What’s it all about?:
After being run out of Boneville, the three Bone cousins, Fone Bone, Phoney Bone, and Smiley Bone, are separated and lost in a vast uncharted desert.
One by one, they find their way into a deep, forested valley filled with wonderful and terrifying creatures…
Humor, mystery, and adventure are spun together in this action-packed, side-splitting saga. Everyone who has ever left home for the first time only to find that the world outside is strange and overwhelming will love Bone.
Logo designed by Luna’s Little Library
Welcome to our ninth banned book of 2016! As always, we’ll be looking at why the book was challenged, how/if things have changed since the book was originally published and our own opinions on the book. Here’s what we’ll be reading for the rest of 2016…
OCTOBER – The Glass Castle- Jeanette Walls
NOVEMBER- Gossip Girl- Cecily Von Ziegesar
DECEMBER – My Sister’s Keeper- Jodi Picoult
But back to this month….
Bone, Volume One (Issues 1-6) by Jeff Smith
First published: 1993
In the Top Ten most frequently challenged books in 2013 (source)
Reasons: political viewpoint, racism, violence
Do you understand or agree with any of the reasons for the book being challenged when it was originally published?
BETH: I can’t believe this graphic novel is over twenty years old! It was first published in 1993 which doesn’t seem that long ago to me and I don’t think attitudes have changed too much in the past twenty years so, as with most of our banned books, I don’t agree with the reasons for it being challenged when it was originally published. I was struggling with reasons why this book had been challenged as I read it and I deliberately don’t look at the reasons why until I write this part of the review. To be honest, I’m pretty dumbfounded. The violence – yes, I get to a point…but political viewpoint and racism? I must have been reading a different book?
CHRISSI: Like Beth, I was really searching for a reason why this book was banned. I read it over a week ago and nothing has stuck in my mind for a reason why it should be banned. Political viewpoint and racism- I really couldn’t pick out ANYTHING, so if anyone does know why then please enlighten me! Yes, there were certainly some violent scenes but nothing overly shocking, although I can understand why some educators wouldn’t want it in their classroom or libraries.
How about now?
BETH: In a open, liberal society (we would hope!) there’s even less reason for any book to be banned or challenged (the exception is if it is being considered as a taught text for some age groups in schools). As I mentioned above, I struggled with two of the reasons for this graphic novel being challenged as I don’t really remember any instances of either political viewpoint or racism in the narrative! The only thing that made me a bit wary of it being available for all age groups is that some of the monsters in it, known as the rat creatures, are a bit scary and I can imagine it being a bit too frightening for certain children. I still think it should be available in case they fancy scaring themselves a bit though!
CHRISSI: I have said before that censoring a book can make children (and adults alike) more keen to try it out. Like Beth, I understand that the violence and scariness might be unsuitable for certain children, but in the main part, I don’t see that it should be banned now. Children can see much worse on the TV, in the news, or computer games.
What did you think of this book?:
BETH: This was a bit of a strange one for me. I liked the artwork and some of the characters like Thorn and her grandmother were very endearing, (others very irritating) and I did laugh out loud at a couple of points in the story. However, I wouldn’t rush to read the next one in the series. Apparently Neil Gaiman is a fan though, which makes me slightly more curious to read on.
CHRISSI: I didn’t really like this book. I wasn’t hooked by the story. The artwork was good, but it didn’t capture my attention.
Would you recommend it?:
CHRISSI: It’s not for me!
BETH’S personal star rating (out of 5):
Join us again on the last Monday of October when we will be discussing The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls.