Children’s ghost story book ‘not appropriate’ for any kid, NC parent says

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KNIGHTDALE, N.C. (WNCN) – A Knightdale parent is raising concern over a book her first grader checked out from his elementary school’s library Monday.

It’s a graphic novel about a ghost story that is written specifically for kids.

But Kay Walker said it’s not appropriate for students of any age.

“It was talking about a man who murders his family and shows a man walking with his shotgun going to his parents and his sister and brother,” said Walker.

Walker was stunned when her son brought home the book from Lake Myra Elementary’s library.

She took pictures of it and posted it to Facebook and got a big response from other parents.

“I couldn’t imagine a teacher pulling this book off the library and sitting in front of her kindergarten or first grade class reading it to them,” she said.

The book “Amityville” is part of a series called “Junior Graphic Ghost Stories” published in 2006 by Rosen publishing.

Rosen is dedicated to providing books to schools and libraries. On the publisher’s website, the book is listed as an interest level for grades three through six, and a reading level for grades two through three.

“To make it towards kids who are so young and they’re just learning what is right and what’s wrong, and giving them these ideas, it just it blows my mind,” said Walker.

Walker notified school officials and was told the book has been taken out of the library.

She’s submitting a request for the book to be reviewed by a committee and has been told the book has been pulled from Lake Myra’s library.

Wake County Schools released this statement to WNCN that read in part:

“In accordance with Board of Education policy a committee is formed once an official request is made to review a book. This committee follows the review process as put forth by policy and then makes a recommendation regarding the book in a timely manner.”

Walker hopes the book will be taken off of all shelves in Wake County Schools.

“When you stare at an image of a man shooting his family, that gets in your head, whether or not you know if it’s wrong or right,” she said.

WNCN spoke to the vice president of Special Markets for Rosen Publishing to see if the company has received any complaints about the book.

Tricia Bauer said since the series’ release, they have had no negative comments.

Walker said she intends to write the book’s author, John Perritano, to inquire why he would write such a story for such a young audience.

“Our children are our next generation. If we want things to change and violence to stop then we have to start with them,” said Walker.

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