series), by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
    Reasons:听offensive language and sexually explicit
  4. The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big Round Things, by Carolyn Mackler
    Reasons:听anti-family, offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  5. The Bluest Eye, by Toni Morrison
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  6. Scary Stories听(series), by Alvin Schwartz
    Reasons: 听insensitivity, occult/Satanism, unsuited to age group, violence
  7. Athletic Shorts, by Chris Crutcher
    Reasons: homosexuality, offensive language
  8. The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky
    Reasons: homosexuality, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  9. Beloved, by Toni Morrison
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  10. The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, violence


Top 10 for 2005

Out of 405 challenges recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom

  1. It's Perfectly Normal: Changing Bodies, Growing Up, Sex, and Sexual Health, by Robie H. Harris
    Reasons: abortion, homosexuality, nudity, religious viewpoint, sex education, unsuited to age group
  2. Forever, by Judy Blume
    Reasons: offensive language, sexual content
  3. The Catcher in the Rye, by J. D. Salinger
    Reasons: sexual content, offensive language, unsuited to age group
  4. The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier
    Reasons: sexual content, offensive language
  5. Whale Talk, by Chris Crutcher
    Reasons: racism, offensive language
  6. Detour for Emmy, by Marilyn Reynolds
    Reason: sexual content
  7. What My Mother Doesn't Know, by Sonya Sones
    Reasons: sexual content, being unsuited to age group
  8. Captain Underpants听(series), by Dav Pilkey
    Reasons: anti-family content, unsuited to age group, violence
  9. Crazy Lady!, by Jane Leslie Conly
    Reason: offensive language
  10. It's So Amazing! A Book about Eggs, Sperm, Birth, Babies, and Families, by Robie H. Harris
    Reasons: sex education, sexual content


Top 10 for 2004

Out of 547 challenges recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom

  1. The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier
    Reasons: offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group,听violence
  2. Fallen Angels, by Walter Dean Myers
    Reasons: offensive language, racism,听violence
  3. Arming America: The Origins of a National Gun Culture, by Michael A. Bellesiles
    Reasons: inaccurate,听political viewpoint
  4. Captain Underpants听(series), by Dav Pilkey
    Reasons:听offensive language,听sexually explicit
  5. The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky
    Reasons: homosexuality, offensive language,听sexually explicit听
  6. What My Mother Doesn't Know, by Sonya Sones
    Reasons: offensive language, unsuited to age group,听sexually explicit
  7. In the Night Kitchen, by Maurice Sendak
    Reasons: nudity, offensive language,听sexually explicit
  8. King & King, by Linda deHaan
    Reason: homosexuality
  9. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, by Maya Angelou
    Reasons: homosexuality, offensive language, racism, sexually explicit,听unsuited to age group
  10. Of Mice and Men, by John Steinbeck
    Reasons: offensive language, racism,听violence

Top 10 for 2003

Out of 458 challenges听recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom

  1. Alice听(series), by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
    Reasons:听sexual content,听offensive language, unsuited to age group
  2. Harry Potter听(series), by J.K. Rowling
    Reasons: occult/Satanism
  3. Of Mice and Men, by John Steinbeck
    Reason: offensive language
  4. Arming America: The Origins of a National Gun Culture, by Michael Bellesiles
    Reason:听inaccuracy
  5. Fallen Angels, by Walter Dean Myers
    Reason: drugs,听offensive language, racism, sexual content,听violence
  6. Go Ask Alice, by Anonymous
    Reason: drugs
  7. It's Perfectly Normal, by Robie Harris
    Reasons: homosexuality, nudity, sexual content,听sex education
  8. We All Fall Down, by Robert Cormier
    Reasons: offensive language, sexual content
  9. King & King, by Linda de Haan
    Reason: homosexuality
  10. Bridge to Terabithia, by Katherine Paterson
    Reasons:听occult/Satanism, offensive language


Top 10 for 2002

Out of 515 challenges听recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom

  1. Harry Potter, by J.K. Rowling
    Reasons: occult/Satanism, violence
  2. Alice听(series), by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
    Reasons: homosexuality, sexually explicit,听unsuited to age group
  3. The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit,听unsuited to age group
  4. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, by Maya Angelou
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group, violence
  5. Taming the Star Runner, by S.E. Hinton
    Reason: offensive language
  6. Captain Underpants, by Dav Pilkey
    Reasons: offensive language, unsuited to age group
  7. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain
    Reason: offensive language
  8. Bridge to Terabithia, by Katherine Paterson
    Reasons: occult/Satanism, offensive language,听violence
  9. Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, by Mildred D. Taylor
    Reason: offensive language
  10. Julie of the Wolves, by Jean Craighead George
    Reasons: unsuited to age group, violence


Top 10 for 2001

Out of 448 challenges recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom

  1. Harry Potter, by J.K. Rowling
    Reasons: anti-family, occult/Satanism, religious viewpoint,听violence
  2. Of Mice and Men, by John Steinbeck
    Reasons: offensive language, racism, unsuited to age group,听violence
  3. The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group,听violence
  4. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, by Maya Angelou
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit
  5. Summer of My German Soldier, by Bette Greene
    Reasons: offensive language, racism, sexually explicit
  6. The Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger
    Reasons: offensive language, unsuited to age group
  7. Alice听(series), by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
    Reasons: sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  8. Go Ask Alice, by Anonymous
    Reasons: drugs, offensive language,听sexually explicit
  9. Fallen Angels, by Walter Dean Myers
    Reason: offensive language
  10. Blood and Chocolate, by听Annette Curtis Klause
    Reasons: sexually explicit, unsuited to age group


Background Information from 2000 to 2009

View the

From 2000 to 2009, 5,099* challenges were reported to the Office for Intellectual Freedom.

  • 1,577 challenges due to "sexually explicit" material
  • 1,291 challenges due to "offensive language"
  • 989 challenges due to materials deemed "unsuited to age group"
  • 619 challenged due to "violence"'
  • 361 challenges due to "homosexuality"

Further, 274 materials were challenged due to "occult" or "Satanic" themes, an additional 291 were challenged due to their "religious viewpoint," and 119 because they were "anti-family."

Please note that the number of challenges and the number of reasons for those challenges do not match because works are often challenged on more than one ground.

1,639 of these challenges were in school libraries; 1,811 were in classrooms; 1,217 took place in public libraries. There were 114 challenges to materials used in college classes, and 30 to academic libraries. There are isolated cases of challenges to library materials made available in or by prisons, special libraries, community groups, and students.

The vast majority of challenges were initiated by parents (2,535), with patrons and administrators to follow (516 and 489 respectively).

* We receive challenge reports after the Top Ten lists have been published. This number reflects all the challenges we received since July 31, 2013 for the 2000-2009 time period.

Before 1990

OIF has only been collecting data about banned books since 1990, so we do not have any lists of frequently challenged books or authors before that date.