Wednesday, October 2, 2019

What I'm Reading - The Handmaid's Tale and The Testaments (no spoilers!)

I admit I'm late to The Handmaid's Tale fan club - but not the TV series - the book that that Hulu show is based on!  I'm not completely sure why it took me so long to read The Handmaid's Tale - as an English major and teacher one would think I would have read it in a class.  I do know that once the series came out and everyone was talking about it, I was afraid that reading it would be too depressing and too close to real life.  I'm a big fan of young adult dystopian fiction - where the hero (but usually heroine) wins at the end and everything is great.  So I also thought that it would be like 1984 - where there is no resolution at the end and you end the book feeling hopeless!  


Once The Testaments came out, I decided it was time.  I checked out The Handmaid's Tale to read.  I was immediately hooked and finished it in two days!  The characters were so well-developed, and while there was an opportunity for a sequel (obviously), it had an ending that was somewhat satisfying - not hopeless at least!   

Luckily, my library's copy of The Testaments came in just as I needed it - and without any spoilers, I have to say that it was the perfect sequel - it gave a lot of background on the creation of Gilead - this patriarchal society - and it tied together the loose ends of The Handmaid's Tale perfectly - but without being formulaic.  

Now, I still haven't watched the TV series, and I'm not sure if I will, but for those people who do, I believe that reading The Testaments will give you some insight into where the series is going to go in future episodes.  When I read The Handmaid's Tale, I couldn't figure out how they had pulled three seasons from that book, but I believe that The Testaments will offer plenty to explore for several more seasons if they choose!  

Are you a fan of the series?  Have you read either of the books?  




This post contains Amazon affiliate links.  If you use the link to buy a book,  I may make money, and you will get a great book to read (at no additional cost!)  Everyone wins!

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Disney Tips Blog Link-up Party!



I am just one week away from going "home" to Walt Disney World!  I'm starting to get excited so I thought I would try something new - a blog link-up party!  If you have a blog post where you share your Disney tips or tricks (for any Disney park!) please share it below!  This link-up will be open through the weekend! 

Let's party!

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!
Click here to enter

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Banned Books Week

This week is Banned Books Week, the week to celebrate our freedom to read!  It was first observed in 1982 and it highlights the books that have been challenged in libraries and schools around the United States.  I have decked out the library with caution tape and signs - it has definitely drawn the attention of the students, but they think they actually can't check these books out!  :)  I may have to rethink my Banned Books Week display for next year!



In celebration of Banned Books Week, I want to share some books that have been challenged or banned over the years.  Scroll to the bottom to see my 5 favorite young adult banned books!

This post contains Amazon affiliate links.  If you use the link to buy a book,  I may make money, 
and you will get a great book to read (at no additional cost!)  Everyone wins!

5 Classics that have been challenged and/or banned: 



Challenge reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group



Challenge reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group


Challenge reasons: alleged anti-religion and anti-family themes, sexual content


Challenge reasons: themes of racism, incest, and child sexual abuse

(Be sure to read her newly published sequel The Testaments!)

Challenge reasons: sexuality, profanity, suicide, violence, anti-Christian themes

5 Young Adult books that have been challenged and/or banned: 


Challenge reasons: unsuited to age group, witchcraft, religious viewpoint, anti-family, darkness/scariness/violence 


Challenge reasons: offensive language, racism, sexually explicit



Challenge reasons: obscene language, sexual content, violence, unsuited to age group



Challenge reasons: alcohol, bullying, violence, sexual references, profanity and slurs



Challenge reasons: "anti-cop," profanity, drug use, sexual references


5 Nonfiction books that have been challenged and/or banned: 



Challenge reasons: anti-family, profane language, homosexuality



Challenge reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit



Challenge reasons: drugs, inaccurate, offensive language, political viewpoint, religious viewpoint



Challenge reasons: sexual content, homosexuality



Challenge reasons: unsuited to age group, objectionable content



5 graphic novels that have been challenged and/or banned: 



Challenge reasons: profane language, political viewpoint, gambling



Challenge reasons: LGBTQ content, drugs or alcohol, profane language


Challenge reasons: LGBTQ content, sexual content, political viewpoint



Challenge reasons: bullying, sexual content, drugs or alcohol



Challenge reasons: references to smoking, drinking, and gambling


5 children's books that have been challenged and/or banned: 



Challenge reasons: homosexuality



Challenge reasons: LGBTQ content, unsuited to age group, sexual content



Challenge reasons: offensive language, unsuited to age group, violence


Challenge reasons: the books use of the words "fart" and "farting" 24 times



LGBTQ content, political viewpoint, religious viewpoint




And now . . . My favorite 5 YA books that have been challenged and/or banned: 


Carter Finally Gets It by Brent Crawford is a HILARIOUS novel of Carter's freshman year in high school.  It is laugh out loud funny, and very much like being inside the head of a 14 year old boy.  Because of this, it has been challenged for objectionable content.  But it's also why it's awesome, and whenever I have a 9th grade boy who doesn't really like reading, I get him to read this book!  



The Face on the Milk Carton by Caroline B. Cooney is a great mystery about a girl who sees her own face on a milk carton as "missing" - she tries to uncover the truth about her family and herself.  This book has been challenged for being unsuited for the age group, challenging authority, and sexual content.  It has an entire series that follows Janie's journey, and all of the books are so good.  Highly recommended! 



Just One Day by Gayle Forman is a book about a girl who meets a boy on a school trip to Europe and they have one day together.  It is a sweet realistic romance for teens.  It has been challenged for sexual content, drugs or alcohol, and profane language.  Although I probably wouldn't recommend it for a middle school student, it is a great teen read!  



Little Brother by Cory Doctorow is a book that is so timely - so good!  It is a book about a hacker teen and his friends and how they get picked up by the Department of Homeland Security and questioned - and once released they see that everyone is treated as a potential terrorist and work to fight back.  Because of this it has been challenged for having a political viewpoint.  But this book is so good and thought-provoking!  A must read!



Unwind by Neal Shusterman might be my favorite dystopian novel.  It is set in a post-abortion society where all life is valued - and abortions are illegal; however, once a child becomes a teenager, the parents can choose to have them "unwound" where their organs and body parts are harvested as donors.  In this view, they are not technically killed because their body lives on in another.  It is a fascinating story of 3 teens who are slated to be discarded in this way and their struggle to survive.  It has been challenged for sexual content, suicide, and drugs or alcohol.  This is another book I recommend often! 



So - what is your favorite banned book?  


Welcome to the Library Lady Life!

As many of you know, I am a Library Lady and very proud of that fact! This blog has evolved several times over the years as I have g...