Harry Potter tops list of most challenged books of 21st Century

Larra Clark/Macey Morales
ALA Media Relations

For Immediate Release
September 21, 2006

Harry Potter tops list of most challenged books of 21st Century

(CHICAGO) In anticipation of the 25th anniversary of Banned Books Week (September 23-30), the American Library Association (ALA) today announced the top 10 most challenged books from 2000-2005, with the Harry Potter series of books leading the pack.
The 10 most challenged books of the 21st Century (2000-2005) are:

Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling

"The Chocolate War" by Robert Cormier

Alice series by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor

"Of Mice and Men" by John Steinbeck

"I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings" by Maya Angelou

"Fallen Angels" by Walter Dean Myers

"It's Perfectly Normal" by Robie Harris

Scary Stories series by Alvin Schwartz

Captain Underpants series by Dav Pilkey

10. "Forever" by Judy Blume

All but three of these books also were in the top 10 of the most challenged books of the 1990s:
The ALA reports there were more than 3,000 attempts to remove books from schools and public libraries between 2000 and 2005. Challenges are defined as formal, written complaints filed with a library or school requesting that materials be removed because of content or appropriateness.

Now readers can vote online for THEIR favorite challenged book by logging on at
The ALA will announce the "winners" Monday, October 2.

Banned Books Week is a time in which schools, libraries and bookstores around the country celebrate the freedom to read with exhibits, readings and special events.

In honor of 25 years of fighting to keep books freely accessible in U.S. schools and libraries, the ALA has expanded the range of resources available to celebrate the freedom to read. Download a free chapter of three frequently challenged books from Audible.com. Search modern classics that have been banned or challenged with Google Book Search. Check it all out at

Banned Books Week is sponsored by the American Booksellers Association, the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression, the ALA, the Association of American Publishers, the American Society of Journalists and Authors, and the National Association of College Stores. It is endorsed by the Library of Congress Center for the Book.

For more information, please visit