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Celebrate Freedom to Read Week
Freedom to Read Week is an annual event that encourages Canadians to think about and reaffirm their commitment to intellectual freedom, which is guaranteed them under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
Every year, well-meaning Canadians ask their local public, school, or university libraries to remove or censor items from the collection. Common justifications are for religious, sexual, racial, cultural, or political content that the challenger finds personally offensive or potentially dangerous to young impressionable readers. Most of these challenges are unsuccessful, and the items remain on the shelf for readers to borrow.
All of the books in this guide have been challenged repeatedly over the years. Read more about when and why these books, and others, have been targeted.
Challenged Children's and Young Adult Fiction
And Tango Makes Three by
Publication Date: 2005
And Tango Makes Three is the bestselling, heartwarming true story of two penguins who create a nontraditional family.
His Dark Materials: the Golden Compass (Book 1) by
Call Number: PZ7 .P968 G65 1997
Publication Date: 1996
Lyra is rushing to the cold, far North, where witch clans and armored bears rule. North, where the Gobblers take the children they steal--including her friend Roger.
Asha's Mums by
Call Number: PS8559 .L85 A75 1990
Publication Date: 1990
When Asha's lesbian mums become an issue for the teacher and the curiosity of classmates, Asha responds that having two mums is not a big deal. They are a family.
Exercise YOUR freedom to read!
Looking for your next great read? Try one of these lists, or one of the titles on the padlet below. Feel free to add your own!
Canada Reads 2021
Canada Reads, CBC's annual battle of the books, is officially back for another round of high-stakes debate. Every year, five prominent Canadians champion a book they think the entire country should read. This year's theme is One Book to Transport Us. All five of this year’s panellists — Roger Mooking, Devery Jacobs, Rosey Edeh, Paul Sun-Hyung Lee and Scott Helman — joined guest host Talia Schlanger to introduce us to the books they’re championing: Butter Honey Pig Bread by Francesca Ekwuyasi, Jonny Appleseed by Joshua Whitehead, The Midnight Bargain by C.L. Polk, Hench by Natalie Zina Walschots, and Two Trees Make a Forest by Jessica J. Lee.
Scotiabank Giller Prize
A list of the finalists from past Giller Prize awards, a celebration of the best Canadian literature for the year.
Challenged Adult Fiction
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Bestselling author Sherman Alexie tells the story of Junior, a budding cartoonist growing up on the Spokane Indian Reservation. Determined to take his future into his own hands, Junior leaves his troubled school on the rez to attend an all-white farm town high school where the only other Indian is the school mascot. Heartbreaking, funny, and beautifully written, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, which is based on the author's own experiences, coupled with poignant drawings by Ellen Forney that reflect the character's art, chronicles the contemporary adolescence of one Native American boy as he attempts to break away from the life he was destined to live. With a forward by Markus Zusak, interviews with Sherman Alexie and Ellen Forney, and four-color interior art throughout, this edition is perfect for fans and collectors alike.
Publication Date: 2009-04-01
The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz by
Call Number: PS8535.I27 A7 2001
Publication Date: 1959
Growing up in the heart of Montreal’s Jewish ghetto, Duddy Kravitz is obsessed with his grandfather’s saying, “A man without land is nothing.”
The handmaid's tale by
Call Number: PS8501.T9 H35
Publication Date: 1998
Margaret Atwood’s popular dystopian novel The Handmaid’s Tale explores a broad range of issues relating to power, gender, and religious politics.
The Wars by
Call Number: PS8511.I5 W3 1986
Publication Date: 1977
Robert Ross, a sensitive nineteen-year-old Canadian officer, went to war--The War to End All Wars. He found himself in the nightmare world of trench warfare, of mud and smoke, of chlorine gas and rotting corpses. In this world gone mad, Robert Ross performed a last desperate act to declare his commitment to life in the midst of death.
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by
Call Number: eBook
Publication Date: 1884
Fleeing his drunken father and the civilizing influence of the Widow Douglas, Huck and the runaway slave Jim pilot a log raft down the mighty Mississippi River.
Of Mice and Men by
Call Number: PS3537.T3234 O2
Publication Date: 1937
A controversial tale of friendship and tragedy during the Great Depression.
The Three Musketeers by
Call Number: eBook
Publication Date: 1844
In seventeenth-century France, a daring young man defends the queen's honor and tests his skills against the best swordsmen of the day.
To Kill a Mockingbird by
Call Number: PS3523.E44 T6
Publication Date: 1960
Harper Lee's Pulitzer Prize-winning masterwork of honor and injustice in the deep South--and the heroism of one man in the face of blind and violent hatred.