13 Banned Books Your Teens Should Definitely Read

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Each October, communities, libraries, and readers around the country take time to celebrate the freedom to read and reflect on current and historical attempts to ban or censor books. We are currently in the throws of Banned Books Week which is honored from Oct. 1-Oct. 7 this year.

The “celebration” comes just two weeks after nearly 200 celebrities came together to denounce book bans, citing the “chilling effect”of the “restrictive behavior.”

“We cannot stress enough how these censorious efforts will not end with book bans. It’s only a matter of time before regressive, suppressive ideologues will shift their focus toward other forms of art and entertainment, to further their attacks and efforts to scapegoat marginalized communities, particularly BIPOC and LGBTQ+ folks,” reads the letter that was spearheaded by LeVar Burton and signed by Ariana Grande, Gabrielle Union, Margaret Cho, and more.


Each year, the American Library Association releases a list of the Top 10 Most Challenged Books nationwide based on reports filed by library professionals, community members, and news stories. The ALA documented 1,269 demands to censor library books and resources in 2022 — “[the data is] only a snapshot of book challenges — which they say is the highest number of attempted book bans since the association started tracking censorship attempts more than 20 years ago.

Below are the “Top 10” of 2022 — really it’s 13 since there were ties — that your teen should really read to better understand themselves and the people around them.

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