A new online banned bookstore in Central Maine

Published: Jan. 16, 2023 at 6:34 PM EST
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WATERVILLE, Maine (WABI) - It is not your typical bookstore.

”Pretty much anything you would not find in your school library,” Smith said.

Maddie Smith started The Banned Bookstore, an online independent bookstore in Central Maine.

“It’s just important to not hinder anyone’s education or what they would like to read or what they have access to,” she said.

As an avid reader herself, she says she did not realize books were still getting banned until she came across a banned book list from Barnes and Noble.

”I thought it was crazy that people are still banning books, and current books and classics,” she said.

Classics such as To Kill a Mocking Bird, Of Mice and Men, and Animal Farm are on Barnes and Noble’s top banned or challenged list.

Smith says books can make the list for various reasons.

”A lot of the times, it is the use of sexuality explicit language, or just explicit language in general, some things that more traditional people might not be wanting their kids to be introduced to,” she said.

Her goal is to ensure people have access to the books they want.

”LGBTQ rights, there are lots of anti-racism books there that are banned,” she said.

The online book store went live earlier this month and Smith says business is already flourishing.

“I have gotten a really good response. I am getting orders to people really fast, and they are loving everything they are reading,” Smith said.