EASLEY, S.C. (WSPA) – The award-winning author of a book that was recently banned from Pickens County schools visited the county Friday to speak at the Hampton Memorial Library in Easley.

Dozens of people were expected to file into the library to listen to Jason Reynolds discuss and sign his new book, Miles Morales: Suspended, a novel about the Marvel superhero.

Recently, a book he co-authored, Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You, has been the center of controversy in an ongoing lawsuit filed by the NAACP and a group of frustrated parents against School District of Pickens County.

A #1 New York Times best seller, the book was created to help better understand racism, according to Reynolds’ co-author, Ibram X. Kendi.

It was taught in a Pickens County schools before being banned last year when the school board unanimously voted to remove the book from its libraries for five years.

“Racism still exists in America,” said Shelia D. Crawford.

In a previous interview with 7NEWS, president of the Pickens County branch of NAACP, Shelia D. Crawford, claimed the ban strips students from learning.

“When you’re a teenager, you wonder about things,” explained Crawford. “But if you never have the opportunity to discuss it… that’s what schools are for, to teach students and have an opportunity for them to learn and grow. Without having books of this nature, then they’re denied those discussions.” 

Friday’s event is in-part hosted by the Pickens County Public Library System and Fiction Addiction, a Greenville-based book store.

“As a book store owner, I believe in the freedom to read and we try and bring authors into the community to give people the right to see them and hear from them first-hand to make up their own minds if this is somebody that they are interested in reading or not,” said Jill Hendrix, owner and founder of Fiction Addiction.

While the main purpose of Jason Reynolds’ appearance is to discuss his new book, the looming controversy in the county left many wondering if the author would address the issue.

“We are very excited,” said Hendrix. “Even though there are some people that don’t like Jason Reynolds and some of his work, there are a lot of people that do and we are very excited for the event.”

According to the library system, tickets for the event are sold out.