Top 10 most frequently challenged books of 2012, as compiled by the ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom.
The premise of the series is that whenever someone snaps his or her fingers, the school principal falls into a hypnotic trance and acts upon a suggestion that he’s a superhero named Captain Underpants.
This reader lauded Pilkey’s “third epic novel,” Captain Underpants and the Invasion of the Incredibly Naughty Cafeteria Ladies From Outer Space (and the Subsequent Assault of the Equally Evil Lunchroom Zombie Nerds), for its hysterically laugh-out-loud silliness.
The stories incorporate comic book narratives that reminded this reader of the hand-drawn epics that she used to create — which, coincidentally, cast her high-school teachers in the roles of superheros in an elite crime-fighting force.
In spite of the books’ potential appeal to reluctant readers — the large type and lots of illustrations make the book accessible to students who may be intimidated by text and who enjoy a visual style — challenges to the series cited “offensive language” and declared it “unsuited to age group.”
Rounding out the list for 2012:
- The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie. (Reasons: Offensive language, racism, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group)
- Thirteen Reasons Why, by Jay Asher. (Reasons: Drugs/alcohol/smoking, sexually explicit, suicide, unsuited for age group)
- Fifty Shades of Grey, by E. L. James. (Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit)
- And Tango Makes Three, by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson. (Reasons: Homosexuality, unsuited for age group)
- The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini. (Reasons: Homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit)
- Looking for Alaska, by John Green. (Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group)
- Scary Stories (series), by Alvin Schwartz. (Reasons: Unsuited for age group, violence)
- The Glass Castle, by Jeanette Walls. (Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit)
- Beloved, by Toni Morrison (Reasons: Sexually explicit, religious viewpoint, violence)