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Friday, July 18, 2014

Another Summer, Another Case of Summer Reading List Drama

What is it about summer reading that makes people so cranky? Is it the heat? Are people just bored before they go away on vacation? I dunno, man. Last year, people got all up in arms about mistakes on a school's summer reading list. That was fun.

THIS summer's drama hits a bit closer to home for me: an opinion columnist at the NY Post wrote a rather scathing and (in my opinion) uninformed diatribe against this's seasons summer reading lists from NYC libraries. Here are just a few of the author's problems with the books that were chosen for the list: there aren't enough classics on it, the books represent too much ethnic diversity, and (I'm paraphrasing here), librarains are obviously trying too hard to be politically correct to pander to certain demographics. 

Here's my reaction piece over on Book Riot: A Defense of NYPL's Summer Reading List for Kids.

The issues of literacy and diversity in books are very important to me, so I tried hard to give a measured, somewhat-fact-based response (as opposed to yelling and breaking things, like I was tempted to do). I hope you find it worth reading, and I hope your summer - and summer reading - are going well.


  1. I sometimes wonder if summer side is just as related to offering children choices they don't like as to not reading. Wait, the second is a result of the first. Lists are fine, but they never can replace a librarian who is aware of the literature and can get "the right book for the right child at the right time". Sigh.

  2. Ugh... whenever a Lucille Bluth gif represents the appropriate response to a situation, you just KNOW there's going to be a lot of eye rolling, head shaking, exasperated gestures, and all around "WHY?!?!?!" More power to you for NOT succumbing to "because you're wrong!" as your whole argument (even though it's the right answer).