My commute to work is a half an hour each way, so I’m always on the look out for a good book on tape to make the ride more enjoyable. When the library offered Robert Cormier‘s The Chocolate War as an audio book I snapped it up. I’d read The Chocolate War as a teenager, a few years after the book was published in 1974, and I’d seen the 1988 movie, but I’d forgotten how relentlessly tense and tightly written the story is.
The book was challenged because of its unflattering portrayal private Catholic high school, where the weaker boys are bullied not only by the brothers who run the school but by a shadow organization of students called the vigils.
For example, in 1984 The Chocolate War along with another of Cormier’s books, I am Cheese was challenged in New York for being:
Humanistic and destructive of religious and moral beliefs and of national spirit. [120 Banned Books pg 85.]
It has also been banned for Violence, Offensive Language and Sexual Content.