Banned Books Conversations - This One Summer by Jillian and Mariko Tamaki

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Banned Books Conversations: Where Radical Readers Discuss Prohibited Prose
Banned books are works that have been removed from a library shelf or school curriculum. Over the course of Banned Books Week, this series will cover seven different books, the reasons they were banned, and the value in reading them.

Guest Panelists - Guest Links and Information

Veronica Klash - Primarily short format writer, anything from flash fiction to personal essays, articles, etc. Associate editor for Okay Donkey. Find her work at She's @veronicaklash on social media.
Brenna Thummler - Author of the Sheets Series from Only Press. Graphic Novelist.
Find her at, social media @brennathummler

AR Farina/Tony Farina - Podcaster, writer, and teacher. Find him at The second book in the Austen Chronicles series out in October, 2023. Original work (his and others) fortnightly on the podcast Sonic Salon.

Tonya led a discussion on banned books with guests Brenna Thummler, Veronica Klash, and Tony Farina. They explored the importance of reading banned books, the fear often underlying attempts to ban them, and the need for ongoing conversations about these issues. The book under discussion was "This One Summer" by Mariko and Jillian Tamaki.

The group also discussed the accessibility of books in schools and libraries and the impact of banning books on readers. Brenna expressed concern about parents restricting their children's access to books, suggesting a warning system to inform parents about book content.

Veronica, Tonya, Brenna, and A.R. discussed the influence of literature on children and the concept of the "slippery slope" in relation to book banning. The discussion ended with Tonya noting a pattern in the themes that get books banned, prompting reflection on societal progress.

The group also discussed the shifting power structures in society and the resistance to progress. They touched on the importance of reading books that may be considered offensive, as they offer the opportunity for empathy and understanding. The conversation also delved into the challenges of writing about mental health in literature and the responsibility of writers to educate themselves to avoid unintentionally using offensive statements. Veronica and Tonya emphasized the importance of anti-racist practices, including actively doing the work to avoid offense, rather than relying solely on intentions.

"This One Summer", a graphic novel published in 2014 is a coming-of-age story, won several prestigious awards including an Eisner award and an Ignatz award. Brenna first discovered it in a thrift store in 2015 and was drawn to it due to its beautiful illustrations. The book influenced her to work on her first graphic novel, "Anne of Green Gables.” A.R. was one of the first to receive an advance reader copy (ARC) of "This One Summer" from Net Galley, and after reading it, he's been a fan ever since. Veronica was also attracted to the graphic novel format, as it was a type of literature she enjoyed in her childhood.

Host: Tonya Todd
Video Producer: JP Butler
Audio Producer: Ria Carrogan
Graphics: Mike Burton

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Creators and Guests

Tonya Todd
Tonya Todd
Author | Actress | Activist ~ Fairy Queen ~Sapiosexual | Cinephile Writing Linguistic Sensuality (she/her) Repped by @askamycollins & @OpaqueMgt UK
Banned Books Conversations - This One Summer by Jillian and Mariko Tamaki
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