As the editor of "The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants," I feel obligated to respond to Peggy Orenstein's March 2 opinion piece, "The 'Other' Within." The line in Ann Brashares' novel that offended her is a spontaneous thought of a feisty, passionate, sometimes thoughtful, sometimes thoughtless character -- in other words, a typical American teenager -- and not "racist speech."
We will not be removing the line from future printings, as Orenstein requests, and are dismayed that a journalist would advocate censorship. "The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants" has earned glowing reviews, nominations to numerous state reading lists, is a New York Times bestseller and the recipient of the Book Sense Book of the Year award as the independent booksellers' favorite book for young people. It's a book whose merits are too plentiful to list in this reply, and it deserves better than an inaccurate critique cobbled together after reading two paragraphs.
Random House Children's
Books, New York City