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Cosby's New Infamy: Kids' Books Among 'Most Challenged'

American Library Association is out with list for 2016
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 10, 2017 1:07 PM CDT
Cosby's New Infamy: Kids' Books Among 'Most Challenged'
Bill Cosby departs the Montgomery County Courthouse after a pretrial hearing in his sexual assault case in Norristown, Pa.   (Matt Rourke)

A celebrity once beloved among young people now finds himself on a list of books parents and other community members most wish to see removed from libraries: Bill Cosby. Cosby's "Little Bill Books" series is among those making the American Library Association's annual top 10 "challenged books," per the AP. The reason is unique for the list, which the ALA announced Monday: not the books themselves, but the multiple accusations of sexual assault against the actor-comedian. The Cosby series was launched in 1997, and the first three releases, The Meanest Thing to Say, The Treasure Hunt, and The Best Way to Play were selected by Oprah Winfrey for her book club.

Here is the ALA list, with the summary of complaints by people in parenthesis:

  1. This One Summer, by Mariko Tamaki (includes LGBT characters, drug use, and profanity, and was considered sexually explicit with mature themes)
  2. Drama, by Raina Telgemeier (includes LGBT characters, was deemed sexually explicit, and was considered to have an offensive political viewpoint)
  3. George, by Alex Gino (includes a transgender child, and the "sexuality was not appropriate at elementary levels")
  4. I Am Jazz, by Jessica Herthel and Jazz Jennings (portrays a transgender child and because of language, sex education, and offensive viewpoints)
  5. Two Boys Kissing, by David Levithan (cover has an image of two boys kissing, and it was considered to include sexually explicit LGBT content)
  6. Looking for Alaska, by John Green (challenged for a sexually explicit scene that may lead a student to "sexual experimentation")
  7. Big Hard Sex Criminals, by Matt Fraction (considered sexually explicit)
  8. Make Something Up: Stories You Can’t Unread, by Chuck Palahniuk (challenged for profanity, sexual explicitness, and being "disgusting and all around offensive")
  9. Little Bill (series), by Bill Cosby (challenged because of criminal sexual allegations against the author)
  10. Eleanor & Park, by Rainbow Rowell (challenged for offensive language)

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