None of this misogyny rings true for a contemporary fourth-grade boy. Fourth-grade boys in 2013 know better. First-grade boys do. My own son knows that girls can do anything boys can do. It's not even a question.
Gay penguins, a superhero clad in briefs, vampires and witches, bondage -- next week is all about banned books here at PEN as we join librarians, booksellers, publishers and writers to celebrate the freedom to read.
It shouldn't matter what kids want to read. They should just read. If they want to spend half an hour doing MadLibs, or reading a sports magazine, or a comic book, or novel, or a fix-it book, or a book of jokes they should. It's all reading.
Reluctant readers, it seems, like fart jokes. They also seem to like gross food, nonstop action, and the occasional illustration. For those not in the business, the term "reluctant reader" tends to be a synonym for "boy."