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the boy in the striped pyjamas - what age is it for?

10 replies

cornsilk · 02/11/2007 21:18

I picked this up in the children's section of Waterstones and started reading it to ds. Now I've read the ending I'm not sure if ds is too young for it at 9. What age is it meant to be for? It was with all the primary books in the shop.

OP posts:
beautifuldays · 02/11/2007 21:22

hmm not sure to be honest. i read it and i'm 24!

it is quite upsetting and you would need to know about ww2/concentration camps etc to understand it.

Pollyanna · 02/11/2007 21:36

I read it and decided against letting ds (8) read it. I found it too upsetting too.

BlueCornflower · 02/11/2007 21:36

I know it is meant to be a children's book - it reads like a pre-teenager book. It is desperately heart-stopping at the end though. My DD is only little still so I don't know what age they study wars and stuff in school but don't they do 'war' quite early nowadays? I guess it depends on how sensitive your DS is.

pinkbubble · 02/11/2007 21:41

DD who is 13 has read this book, have just asked her about it, and she seemed to understand it. Have to admit I havent read it, think it will be on my list of books to read!.

roisin · 02/11/2007 21:51

DS1 picked this up in a bookshop when he was 8, and I read it first, and decided he was too young for it.

It says on the back 'not suitable for younger readers' or something, or at least our copy did.

I think 12+ probably OK.

But in answer to your question, I don't really know what age it is aimed at. The book has been the centre of some controversy, and I'm not a fan actually, but lots of people like it a lot.

swedishmum · 03/11/2007 11:21

I picked it up in adult section of Waterstones and gave it to dd (13) to read after me - we spent some time in Poland in summer. Encouraging dd (11) but would agree 8 or 9 is too young. The font size and layout's a bit misleading I think, though obviously done intentionally.

cornsilk · 03/11/2007 16:31

Have decided not to continue with it even tho' he wants to. Am quite cross with Waterstones - it was lying next to the Horrid Henrys etc. It should have been in the 11+ section. Will save it till he's older.

OP posts:
MissM · 09/11/2007 18:46

I think it's one for an older age group - say 12+ or even older, perhaps when they're doing the Holocaust in history. It's quite dark and the ideas it explores are quite complex even though they're dressed up as simple. The ending is very grim too, and I'm not sure an 8 year-old, unless very aware would entirely understand the connotations.

Katymac · 09/11/2007 18:50

DD read it at 9 - but seemed to have no understanding about the issues involved - she was oblivious to the facts and history

I freely admit I glossed over it a bit

When she read Anne Frank I will expand a bit - but hopefully she will be older & will re-read it then

MsPontipine · 20/11/2007 22:32

I've got this book in my pile of books to read. I've also bought it for my sister for Christmas (She's 40)

My copy says on the back " will go on a journey with a 9 year old boy... (Though this isn't a book for nine-year-olds)"

This is not much of a problem for me as yet as DS is only 4. I do believe in being honest with children and we would not be doing them any favours by totally shielding them from real life but what is the point in scaring the life out of them and giving them sleepless or nightmare filled nights.

Yes, carefully introduce some of the harsher realities of life when you think appropriate to their age/maturity and what better way to do this than reading books especially if reading them together but for now I shall be discreetly skipping over the more grisly bits of Bambi, 101 Dalmations etc and hoping he doesn't notice!

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