Maia Kobabe has the distinction of having written the most banned book in America, according to the American Library Association and PEN America, the writers' advocacy group Poets, Playwrights, Editors, Essayists, and Novelists. "Gender Queer" is a graphic memoir first published in 2019 but re-issued in a hardcover deluxe edition this month by Oni Press.
The book charts Kobabe's journey discovering gender identity as both a nonbinary and asexual person."Gender Queer" won two prestigious prizes, the Alex Award for adult books with special appeal to young readers presented by the American Library Association and the Stonewall Book Award for nonfiction.
Consequently many school and public libraries began purchasing the book.Parents began objecting to the sexually explicit illustrations in the book: a fantasy in which an older man touches a youth's penis based on a piece of painted ancient Greek pottery; another depicting Kobabe's girlfriend performing oral sex while Kobabe wears a strap-on dildo; and other episodes portraying masturbation and menstrual blood.School boards in Virginia, Florida, North and South Carolina began pulling the book from library collections.