Shortly after the Jan. 30 death of Sidney Sheldon, whose novels fueled many a fantasy, his name popped up in an EW.com column about racy reading that EW staffers indulged in as teens. In hundreds of online responses, readers cited Sheldon along with works by Judith Krantz, Stephen King, and even Scott Turow. Here, the most frequently cited books devoured when Mom wasn’t looking.
1. FLOWERS IN THE ATTIC V.C. Andrews (1979)
This incest classic spawned many sequels. ”I was…enthralled and floored and weirded out at the same time,” says a reader.
2. FOREVER Judy Blume (1975)
This seemed to be the book most women were sneaking way back when — a book about adolescent love with actual intercourse.
3. THE GODFATHER Mario Puzo (1969)
Yes, the classic Mafia novel is full of sex (many readers cited page 27, the bathroom coupling of Sonny and a bridesmaid).
4. CHANCES Jackie Collins (1981)
A very non-Puzo take on the Mob. ”I was about 13 when I read Chances; that was all the education I needed!” says one reader.
5. THE CLAN OF THE CAVE BEAR Jean M. Auel (1980)
Two words: prehistoric porn.