The Great Gilly Hopkins by Katherine Paterson

by Banned Library in ,

The Great Gilly Hopkins
By Katherine Paterson

A brat becomes an average kid with a strange family with this week's book.


#52 on Top 100 Banned/Challenged Books: 2000-2009

1983 - Kansas - Challenged at Lowell Elementary School in Salina for the language "God," "damn," and "hell"

1985 - Minnesota - Challenged at Orchard Lake Elementary School in Burnsville because "the book took the Lord's name in vain" and had "over forty instances of profanity

1988 - Colorado - Challenged at the Jefferson County schools because "Gilly's friends lie and steal, and there are no repercussions. Christians are portrayed as being dumb and stupid."

1991 - Connecticut - Pulled but later restored at four Cheshire elementary school for being "filled with profanity, blasphemy and obscenities, and gutter language."

1992 - Texas - Challenged at Alamo Heights School District for language such as "hell" and "damn"

1993 - Kansas - Challenged at the Walnut Elementary School in Emporia by parents for graphic violence and language

1997 - Nevada - Challenged yet retained for explicit language in the Lander County School District


ALA. "Top 100 Banned/Challenged Books: 2000-2009." Retrieved January 9, 2018 from

Doyle, Robert P. "Banned Books: Challenging Our Freedom to Read." American Library Association, 2014.

"Katherine's Biography." Katherine Paterson's Website. AuthorsOnTheWeb; 2016. Retrieved on December 23, 2017 from

Paterson, Katherine. "The Great Gilly Hopkins." Avon Books, 1978.

Jacob Have I Loved by Katherine Paterson

by Banned Library in

Jacob Have I Loved
By Katherine Paterson

Banned for language and moral/religious reasons, we get into the story of a little girl with family problems and the old man she thinks is taking her friend.


1989 - New Jersey - Challenged at Bernardsville schools for being offensive to several parents on moral and religious grounds.

1993 - Pennsylvania - Challenged in the Gettysburg public schools for offensive language


Doyle, Robert P. "Banned Books: Challenging Our Freedom to Read." American Library Association, 2014.

"Katherine's Biography." Katherine Paterson's Website. AuthorsOnTheWeb; 2016. Retrieved on December 23, 2017 from

Paterson, Katherine. Jacob Have I Loved. HarperTrophy, 1980.

Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson

by Banned Library in

Bridge to Terabithia
By Katherine Paterson

A young boy makes a new friend and is drawn deeper into an evil world of Satanism and the occult, learning sometimes sacrifices must be made.


1986 - Nebraska - Challenged in Lincoln schools as 6th grade recommended reading because of inclusion of “profanity,” including the phrases “Oh Lord” and “Lord” as expletive.

1990 - Burlington, Connecticut: Challenged as suitable curriculum material because it contains “language and subject matter that set bad examples and give students negative views of life.”


Apple Valley, California: Challenged in Unified School District because of “vulgar language.”

Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania: Challenged in school district because of “profanity and references to witchcraft.”

Cleburne, Texas: Challenged because of “profane language.” School board voted to retain book in libraries, but not to include it as required reading.


Oskaloosa, Kansas: Challenge led to new policy requiring teachers to examine all required material for profanities, list each profanity and note number of times it is used in book, and forward list to parents, who must then give written permission for children to read material.

Gettysburg, Pennsylvania: Challenged because of “offensive language.”

1995 - Medway, Maine: Challenged because book uses “swear words.”

1996 - Pulaski Township, Pennsylvania: Removed from 5th grade classrooms of New Brighton Area School District due to “profanity, disrespect for adults, and an elaborate fantasy world” that “might lead to confusion.”

2002 - Cromwell, Connecticut: Challenged in Cromwell middle schools (along with another Newbery Award-winning book, The Witch of Blackbird Pond and the Harry Potter books in general) because they are “satanic [and] a danger to our children.” Argues that the “witchcraft” supposedly displayed in the books equates with the religion of Wicca, and because Wicca is an organized religion, it violates the First Amendment concept against the establishment of religion by the government.


Doyle, Robert P. Banned Books: Challenging Our Freedom to Read. 2014

University of Minnesota, Dr. Roggenkamp;

ALA Newbery Winners;

ALA Banned Books 1990-1999;

Banned Books Awareness “Bridge to Terabithia”;

American Bookseller’s Association “Connecticut Residents Seek to Ban Two Newbery Medal Winners from School”

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