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Reflections of a working writer and reader



It’s Perfectly Normal

A woman in Maine has decided to take unilateral action over a book in the public library.

JoAn Karkos of Lewiston was so horrified by the children’s book It’s Perfectly Normal: Changing Bodies, Growing Up, Sex & Sexual Health by Robie Harris, illus. by Michael Emberley (Candlewick, 1993) that she checked out the copies from local public libraries and is now refusing to return them.

The plot continues to thicken . . .

6 Responses to “It’s Perfectly Normal”

  1. Maine finally makes the book news, and it’s because of this woman. Another shining example of why we can’t get many authors to come here and read –

  2. Yeah, they’re afraid we’ll burn them at the stake.

    My nine year-old has owned a copy of IT’S PERFECTLY NORMAL since she was five. I guess that makes me a bad parent.

    jb says: Hey, Patrick. So for the rest of us who haven’t seen the book, only heard the crowing. What’s up?

  3. anne says:

    It’s an illustrated (i.e., drawn not photographed) and kid-level presentation of developing bodies and physical feelings. Quite nice, actually, and absolutely harmless unless you prefer kids to think that the physical facts that allow, and the physical and emotional impulses that lead to, sex (ooh, naughty word) and sometimes making babies are released by birthday numbers and only happen in bedrooms, in private. She must block The Learning Channel and Animal Plant. Foolish nonsensical woman.

    jb says: Thanks Anne. More or less what I expected, but good to have it confirmed.

  4. This editorial from the local paper says it pretty well:

    jb says: Thanks for the link, Patrick. I learned a lot. “I think many parents would be relieved to have answers like this if their kids asked questions. Those who don’t should find another book.”

  5. The Old Hack says:

    I wonder if this woman even considered that by refusing to hand back the books she would make the news and thereby give the book more publicity than it has ever before received? Maybe she is secretly working for the author in a conspiracy.. maybe she… oh shut up – she’s just a Neanderthal redneck.

    jb says: Yeah, I guess I can see where you’re coming from . . ..

  6. Moral Relativists says:

    Maybe the book upset her because it promotes sex and says that abortion is “perfectly normal”. In conjunction with the knowledge that it being promoted by Planned Parenthood (the largest abortion provider in the US), perhaps she thought she was stopping a large rich corporation from preying upon children.

    “I guess that makes me a bad parent.”
    Yes, it does.