Date Published:

Ban This Book: Summary

Don't judge a book by its ban! In "Ban This Book" by Alan Gratz, an unforgettable tale unfolds in the small-town setting of Rock Creek Elementary School. Fourth-grader Amy Anne Ollinger adores reading. But her world takes a shocking turn when her favorite book, and soon after many others, are banned from the school library, due to the complaints of a parent. Fueled by the urge to protect her literary sanctuaries and to let other kids read them too, Amy Anne secretly starts a "Banned Books Locker Library". With every forbidden title, the stakes rise, and her covert operation becomes a beacon of rebellion, freedom, and the power of stories. The battle over banned books is more than just about what's on the pages; it's about the rights of every reader. Will Amy Anne succeed in keeping the spirit of stories alive, or will censorship prevail?

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Ban This Book

Author: Alan Gratz

Date Published:

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Ban This Book: Genres

Middle Grade Fiction
Realistic Fiction
Social Issues

Ban This Book: Main Characters

Amy Anne Ollinger: A spirited fourth-grader with a profound love for books. She’s passionate about her beliefs, as seen when she sets up the underground library for banned books.

Rebecca Zimmerman: A member of the school board and the parent who initiates the book bans. She’s concerned about the content of some books, reflecting her conservative values.

Mrs. Jones: The school librarian and a silent supporter of Amy Anne’s cause. Her dedication to books is evident when she quietly directs kids to the Banned Books Locker Library.

Alex: Amy Anne’s close friend and loyal ally in her mission. His unwavering support showcases his value for friendship and justice.

Ban This Book: Themes

Censorship and Freedom of Expression: The core conflict arises from the banning of books, challenging the idea of what content is deemed appropriate. The underground library and the Read-In event highlight the fight for freedom of thought.

Empowerment and Advocacy: Amy Anne’s transformation from a passive reader to an advocate showcases the power of standing up for what one believes in. This is particularly evident in her address to the school board.

Friendship and Solidarity: Throughout her journey, Amy Anne learns the importance of collaboration and trust. This is evident in how her friends rally around her cause, proving that strength lies in numbers.

The Power of Stories: The lengths Amy Anne goes to preserve banned books underscores the transformative and enlightening power of literature.

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