Sunday, October 9, 2022

NYC Books through Prison Bars October bundle has launched

Make a statement about banned books by purchasing* for incarcerated readers these titles increasingly targeted by state school systems; each donation will also include an art instructional guide.   
Four works for $30 (40% off retail) 

Over 16,650 books purchased on behalf of NYC Books Through Bars

We truly appreciate your generosity at this time when those incarcerated face ever greater obstacles getting access to written material. Since we began this drive in June of 2020 in reaction to the COVID-19 quarantine (which shut down volunteer sessions and in-person drop offs at the store), NYC Books Through Bars has been able to keep up with the steady demand from incarcerated readers across the country. Nearly 300 per week have been regularly sent out. This monthly program helps fulfill requests in categories Books Through Bars might be understocked in at a given time. But we also encourage you to donate gently used paperbacks of your own on these perennially popular topics. As postage and shipping supplies consume the majority of their operating expenses, monetary gifts are also appreciated. You can donate directly here.   

October 2022's pick--Books banned in our schools:
Homegoing, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, Persepolis, and a selection from Search Press's instructional series, How to Draw in Simple Steps-- $30 for four books

Following September's campaign (collecting 175 books!) that was a combo of escapist thrillers, no-nonsense business advice, and extraterrestrial speculation, we put another spotlight on censorship in America. Prison authorities at the state and federal level block incarcerated readers from getting access to an extensive list of books. Texas alone bars upwards of 10,000 titles from their facilities. Obviously NYC Books Through Bars cannot get around those restrictions, but we can make a statement by sharing with those readers other works of literature deemed too inflammatory for legislators and educational gatekeepers. PEN America estimates that nearly 1,600 individual titles face removal from 2,900 school libraries. Yaa Gyasi's novel, Homegoing, is one of them, banned in Georgia, Missouri, Florida, and Texas, for its unvarnished look at slavery's legacy in America. Marjane Satrapi's graphic memoir, Persepolis, is another, banned by Pennsylvania and Texas schools for its depiction of the violence associated with political and societal repression. And perhaps the most peculiar act of censorship is the choice by the Edmond School District in Oklahoma to remove the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass from their curriculum. By purchasing these three titles, we will also include one of Search Press's drawing guides--art instruction is amongst the most requested subjects and NYC Books Through Bars is in short supply at the moment. 

*Each purchased bundle will be delivered directly to Books Through Bars so that they can fulfill requests from incarcerated readers.  If you wish to purchase one of these titles for yourself, you can go to


Free All Political Prisoners!

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