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IT'S been described as "mummy porn", and women can't get enough of it.
Wives and mothers across Queensland are charging in to bookstores and libraries to get copies of the raunchy Fifty Shades trilogy, described as a "publishing phenomenon" that has taken the world by storm, much the same way the Harry Potter series did.
Queensland libraries are reporting waits of up to six months for the opportunity to read Fifty Shades of Grey and its sequels. There are currently no copies available for loan at any of Brisbane's libraries. More copies are on order.
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Some libraries in the US have placed bans on the books due to the controversial sadistic and masochistic content
he success of the series has sparked an increase in the sale of hardware products - mainly rope - within the US.
The erotic novels, penned by British author E.L. James, have encouraged New York women to seek out the same type of bondage material featured in the book.
Queensland booksellers are also reporting an avalanche in sales across the state.
Have you read Fifty Shades of Grey? What did you think? Leave your comment below
Last week sales of the novels at Big W soared by 144 per cent.
A Big W spokesman Benedict Brook told The Sunday Mail: "While it's taken its time to catch on in Queensland it's breaking through right now."
Last week in Queensland one in every 10 books sold was from the Fifty Shades trilogy.
"That's not just popular, that's a publishing phenomenon," Mr Brook said.
The Robina store on the Gold Coast is one of the top national sellers of the fiction, followed by McArthur Central in Brisbane City.
Riding on the back of Australian's passion for the saucy series, HarperCollins Australia recently announced that it has secured world rights to three new Australian erotic fiction novels for a six-figure sum.
While the discreet nature of e-books have added to the readership of erotica, Queenslanders are happy to be brazen, with hard copies tucked in their handbags.
B105 breakfast presenter Abby Coleman has been reading Fifty Shades of Grey for her Brisbane book club meeting this week.
"I'm not a great reader and I was going to bluff it by not actually reading the book but was told in no uncertain terms I had to if I wanted to contribute at the meeting," Coleman said.
"I have a five-month-old and am pretty busy so I reluctantly agreed. But now I am hooked.
"I can't wait to go to book club because I reckon it will be hilarious. A bit like going to a sex-toy party.
"I'm not really sure what pulls you in to the book but it's a bit of fun and opens up doors in conversation that would otherwise remain closed. I was a bit shocked by bits of the book. It's very direct.
"In bodice-rippers of old, the writers would use very flowery language to set up the sex scenes. There are no euphemisms here.
"I certainly got my eyes opened. It's dirty.
"I keep thinking back to the fact the book was written by a mother. I ask myself where on earth did she get that stuff from?"
The trilogy was penned by a 40-something mother of teenagers.
It all began when she posted her writings on a website for amateur romance writers.
"I think the books are not to be taken too seriously. Of course, what the central character, Christian Grey, gets up to is not the norm but it gives us a little insight into an unknown world and I have heard of husbands and partners reaping the benefits in the bedroom," Coleman said.
According to Wavell Heights mum of three Felicity Moore: "Why does all this appeal to the great swath of middle-class mums across suburban Brisbane? Quite frankly, it's the same reason that any of those more traditional romances sell. It's some escapism.
"Motherhood is great but it comes with a staggering level of tedium: Get up, get the kids breakfast, pack lunches, wrangle children into school uniforms, drop kids at school, home to do housework or off to work, school pick-up, dinner, stories, bed and bring on wine o'clock! We do this day in, day out. Forever," Ms Moore, who also writes a blog Moore4Mums.com, said.
"Then along comes super-rich Christian Grey. He could sweep us off our feet and solve all our problems. He's rich - no more mortgage woes. He's handsome, he's witty, clever and, at times, romantic. He's a knight in sexy armour. The complete package."
What's for dessert?
COMMENT by Jackie Sinnerton
Last week I grabbed a copy of Fifty Shades of Grey. Not an e-copy, I walked into Big W, paid my money and brazenly smiled at the cashier. I'm too old to blush.
The book took me back to when I was a 10-year-old looking up dirty words in the dictionary.
I'd heard that busy mums like me are addicted to the E.L. James saucy trilogy ... mid-life wives in need of a giddy-up.
Word had it that the first book explored the world of BDSM. What? I googled and found that meant bondage, domination, sadism and masochism. Who knew?
I did what all lazy book-skimmers do and my eye glanced through the pages, waiting for the rude bits to jump out and, by God, they did. Forget making the kids' lunches, I sacrificed my family's wellbeing in the name of research and read the book from cover to cover.
Mummy porn? I'm not sure. I'm not an aficionado of erotica. But Fifty Shades of Grey has the key ingredient for soccer mums everywhere ... escapism.
Tongue-in-cheek were the words that popped to mind - no, not in a dirty way. I suspect the 40-something mother of boys who wrote these successful works of fiction was well aware they were nothing more than outrageous fantasy. A place of escape, to block out the cries of "What's for dinner?"