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Sunday, April 22, 2012

Book Banning and The Dirty Cowboy

"Oh Harry, don't you see? If she could have done one thing to make absolutely sure that every single person in this school will read your interview, it was banning it!"
Hermione Granger penned by JK Rowling 


This morning, Donalyn Miller, aka The Book Whisperer, sent out a Tweet to many of her library/teacher friends.  While this is kind of the norm for our communication, today's tweet was a bit different.

See, there is this really cute, funny and insightful book about a cowboy and his dog.  This book and its illustrations are adorable!  And while, I always appreciate the joy of hearing one of Donnalyn's book finds, this book is a bit different.

It's being banned.

No, seriously, it's being banned.

Here is the basic plot.  A Cowboy is very dirty and needs a bath.  He asks his trusty friend to watch his clothing while he takes said bath.  After bath, cowboy is no longer stinky and trusty friend doesn't recognize him.  What follows is a fun-filled book about the antics of a man trying to convince his friend to give him back his clothing.  

Really, that is it.  Not a curse word, nobody dies, the dog is well treated, the horse is well treated.  Why is this book being banned you might ask?  The cowboy is ....

Dare I say the word .....

Naked. 

Ok, he's naked but nobody can see anything.  There are well placed boots, the dog's tail, not so much as a teeny little hint of anything shows.  It's actually quite clever how the non-nudity is handled.

Here is the story in the Lebanon Daily News. (there are images from the book as well)
Here is the author's take on the banning.

Now, don't get me wrong.  If one set of parents feels that this book is inappropriate for their child, please don't allow your child to read it.  It is a parent's right to decide what THEIR child can read or be exposed to.  It is not one parent's right to decide what ALL children can or cannot read.

To remove the book from the school library, from the hands of all children, now this is wrong. 

One of the great things about books, is that they teach sus about the world.  The Dirty Cowboy teaches us about friendship and loyalty.  Today I ordered a couple of copies of the books for the young readers in my life.

After all, according to Hermione Granger, and her very talented creator JK Rowling, the one way to make sure everyone reads something is to to ban it. So, maybe for an author, having your book challenged is a good thing.  For a free society, the limiting of what we can read, is not. 

To the author, Amy Timberlake, (@amytimberlake on twitter)  You go girl!  Now your book will be on the banned book list with some very impressive authors indeed!

If you want to read more from some of my banned books blogs, please feel free to click the links below...


Why I Read Banned Books
Check Out Banned Books
Banned Book Week on The Leaky Cauldron
Banned Books:  I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
Banned Books:  Huckleberry Finn
Banned Books:  The Chocolate Wars
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