‘Fifty Shades of Grey,’ by E. L. James, in Demand at Libraries - The New York TimesOr as the handwritten tag on a paperback copy in a Montclair, N. The problem has been finding it. The first book of a trilogy, it was published by a tiny independent press in Australia, and distribution in print has been limited and sluggish, leaving bookstores deprived of copies. Now American publishers have just concluded a battle over the rights to re-release the book in the blockbuster fashion they think it deserves. This week, Vintage Books, part of the Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, known for its highbrow literary credentials, won a bidding war for the rights to all three books, paying a seven-figure sum.
Fifty Shades of Grey BOOK Review!
Glass Slipper as Fetish
Sex is a hard sell. Sex has to be transgressive to cause a stir, and nowadays the best step forward is to take a step back. Universal Pictures and its art-house film division, Focus Features, have already bought the movie rights. This S-and-M story about a virginal college student and the handsome young billionaire who binds her sounds racier than it is. When Sara Blakely, a former office equipment saleswoman, wanted control-top pantyhose without the hose and figured that other women might too, she started her own company, Spanx. Women embraced her light-weight girdle — once known as a foundation garment — as a body-shaping breakthrough.
The idea that movies and other forms of popular culture could be subjected to serious critical scrutiny was a new and controversial notion in American intellectual circles at the time, and Warshow wanted to make clear that any such criticism would have to take account of its origins in everyday experience. Wherever your thoughts and judgments might take you, you always start out as a consumer, a member of the audience, a fan. The entertainment industry does business through careful demographic sorting, dividing its potential public by age, gender, region and race, and hoping to hit as many of those disparate targets as possible. At the same time, members of the public are accustomed to looking at themselves and one another through various lenses of identity, and to spotting the biases and blind spots in what they read. Sorry to get all confessional. Long before the film opened on Feb. The global popularity of the books — million copies is the number most frequently bandied around — has seemed to open a window into an often hidden zone of the collective psyche, adding a voyeuristic thrill to the dreary work of deadline-driven cultural analysis.
The source of that laughter continues to puzzle and intrigue me, perhaps more than the actual movie did. Was it delight? All of the above? Sex is a knotty business, perhaps all the more so when actual knots are involved, as they tend to be in the world of Christian Grey, the kinky billionaire bachelor who lends his name and his impressive collection of neckties to this Seattle-set tale of seduction, submission and commodity fetishism. He has his own helicopter, which he pilots himself; an underground garage full of cars with a chauffeur to drive them; a penthouse apartment with a grand piano; and a walk-in closet so big that his suits hang without even touching. Early in their relationship, he gives a tour to Anastasia Steele, his young inamorata, played with captivating sensitivity by Dakota Johnson.
“Fifty Shades of Grey,” an erotic novel by an obscure author that has been described as “Mommy porn” and “Twilight” for grown-ups, has.
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The Book Was Better: 50 Shades of Grey Review
The likes of Madonna and the photographer Helmut Newton had primed that pump long ago, turning dominance, submission and toys into an acceptable spectacle. With low-key charisma, she drew you toward her, so that your attention and hopes fell on her instead of the nonsense surrounding her. She was a stealth weapon. I was still rooting for Ms. Once again, the story involves the on-and-off, tie-her-up, tie-her-down romance between Anastasia Steele Ms.
But adapting something so popular yet so derided, potentially X-rated and freighted with preconceptions was never going to be simple. Taylor-Johnson continued. Sipping water in the bar of the Mandarin Oriental Hotel on Columbus Circle the other day, she was a self-contained oasis of calm in the midst of the huge publicity operation — interviews at minute intervals, publicists wielding clipboards and barking into their cellphones, suites filled with snacks for the flagging stars and functionaries — taking place around her. Negative rumors have been swirling about: Ms. Johnson and Mr. Dornan hate each other. The sex is too graphic, not graphic enough or not sexy at all.