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Graphic novels, though increasingly popular, are 'prime targets' for book ban lists

10 year old girl browsing through book during visit to library.
xavierarnau / Getty Images
10 year old girl browsing through book during visit to library.

Graphic novels and comic books sales in the U.S. have grown in recent years, but the format is still a "prime target" for book ban lists.

Maia Kobabe's award-winning graphic memoir Gender Queer was named the top challenged book of 2022 and 2021 by the American Library Association. Jerry Craft, Connecticut native and the author of graphic novel New Kid, also found his book on ban lists.

RELATED LISTEN: Earlier this year, Jerry Craft spoke on Connecticut Public's Disrupted. He "talks about his banned, award-winning graphic novel New Kid, in addition to his latest book, School Trip."

This hour, we hear from the national and state Library Association about this important and often-undervalued format. Newtown recently saw challenges to two graphic novels. We hear from local librarian and Immediate Past President of the Connecticut Library Association, Douglas Booth.

Plus, one youth librarian describes the explosion of interest in graphic novels she’s seeing in Simsbury.


  • Samantha Lee: Chair, Connecticut Library Association’s Intellectual Freedom Committee; Head of Reference Services at Enfield Public Library
  • Douglas Lord: Director, C.H. Booth Library in Newtown; Immediate Past President, Connecticut Library Association
  • Deborah Caldwell Stone: Director, American Library Association Office for Intellectual Freedom
  • Mary Richardson: Teen Services Librarian, Simsbury Public Library; Co-Host, "The Book Jam"Podcast

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Katie is a producer for Connecticut Public Radio's news-talk show 'Where We Live.' She has previously worked for CNN and News 8-WTNH.
Catherine is the Host of Connecticut Public’s morning talk show and podcast, Where We Live. Catherine and the WWL team focus on going beyond the headlines to bring in meaningful conversations that put Connecticut in context.