Massachusetts’ Most Infamous Challenged and Banned Books

Fact Checked by Michael Peters

World Book Day is April 23 and in celebration, took a break from Massachusetts sports betting and decided to see what state residents favorite banned or challenged books are.

From a list of the top 13 most banned and challenged books according to the American Library Association, we used Google Trends to see how often those books were searched in Massachusetts. The search period was between March 8-April 8, 2024. Here is the top 10 from the Commonwealth:

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Massachusetts’ Most Popular Banned Books

RankBookAuthorSearch Interest Score
1“The Perks of Being a Wallflower”Stephen Chbosky28
2“The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian”Sherman Alexie14
3“A Court of Mist and Fury”Sarah J. Maas12
4“Out of Darkness”Ashley Hope Perez8
5“Crank”Ellen Hopkins7
6“Looking for Alaska”John Green6
7“This Book is Gay”Juno Dawson5
8“The Bluest Eye”Toni Morrison4
9“Flamer”Mike Curato2
10“Lawn Boy”Jonathan Evison1

Which Banned Books are Most Popular?

At the top of the list is “The Perks of Being a Wallflower” by Stephen Chbosky, with a search interest score of 28, doubling that of the second choice, “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian” by Sherman Alexie, which posted a 14. A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas rounded out the top three with a 12.

Published in September 2015, the young, adult novel, “Out of Darkness” by Ashley Hope Perez, came in fourth with a score of 8. The book centers around a Mexican American girl who falls in love with an African American boy in Texas during the 1930s.

Twenty years ago, “Crank” by Ellen Hopkins was published, and it rounds out the top five with a score of 7. The book is loosely based on the real-life addictions of the author’s daughter to crystal meth. The book is required reading in many high schools across the country, as well as many drug addiction and prevention programs.

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Lou Monaco had been East Coast Scene columnist for Gaming Today in Las Vegas since June 2019, covering the East Coast sportsbook scene. He also currently is a part-time writer for the high school sports department for NJ Advanced Media ( in Iselin, NJ. Lou has over 30 years sports experience with previous stints at ESPN SportsTicker, Daily Racing Form and Oddschecker.

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