6 Terrifying Children in Literature

Children are amongst the most terrifying creatures imaginable. Behind their unsuspecting smiles and affectionate hugs, they are undoubtedly scheming behind your back. They shout in high-pitched screams, talk in wiccan rhymes, make sudden movements, and are willing to resort to physical violence if it means getting their way. They are evil.


If you don’t believe me, here are six evil children from literature that will seriously make you rethink having little monsters of your own.


1. Isaac – Children of the Corn by Stephen King



Image Via Hal Roach Studios


The leader of a muderous child cult that terrorizes the adults in his small town (seriously, Stephen King, why do you treat small towns like this?), Isaac is a religious fanatic who uses violence to manipulate others. He convinces children to murder their parents and any adult over the age of nineteen. If you live near any cornfields, beware of children like Isaac.


2. Kevin – We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver



Image Via BBC Films


Kevin is a manipulative sociopathic teenager who, prior to committing a school massacre, spent his time mentally abusing his mother, physically and emotionally torturing his sister, and killing his sister’s pet rodent in a vile manner. We all knew teenagers were terrible, but Kevin gives us a little more evidence. 


3. Rhoda – The Bad Seed by William March



Image Via Warner Bros. 


This sociopathic 8-year-old will make you distrust any girl with pigtails. Behind this angelic facade is a murderer whose jealousy and fierce competitive nature is met with a murderous rage. We all know children hate to lose, but Rhoda shows us why these spoil sports are so dangerous.


4. Jack – Lord of the Flies by William Golding



Image Via Castle Rock Entertainment


Being stranded on an island is sure to bring out desperation and frustration. For others, apparently, it brings out one’s sick and twisted nature. Jack is the official example of “hangry,” a domineering teen whose lack of food and resources brings out the pure savagery within him. He has an intense obsession with hunting, and finds pleasure in torturing animals, particularly pigs. Jack will make any parent terrified to be stranded alone with their teenage son.


5. Cathy – East of Eden by John Steinbeck



Image Via Amazon


Sex can kill, literally. Cathy Ames is a manipulative character, successfully able to frame two boys for rape, driving a lust-filled professor to commit suicide, and using sexuality to control men. Her sexual exploits lead to the ruin of many characters, much to her sick and twisted delight. 


6. Jacob – Defending Jacob by William Landay



Image Via Amazon


If you’re naturally skeptical of teenage boys, then the good news is Jacob will prove it’s not all in your head. After his 14-year-old classmate is found murdered, young Jacob soon finds himself as a suspect. His frightened parents, completely unaware of their son’s underlying issues, are forced to question their son’s true form and, what they find is every parent’s worst nightmare. Jacob is an example of a wolf in sheep’s clothing.



Featured Image Via Castle Rock Entertainment