Author Opens Banned-Book Store in Land of Banned Books

Author Lauren Groff is opening a banned-book store in Gainesville, Florida, with her husband. The Lynx bookstore grand opening is set for April 28.

Groff, who made Time Magazine’s 2024 Time 100 list of the 100 most influential people in the world, is an award-winning author.

The store is liable to have no shortage of inventory, given that Florida leads the nation in book bans. In 2023 there were 33 attempts to ban or restrict books in the Sunshine State, with 2,672 titles removed from public school shelves between 2020 and 2023.

Nearly half (47%) of the challenged titles dealt with LGBTQ+ or BIPOC (Black, indigenous and other people of color) persons and themes. An activist in Brevard County, Florida, has proposed banning the Bible from public schools due to its themes of sex and violence.

In a nod toward the fact that Florida Legislature might have gone too far with its book-banning laws, last week Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a new measure restricting (barely) who and how often an individual can request a book be banned. Florida residents who aren’t the parent or guardian of a student “may not object to more than one material per month” in their county, according to the amendment to House Bill 1285.

DeSantis blamed woke liberals for the need to limit residents’ rights to ban any book for any reason any time.

But don’t worry, Lauren Groff, we’re confident the dedicated literary vigilantes of the Sunshine State will maintain a steady stream of banned books to populate the Lynx’s bookshelves.


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