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Go the Fu*k to Sleep: Children’s Books that are not Children’s Books

2013 May 16

Inappropriate Children's BooksWritten by: hswhite,theallegiant.com/- This week, an acquaintance of mine was tricked into reading The Adventures Of The Princess and Mr. Whiffle  aloud to some kids. She had to quit halfway through. Why? It actually isn’t for kids. It even comes with a golden sticker that reads, “This s— isn’t for kids.” Unfortunately it had been mistaken for a Caldecott award.

The punchline of the book involves a girl killing and eating a live animal, then making a house out of its bones. Would I read this to a child? Well, no. But then I got to thinking- I have absolutely loved some inappropriate children’s books. I own some and treasure them. I’ve even threatened to read them to children (maybe I will… and maybe I have).

Without further ado, here is a list of some amazing inappropriate children’s books. Click on a title and you’ll be taken to visuals highlighting their glory… or to the dulcet tones of Samuel L. Jackson yelling at a child.

all my friends are dead

1) All My Friends Are Dead by Avery Monsen and Jory John

This book is a gorgeous catalog of loneliness and despair, culminating with the image of Death saying “This job makes me feel so alive.” While reading this you won’t know which started first: the laughter or the tears.

sequel was released last year. Spoiler: everyone is still dead.

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the gashlycrumb tinies

2) The Gashlycrumb Tinies by Edward Gorey

Published in 1962, Tinies is an alphabet of dead children; each letter is assigned to a youngster who has met a grisly end. Surprisingly, this isn’t the most disturbing thing Gorey wrote.

This book is also available in poster form. I suppose parents or teachers might use it as a discipline tool; if a child acts poorly, you can just show them the poster and say “all right, pick one.”

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