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Indy author John Green fights for other books to be moved back to the teen section

Indianapolis author John Green at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. (WISH photo, file)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Hoosier author John Green responded to the Hamilton East Public Library Board President’s statement about his book being moved out of the teen section in “error.”

“The Fault in Our Stars” author posted to social media in support of the other authors who now have their young adult books shelved in the adult section as a result of the board’s new ‘Collection Development Policy.’

“Cool. What about my other books and hundreds of other YA titles? Award-winning classics of YA lit by everyone from Nic Stone to Judy Blume continue to be wrong shelved by a ridiculous policy that embarrasses Central Indiana,” Green said. “Change the policy not just for TFIOS, but for all.”

He followed up with an additional post sharing that he tried to speak to members of the board but was unsuccessful.

“By the way, I’d be happy to talk privately with people on the boards trying to censor my books and hundreds of others, or with the Republican politicians in Noblesville and Fishers who oversee them, but none of them will respond to my phone calls or emails,” Green said. “Big thanks to the board members who are fighting this–a true and difficult public service–and to all the community members who’ve stood up to say that these extremists do not represent most Hoosiers.”

Hamilton East Library Board President Laura Alerding originally shared the statement, explaining the book would be moved back after there was an “error” in the review process.

“Upon reviewing the page(s) of ‘The Fault in Our Stars’ book that were the basis of the Director’s and review staff’s reason to move the book out of the Teen section,” said Alerding. “I believe there was an error in implementing the Collection Development Policy, and that this book should be moved back to the Teen section immediately. The Board of Trustees will discuss further what went wrong with the review process at the next public board meeting. No further comments at this time.”

The ‘Collection Development Policy‘ requires strict attention be given to nudity, alcohol and drug use, profanity, violence, and sexual content before a book is placed in the children or teen sections.

The policy overrides publisher, author, and librarian recommendations on where to shelve books.

All members of the HEPL Board have not yet responded to News 8’s request for comment on Green’s response except for Tiffanie A. H. Ditlevson who said, “I defer to the board president.”

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