I read a lot of extremely strange books as a kid. Since I was an introverted bookworm who read extremely quickly, I went through all the “normal” books in no time at all, and ended up in the corners of the library skimming through stacks of offbeat children’s literature. Of course, if you were a childhood bookworm, you probably did the same thing.
The truth is that there are a lot of really weird children’s books out there.You probably read them as a kid. In fact, your bookshelf was probably full of them — I know mine was. But then, over the years, you forgot exactly how bizarre those books were.
Memory gives a glossy sheen to the plot details, and you don’t remember the strange premises and quirky characters — you just remember how much you loved the stories.And as for the classics, well, they’re so popular at this point that no one would question any weird plot points.
Well, I’m here to remind you exactly how strange those stories actually were. From the beloved classics with weird twists, to the obscure books you discovered at the edges of the children’s section, the following books are some of the most bizarre that every book-lover has probably encountered at one point or another.
1. Sideways Stories From The Wayside School By Louis Sachar
Wayside School is 30 stories tall and has no 19th floor. This is the normal part of this book. Some examples of other plot points: a teacher turns students into apples and eventually gets turned into an apple herself and eaten. A kid gets stuck to a chair with chewing gum. Another kid wears a million raincoats to disguise the fact that he’s actually a dead rat. A girl tries to sell her toes. Need I go on?
2. Freckle Juice By Judy Blume
3. The Bailey School Kids Series By Debbie Dadey And Marcia Thornton Jones
The Bailey School kids always think everyone is a monster… and, much to the young reader’s chagrin, the endings never reveal whether they’re right or not. I used to get so angry about the endings of these books, and yet I kept coming back for more.
4.The Witches By Roald Dahl
Everyone loves Roald Dahl stories, but sometimes people forget exactly how weird his books are.
For example, in the end of The Witches(spoiler alert!) the boy gets turned into a mouse and has to live that way forever.
His silver lining? His remaining lifespan will now be about the same length as his grandmother’s.Totally normal, right?