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David copperfield and little dorrit suitable for an 11 year old?

(12 Posts)
Bluecarrot Tue 25-Mar-14 10:33:10

Her granda have her these books a few years ago. Her ability to read them is not an issue ( assessed as 18 years when she was 10) but I'm not sure about the content.

Should I hold them back another few years?

duchesse Tue 25-Mar-14 10:37:06

God yeah, should be fine, as long as her maturity levels match her reading levels. The more classics you can pour into her the better!

NigellasDealer Tue 25-Mar-14 10:37:50

no they are fine i was reading DC at the age of 9.

as for LD it is not actually all that readable, although there are marvellous evocations of the Marshalsea, the fact that it was written for a series and weekly payments is all too apparent.

iseenodust Tue 25-Mar-14 10:42:08

Let her at them before someone tells her they're not cool. I ploughed through loads of Dickens at that age because there wasn't any teen literature so so many years ago.

duchesse Tue 25-Mar-14 10:45:02

I'd recommend holding back on the Zola a few years. I read them at 12 and learned quite a few things I wasn't ready for.

Bluecarrot Tue 25-Mar-14 10:47:43

She revels in being "weird" iseenodust!

Will leave them out for her then. Thanks everyone. smile

DuchessofMalfi Tue 25-Mar-14 17:32:53

We started reading Dickens in my first year at secondary school, so was 12 at the time. We also started reading Shakespeare, and various other classics, poetry etc. So, yes I would say Dickens is suitable for an 11 year old with good reading skills.

Caitlin17 Tue 25-Mar-14 23:32:35

Nothing to worry about in either of them. I'd leave Oliver Twist,Nicholas Nickelby and The Old Curiosity Shop until she's a bit older.

In Oliver the sections in the workhouse, the Sowerbys and Fagin's Den and Dotheboys Hall and the treatment of poor Smike in Nicholas Nickelby are disturbing. In The Old Curiosity Shop the treatment of the servant girl "the Marchioness" is bleak for an 11 year old but the side plot of the love story between her and Richard Swiveller is the best and least sentimental of Dickens' love stories.

I'd hold back on Zola. Nana, L'Assomoir, La Terre, La Bete Humaine are not suitable for children.

ErrolTheDragon Tue 25-Mar-14 23:38:33

I read Oliver Twist to my DD before that age (she'd seen a production of Oliver! and asked for it) and rather regretted it - rather miserable. Then read DC a bit later - that was fine except I totally choked in the scene where Dora is dying 'offstage', but the daft dog expires.

Caitlin17 Tue 25-Mar-14 23:39:43

I'd also not allow Balzac and Flaubert for the same reasons as Zola. It's not just the frankness which is not suitable but they can be cruel in a way Dickens isn't. Yes terrible things happen in Dickens and good people die along the way but on the whole bad people get their just desserts and endings are mostly happy. You don't get that sort of resolution with the French.

Caitlin17 Tue 25-Mar-14 23:45:13

My favourite is Bleak House but I think it's too complex even for a good reader at 11. It's his only experimental novel with the multiple plots and dual narrators, characters who appear in all the plots, characters who only appear in some,characters who connect and those who don't.

Martorana Tue 25-Mar-14 23:50:30

Don't be silly- course it's not suitable. She's got 80 years to read adult books! There are loads of wonderful children's books she should be reading now.

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