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theshillerdude's avatar

Is the book The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo appropriate for a young teen?

Asked by theshillerdude (34points) April 3rd, 2013

My twelve-year-old son, who is a big reader, wants to read this book, but his father is concerned that it is not age appropriate. Is there explicit sex/vivid violence? My son watches R rated movies all the time and I don’t mind him reading books that have some foul language/mild violence/romance (but not heavy sex.)

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11 Answers

keobooks's avatar

I have been a YA librarian for many years, so I am hardwired to say that it’s always up to the kids and the parents as to what they can handle and not give thumbs down to any book if a kid wants to read it. But I think 12 might be a bit young for the book, in my parental non-librarian opinion.

You may let him take a crack at it. You may get the pleasant surprise many moms I worked with got. The kids started to read a book they wanted and then handed the book back to the parents, saying that THEY thought it was too mature for them to read. You’d be surprised how many times I’ve had kids make that choice for themselves.

janbb's avatar

No! I like @keobooks am a librarian who is very liberal in allowing kids to find their own level but that book has really disturbing sex and violence in it. Lots and lots of abuse and cruelty.

Again like @keobooks you could let him give it a try but I would attempt to steer him away from this one.

Blackberry's avatar

If they’re both mature enough, yes.

janbb's avatar

@theshillerdude Really the best answer we can give is that you should read it first and see if you think it is appropriate for him.

SuperMouse's avatar

I have to chime in with @keobooks and @janbb and say that in my opinion it is not appropriate for a young teen.

My fourteen year old is a very precocious reader (right now he is reading The Good War by Studs Terkel), and I steadfastly refuse to let him read the Dragon Tattoo books until he is older. The book has lots of very disturbing sex and violence that I think most 12 year-old’s would find upsetting. I have always let him read whatever he is interested in, but I have just had to say no to that series. Come to think of it I might discourage Don Winslow books at this point, but I would let him read those before the Dragon Tattoo books. I wouldn’t even consider letting my 13 year-old read them.

There are so many awesome young adult series out, it shouldn’t be hard to find some great books that are more age appropriate. Has he tried The Maze Runner Series or maybe some John Green? Totally different genres and very compelling reads with more age appropriate sex and violence.

keobooks's avatar

I think the Maze Runner series is awesome for a 12 year old. John Green may be a bit too slow paced for a 12 year old, but his stuff is great too.

Bellatrix's avatar

I haven’t read the book but there is a very violent rape scene in the film. I don’t think I would want my 12 year old reading the books yet.

nofurbelowsbatgirl's avatar

I haven’t read the book, but I have seen the movie and if the book is anything close to the movie I would say 12 is probably too young.

I have a daughter who is into books that young boys like, she is not very girlie girl. There is always the Hunger Games, Eragon, The Zombie Room, Artemis Fowl, Lord of the Flies, The Outsiders, The Hobbit are all books she loves. My daughter also says she loves James Patterson books for teens ironically I like the adult books. :)

augustlan's avatar

I’ve read them, and I wouldn’t have allowed my kids to read them at 12 years old. They are fantastic books, but very graphic (both violence and sex).

Seek's avatar

The main character gets violently raped several times and then sexually assaults her attacker in return. It is quite graphic. If you’re cool with that, I’m cool with that.

keobooks's avatar

This is a little off topic, but I was thinking of the time I saw a 12 year old pick up “A Clockwork Orange” to read. I thought .. OMG the violence! The sex! The violent sex! He’s going to be scarred for life just reading a few chapters!

About half an hour later, he handed me the book and said “I can’t even get through a paragraph. I have no idea what’s going on. Is this book even written in English?” Because of all the slang that Burgess invented for the book, he couldn’t even muddle through the book enough to know it was full of sex and violence.

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