Book Ratings:
Or Am I too young to buy this book?

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"Are there age limits on buying books? I'm a 14 year old male and I want to read a book called Auschwitz: A Doctors Eyewitness Account but I'm not sure if I'm allowed to?"

While it is not common and not heavily enforced, yes, there is a system for rating books. Book ratings are not something a lot of people are aware of, because so few books ever warrant having a rating put on it.

Some books do have ratings on them, and are required by law to not be sold to minors. This is very rare however. Typically you only see these ratings put on comic books, manga, and adult magazines (such as PlayBoy). If the book does not have a rating label on it's cover than anyone of any age can buy it.

Book ratings will say:

Rated T for Teens. (No one under 14 is allowed to buy it)

Rated T16 for Older Teens (No one under 16 is allowed to buy it)

Rated M for Mature Audiences (No one under 21 is allowed to buy it)

It is very rare to see book rating labels on text-only books. Usually the labels indicate there are nude images in the book.

Some publishers, such as Harlequin, are now putting M rated labels on Erotica novels, but this is a very new trend which only started in late 2012. You can expect to see it happening more often, because several other publishers are now talking about following Harlequin's lead.

However, even books which have book ratings clearly marked on them, are often easy to buy. For example the manga InuYasha is rated T16, but I've seen children as young as 8 walk into a store a buy it and the sales clerk never batted an eye. Very few bookstores enforce the rating system law, partly because it's so rarely seen that few book store clerks are even aware to look for the rating labels.

I am not familiar with the book you are asking about, but if it has no rating label on the back cover (and also on the copyright page) than, no anyone any age can buy it.

Of course at 14, you are not exactly old enough to be going to the store without your parents (and you got crappy parents if they don't care enough about you to keep you safe) so it's really up to your mom and dad whether or not you are allowed to buy that book. You need to be asking them what they think about this book and if they think you are old enough to read it of not.

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