The fame surrounding “The Fault in Our Stars” did not stop a schools committee in Riverside, California from banning the novel in certain middle school classrooms.
The committee points out that the novel prematurely exposes the young ones to mortality and sexuality.
Author John Green speaks out on the issue.
When asked by one fan in Tumblr about his reaction, he said: “I guess I am both happy and sad.
“I am happy because apparently young people in Riverside, California will never witness or experience mortality since they won’t be reading my book, which is great for them.
“But I am also sad because I was really hoping I would be able to introduce the idea that human beings die to the children of Riverside, California and thereby crush their dreams of immortality.” The banning of “The Fault in Our Stars” from certain middle schools started when parent Karen Krueger deemed the novel inappropriate for middle school pupils.
She took the case to the Riverside Unified School District’s reconsideration committee and suggested that the novel should only be available for library checkout with parental consent.
While Krueger said that she didn’t want to “come off as a prude,” she likewise believed that a novel which involved cancer-stricken teens and sex should not be in middle schools.
“I just didn’t think it was appropriate for an 11-, 12-, 13-year-old to read.
I was really shocked it was in a middle school,” she said.
School principal and committee member Betsy Schmechel similarly challenged the appropriateness of Green’s work: “The thing that kept hitting me like a tidal wave was these kids dealing with their own mortality, and how difficult that might be for an 11-year-old or 12-year-old reading this book.” “The Fault in Our Stars” isn’t the first book to come under fire in the district.
Since 1988, a total of 37 books have been questioned by the district but only one was banned – Robert Cormier’s “The Chocolate War.”