Plenty of attention has already been paid to the runaway success of E L James' erotic 50 Shades trilogy, but the phenomenon goes well past all 180 copies in the Broward County library system being checked out -- the scandalous series anchored by Fifty Shades of Grey is also helping the Fort Lauderdale Hustler Hollywood store sell kinky accessories.
"SEX LUST LOVE BONDAGE," reads a display at the entrance of the store. "You only need one hand to hold this book."
The display promises to help you "live out your Fifty Shades of Grey fantasy" and features Hustler-brand merch linked to the books, which sold 10 million copies in their first six weeks on shelves. A manager says sales of all the Fifty Shades-themed items are up, with one notable outlier:
"The Ben Wa balls are selling like hotcakes," he said. "Anything to do with Ben Wa balls."
If you are unfamiliar with Ben Wa balls, this blog cannot be of too much help aside from telling you the invention is hundreds of years old and is designed for internal use.
Also in the display are "dare devil balls," "heart smackers," "flirty floggers," and "fetish fantasy cuffs."
GoodReads.com found Florida to be one of the top states for Fifty Shades sales, though librarygoers up in Brevard County missed out on the Twilight fan-fiction fun when their libraries yanked (heh) the Fifty Shades books off of shelves after officials decided they were too spicy to be... uh... looked at by people.
"We have criteria that we use, and in this case we view this as pornographic material," Brevard County rep Don Walker told the New York Times last month.
They've since backed down, with another spokeswoman saying, confusingly, that "we have always stood against censorship."
...what are you waiting for? Get to it.