We Stand with the Banned

By Kat La Mantia | August 22 2023 | AdultsChildren'sGeneralAllBlog

We at Penguin Random House believe that books make us better, and young readers in particular deserve access to a wide range of perspectives.

We stand with our authors and are committed to publishing diverse stories and a rich, wide span of narratives. We stand with teachers and librarians and trust their expertise on what books to share with students. And we stand with our readers, because everyone deserves to see themselves in a book.

To learn more about what Penguin Random House is doing to fight censorship and what you can do to help protect the freedom to read, please take a look at our new Banned Books Resources Site. This is an issue that affects us all, even beyond the walls of schools and libraries, and everyone can help in the fight against book bans.

Browse through our resources hub, share it with anyone you know who’s concerned about preserving free access to reading, and then explore some of our more commonly banned and challenged books in title lists linked below! For stores, participating in Banned Books Week can be a great way to show that you stand for free expression in your community. Learn more about Banned Books Week, which this year runs from October 1 – October 7, here, and wear your support on your sleeve with Out of Print’s banned books designs.

Banned and Challenged Books – Young Readers

Banned and Challenged Books – Adult

Banned Books – Out of Print

1984
75th Anniversary
978-0-452-28423-4
Written 75 years ago, 1984 was George Orwell’s chilling prophecy about the future. And while 1984 has come and gone, his dystopian vision of a government that will do anything to control the narrative is timelier than ever...This 75th Anniversary Edition includes:• A New Introduction by Dolen Perkins-Valdez, author of Take My Hand, winner of the 2023 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work—Fiction• A Foreword by Thomas Pynchon• A New Afterword by Sandra Newman, author of Julia: A Retelling of George Orwell’s 1984“The Party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command.”Winston Smith toes the Party line, rewriting history to satisfy the demands of the Ministry of Truth. With each lie he writes, Winston grows to hate the Party that seeks power for its own sake and persecutes those who dare to commit thoughtcrimes. But as he starts to think for himself, Winston can’t escape the fact that Big Brother is always watching...A startling and haunting vision of the world, 1984 is so powerful that it is completely convincing from start to finish. No one can deny the influence of this novel, its hold on the imaginations of multiple generations of readers, or the resiliency of its admonitions—a legacy that seems only to grow with the passage of time.•Nominated as one of America’s best-loved novels by PBS’s The Great American Read•
$19.00 US
May 06, 2003
5-7/16 x 8
Paperback
384 Pages
Berkley

It's Perfectly Normal
Changing Bodies, Growing Up, Sex, Gender, and Sexual Health
978-1-5362-0720-0
Fully and fearlessly updated, this vital new edition of the acclaimed book on sex, sexuality, bodies, and puberty deserves a spot in every family’s library.With more than 1.5 million copies in print, It’s Perfectly Normal has been a trusted resource on sexuality for more than twenty-five years. Rigorously vetted by experts, this is the most ambitiously updated edition yet, featuring to-the-minute information and language accompanied by new and refreshed art. Updates include: * A shift to gender-neutral vocabulary throughout* An expansion on LGBTQIA topics, gender identity, sex, and sexuality—making this a sexual health book for all readers * Coverage of recent advances in methods of sexual safety and contraception with corresponding illustrations* A revised section on abortion, including developments in the shifting politics and legislation as well as an accurate, honest overview * A sensitive and detailed expansion on the topics of sexual abuse, the importance of consent, and destigmatizing HIV/AIDS* A modern understanding of social media and the internet that tackles rapidly changing technology to highlight its benefits and pitfalls and ways to stay safe online Inclusive and accessible, this newest edition of It’s Perfectly Normal provides young people with the knowledge and vocabulary they need to understand their bodies, relationships, and identities in order to make responsible decisions and stay healthy.
$24.99 US
May 18, 2021
6-1/2 x 10-1/4
Hardcover
128 Pages
Candlewick
Age 10 and up

My Rainbow
978-1-9848-1460-9
A dedicated mom puts love into action as she creates the perfect rainbow-colored wig for her transgender daughter, based on the real-life experience of mother-daughter advocate duo Trinity and DeShanna Neal.
$18.99 US
Oct 20, 2020
8-1/2 x 10-3/4
Hardcover
32 Pages
Kokila
Age 4-8 years

The Complete Maus
A Survivor's Tale
978-0-679-40641-9
The definitive edition of the graphic novel acclaimed as “the most affecting and successful narrative ever done about the Holocaust” (Wall Street Journal) and “the first masterpiece in comic book history” (The New Yorker) • PULITZER PRIZE WINNER • One of Variety’s “Banned and Challenged Books Everyone Should Read”A brutally moving work of art—widely hailed as the greatest graphic novel ever written—Maus recounts the chilling experiences of the author’s father during the Holocaust, with Jews drawn as wide-eyed mice and Nazis as menacing cats. Maus is a haunting tale within a tale, weaving the author’s account of his tortured relationship with his aging father into an astonishing retelling of one of history's most unspeakable tragedies. It is an unforgettable story of survival and a disarming look at the legacy of trauma.
$35.00 US
Nov 19, 1996
6-3/8 x 9-1/8
Hardcover
296 Pages
Pantheon

The 1619 Project: Born on the Water
978-0-593-30735-9
The 1619 Project’s lyrical picture book in verse chronicles the consequences of slavery and the history of Black resistance in the United States, thoughtfully rendered by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones and Newbery honor-winning author Renée Watson.
$18.99 US
Nov 16, 2021
9 x 9
Hardcover
48 Pages
Kokila
Age 7-10 years

Antiracist Baby Board Book
978-0-593-11041-6
From the National Book Award-winning author of Stamped from the Beginning and How to Be an Antiracist comes a fresh new board book that empowers parents and children to uproot racism in our society and in ourselves.
$8.99 US
Jun 16, 2020
7 x 7
Board Book
24 Pages
Kokila
Age 0-3 years

Anne Frank's Diary: The Graphic Adaptation
978-1-101-87179-9
The only graphic adaptation of Anne Frank's diary that has been authorized by the Anne Frank Foundation and that uses text from the diary--it will introduce a new generation of young readers to this classic of Holocaust literature.
$25.00 US
Oct 02, 2018
7 x 10-1/4
Hardcover
160 Pages
Pantheon
Age 13 and up

Invisible Man
978-0-679-73276-1
NATIONAL BOOK AWARD WINNER • NATIONAL BESTSELLER • In this deeply compelling novel and epic milestone of American literature, a nameless narrator tells his story from the basement lair of the Invisible Man he imagines himself to be. One of The Atlantic’s Great American Novels of the Past 100 YearsHe describes growing up in a Black community in the South, attending a Negro college from which he is expelled, moving to New York and becoming the chief spokesman of the Harlem branch of "the Brotherhood," before retreating amid violence and confusion.Originally published in 1952 as the first novel by a then unknown author, it remained on the bestseller list for sixteen weeks and established Ralph Ellison as one of the key writers of the century. The book is a passionate and witty tour de force of style, strongly influenced by T.S. Eliot's The Waste Land, James Joyce, and Dostoevsky.
$17.00 US
Mar 14, 1995
5-3/16 x 8
Paperback
608 Pages
Vintage

Last Night at the Telegraph Club
978-0-525-55527-8
Malinda Lo's bestselling and National Book Award longlisted masterpiece is a gripping story of love and duty set in San Francisco's Chinatown during the 1950s. Now in paperback.
$11.99 US
Dec 28, 2021
5-1/2 x 8-1/4
Paperback
432 Pages
Dutton Books for Young Readers
Age 14 and up

I Am Jazz
978-0-8037-4107-2
The story of a transgender child based on the real-life experience of Jazz Jennings, who has become a spokesperson for transkids everywhere"This is an essential tool for parents and teachers to share with children whether those kids identify as trans or not. I wish I had had a book like this when I was a kid struggling with gender identity questions. I found it deeply moving in its simplicity and honesty."—Laverne Cox (who plays Sophia in “Orange Is the New Black”)From the time she was two years old, Jazz knew that she had a girl's brain in a boy's body. She loved pink and dressing up as a mermaid and didn't feel like herself in boys' clothing. This confused her family, until they took her to a doctor who said that Jazz was transgender and that she was born that way. Jazz's story is based on her real-life experience and she tells it in a simple, clear way that will be appreciated by picture book readers, their parents, and teachers.
$18.99 US
Sep 04, 2014
10-1/2 x 9
Hardcover
32 Pages
Dial Books
Age 4-8 years

Our Skin: A First Conversation About Race
978-0-593-51939-4
Based on the research that race, gender, consent, and body positivity should be discussed with toddlers on up, this read-aloud series offers adults the opportunity to begin important conversations with young children in an informed, safe, and supported way. Now available as a hardcover picture book! 
$14.99 US
May 25, 2021
9 x 10
Hardcover
40 Pages
Rise x Penguin Workshop
Age 2-5 years

Beyond the Gender Binary
978-0-593-09465-5
Winner of the 2021 In The Margins Award  "When reading this book, all I feel is kindness."-- Sam Smith, Grammy and Oscar award-winning singer and songwriter "Thank God we have Alok. And I'm learning a thing or two myself."--Billy Porter, Emmy award-winning actor, singer, and Broadway theater performer"Beyond the Gender Binary will give readers everywhere the feeling that anything is possible within themselves"--Princess Nokia, musician and co-founder of the Smart Girl Club"A fierce, penetrating, and empowering call for change."-- Kirkus Reviews, starred review"An affirming, thoughtful read for all ages." -- School Library Journal, starred reviewIn Beyond the Gender Binary, poet, artist, and LGBTQIA+ rights advocate Alok Vaid-Menon deconstructs, demystifies, and reimagines the gender binary.
$8.99 US
Jun 02, 2020
4-3/8 x 6-1/4
Paperback
64 Pages
Penguin Workshop
Age 12 and up

All Are Welcome (An All Are Welcome Book)
978-0-525-57964-9
Join the call for a better world with this New York Times bestselling picture book about a school where diversity and inclusion are celebrated.
$17.99 US
Jul 10, 2018
10 x 10
Hardcover
44 Pages
Knopf Books for Young Readers
Age 4-8 years

This Is Our Rainbow
16 Stories of Her, Him, Them, and Us
978-0-593-30397-9
The first LGBTQIA+ anthology for middle-graders featuring stories for every letter of the acronym, including realistic, fantasy, and sci-fi stories by authors like Justina Ireland, Marieke Nijkamp, Alex Gino, and more!
$8.99 US
Apr 11, 2023
5-3/16 x 7-5/8
Paperback
336 Pages
Yearling
Age 8-12 years

SHOUT
978-0-14-242220-5
Award-winning Speak author Laurie Halse Anderson's New York Times bestselling poetic memoir and call to action, which garnered eight starred reviews!
$11.99 US
Mar 10, 2020
5-1/16 x 7-3/4
Paperback
320 Pages
Penguin Books
Age 14 and up

I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter
978-1-5247-0051-5
The National Book Award Finalist and instant New York Times bestseller about losing a sister and finding yourself amid the pressures, expectations, and stereotypes of growing up in a Mexican American home.  “I fell in love with Erika L. Sánchez’ stunning novel....The depth, wit and searing intelligence of her writing, and her young Latina heroine, struck me to my core and left me wanting so much more." --America Ferrera
$12.99 US
Mar 05, 2019
5-1/2 x 8-1/4
Paperback
368 Pages
Ember
Age 14 and up

Julián Is a Mermaid
978-0-7636-9045-8
Winner of a 2019 Stonewall Book AwardIn an exuberant picture book, a glimpse of costumed mermaids leaves one boy flooded with wonder and ready to dazzle the world.While riding the subway home from the pool with his abuela one day, Julián notices three women spectacularly dressed up. Their hair billows in brilliant hues, their dresses end in fishtails, and their joy fills the train car. When Julián gets home, daydreaming of the magic he’s seen, all he can think about is dressing up just like the ladies in his own fabulous mermaid costume: a butter-yellow curtain for his tail, the fronds of a potted fern for his headdress. But what will Abuela think about the mess he makes — and even more importantly, what will she think about how Julián sees himself? Mesmerizing and full of heart, Jessica Love’s author-illustrator debut is a jubilant picture of self-love and a radiant celebration of individuality.
$17.99 US
Apr 23, 2018
9-13/16 x 9-1/16
Hardcover
40 Pages
Candlewick
Age 4-8 years

Dear Martin
978-1-101-93952-9
A #1 New York Times bestseller!"Raw and gripping." -Jason Reynolds, New York Times bestselling coauthor of All American Boys"A must-read!" -Angie Thomas, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Hate U GiveRaw, captivating, and undeniably real, Nic Stone joins industry giants Jason Reynolds and Walter Dean Myers as she boldly tackles American race relations in this stunning debut.
$12.99 US
Sep 04, 2018
5-1/2 x 8-1/4
Paperback
240 Pages
Ember
Age 14 and up

The Bluest Eye
978-0-307-27844-9
NATIONAL BESTSELLER • A PARADE BEST BOOK OF ALL TIME • From the acclaimed Nobel Prize winner—a powerful examination of our obsession with beauty and conformity that asks questions about race, class, and gender with characteristic subtly and grace. In Morrison’s acclaimed first novel, Pecola Breedlove—an 11-year-old Black girl in an America whose love for its blond, blue-eyed children can devastate all others—prays for her eyes to turn blue: so that she will be beautiful, so that people will look at her, so that her world will be different. This is the story of the nightmare at the heart of her yearning, and the tragedy of its fulfillment. Here, Morrison’s writing is “so precise, so faithful to speech and so charged with pain and wonder that the novel becomes poetry” (The New York Times).
$16.00 US
May 08, 2007
5-3/16 x 8
Paperback
224 Pages
Vintage

Persepolis
The Story of a Childhood
978-0-375-71457-3
A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK and SF CHRONICLE AND LOS ANGELES TIMES BESTSELLER: The funny, tragic and deeply moving comic strip memoir of a young girl growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution. First time in paperback.
$16.00 US
Jun 01, 2004
6 x 8-7/8
Paperback
160 Pages
Pantheon

The Handmaid's Tale
A Novel
978-0-385-49081-8
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • An instant classic and eerily prescient cultural phenomenon, from “the patron saint of feminist dystopian fiction” (The New York Times). Now an award-winning Hulu series starring Elizabeth Moss.Look for The Testaments, the bestselling, award-winning the sequel to The Handmaid’s TaleIn Margaret Atwood’s dystopian future, environmental disasters and declining birthrates have led to a Second American Civil War. The result is the rise of the Republic of Gilead, a totalitarian regime that enforces rigid social roles and enslaves the few remaining fertile women. Offred is one of these, a Handmaid bound to produce children for one of Gilead’s commanders. Deprived of her husband, her child, her freedom, and even her own name, Offred clings to her memories and her will to survive. At once a scathing satire, an ominous warning, and a tour de force of narrative suspense, The Handmaid’s Tale is a modern classic.Includes an introduction by Margaret Atwood
$17.00 US
Mar 16, 1998
5-3/16 x 8
Paperback
336 Pages
Vintage

Girl Crushed
978-1-9848-9737-4
Leah on the Offbeat meets We Are Okay in this pitch-perfect queer romance about falling in love and never quite falling out of it--heartbreak, unexpected new crushes, and all.
$10.99 US
Oct 19, 2021
5-1/2 x 8-1/4
Paperback
352 Pages
Ember
Age 12 and up