Banned Books Week—Julie of the Wolves
September 28, 2011 Leave a comment
In honor of Banned Books Week, our staff will be sharing their experiences with banned books, and at the end of the week we’ll give away a copy of Trickster: Native American Tales, A Graphic Collection to one of our randomly selected blog subscribers. To enter the giveaway, just subscribe to our blog via the e-mail subscription link. To enter additional times, you can blog, tweet, or update your status on Facebook with a link over to the giveaway (tag @FulcrumBooks on Twitter and @FulcrumPublishing on Facebook), or “like” Fulcrum Publishing on Facebook! Just be sure to leave a separate comment for each entry and leave the link to each one. The contest ends on October 3.
Today’s blog post is from our editorial and production manager, Haley Berry.
When our marketing team asked us to write about a banned book, I was surprised to see one of my favorites, Julie of the Wolves by Jean Craighead George, on the list. I had to google it to see the objections to the book (marital rape scene), and I had to admit I didn’t remember that part of the story. The part that had stuck in my impressionable young brain was when the main character eats food regurgitated by a wolf. That’s hard core.
I didn’t love the book because I was shocked or felt like I was reading something I shouldn’t; I loved it because the story spoke to the independence I so craved. I was hungry to prove myself, to have my own place in the world. After reading Julie of the Wolves, My Side of the Mountain, and Hatchet, when I was eleven you could have parachuted me into the wilderness and I would have been really happy about it (for a while, anyway). Because after reading those books, I looked at myself and knew I could survive, that I was smart enough and strong enough. Whether that’s true is definitely debatable. I probably would have starved to death or fallen out of a tree or something within a week or two. Still, those books gave me confidence and fed my already independent spirit. What’s not constructive about that?
I can’t imagine what I’d be like if my parents had kept certain books from me. Neither of my parents have a college degree, so they were happy I was hoovering books and that BOOK IT! was giving me free pizzas for it. They figured if it was in the school or town library, then it was probably safe. In short, I was reading Stephen King and watching Predator at nine. That’s likely objectionable to a lot of parents, but I’m so grateful mine didn’t keep certain books and movies away from me. Living in a small town, books provided so many experiences and viewpoints that I never would have had access to otherwise. They made my world bigger and my choices more informed.
But here’s the funny part: my mother never attempted to censor any books or movies, but she was terrified about my exposure to MTV or music with “dirty” lyrics. Makes you scratch your head, doesn’t it? She almost blew a vein when I brought home Alanis Morissette’s Jagged Little Pill, which drops a single F-bomb. One curse word equaled one really big fight, and I was sent to my room (sans Alanis), where I probably curled up in bed to finish Lady Chatterley’s Lover or Go Ask Alice.
Haley is the editorial and production manager at Fulcrum. Some of her favorite Fulcrum authors include Craig Barnes, Dick Kreck, Mitch Tobin, Amy Masching, Kirk Johnson, and Anita Thompson. She’s happy to spend her days working with talented designers and editors (and marketers!), and to have finally found a world that embraces word nerds. If Haley were a book, she’d be a petite paperback with matte lam, flaps, and a deckled edge.
- Why did Julie in Julie of the Wolves have to get married to Daniel (wiki.answers.com)