Jennifer Sullivan's Reviews > Property of the Rebel Librarian

Property of the Rebel Librarian by Allison Varnes
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it was amazing
bookshelves: mg-realistic-fiction

All my library friends must read this tribute to librarians and the freedom to read!

June, a 12-year old avid reader, checks out a new book from the middle school library as she's done many times before. But when her parents see it and disapprove, June's innocent choice of reading material snowballs into the suspension of her beloved school librarian, the sacking and pillaging of the school library, and a ban on all books other that what the school assigns! On top of that, June's parents confiscate all of her personal books at home (later returning them vandalized with ridiculous edits and re-writes). June is devastated, but when she discoveres a Free Little Library nearby, the Rebel Librarian is born!

I loved this book, even though it had my blood boiling by the end of the 3rd chapter. I loved June and related to her love of reading, and I was so angry and frustrated with her parents, as well as the school principal and board members. They were all absolutely narrow-minded and ridiculous, and I hope a gross exaggeration of the degree of censorship that is really out there, though I do know of some cases where communities have gotten up in arms over specific books. June also deals with budding romance, betrayal, and figuring out when and how to stand up for herself. The book is fast-paced and has a satisfying ending.

I would recommend this to all librarians and English teachers, and to kids who are passionate about reading and making their own choices about what they read. This is a manifesto of sorts, about the importance of the freedom of information, equal access, and anti-censorship in regards to children. [The author also wrote an article for Brightly recently about the importance of letting kids make their own choices about what they read.]

While the book that set off the whole book-banning frenzy in this story is fictitious, many other great children's books are mentioned, including classics like Old Yeller, popular fiction like Harry Potter, and potentially controversial books like George, and a complete bibliography of all of them is provided in the endnotes.
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Reading Progress

October 3, 2018 – Started Reading
October 3, 2018 – Shelved
October 3, 2018 – Shelved as: mg-realistic-fiction
October 3, 2018 – Finished Reading

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