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A week to read banned books

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By Bob Gaydos

It would appear that I'm the kind of guy who, when visiting a book store (remember book stores?), headed straight to the banned-book section and got comfortable. (Remember how comfortable book stores could be?)

I do not make this confession arbitrarily or boldly, but rather matter-of-factly. Also a bit surprisingly. Until recently, I had no idea that I was such a fan of banned books, Then, Banned Book Week showed up on Facebook and other social-media calendars and I started looking at the various lists of books that have been banned or challenged, as the American Library Association puts it.

Last year I was a few days late to mark the annual reminder of the importance of freedom of expression. This year, I'm right on time. September 26 is the start of Banned Books Week. At a time when voices of protest and outrage are being stifled, there's not a day to waste promoting the free expression of ideas. So here's my list, in no particular order, of banned books I have read. It's compiled from a few lists I found on the Internet:

The Catcher in the Rye

To Kill a Mockingbird

The Lord of the Flies

, 1984

Lolita

Catch-22

Brave New World

Animal Farm

The Sun Also Rises

Invisible Man

Howl

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Bob Gaydos is a veteran of 40-plus years in daily newspapers. He began as police reporter with The (Binghamton, N.Y.) Sun-Bulletin, eventually covering government and politics as well as serving as city editor, features editor, sports editor and (more...)
 

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