I am not a squeamish person, but I found myself turning away from an explicitly written torture scene in this book, and I am 41 years old. I would not read it to my 8 year old daughter.
It is just possible that a sequence of terrible violence could be acceptable in a book written for (older) children, in a correct context and properly written. But the scene in this book is totally gratuitous, serving merely as an underline for the repellent nature of one of the characters. There are far more imaginative ways of imbuing a character with bile, and the lazy sadism of this section merely highlights an author struggling to break out of the mediocre. (And failing.)
There is a tendency to assume that violence is somehow acceptable and part of society and something to laugh at. You must decide whether you want your children to be part of that tendency. I do not shield my children from the awfulness of the world, but I do not want it sneaking in on them when they are alone and reading.
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