Judy Blume talks about her banned books

Filed under: Teens, Health & Safety: Babies, Day Care & Education, That's Entertainment

It's the mid-80s, and four or five freshman girls are standing huddled in the center of the mall, near the bookstore. Why? They want to read Judy Blume's Forever, but the rumor is the store manager will kick you out just for asking. Finally, the fearless Finnish exchange student stands up and walks into the store. The other girls duck low, watching to see what happens. She doesn't get kicked out, but she's told she must be 18 to buy it and to run along now.

I know this scene happened, because I was there, but I'm guessing it also happened in malls across the country. Judy Blume's books, once you got past SuperFudge and Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing, were all about the things you wanted to know about: girls, boys, growing breasts, puberty, and OMG...sex. But Forever, the one book that actually contained a sexual encounter between two 18-year-old seniors, was the one book we could never get our hands on. (Mainly because we were too embarrassed to ask our parents, who probably would have welcomed the chance at an open conversation about sex.)

Blume has five books on the "most challenged" list put together by the ALA. Watch her talk about her experience and her books here.

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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.