Challenge Update #13 – Week 2 of War & Pages + Its Almost Old Book October! :D

Howdy my scintillating, spectacular Bookbaggers!

Welcome to the second update of War & Pages + some other little updates challenge-wise 🙂

war &  pages challenge badge

I had another nice weekend of reading (mainly on Sunday) cuddled up with the dogs while it rained outside – one of my favorite settings for a long reading session 🙂 – and I easily made my quota:

Catch 22:

25 pages (3 chapters)catch22

World War Z:

38 ½ pagesworld-war-z-book-cover

Total:

63 ½ pages

In other news I’m getting pretty excited because there is less than a week until the start of Old Book October 😀 And if that wasn’t exciting enough I am tantalizingly close to the end of three books – Heartless by Gail CarrigerChasing Magic by Stacia Kane (which both have around 100 pages left) and World War Z by Max Brooks (which has even less than 100 and considering its part of the challenge could be the first one I finish depending on how exciting the other two get  :P) – just in time to choose ones for the event! 😀

Since I did a guilty preemptive pick earlier this month, whichever book I finish first will be replaced by Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman, but after that it will be all Old Books until the end of October!

I also wanted to read a Banned/Challenged book in honor of Banned Books Week and sort of in answer to a challenge posted by Tara from The Librarian Who Doesn’t Say “Shhh”. However, because of all the other challenge action, i didn’t want to commit to a long book, so while I’ve been reading all the lists of frequently challenged books (a bit of an obsession of mine this week!) i kept my eyes peeled for short, yet interesting children’s books or graphic novels. In the list of Books Challenged or Banned 2012-2013 I found the perfect book: Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi

persepolis

Persepolis is the perfect fit because:

  1. I have wanted to read it for years, and especially since I started my Comic Companions challenge
  2. As a graphic novel its not too long to distract me from other challenges so I should be able to at least start it while Banned Books Week is still going
  3. It can also be the Comic Companion for Neverwhere (I did technically already choose, and read, Star Trek TNG: Hive as Neverwhere‘s Comic Companion, but since that was weeks ago I wanted a new one :P)
  4. A quick search on my work’s catalogue revealed that we have it in the collection at a different campus so I was easily able to place a hold and get it sent to me the next day!

The biggest selling point though was the little blurb under its entry in Books Challenged or Banned 2012-2013:

Removed, via a district directive, from all Chicago, Ill. public schools (2013) due to “graphic illustrations and language” and concerns about “developmental preparedness” and “student readiness.” Seventh- and eleventh-grade students study the graphic novel about the author’s experience growing up in Iran during the Iranian revolution as part of Chicago Public Schools’ Literacy Content Framework. As the news spread of the directive, students mobilized a media campaign in opposition to “banning a book that’s all about the freedom of speech.” Students took to their Facebook and Twitter accounts, checked out all library copies of the book, wrote blogs, sent e-mails, wrote investigative articles for the student newspaper, contacted the author, staged protests, and appeared on local radio and television programs. Eventually, the school issued a letter telling high school principals to disregard the earlier order to pull the book. source: May 2013, pp. 103–4

Source: Doyle, R.P. (2013). Books challenged or banned 2O12–2O13. Retrieved from http://www.ila.org/BannedBooks/BBW_2012-2013_Shortlist.pdf

How could I resist reading a banned/challenged book which prompted such a passionate reaction from the students? Plus it was one on this year’s list which is a fitting way to get involved on my first year actively celebrating Banned Books Week 🙂

I’ll update you on what I thought of it in a future challenge update along with other exciting challenge stuff, plus my official listing of the rules and contenders for Old Books October on the 1st of October, but until then:

Ban Bombs – Not Books!

(That may be a controversial sign-off but I stand by it! Please send complaints to bookpolygamist(at)gmail(dot)com so they can be blithely ignored 😛)

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