eBook of the Week

In honor of Banned Books Week, our eBook of the week is one that is on the list of top 10 books challenged in 2012. 

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

13 reasons why

“Clay Jensen returns home from school to find a strange package with his name on it lying on his porch. Inside he discovers several cassette tapes recorded by Hannah Baker – his classmate and crush – who committed suicide two weeks earlier. Hannah’s voice tells him that there are thirteen reasons why she decided to end her life. Clay is one of them. If he listens, he’ll find out why. Clay spends the night crisscrossing his town with Hannah as his guide. He becomes a firsthand witness to Hannah’s pain, and learns the truth about himself-a truth he never wanted to face.

Thirteen Reasons Why is … an unrelenting modern classic.”

Check it out!  Beyond Library Walls Digital Collection

Banned Books Week 2013

Banned Books Week – 10 Most Challenged Titles of 2012

ReadabannedbookBanned Books Week is the national book community’s annual celebration of the freedom to read. The 2013 celebration of Banned Books Week will be held from September 22-28.

Banned Books Week was launched in 1982 in response to a sudden surge in the number of challenges to books in schools, bookstores and libraries. More than 11,300 books have been challenged since 1982.


According to the American Library Association, there were 464 challenges reported to the Office of Intellectual Freedom in 2012, and many more go unreported. The 10 most challenged titles of 2012 were:

1. Captain Underpants (series) by Dav Pilkey
Reasons: Offensive language, unsuited for age group

2. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie [Note: BSC Campus Read selection in 2008]
Reasons: Offensive language, racism, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group

3. Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
Reasons: Drugs/alcohol/smoking, sexually explicit, suicide, unsuited for age group

4. Fifty Shades of Grey by E. L. James.
Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit

5. And Tango Makes Three by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson
Reasons: Homosexuality, unsuited for age group

6. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini.
Reasons: Homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit

7. Looking for Alaska by John Green.
Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group

8. Scary Stories (series) by Alvin Schwartz
Reasons: Unsuited for age group, violence

9. The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls
Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit

10. Beloved by Toni Morrison
Reasons: Sexually explicit, religious viewpoint, violence

Banned Books Week – September 22-28, 2013

Banned Books Week 2013

Attempts to ban books still continue.

  • On September 16, the County Board of Education voted to remove Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison from the library shelves of schools in Randolph County, North Carolina.
  • On September 11, the Ohio Board of Education President Debe Terhar said she  wants all mentions of the Toni Morrison novel The Bluest Eye removed from state guidelines for schools teaching to the new Common Core academic standards.

Banned Books Week stresses the importance of preventing censorship and ensuring everyone’s freedom to read any book, no matter how unorthodox or unpopular.”

Celebrate your right to read.

Banned Books Week.org


eBook of the Week

Check this one out …

The Sojourn by Andrew Krivak


“The Sojourn, winner of the Chautauqua Prize and finalist for the National Book Award, is the story of Jozef Vinich, who was uprooted from a 19th-century mining town in Colorado by a family tragedy and returns with his father to an impoverished shepherd’s life in rural Austria-Hungary. When World War One comes, Jozef joins his adopted brother as a sharpshooter in the Kaiser’s army, surviving a perilous trek across the frozen Italian Alps and capture by a victorious enemy.”

Beyond Library Walls Digital Collection

Survey Says: Reading for Pleasure Is a Very Good Thing

reading Reading for pleasure puts children ahead in the classroom, according to a study conducted by the Institute of Education (IOE) in the United Kingdom.

 “The IOE study, which is believed to be the first to examine the effect of reading for pleasure on cognitive development over time, found that children who read for pleasure made more progress in maths, vocabulary and spelling between the ages of 10 and 16 than those who rarely read.”

 A very good thing, indeed.

Read the full story …

Longest Book Domino Chain

Records are meant to be broken … On August 27, the Cape Town Central Library (South Africa) made an attempt to break the world record set by the Seattle Public Library earlier this year for longest book domino chain.

Although the results have not been officially verified by Guinness World Records, the Cape Town Central Library in partnership with Open Book, toppled a “domino” line of 2,586 books.  It took two attempts to get there.

Have fun watching these videos.  Very cool.

1st attempt – Cape Town Public Library


2nd successful attempt – Cape Town Public Library


Seattle Public Library Book Domino Chain – World Record Setting Attempt – May 31, 2013





eBook of the Week

Kennedy LegacyBSC is hosting “The Kennedy Legacy: 50 Years Later” syposium in November.  What better way to prepare than by reading about JFK and the Kennedy family?  We have great resources at the BSC Library, including this eBook:

The Kennedy Men, 1901-1963 by Laurence Leamer
Kennedy men

“Fascinating .. Absorbing … with the dramatic and powerful style of a master storyteller.”  — Boston Herald

Check it out!  Beyond Library Walls Digital Collection


What’s New at the Library?

“When  a new book comes out or becomes accessible in whatever form, I get it and I read  it.”Christoph  Waltz


It’s easy to discover what’s new at the BSC Library — visit our What’s New at the Library page.

We also highlight new things that we think are especially interesting or noteworthy on Featured Arrivals.

If you want to go back in time, check out the 2012 Featured Arrivals, too.

eBook of the Week

“Evocative and beautifully written, House of Stone… should be read by anyone who wishes to understand the agonies and hopes of the Middle East.” — Kai Bird, Pulitzer Prize-winning historian and author of Crossing Mandelbaum Gate

House of Stone: a Memoir of Home, Family, and a Lost Middle East by Anthony Shadid

House of Stone

In spring 2011, Anthony Shadid was one of four New York Times reporters captured in Libya, cuffed and beaten, as that country was seized by revolution. When he was freed, he went home. Not to Boston or Beirut —where he lives— or to Oklahoma City, where his Lebanese-American family had settled and where he was raised. Instead, he returned to his great-grandfather’s estate, a house that, over three years earlier, Shadid had begun to rebuild.

House of Stone is the story of a battle-scarred home and a war correspondent’s jostled spirit, and of how reconstructing the one came to fortify the other … House of Stone is an unforgettable meditation on war, exile, rebirth, and the universal yearning for home.”

Check it out!  Beyond Library Walls Digital Collection