Osbert the Avenger (Tales from Schwartzgarten, #1) Osbert the Avenger question

Is it just me, or is this too violent to be a children's book?
Kate Kate (last edited Dec 20, 2012 05:24PM ) Dec 20, 2012 05:20PM
In this story Osbert is pushed to the limits of his endurance by a clique of evil and sadistic school teachers. Eventually he cracks and begins a well-thought out assassination programme, killing one teacher at a time. The descriptions of each murder are graphic and bleak. The book ends with him following one of his fellow female students down a dark alley clutching a meat-cleaver. Is this funny? Is this a good book to give to primary school children? Despite all the hype I think the publishers have got this one very wrong.

I agree, I was shoked to find it on kids bookshelf with Roald Dahl books. I am going to point it to the librarians, so they place this "masterpiece" somewhere else.

I absolutely agree. To align this stuff with Dahl is to completely miss the point of Dahl's entire works. I would and do happily read Dahl to children in my Year 4 class, but wouldn't DREAM of reading a pretty brutal account of a child serial killer to any class! Young teen fiction perhaps, but NO WAY for the Dahl generation.

I am with you Kate - I was horrified to find that my 10 year old was reading about a sadistic serial killer. Starving a teacher to death? Slicing up another? The kid is "justified" in the killing because the teachers are horrible. Call me old fashioned but this is not entertainment even if it's presented as humour. The final scene is appropriate for an R18 horror film - not a children's book. I am an open-minded reader - my shelves are full of books that would make my parents' eyes water:) But they are not books I would allow my children to read! I'm taking this one up with the New Zealand library service because it's not a book we should be serving to our children. Especially in light of school shootings!

Kate I'm glad it's not just me! ...more
Feb 03, 2013 11:47AM · flag

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