Flowers in the Attic Series...okay for 13 year old? yes? no?

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Posted 2/26/2010 by WorkingClassDog in NSBR Board

Rick Springfield Junkie

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Posted: 2/26/2010 3:15:57 PM
My daughter is looking for some new things to read.. she is 13 and starting to look at my collection of books. I have a lot of the older VC books and I think I have the whole series to Flowers in the Attic. Do you think it is age appropriate? She is pretty mature for her age, although I try to censor movies/books pretty good. Mostly no Rated R and try to catch PG13 before she sees them... I don't want her to grow up to fast.


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Posted: 2/26/2010 3:18:21 PM
I know I read the series when I was 13-16 but if you censor PG-13 I would say no. There is incest and longing...passionate longing (worse than Twilight) and bad parents.


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Posted: 2/26/2010 3:26:02 PM
I read them in junior high, but I am not sure I would call them appropriate

Rick Springfield Junkie

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Posted: 2/26/2010 3:27:35 PM
I don't censor censor PG13.. just try to watch them first. The only thing I could remember was the relationship between the older brother/sister and how far it went in the books. I guess it didn't scar me any.... or maybe I should read again just for fun. The bad parent thing is okay, maybe it will make me look better.. LOL

Is there another word for synonym?

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Posted: 2/26/2010 3:30:19 PM
Flowers in the Attic
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

There's two ways to look at it. If you let her read it, she will DEFINITELY see how good she has it, however, I know that it way creeped me out...wish I hadn't read it so young.

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Posted: 2/26/2010 3:30:19 PM
My mom didn't censor my reading at all. I read those books around that age, and wish I hadn't. Fascinating at that age? Yes. Disturbing for years afterward? Yes. It's incest and child imprisonment/abuse, after all. Reading them as an adult would be fine.

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Posted: 2/26/2010 3:32:25 PM
I read these when I was 9.


No way would I let a 13 year old read them, even a very mature one.

The book is VERY detailed.

I'd squeam as an adult!


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Posted: 2/26/2010 3:36:13 PM
I read them when I was 13-14. Checked them out at the local library. I was mature for my age also - the incest and abusive mother/grandmother were disturbing. But I don't remember them being graphic, more just a shocking new concept that I had never read about before. I also remember that Cathy uses men quite a bit as the series goes on. I know I found the books fascinating because they were different from anything else I'd read. I've read some of dd's youth fiction and they probably aren't any worse.... I certainly would discuss the books with her during and after her reading them.

Rick Springfield Junkie

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Posted: 2/26/2010 3:37:23 PM
Thanks for the wikipedia link.. good place.. I read the summary...and brought back a lot of memory.. I think I will wait a few years..LOL...apparently I totally forgot about a few things in the book...


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Posted: 2/26/2010 3:39:20 PM

FTR, these are my FAVORITE books and I still read the whole series about once a year, but I read it first at 11 or 12 and was

There is incest, incest, incest and not "victimized" incest but consensual and graphic sexual incest between brother and sister.

Plus, there is a lot of child neglect and abuse and a lot of sensitive subject material.

Petals in the wind is all about 15yo Carrie shacking up with her "adoptive father" and becoming his wife...twisted...

I would NOT let my DD read these at 13.

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Posted: 2/26/2010 3:40:48 PM
They are number one on my list of "books I wish I had never read". They are revolting in the extreme.

Fascinating? Yes. But disgusting and disturbing.

I would vote no. But you are the parent.


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Posted: 2/26/2010 3:57:16 PM
GOSH - I apologize for saying they were probably ok - I guess I forgot about alot! Every parent should make their own decision as they know their child best.

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Posted: 2/26/2010 3:57:58 PM
I haven't read any responses because I wanted to respond before I did.

I don't remember how old I was when I read those books, but my mom did not censor anything I read. I remember being entralled with the Flower's in the Attic Series.

That said, I would not want my 14 year old daughter reading them. I don't remember all of the details, but just the whole incest thing would make me not want her to read them. Nevermind the whole rest of the theme of the book...hiding your kids away in the attic.

So my opinion is no, not for a 13 year old.


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Posted: 2/26/2010 4:03:51 PM
I was 14 when I read them and disgusted/fascinated. If my daughter discovered these books on her own I wouldn't forbid her from reading them. I would tell her that they cover brother/sister incest and child abuse and then let her decide if she wants to read them.

However, I also wouldn't point them out/recommend them to her either. So is she hasn't discovered these books, I wouldn't mention them to her.

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Posted: 2/26/2010 4:12:12 PM
I probably read that at that age, however I dont think I'd recommend them to my DD at that age.

Has she read the Princess Diary series or the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series?? They might be more appropriate for her.

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Posted: 2/26/2010 4:26:34 PM
I started reading them when I was in the sixth grade- loved it, but was WAY too young for it!! I read and watched a lot of stuff way before I was mature enough to, which is why I'm stricter with my own kids. My parents set no boundaries. As a result, I knew too much, too soon. I just think there are so many good, positive books out there for this age group that they shouldn't need to get into these graphic, explicit, adult novels just yet.

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Posted: 2/26/2010 4:27:28 PM
I read them about that age and turned out ok. Though once my parents figured out what they were about they were banned (that didn't stop me lol).

That said, I would not let my dd read them at thirteen. I have to agree with my parents now. Ack lol.


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Posted: 2/26/2010 4:36:26 PM
Although I read that series at that age (my parents had no idea what is was about), I won't let my tween read it yet.

Give her the Sweet Valley High books. Wholesome goodness. Of course, they've updated those books too and still basically the same, but it's updated with cell phones, better cars, etc.


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Posted: 2/26/2010 4:49:44 PM
Yes, she has read Sisterpants books, Sweet Valley High.....I just gave her a 'grown up' book.. Dear John by Nicholas didn't have much in it, that I remember.. it's been about a year..and she saw the movie..and the other new Nicholas Sparks one..can't remember the name...but Miley Cyrus is in the movie.

Yeah, after reading the summary on wikipedia.. I guess I totally forgot about the rape and all that... I can't believe I forgot some of what happens in those books.. creepy!! She hasn't asked about it yet..but will just keep for a few more years. Shoot I will give her a Danielle Steele book before the Flowers

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Posted: 2/26/2010 5:03:14 PM
UGH...I had nightmares about those stories, they are old...lay them to rest! Please!

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Posted: 2/26/2010 5:13:11 PM
Well, let's put it this way:

My Mom had that book on her bookshelf when I was around 13 and she would not allow me to read it. So of course I would sneak and read a page here and a page there, whenever she wasn't looking, until months later I was finally done with the book.

And look how good I turned out, haha.

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Posted: 2/26/2010 5:19:06 PM
I read them in 5th or 6th grade and wasn't overly disturbed or scarred. I guess it depends on her level of maturity and whether she'd come talk with you if things bothered her.

I may not remember the details, but what about the Clan of the Cave Bear books by Jean Auel? I read those in middle school.

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Posted: 2/26/2010 5:23:33 PM
Um, no. I read them at that age and I am still um, shocked by the level of topics. I wouldn't want my DD to read them at that age. No reason to have those images in her head....

My parents didn't ensor much of anything when I was a child and I have very graphic images in my head from movies and such we were allowed to see (even in the company of our parents). There are some bells that just can't be unrung....


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Posted: 2/26/2010 5:24:43 PM
I actually just finished re-reading these after reading them for the first time in my mid-teens. The Dollanganger and the Casteel series - those were enough never read any of her other series though.

I am still disturbed by some of them at the age of 35, lol. Incest is just creepy. And there really is a lot of emotional abuse and somewhat disturbing religious stuff in them.

So no I probably wouldn't recommend them for a 13 year based on my recent reading of them. I wouldn't say never let her read them - just maybe wait a few more years, if those things concern you for her to read about.


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Posted: 2/26/2010 5:26:51 PM
I started reading them in 6th grade and I won't let my 7th grader read them. I was also reading Harlequins and Silhouettes by 7th grade (parents never saw the books) and I won't let her read them either.

Our used book store is closing and has their books for $4/bag. I looked in the teen section for some books for my dd. If I wanted to, I could have gotten 2 sets of V C Andrews books for $4 but I didn't. There weren't many books left in that section other than those books.

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Posted: 2/26/2010 5:27:21 PM
I read all those and the Landry series in the 7 grade...and I am semi normal


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Posted: 2/26/2010 6:00:10 PM
I read FLOWERS IN THE ATTIC in high school, I think I was at least a junior or senior at the time and found it revolting but there were tons of books like that out there in the 80s.

I have to admit I did start reading SYBIL when I was around 12 and it was my 6th grade teacher that took the book away from me and ratted me out to my Mom. Probably a good thing because it was very frightening.

At thirteen I would think something like Sweet Valley High or the R.L. Stine series would be great. I actually bought some R. L. Stine books for my DSD but ended up reading them myself because she had read them.

I think if your daughter likes mystery and science fiction she might like the book, The Eight by Katherine Neville and I believe most of her books are similar.

And I loved TOUCH NOT THE CAT by Mary Stewart and her Merlin Series:

If you are looking for something romantic mystery and history, I would suggest Victoria Holt, ONE of the pen names for Eleanor Hibbert.

I read THE SECRET WOMAN when I was around 13 and all of her books have historical information as well as a plot line with a strong woman involved in a mystery during the Victorian Era.

Every summer on our family trip I would get the "new" to me books and read them.

Don't forget REBECCA, I read that one in junior high for English and some of the other Classics.

And how could I forget, John Jakes, those are excellent books to read as well and I read them in junior and senior high school.

I will ask my friend who works at the SHSU library what the current crop of good teen reads is, her daughter is 21 but they read EVERYTHING and then some.

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Posted: 2/26/2010 6:00:56 PM
I've read all of her series, even a few of the crappy ones written by someone else under her name after she died.

I think I read the first ones (Flowers in the Attic) at about 14 years old. Loved them! Of course, I had also read things like the Amityville Horror and Stephen King by that age, so nothing much fazed me. I enjoyed being creeped out and scared. I still do to some extent, lol!


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Posted: 2/26/2010 6:16:15 PM
I'm super liberal when it comes to what my kids read and I usually let them guide themselves, but, Flowers in the Attic- I pretend those have never been written! I found them very disturbing!


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Posted: 2/27/2010 8:29:45 AM
My 16 year old really liked the Diary of a Teenager and that whole series by Melody Carlson, she writes Christian fiction, so I think that they are pretty safe.


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Posted: 2/27/2010 9:00:28 AM
I read it at 13 and was horrified / facinated / disgusted by it.

Also read Forever because it was the big thing back then. Once I did, I thought the girl was an idiot and wondered why was there so much hype. What a waste of my time. DD12 felt the same way about Twilight.

These two books definitely formed my opinion on appropriate behavior. And what not to do.

I see no problem in her reading it. If you've raised her right, she'll react appropriately and it can be a teachable moment. She is 13 and will hear about this stuff in school.
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