Monday, November 17, 2008

A Newbery Medal winner written by a librarian continues to be discussed for its content

The Winner of the 2007 Newbery Medal, The Higher Power of Lucky by Susan Patron received an abundance of attention last year, from librarians, particularly school librarians for the word “scrotum” that appears on the first page of the story. The New York Times stated that “Susan Patron, the author of the book and a librarian, said the controversial word was just part of the character’s learning about body parts.” The Times also stated that Patron commented that she was “stunned the objections and that the story of the rattlesnake bit was based on a true incident involving a friend’s dog.” Patron also explained that the book was written for children ages nine to twelve years old. The New York Times highlighted that some librarians questioned the targeted audience for the book, since the heroine in the story is ten years of age; they felt that older children would not be interested in the book. This book has been a hot topic in one of my classes and I was curious to find out if any of the public librarians in Allegheny County had any trouble shelving this book or recommending this book or if anyone had any patrons voiced their concerns about the book. I also wonder how popular the book has been with children and what age group has been seen checking this work out?