October 1st, 2010 / 4:07 pm

Nick Antosca on reading Lolita at 12. What was the first book that you felt dirty reading? I’d say mine was either A Confederacy of Dunces around the same age, or maybe The Godfather. Hard question for me because I was watching stuff like Terminator & Skinemax from about 5 on. You?


  1. Matthew Simmons

      Weird synchronicity: I think it was probably Story of the Eye. My brother, who is four years older than I am, had a copy.

      If we’re including funny books, though, it was probably a Robert Crumb comic. HUP, maybe.

  2. Guest

      the soft machine at age 15. i remember i kept thinking, “there’s gotta be at least one page where he doesn’t mention a dick flopping out of some boy’s shorts with a dollop of pearly cum on its tip.” then i got used to it, over it, and learned to love all the other things that were going on.

  3. Jack M

      Valley of the Dolls, where one of the characters loudly berated her husband for having sex with another woman in their pool. I think I was about 11.

  4. Owen Kaelin

      The Jungle Book.

  5. Richard

      For some reason I want to say Friday by Robert A. Heinlein. Or, predating that, Are You There God, It’s Me, Margaret. by Judy Blume, in 5th or 6th grade.

  6. jereme

      i can’t remember which was first but either IT or this weird Zombie Story collection I found at the library.

      Both instances were fairly close together. IT was written better, but the Zombie fucking in one story from the collection was and still is the most perverted thing i have read.

      it made me dry-heave-boner-pop in a disgustingly lecherous way.

  7. Trey

      IT was mine as well.

  8. stephen

      i remember sneaking off with “the catcher in the rye” from my parents’ bookshelf after paging through it and seeing that it had lots of naughty words in it

  9. goner

      Last Exit to Brooklyn. Didn’t make me feel dirty, but it blew my mind.

  10. goner

      Meaning that I’ve never felt dirty for my tastes (I’m not religious), but the book was dirty and unlike anything I had read.

  11. Jonny Ross

      American Psycho, definitely. Yeah, OK, so none of the “stuff” actually happens, in that it’s all just Bateman’s fantasy or whatever, but there it is on the page.

  12. mimi

      I can’t say that the feeling was dirty, in fact I would describe it as a clean feeling – “a natural, zesty enterprise”, to quote Maud Lebowski.

      Anyway, my list would be:
      My friend’s parents had Candy and The Story of O – middle school.
      My mom’s copy of The Hite Report – age fourteen – highly informative and instructive.
      Bastard Out of Carolina had a dirty little bit.
      The Persistent Desire: A Butch Femme Reader, during a phase…..

  13. Marc

      The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.
      A boy. An escaped slave. Both naked. Alone on a raft. Floating a river. Together.
      Enter. Tom Sawyer. A true sadist.

      Book still creeps me out.

  14. Michael Hemmingson

      Barry Malzberg’s BEYOND APOLLO at age 13. That novel warped my brain…and still does…

  15. Shera

      Julie of the Wolves in 5th grade (age 9)

      It’s young adult, but there was a sex. It’s a banned book.

  16. ryder

      Flowers in the Attic. no wonder my love life’s all fucked up…

  17. Alec Niedenthal

      The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys in seventh grade. The next full novel I read was I think four years later, and that was Naked Lunch. So.

  18. Guest

      Depends on how you define “dirty,” but probably most of Dickens. Characters “ejaculating” after each line of dialogue, and, of course, Uriah Heep, the creepiest character in the history of literature.

  19. Ken Baumann

      I had a similar reaction.

  20. Tadd Adcox
  21. Ned Vizzini

      I read a short story that I think was called “The Up Escalator”. It started out with the sentence “Fear is the precursor to pain” and then described a man who was in a car accident when a truck jackknived on him and how he woke up in the hospital and wanted to have sex with the nurse tending to him. Then he had a wet dream with her on the subway. It was the first explicit sexual prose I had ever read. I was 10 or 11. I am STILL trying to find this story. Was it Bret Easton Ellis? It was in a magazine, Esquire or something… this was around 1991…. any help would be much appreciated. Thank you!