Fifty Shades Of Wahey!


Raunchy read getting Irish women hot under the collar

Westlife’s Shane Filan claims his wife has gone missing since getting her hands on a copy of best-selling erotic novel Fifty Shades of Grey.

“So who this Mr Gray my wife @Gillian_Filan has run off with!? Lol,” the Sligo singer tweeted this week.

And another Westlife WAG, Jodi Albert, posted a photo of her copy of the saucy book on her blog, adding: “So this is where it’s at. Huh ladies? Xxx”

Meanwhile, singer Sinead O’Connor has claimed her therapist advised her to read the book — which has been dubbed ‘mummy porn’ — as she dutifully picked up a copy on her way to Spain last week. “Fifty Shades of Grey, she told me to get,” she tweeted. “The idea is... No thinking... She say sex will stop me thinking!”

It seems the rest of Ireland’s womenfolk are following suit as Easons bookstores revealed yesterday that Fifty Shades of Grey was out of stock in stores around the country. “It’s flying off the shelves and the publishers are finding it hard to keep up with demand,” said Maria Dickenson, head of book purchasing. “We’ll have it in shortly again but it’s hard to keep on top of it when we sold 13,000 copies from the trilogy in the last week alone.”

Ms Dickenson also revealed that 60,000 copies of the book had been sold around the country so far. “It’s quite something — it’s the fastest-selling paperback in the world. It has beaten Dan Brown’s Da Vinci Code and selling with more than 20 million copies worldwide so far,” she said.

She attributed the book’s success in Ireland to word of mouth and the dire economic times. “It’s a funny one, because erotic fiction didn’t sell well here before,” said Ms Dickenson. “A lot of it is word of mouth. People are talking about it and it’s very much a female-driven phenomenon. I think there’s an element of escapism adding to its success, too. In these gloomy times, everyone needs a little escapism.”

Not only has Fifty Shades of Grey become the fastest selling paperback, it has also become the number one Kindle book ever on online retailer Amazon’s UK website. The raunchy trilogy has also become the first to sell more than 100,000 of each instalment in the UK.

Set largely in the American city of Seattle, Fifty Shades of Grey is follows the relationship between a college graduate, Anastasia Steele, and sadomasochistic billionaire Christian Grey. The sex-filled series continues with Fifty Shades Darker and Fifty Shades Freed.

British author EL James — a pen name for 48-year-old Erika Leonard — has become a multi-millionaire almost overnight. The author is making an estimated €1m a week, according to The website says: “It’s safe to assume that EL James has long ago sold enough copies to repay her seven-figure book advance, which means at this point she is earning the standard seven per cent royalty on every $14 (€11) paperback and 25 per cent on every $10 (€8) ebook.

“In the last month, James has sold four million paperbacks and one million ebooks — which equates to $2.94m (€2.3m) in paperback royalties and $2.497m (€2m) in ebook royalties.”

And even more cash is winging its way to the author with the sale of the movie rights. Last week, actor Mark Wahlberg revealed that his production company nearly bought the film rights to Fifty Shades of Grey — before Universal and Focus secured the adaptation. The film promises even more erotic thrills for Irish women with Cork actor Cillian Murphy and Kerry star Michael Fassbender among a host of hunky stars hotly tipped for the Christian Grey role.

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