Nabokov (who wrote the banned book Lolita) once said: “A good reader, a major reader, an active and creative reader is a rereader.”
Here at Guernica, celebrating Banned Books Week has meant many nostalgic trips to the book store. (And helped us to finally become, ahem, major readers.) Here’s a list of stuff we re-read this week that we know you’d also enjoy:
The Color Purple - First you read the book. Then you watch the movie. Then you go see the musical—touring since 2005.
The Master and Margarita—To quote professor Woland, “Didn’t you know that manuscripts don’t burn?” In other words: you can’t keep a banned book down.
Bridge to Terabithia—This made us cry when we were 12. It still does. Make sure to keep some kleenex handy.
Beloved—Packs the same emotional wallop it did in 9th grade. Like Beloved herself, not something one can put down and walk away from.
The Satanic Verses—Salman Rushdie’s masterpiece is a literary work with street cred. In 1989 a fatwā was placed on Rushdie’s head, and it was not until 1998 that the Iranian government revoked the threat. Rushdie seemed to be living a fictional life—a fact that he recognized and promptly wrote down. His latest book, Joseph Anton: A Memoir, details that bizarre and terrifying period of his life. Fun fact: the title of the new memoir is the alias Rushdie resumed for police protection, a combination of the first and last name of his two favorite writers—Conrad and Chekhov.
Tropic of Cancer—Let’s just say we learned some slang. Let’s just say that.
The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven—Sherman Alexie proves that when poets write in long form, things get interesting. And beautiful. And wild. This collection of short stories reads like a seamless novel.
And who can resist Judy Blume’s Forever, which taught more than a few of us more than a little bit about sex? We sure can’t.
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