This Boy's Life -- Tobias Wolff
People are so lame. I know that the school that yanked this book pulled it because of a curriculum overview, but they wouldn't have done the overview if some freakazoid hadn't complained about the book in the first place. Not that I take issue with the idea of curriculum overview--I just can't help feeling that this book and the Walter Dean Myers book were the school's attempt to throw the censors a bone.
My assumption is that the "objectionable content" would be the f-bomb (and variations of it). It pops up about seven times over a page and a half, which is, I'm guessing, all the that the complainers actually read of the book. For the record--the swearing really isn't gratuitous. In that specific case, it's necessary to the telling of a specific story, and that specific story is necessary as a turning point in the whole journey.
Oh, wait. They might have also taken issue with a one-time split-second kiss between two boys.
But other than that, I don't get it. I don't get how someone could read this entire book and take issue with it. It's a fantastic book. Which, having read Old School, I expected. But I had no idea that it would be anything like this. It was funny, it was heartbreaking, it was impossible (you should read this book IF ONLY to see how Tobias Wolff got into prep school), it was heartening. Even his foreword was wonderful:
I have been corrected on some points, mostly of chronology. Also my mother thinks that a dog I describe as ugly was actually quite handsome. I've allowed some of these points to stand, because this is a story of memory, and memory has its own story to tell. But I have done my best to make it tell a truthful story.
My first stepfather used to say that what I didn't know would fill a book. Well, here it is.
So don't listen to the Jackass Patrol in Kansas. Read this book.