Frequently Challenged Young Adult Books

The ALA's Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF) receives reports from libraries, schools, and the media on attempts to ban books in communities across the country. We compile lists of challenged books in order to inform the public about censorship efforts that affect libraries and schools.

Young Adult Banned/Challenged Books

(Books written for YA audiences, those featuring a YA main character, and classics that regularly appear on high school required reading lists.)

  • Adler, C.S. The Shell Lady’s Daughter
  • Alexie, Sherman. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
  • Alva0rez, Julia. In the Time of the Butterflies
  • Anaya, Rudolfo A. Bless Me, Ultima
  • Anderson, Laurie Halse. Speak
  • Anderson, Laurie Halse. Twisted
  • Anderson, M.T. Feed
  • Angelou, Maya. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
  • Anonymous. Go Ask Alice
  • Asher, Jay. Thirteen Reasons Why
  • Atkins, Catherine. Alt Ed
  • Atkins, Catherine. When Jeff Comes Home
  • Atwood, Margaret. The Handmaid’s Tale
  • Barnes, Derrick. The Making of Dr. Truelove
  • Barron, T.A. The Great Tree of Avalon: Child of the Dark Prophecy
  • Baskin, Julia, Lindsey Newman, Sophie Pollitt-Cohen, and Courtney Toombs. The Notebook Girls: Four Friends, One Diary, Real Life
  • Bauer, Marion Dane. On My Honor
  • Bauer, Marion Dane, ed. Am I Blue? Coming Out from the Silence
  • Benioff, David. City of Thieves
  • Block, Francesca Lia. Baby Be-Bop
  • Block, Francesca Lia. Girl Goddess
  • Block, Francesca Lia. I Was a Teenage Fairy
  • Block, Francesca Lia. The Rose and the Beast: Fairy Tales Retold
  • Block, Francesca Lia. Witch Baby
  • Blume, Judy. Deenie
  • Blume, Judy. Forever
  • Blume, Judy. Here’s to You, Rachel Robinson
  • Blume, Judy. Tiger Eyes
  • Bode, Janet, and Stan Mack. Heartbreak and Roses: Real Life Stories of Troubled Love
  • Bower, Bert, and Jim Lobdell. History Alive! The Medieval World and Beyond
  • Boyle, T. Coraghessan. The Tortilla Curtain
  • Bradbury, Ray. Fahrenheit 451
  • Brashares, Ann. Forever in Blue, the Fourth Summer of the Sisterhood
  • Burgess, Melvin. Doing It
  • Card, Orson Scott. Ender’s Game
  • Cart, Michael. My Father’s Scar
  • Cast, P.C., and Kristin Cast. House of Night series
  • Chambers, Aidan. Dance on My Grave: A Life and Death in Four Parts
  • Chbosky, Stephen. The Perks of Being a Wallflower
  • Choldenko, Gennifer. Al Capone Does My Shirts
  • Clerc, Charles, and Louis Leiter, comp. Seven Contemporary Short Novels
  • Cohen, Susan, and Daniel Cohen. When Someone You Know is Gay
  • Clinton, Cathryn. A Stone in My Hand
  • Colasanti, Susane. When It Happens
  • Cole, Brock. The Facts Speak for Themselves
  • Cole, Brock. The Goats
  • Colfer, Eoin. The Supernaturalist
  • Collins, Suzanne. The Hunger Games Trilogy
  • Conly, Jane. Crazy Lady
  • Cooney, Caroline. The Face on the Milk Carton
  • Cooney, Caroline. The Terrorist
  • Cormier, Robert. After the First Death
  • Cormier, Robert. Beyond the Chocolate War
  • Cormier, Robert. Fade
  • Cormier, Robert. Heroes
  • Cormier, Robert. I Am the Cheese
  • Cormier, Robert. Tenderness
  • Cormier, Robert. We All Fall Down
  • Coville, Bruce. Am I Blue?
  • Cox, Elizabeth. Night Talk
  • Crawford, Brent. Carter Finally Gets It
  • Cruse, Howard. Stuck Rubber Baby
  • Crutcher, Chris. Athletic Shorts
  • Crutcher, Chris. Chinese Handcuffs
  • Crutcher, Chris. Deadline
  • Crutcher, Chris. In the Time I Get
  • Crutcher, Chris. Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes
  • Crutcher, Chris. Whale Talk
  • Daldry, Jeremy. The Teenage Guy’s Survival Guide
  • Dandicat, Edwidge. Krik! Krak!
  • Danforth, Emily M. The Miseducation of Cameron Post
  • Davis, Deborah. My Brother Has AIDS
  • Davis, Jenny. Sex Education
  • Dawe, Ted. Into the River
  • Dawson, James. This Book is Gay
  • Dessen, Sarah. Just Listen
  • Deuker, Carl. On the Devil’s Court
  • Doctorow, Cory. Little Brother
  • Dorfman, Ariel. Death and the Maiden
  • Dorris, Michael. A Yellow Raft in Blue Water
  • Draper, Sharon M., and Adam Lowenbein. Romiette and Julio
  • Drill, Esther. Deal With It! A Whole New Approach to Your Body, Brain, and Life as a gURL
  • Duncan, Lois. Daughters of Eve
  • Duncan, Lois. Killing Mr. Griffin
  • Eleveld, Mark, ed. The Spoken Word Revolution: Slam, Hip Hop & the Poetry of a New Generation
  • Elish, Dan. Born Too Short: The Confessions of an Eighth-Grade Basket Case
  • Ellis, Elisabeth Gaynor, and Anthony Esler. World History
  • Ellison, Ralph. Invisible Man
  • Erlbach, Arlene. The Middle School Survival Guide
  • Ferris, Jean. Eight Seconds
  • Fitzgerald, F. Scott. The Great Gatsby
  • Forman, Gayle. Just One Day
  • Franco, Betsy. You Hear Me? Poems and Writings by Teenage Boys
  • Frank, Anne. Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl
  • Frank, E.R. America: A Novel
  • Frank, E.R. Life is Funny
  • Freedom Writers. The Freedom Writers Diary: How a Teacher and 150 Teens Used Writing to Change Themselves and the World Around Them
  • Freymann-Weyr, Garret. My Heartbeat
  • Friend, Natasha. Lush
  • Gaiman, Neil. Neverwhere
  • Gaines, Ernest. The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman
  • Garden, Nancy. Annie on My Mind
  • Garden, Nancy. Good Moon Rising
  • Gardner, John. Grendel
  • Giles, Gail. Shattering Glass
  • Glenn, Mel. Who Killed Mr. Chippendale?
  • Going, K.L. Fat Kid Rules the World
  • Golding, William. Lord of the Flies
  • Gould, Steven. Jumper
  • Gray, Heather M., and Samantha Phillips. Real Girl/Real World: Tools for Finding Your True Self
  • Green, John. An Abundance of Katherines
  • Green, John. The Fault in Our Stars
  • Green, John. Looking for Alaska
  • Green, John. Paper Towns
  • Greene, Bette. The Drowning of Stephan Jones
  • Greene, Bette. Summer of My German Solidier
  • Haddix, Margaret Peterson. Don’t You Dare Read This, Mrs. Dunphrey
  • Halpern, Julie. Get Well Soon
  • Hartinger, Brent. Geography Club
  • Hautzig, Deborah. Hey Dollface
  • Heller, Joseph. Catch-22
  • Hernandez, Gilbert. Palomar: The Heartbreak Soup Stories
  • Heron, Ann. Two Teenagers in Twenty
  • Hinton, S.E. The Outsiders
  • Hinton, S.E. Taming the Star Runner
  • Hinton, S.E. Tex
  • Hinton, S.E. That Was Then, This is Now
  • Holliday, Laurel. Children in the Holocaust and World War II: Their Secret Diaries
  • Holmes, Melisa, and Trish Hutchison. Hang-ups, Hook-ups, and Holding Out: Stuff You Need to Know about Your Body, Sex, and Dating
  • Hopkins, Ellen. Crank
  • Hopkins, Ellen. Identical
  • Horowitz, Anthony. Snakehead
  • Hosseini, Khaled. The Kite Runner
  • Howe, James. Totally Joe
  • Huegel, Kelly. GLBTQ: The Survival Guide for Queer and Questioning Teens
  • Hurston, Zora Neale. Their Eyes Were Watching God
  • Hurwin, Davida. Time for Dancing
  • Huxley, Aldous. Brave New World
  • Hwa, Kim Dong. The Color of Earth series
  • Jahn-Clough, Lisa. Me, Penelope
  • Johnson, Maureen. The Bermudez Triangle
  • Jukes, Mavis. The Guy Book: An Owner’s Manual
  • Kehret, Peg. Abduction!
  • Kenan, Randall. James Baldwin
  • Keyes, Daniel. Flowers for Algernon
  • King, Stephen. Carrie
  • King, Stephen. Christine
  • Klause, Annette Curtis. Blood and Chocolate
  • Klein, Norma. Beginners’ Love
  • Klein, Norma. Family Secrets
  • Klein, Norma. Just Friends
  • Kleinbaum, N.H. Dead Poet’s Society
  • Knowles, Jo (Johanna Beth). Lessons from a Dead Girl
  • Koertge, Ron. Arizona Kid
  • Koertge, Ron. The Brimstone Journals
  • Koerge, Ron. Where the Kissing Never Stopped
  • Korman, Gordon. Jake Reinvented
  • Kuklin, Susan. Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out
  • LaCour, Nina. Hold Still
  • Larson, Rodger. What I Know Now
  • Lebert, Benjamin. Crazy: A Novel
  • Lee, Harper. To Kill a Mockingbird
  • Lester, Julius. When Dad Killed Mom
  • Levenkron, Steven. The Best Little Girl in the World
  • Levithan, David. Two Boys Kissing
  • Lipsyte, Robert. One Fat Summer
  • Locker, Sari. Sari Says: The Real Dirt on Everything from Sex to School
  • Lockhart, E. The Boy Book: A Study of Habits and Behaviors, Plus Techniques for Taming Them
  • London, Jack. The Call of the Wild
  • Lopez, Tiffany Ana. Growing Up Chicana/o
  • Loux, Matthew. SideScrollers
  • Lyga, Barry. I Hunt Killers
  • Lynch, Chris. Extreme Elvin
  • Lynch, Chris. The Iceman
  • Mackler, Carolyn. The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big, Round Things
  • Mackler, Carolyn. Love and Other Four Letter Words
  • Mackler, Carolyn. Tangled
  • Mackler, Carolyn. Vegan Virgin Valentine
  • Martin, W.K. Marlene Dietrich
  • Martinac, Paula. k.d. lang
  • Mazer, Harry. The Last Mission
  • McBain, Ed. Alice in Jeopardy
  • McCormick, Patricia. Cut
  • McCullers, Carson. The Member of the Wedding
  • McKissack, Fredrick, Jr. Shooting Star
  • McNally, John, ed. When I Was a Loser: True Stories of (Barely) Surviving High School by Today’s Top Writers
  • Mead, Richelle. Vampire Academy series
  • Meyer, Michael, ed. Bedford Introduction to Literature
  • Meyer, Stephenie. Twilight series
  • Morrison, Toni. Beloved
  • Morrison, Toni. The Bluest Eye
  • Morrison, Toni. Song of Solomon
  • Mungo, Raymond. Liberace
  • Myers, Walter Dean. Fallen Angels
  • Myers, Walter Dean. Hoops
  • Myracle, Lauren. ttyl; ttfn; l8r g8r series
  • Naylor, Phyllis Reynolds. Alice series
  • Nix, Garth. Shade’s Children
  • Nixon, Joan Lowery. Whispers from the Dead
  • Nunokawa, Jeff. Oscar Wilde
  • O’Brien, Sharon. Willa Cather
  • O’Brien, Tim. The Things They Carried
  • Oates, Joyce Carol. Sexy
  • Ockler, Sarah. Twenty Boy Summer
  • Oh, Minya. Bling: Hip Hop’s Crown Jewels
  • Orwell, George. 1984
  • Parish, James Robert. Whoopi Goldberg: Her Journey from Poverty to Mega-Stardom
  • Park, Barbara. Mick Harte Was Here
  • Parks, Gordon. The Learning Tree
  • Paulsen, Gary. Harris and Me
  • Peck, Robert Newton. A Day No Pigs Would Die
  • Pelzer, Dave. A Child Called It
  • Picoult, Jodi. Nineteen Minutes
  • Pike, Christopher. Bury Me Deep
  • Pike, Christopher. Chain Letter 2
  • Pike, Christopher. Die Softly
  • Pike, Christopher. Last Act
  • Pike, Christopher. The Listeners
  • Pike, Christopher. The Lost Mind
  • Pike, Christopher. The Midnight Club
  • Pike, Christopher. Remember Me 3
  • Pike, Christopher. The Star Group
  • Pike, Christopher. Witch
  • Plum-Ucci, Carol. The Body of Christopher Creed
  • Pomeroy, Wardell. Boys and Sex
  • Pomeroy, Wardell. Girls and Sex
  • Rapp, Adam. The Buffalo Tree
  • Reiss, Johanna. The Upstairs Room
  • Rennison, Louise. Angus, Thongs, and Full Frontal Snogging
  • Rennison, Louise. Knocked Out By My Nunga-Nungas
  • Rennison, Louise. On the Bright Side, I’m Now the Girlfriend of a Sex God: Further Confessions of Georgia Nicolson
  • Reynolds, Marilyn. Detour for Emmy
  • Riley, Andy. The Book of Bunny Suicides: Little Fluffy Rabbits Who Just Don’t Want to Live Anymore
  • Rivera, Tomas. And the Earth Did Not Devour Him
  • Roquelaure, A.N. [Anne Rice]. Sleeping Beauty Trilogy
  • Rowell, Rainbow. Eleanor & Park
  • Salinger, J.D. The Catcher in the Rye
  • Sanchez, Alex. Rainbow Boys
  • Santiago, Esmeralda. When I Was Puerto Rican
  • Sapphire [Ramona Lofton]. Push
  • Satrapi, Marjane. Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood
  • Schouweiler, Thomas. The Devil: Opposing Viewpoints
  • Scott, Elizabeth. Living Dead Girl
  • Selzer, Adam. How to Get Suspended and Influence People
  • Shakespeare, William. Romeo and Juliet (No Fear Shakespeare)
  • Shusterman, Neal. Unwind
  • Sidhwa, Bapsi. Cracking India
  • Sittenfeld, Curtis. Prep: A Novel
  • Skloot, Rebecca. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
  • Smith, Lee. Fair and Tender Ladies
  • Smith, Patrick. A Land Remembered
  • Snyder, Jane McIntosh. Sappho
  • Sones, Sonya. One of Those Hideous Books Where the Moher Dies
  • Sones, Sonya. What My Mother Doesn’t Know
  • Sonnie, Amy, ed. Revolutionary Voices: A Multicultural Queer Youth Anthology
  • Speare, Elizabeth George. The Witch of Blackbird Pond
  • Spies, Karen Bornemann. Everything You Need to Know About Incest
  • St. Stephen’s Community House. The Little Black Book for Girlz: A Book on Healthy Sexuality
  • Steinbeck, John. The Grapes of Wrath
  • Steinbeck, John. Of Mice and Men
  • Stine, R.L. Double Date
  • Stokstad, Marilyn. Art History: Eighteenth to Twenty-First Century Art, Third Edition
  • Stone, Tanya Lee. A Bad Boy Can Be Good for a Girl
  • Srasser, Todd. Give a Boy a Gun
  • Summers, Courtney. Some Girls Are
  • Tarbox, Katherine. A Girl’s Life Online
  • Taylor, Mildred D. Mississippi Bridge
  • Touchette, Charleen. It Stops With Me: Memoir of a Canuck Girl
  • Trueman, Terry. Stuck in Neutral
  • Twain, Mark [Samuel L. Clemens]. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
  • Twain, Mark [Samuel L. Clemens]. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
  • von Ziegesar, Cecily. Gossip Girl series
  • Walker, Alice. The Color Purple
  • Walker, Kate. Peter
  • Watkins, Yoko. So Far From the Bamboo Grove
  • Wersba, Barbara. Whistle Me Home
  • Williams-Garcia, Rita. Like Sisters on the Homefront
  • Wittlinger, Ellen. Sandpiper
  • Wolfe, Daniel. T.E. Lawrence
  • Wolff, Tobias. This Boy’s Life: A Memoir
  • Wood, Maryrose. Sex Kittens and Horn Dawgs Fall in Love
  • Wright, Richard. Native Son
  • WritersCorps. Paint Me Like I Am: Teen Poems
  • Zindel, Paul. The Pigman
  • Zwerman, Gilda. Martina Navratilova

Compiled by Patricia Peters
August 2016