The Rationalist has been asking to read them for quite some time, but they are just out of his assigned reading level for his accelerated reader program at school. Mainly, I was trying to make him wait until he was a bit older. From what I have heard, the last few books are a lot darker and have more general peril in them. I knew once he started the series that he would fly through the books in a matter of months, if not weeks, so I was hoping to let him loose on the entire enterprise once I thought he could handle all of them.
I am somewhat ambivalent about exerting a measured amount of censorship over what our children read. When I was a child, I was an advanced reader. By third grade, I was reading my mother's pulp fiction paperbacks, most of which were wildly inappropriate for me due to the sexual and violent content. By fifth grade, I was a huge Stephen King fan.
The scarier, the more horrifying, the better.
So....I understand the urge for fantasy and horror at a young age.
On the other hand, I was exposed to many subjects at a young age that I wouldn't want my own children to be exposed to. Walking the line between implementing parental guidance and allowing breathing space for the kids is a balancing act.
The Intuitive is ready to attack all of the R.L. Stine , Goosebumps books. I'm making him wait until 3rd grade only because I made The Rationalist wait that long. I had been turned off of the Goosebumps series when The Rationalist came home with one in first grade. The story involved a young girl become possessed by a scary mask and almost strangling her best friend to death.
Too much for a 6 year old to process.
By third grade The Rationalist landed in a classroom stocked with every Goosebumps book ever written. He'd read them all by Christmas break.
Now, I only casually keep track of what he's reading. There have been only a few instances when he has come home with a book that has been vetoed by us, usually because it has more realistic violence in it than we think he's old enough to handle. It is surprising sometimes what subjects pop up in the young juvenile section of the library.
One of the books he picked out in second grade dealt heavily with domestic abuse and had scenes depicting a woman being hit by her husband...way too heavy of a subject for an 8 year old to deal with. Usurping his choice, we made him stop reading it and find something else to meet his reading requirements.
It's becoming more complicated to figure out what is appropriate now that both of the boys are becoming more sophisticated.
The illusion of parental control I possess will probably completely evaporate over the next few years.