27 most famous banned, censored, or challenged books (Banned Books Week)

Today is the last day of Banned Books Week.  I didn’t want to let it slip by without mention, so here is a list of some of the most famous books that have been banned, censored, or challenged at some time.

  1. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn – by Mark Twain
  2. Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl – by Anne Frank
  3. The Arabian Nights – by Mahsin Mahdi
  4. Awakening – by Kate Chopin
  5. Bell Jar – by Sylvia Plath
  6. Brave New World – by Aldous Huxley
  7. Call of the Wild – by Jack London
  8. The Color Purple – by Alice Walker
  9. Candide – by Voltaire
  10. Catcher in the Rye – by J.D. Salinger
  11. Fahrenheit 451 – by Ray Bradbury
  12. Grapes of Wrath – by John Steinbeck
  13. Gulliver’s Travels – by Jonathan Swift
  14. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings – by Maya Angelou
  15. James and the Giant Peach – by Roald Dahl
  16. Lady Chatterley’s Lover – by D.H. Lawrence
  17. A Light in the Attic – by Shel Silverstein
  18. Lord of the Flies – by William Golding
  19. Madame Bovary – by Gustave Flaubert
  20. Moll Flanders – by Daniel Defoe
  21. Of Mice and Men – by John Steinbeck
  22. The Scarlet Letter – by Nathaniel Hawthorne
  23. Song of Solomon – by Toni Morrison
  24. To Kill a Mockingbird – by Harper Lee
  25. Ulysses – by James Joyce
  26. Uncle Tom’s Cabin – by Harriet Beecher Stowe
  27. A Wrinkle in Time – by Madeleine D’Engle
banned books
Now, confession time:
I have not read 21 of the books on this list, but 6 of those 21 are in my TBR stash. Of the ones “to be read” I have read part of 2 books (and will complete them). This means so far I have read completely only 6 of the 27 listed here.
It’s hard to accept why some books are banned, or censored, or challenged. It’s hard to avoid life, the natural way of some things, and shared expression.
Here are three of the above books on which I’ll comment.
  • I loved Madeleine D’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time, regardless of the “objectionable” things she included in her fantasy novel.
  • I loved the movie To Kill a Mockingbird and equally enjoyed the book, even though there are racial issues. But that was the way of the time, the same as in Gone With the Wind (not included in this list but also challenged); it doesn’t mean I feel that way. I will not read Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee, though, as it will undoubtedly spoil To Kill the Mockingbird for me in revealing more racial issues than I care to read for entertainment.
  • It is fully understandable why there was an outcry (and still is) about Catcher in the Rye, due to the constant use of profanity of Salinger’s main character. Some people are not bothered by that.

Now, it’s your turn.

  • What do you want to share about the list of 27 books?
  • Do you purposely search out books that have been banned or censored or challenged?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  🙂


8 responses to “27 most famous banned, censored, or challenged books (Banned Books Week)

  1. RedHeadedBookLover

    I loved your blog post! This is so amazing. I was so shocked to see so many of the most famous classics now on the banned book lists. That is crazy to me. To kill a mocking bird is a crucial book of our generation, one that everybody should read. Also there are so many other books on there which I am shocked to see our banned. In my opinion I believe that a book, should never be banned. It is important for a person to express their thoughts and feelings on a subject the best way they can. This should not be censored. I read A stolen life and I learnt recently that this is a banned book. It is a true story of a young girl who was captured and abused and yes the book is explicit and hard to read but in my opinion it should not be banned. People need to know of the horrible things which happen in this world. Sorry for an epic comment but great post!


    • Welcome, BookLover, to my blog!

      I know what you mean. These books were banned at one time or another, but I don’t know if there are any on this list that are currently banned. It’s just amazing the reasons people give for challenging them; society changes so much and tolerance levels change with it.

      I don’t know if there would be many books I would say “ban it!”, but it’s so true many are very hard to read because of content.

      Thank you for sharing your views; I appreciate your comment. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve only read five of the books on this list, lol.


  3. I´ve read 13 on the list and about 6 are on my TBR list. I have never understood the banning of books. If you don´t want to read certain books, then don´t. I don´t eat meat but I don´t expect everyone else not to eat it. Live and let live has always been my motto.


    • Darlene, you must be a voracious reader. That’s wonderful.

      There are a few books I would have no objection to seeing banned, but that comes out of my own personal faith and conviction. We can’t make people believe like ourselves or commit to the same things, so I agree with you on the most part. I have said much the same as you said here, if they don’t like it then don’t watch/read it. Having said that, I do believe our children are greatly and easily influenced … so, wisdom, caution, common sense …

      Thank you for your comment. 🙂


  4. Great list! I don’t know how many I’ve read, but I know it isn’t a lot (probably around 3). If you read the reasons that some were banned, some make no sense at all! (Did you know a dictionary was banned?)
    I want to read more of them. 🙂


    • I agree about it making no sense for why some were banned, but when you look at how thinking and views (tolerance) have changed and continue to change that helps to explain some of it. I had heard a dictionary was banned. Now that is odd. 🙂


I look forward to reading your greatly appreciated comments. Thanks for making my day! :)

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