Library celebrates freedom to read

Published: Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 10:20 AM.

While books are rarely challenged at the Crestview library, in 2010, a local mother demanded “manga” graphic novels, well read among teen readers, be removed or secured. The woman said her son “lost his mind when he found this,” she said, exhibiting a mature version of manga the boy had stolen from the adult graphic novels section. Her challenge was unsuccessful.

“We like people to appreciate what living in America provides for them,” Whitmore said as she placed fREADom bookmarks around the display. “It allows people the opportunity to challenge books, but it also allows people the right to choose what they want to read.”

Visitors to the library might be surprised to see books like Rowling’s Harry Potter series, Tolkien’s “Lord of the Rings,” George Orwell’s “1984” or poetry by American author Maya Angelou on the table.

Librarians hope patrons will be disturbed to know that at one time or another, other citizens tried to deprive them of the opportunity to check those and many other books out of the library.

“It allows people to realize what our First Amendment rights are,” Whitmore said.

The Banned Books Week display will be up at the Crestview Public Library through Oct. 6.

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