My first ever newspaper column appeared in the Geelong Advertisers Saturday GT lift out.
Erotic novel is not to be toyed with
Fifty Shades of Grey is turning me 50 Shades of pink and not for the reasons you would think
I am sure you have heard about 50 Shades of Grey in some shape or form over the last few weeks. Everywhere I turn, its there. It could quite possibly be mentioned in every 4th post on my Facebook feed. There are people devouring the trilogy in weeks and are left wanting more.
What is turning me 50 shades of PINK is not reading the book, well maybe a little but more on that later, it is more the places I am able to purchase this book.
There I was at the Target toy sale last week wandering up and down the numerous aisles showcasing every type of barbie known to little girls, fluffy pillow pets, pretty Crayola crayon gift packs and boxes of Lego and smack bang in the middle of all this kiddie cuteness was a bookshelf. The bookshelf was well stocked with all three titles of 50 Shades. Does anyone else have a problem with this? How is it not sealed in plastic or better yet locked with a padlock that requires you to get the key from the front desk? I am giggling as I imagine the microphone blaring through Target “ can someone please help the Mum at Counter 1 with the keys for her 50 Shades book”. This however is not the case, our children can pick up the book, flick through and be confronted with all kinds of things that they most certainly are not allowed to view at the movies or on TV.
We are talking porn here people. I am not a prude by any stretch of the imagination BUT this ruffles my feathers.
It had me thinking what constitutes pornography these days. Perhaps it is not printed matter. Maybe my definition is way off the real definition so Google came to the rescue and this is what I got, Pornography(noun)- Printed or visual material containing the explicit description or display of sexual organs or activity. Was I surprised? Not at all, this aligns with my understanding of porn. Wikipedia goes on to say Pornography may use a variety of media, including books (check) and hardcore pornography explicitly showcases penetrative intercourse (check) .
So there in the middle of Target in the middle of Geelong, at the front door of my newsagency and proudly displayed at the Airport bookshop with an accompanying poster is not only porn but hardcore porn. Is anyone blushing yet?
Do the sales people unpacking these books even know what it is they are so readily handling? I know we have become more liberal in our thinking as each decade whizzes by but surely this is overstepping the mark.
If the book was visual rather than in print would more people object? I believe so, there is good reason to why the Playboys and Penthouses are not sold at everyday convenience stores advertised front and center.
I am not about to go waving my banner down the street but I am disappointed and shocked that our children already exposed to so much at such a young age have this to deal with too. Would a vulnerable teenage girl have a flick through and think this is normal behavior and what is expected of her in a sexual relationship? What about a teenage boy thinking this is what he needs to do to keep his new girlfriend happy?
Back to the book, I don’t see what the fuss is all about. In the risk of offending this is not a “readers” book. I am 63% through now (that’s more than half way for non Kindle readers) and am bored, bored, bored. I don’t need to be told in every chapter how devastatingly good looking he is (25 times), I got that at Go. There is a wonderful search option in Kindle that has enabled me to find out the following, there are 40 references to lip biting, 58 references to Ana’s inner goddess, 80 mentions of her boring subconscious and a whopping 93 uses of the word ‘crap’ . Do we really need to know that she “blushes” and “flushes” 125 times?
It’s also terribly unbelievable however trying hard to disguise itself as believable. An awkward 23 year old College Virgin meets 27 y.o multi millionaire with his own helicopter who buys her a car after a few weeks of meeting. Really?!? I am an avid reader and this is not the best written word, far from it and I am pulling teeth to get through the last 37%.
The last thing turning me a shade of pink is that this book is being called “Mummy Porn”, can anyone say condescending? Do we call adult content that men enjoy “Daddy porn”? Eww!!! and downright offensive in my humble opinion.
Apparently they are making a movie. I am keen to see who will allow their teenagers go see that one.
Would love to hear your thoughts so don't be shy.
P.S I have finished the book since writing this column and am it got no better.