Worried if your child might be secretly reading the ‘Game of Thrones’ book? Step out of the panic mode as we break it down for you. Is the book appropriate for teenagers? Keep reading to find out!
It’s hard to keep track around teenage children. Keeping tabs on what the teens are reading or watching in terms of content often becomes a nightmare for parents. With the rising popularity of HBO’s ‘Game of Thrones’ and its original book by George R.R. Martin, people have developed an immense interest in the content, adults and children alike. Is the book appropriate for 14-year-old’s reading list?
- What to look out for?
- How young is too young?
- Listen to what the parents have to say
What to look out for?
George R.R. Martin’s book ‘A Game of Thrones’, which was adapted into the mega-hit series ‘Game of Thrones’ on HBO, made quite an amount of noise when it was first introduced. Besides an extremely gripping plot filled with fantasy, magic, and, of course, dragons, ‘A Game Thrones’ has also presented some really controversial and sensitive comment. Be it nudity, violence, intense frightening scenes, or alcohol and drinking, the book, as well as the series, have hardly censored anything. Such an approach might pose a concern for parents, especially with children navigating through their teen years.
For instance, the first volume itself begins with horrifying violence. Page eleven graphically presents a violent stab in the eye. The fifteenth page demonstrates one of the many beheadings while page 500 has the mass murder of Daenerys Targaryen’s brother who was suffocated to death by molten gold. However, the red flag that screams “not for children” is George R. R. Martin’s unflinching approach towards the sexual content. Incest, molestation, rape, erotic moments – there’s no shortage of the daringly bold sexual things happening throughout the book. Although ‘A Game of Thrones’ makes for an all-absorbing read, the book does contain troubling scenes which could cast quite an impression on the children who have just begun experiencing puberty.
How young is too young?
“Common Sense Media”, a great resource for understanding content appropriateness for children, has given the book, ‘A Game of Thrones’ a 17+ rating. The same platform shows that parents have rated the book as 14+ while kids have given it a rating of 13+. Bottom line: Although the book has violently and sexually explicit graphic content, what matters most is how confident a parent is that their child will be able to handle it.
Agreed that the controversial and sensitive content of the book could be hard for teenagers to suck up with an immature mind, but being too controlling about what they watch or read could be equally harmful. In all fairness, you wouldn’t want them to go behind your backs just to satisfy their curiosity.
Venting out in the comments section of an article that talked about how ‘Game of Thrones’ isn’t really appropriate for minors, a 13-year-old said,
“I’m 13 years old and I haven’t watched the seasons of Game of Thrones yet. My mother says it’s to “inappropriate,” but what really annoys me is that all that happens in this show is exactly what is happening today! … When parents are banning us from not watching these types of shows, it annoys me. I mean, yes, it’s obvious you aren’t going to show a 5-year-old GOT, but I think when puberty hits (12-13?) this could be a good time of allowing your child to possibly watch this. Don’t force them! Just, if they find out about this show. Talk with them. Make them understand what they are watching. None of it is real”.
Listen to what the parents have to say
A minor watching the adapted version of ‘A Game of Thrones’ could, perhaps, be far more troublesome than reading the original book. This is probably why a few parents find it okay for children of 14 years and above to read Martin’s book. A parent’s review on “Common Sense Media” read,
“People actually say this is for adults? I haven’t watched the show or anything but there are like two lines that I wouldn’t let my kid read in this book and I can always scratch them out I mean common the book is huge it would be a shame to ban him from reading a good book because of a few scenes (that aren’t as bad as you would imagine)”.
However, not all parents agree with this view. A parent disagreed with the above view and said,
“The first page starts with a very detailed scene of a man being decapitated. The book also had countless of sex scenes, one of which was twincest. This is not a book for children!”
Do you think the book, ‘A Game of Thrones’ is appropriate for a 14-year-old? Let us know in the comments below!