Since 2002, the American Civil Liberties Union of Texas has posted an annual report, Free People Read Freely, during Banned Books Week that provides information about challenged books that have been removed, restricted, or retained in Texas public and charter school libraries and class reading lists during the previous school year. This information is obtained through an Open Records request by the ACLU under the Texas Public Information Act.
Here are the twelve (there was a four-way tie for ninth place) books (or series of books) on the lower level of the Dick Smith Library that were challenged most frequently:
1. Harry Potter series, by J. K. Rowling - the first book, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, was challenged 21 times just in 2001-2002!
2. Forever by Judy Blume (who is a panelist in a webinar today on challenged books) - 11 challenges since 2001, including one this past school year.
3. (three-way tie with seven challenges each): The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier, In the Night Kitchenby Maurice Sendak, and Olive's Ocean by Kevin Henkes.
6. (three-way tie with five challenges each): And Tango Makes Three by Justin Richardson, It's Perfectly Normal by Robie Harris, and the Scary Stories series (such as Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark) by Alvin Schwartz.
9. (four-way tie with four challenges each): The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman (all in 2007-2008 when the movie came out), Go Ask Alice by Anonymous, It's Not the End of the World by Judy Blume, and Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred Taylor.