September 27, 2017
Throughout Banned Books Week, September 24 – 30, Penguin Random House will be highlighting frequently banned and challenged books to help raise awareness of the importance of defending our right to express ourselves and read without censorship or interference. Keep reading for Banned Books reading list inspiration, and stay tuned all week for more recommendations.
Click here to enter for your chance to win a personalized Banned Books Box filled with ten of your favorite books and a special banned books mug courtesy of Out of Print Clothing (No purchase necessary. US residents, 18+. Ends 9/30/17. See Official Rules.)
ADVENTUERES OF HUCKELBERRY FINN by Mark Twain
Challenge Reasons: Racism, Insensitivity, Offensive Language
An incomparable adventure story, it is a vignette of a turbulent, yet hopeful epoch in American history, defining the experience of a nation in voices often satirical, but always authentic. The classic boyhood adventure tale is updated with a new introduction by noted Mark Twain scholar R. Kent Rasmussen and a foreword by Azar Nafisi, author of Reading Lolita in Tehran
and The Republic of Imagination.
NORWEGIAN WOOD by Haruki Murakami
Challenge Reasons: Drugs, Sexually Explicit
Toru, a quiet and preternaturally serious young college student in Tokyo, is devoted to Naoko, a beautiful and introspective young woman, but their mutual passion is marked by the tragic death of their best friend years before. Toru begins to adapt to campus life and the loneliness and isolation he faces there, but Naoko finds the pressures and responsibilities of life unbearable. As she retreats further into her own world, Toru finds himself reaching out to others and drawn to a fiercely independent and sexually liberated young woman.
LOOKING FOR ALASKA by John Green
Challenge Reasons: Drugs/Alcohol/Smoking, Sexually Explicit, Offensive Language, Unsuitable for Age Group
Miles “Pudge” Halter falls in love with the gorgeous, clever, funny, sexy, self-destructive, screwed-up, and utterly fascinating Alaska Young, who is an event unto herself. She pulls Pudge into her world, launches him into the Great Perhaps, and steals his heart. LOOKING FOR ALASKA, #1 bestselling author John Green’s debut novel, brilliantly chronicles the indelible impact one life can have on another.
Also during Banned Books Week, head over to Out of Print Clothing
to find out how you can contribute to hurricane relief efforts through book donations from Penguin Random House. For each piece of Banned Books merchandise sold on the Out of Print website during Banned Books Week, September 24 – 30, Penguin Random House will donate one book in support of hurricane relief efforts through First Book
up to 10,000 books. Click here
to start browsing and give back.
September 21, 2017
Christine Ball, Senior Vice President, Publisher, Dutton, announced this week the acquisition of AN ABSOLUTELY REMARKABLE THING, the first novel by Hank Green, best known for his enormously popular Vlogbrothers YouTube channel, which he created with his brother, John Green. Executive Editor Maya Ziv won North American rights in a two-book deal at auction from Jodi Reamer at Writers House, LLC, with the first book to be published in Fall 2018.
News of this acquisition was revealed in The New York Times
to read the article) and was also featured in stories by the Associated Press, EntertainmentWeekly.com, Vulture.com, and other outlets.
Christine Ball said, “It is a huge honor to have Hank Green join the Dutton list. We’re excited to be launching his literary career with his utterly unique novel. AN ABSOLUTELY REMARKABLE THING will not only appeal to his massive fan base, but to lovers of exceptional fiction.”
AN ABSOLUTELY REMARKABLE THING tells the story of April May, an art student in New York City who happens across an impressive, mysterious sculpture of a giant robot in midtown Manhattan. With the help of her friend Andy Skampt, she makes a video with the figure, naming it Carl. After news spreads that there are Carls in dozens of cities around the world – and nobody knows how they got there– April is thrust into an international spotlight and finds herself at the center of the quest to find out not just what The Carls are, but what they want from us.
Hank Green said: “We’re at a really weird moment in history, and April’s story helps highlight several of those oddities that we’re now seeing as more and more normal. It’s a story I’ve wanted to tell for a long time that was seeded by a lot of my personal experiences, but it’s April’s story, and it’s been a pleasure watching her live her absolutely remarkable life. I am so excited to have a real-live novel be published by such a talented team.”
AN ABSOLUTELY REMARKABLE THING also grapples with big themes, including how the social Internet is changing fame, rhetoric, and radicalization; how our culture deals with fear and uncertainty; and how vilification and idolation spring from the same dehumanization that follows a life in the public eye.
Hank Green is no stranger to fame himself. He started making YouTube videos in 2007 with his brother, John Green, #1 bestselling author of numerous young adult novels including THE FAULT IN OUR STARS
and the forthcoming TURTLES ALL THE WAY DOWN
, published by Penguin Random House’s Dutton Books for Young Readers. Since then, the two have built an enormous and dedicated community of fans. Across their YouTube channels, which include Crash Course
, their videos have now been viewed more than 2 billion times.