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Books and Beyond: Banned books week

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Banned Books Week is now in its 36th year, still championing and defending the freedom to read.

The spotlight's on banned, sequestered and burned books through history (including two from Aotearoa), as Karen and Louisa celebrate the freedom to read, and conclude that books always outlast their bans!

Listen to this episode on the Auckland Libraries SoundCloud and read on for the books mentioned in the show.




Karen and Louisa presented the American Library Association's list of the top ten most challenged books in 2017.Nine banned books which feature on the Auckland Libraries poster for Banned Books Week: Candide by VoltaireThe divine comedy by DanteUlysses by James JoyceGhosts by Henrik IbsenGargantua and Pantagruel, 1553 by Francois RabelaisLife and Fate by Vasily GrossmanLolita, 1955 by Vladimir NabokovAll Quiet on the Western Front, 1928 by Erich Maria RemarqueOther books discussed:Into the River by Ted DaweThe beginner's guide to living by Lia HillsSafe Marriage by the New Z…

Into the river is no longer a banned book!

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"I have always imagined paradise as a kind of library."

If - as I imagine - you're visiting this blog because you like reading about books, chances are you've already encountered this quote from the great Argentinian poet, writer, and essayist Jorge Luis Borges.

Maybe you also know that for many years Borges earned his living as "first assistant" at a municipal library in Buenos Aires, cataloging books down in the basement (also, apparently, catching up on his reading), until he was dismissed for political reasons when Juan Perón came to power – only to be appointed the director of the National Public Library of Argentina after Perón was deposed.

My appreciation of this feel-good quote for readers par excellence was turned upside down recently when I read Paul Monette’s Borrowed time: an Aids memoir. Monette's friend Roger Horwitz (I use the word 'friend' because in the book Monette spends some time telling us how it is the term he prefers to us…