Did you ever read something well before you should have age-wise? You've got company. Someone recently asked, “What books did you read at a young age that you definitely shouldn't have?” Did it screw you up or disturb you in any way? If so, how?” Here are the top-voted responses.
1. Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark by Alvin Schwartz
One user confirmed, “The answer is Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, not because of the stories, but those pictures. Some of those were so traumatizing.” “YES! I'm 42 and can't even look at those book covers without getting creeped out. That illustrator scarred a whole generation. Do you remember the story about the scarecrow who skins someone and nails it to the roof? I mean, WHAT?”
2. Interview With The Vampire by Anne Rice
“I read Interview With The Vampire by Anne Rice when I was around 11, and someone in the book was smoking a cigarette, turning it into a long, cylindrical ash'. So I spent my later teenage years trying to turn cigarettes into long, cylindrical ashes because of that one. It's weird how you can read something, and it just sticks with you.”
3. Stephen King Books
One person joked, “A bunch of 10-year-old Stephen King readers about to speak up” before several did. “In grade 2, I bragged about how I could read an adult book. A friend randomly pulled a book off her mom's nightstand—Salem's Lot. I slept with a crucifix made of popsicle sticks taped together beside my bed until well into high school.”
“Yes! I was about eight when I got my precocious little mitts on IT. I made it to like chapter 2 and scared the absolute crap out of myself. I was 30 before I read another Stephen King book,” shared one user. A second said, “I read IT when I was nine. I made my sisters go with me when I needed the bathroom for months afterward.”
“Reading Gerald's Game at that age has probably messed me up in many ways,” another commented. “I've read everything I could of King's, and nothing messed with me like Gerald's Game. Not the story but the click at the end that he was real. I was a grown woman, but this one terrified me in my own house.”
4. 100 Strokes of the Brush Before Bed by Melissa Panarello
5. Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
One person confessed, “Memoirs of a Geisha provided 11-year-old me with some interesting new concepts about sex. I know my mom saw me reading that one. I have no idea what she was thinking, considering I wasn't allowed to watch The Simpsons because it was rude.”
6. Night by Elie Wiesel
“I read Night by Elie Wiesel when I was eleven,” one user shared. “My dad was an English teacher, and we had a lot of bookcases in our house. I read it straight through. It was a hot summer day, and I remember not wanting to eat dinner, and I kept the radio on when I tried to sleep. I didn't tell anyone I read it because I feared I'd get in trouble. It deeply impacted me. I had never known man to be so evil.”
7. V.C. Andrews Books
“Flowers in the Attic and My Sweet Audrina by V.C. Andrews. I was both intrigued and confused,” shared one. “When I read Flowers in the Attic, I felt connected to them starving in the Attic. I read it for 24 hours and was around 12 years old.”
“Then, combining my age and delirium, I stopped eating. For days my mom told me I didn't need to be on a diet, but in my head, I kept thinking, if they couldn't eat in the Attic, why should I? That's a pretty good barometer for being too young for a book!”
“Was coming here to say Flowers in the Attic. Rape, starvation and poisoning. ! As an adult, I seriously wonder about the author's mental health,” one person admitted.
8. Jean M. Auel Books
One stated, “Jean M. Auel sent me into early puberty.” Another confirmed, “Same on Jean M. Auel. My mom handed them to me as she had forgotten all the racy bits.” “Racy? You mean rapey,” a third commented. “I read Clan of the Cave Bear in 9th grade AP English class.”
“I don't think anything affected me as much as The Clan of the Cave Bear series; reading that at a young age and expecting to conquer life like Ayla and have a lover like Jondalar is just wrong.” Finally, a user shared, “I listened to them on tape. With my parents. On a road trip. So awkward.”
9. Watership Down by Richard Adams
One shared, “I loved reading animal stories when I was young, so I found and read both Watership Down and Animal Farm from the school library when I was ten, and I kept wondering, ‘Why are these animals so mean?!” Another added, “Great book, messed up for kids. And the cartoon is even worse.”
10. David Sedaris Books
Another person admitted, “I read almost all of David Sedaris's books when I was twelve. I read him talking about being so deep in meth withdrawal he ‘vacuumed his apartment with a straw up his nose.' I didn't know what meth was before that, and now I'll never do it, so thanks, David.”
We hope you enjoyed this Reddit picks list of books people read at way too young of an age. Also, check out the best books of all time.
This article was produced and syndicated by Wealth of Geeks.