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Fifty Shames of Earl Grey: A Parody Paperback – 16 Aug 2012


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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press Inc (16 Aug. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0306821990
  • ISBN-13: 978-0306821998
  • Product Dimensions: 1.9 x 14 x 21 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,542,773 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

Paul Bogaards in the New York Times "Erotica is hard... Comedy is harder. If anyone can pull this off, it's Andrew Shaffer." Valerie Frankel, author of Four of a Kind "Nose picking, vagina scarf tricks, and erect space needles. What more can you ask of an erotic novel?" Diana Rodriguez Wallach, author of Adios to All the Drama "[Fanny Merkin is] the Weird Al of erotica." PW Show Daily, 6/6/12"It had to happen: a parody of the bestselling 50 Shades of Grey. And who better to pull it off than author Andrew Shaffer." Publishers Weekly, 7/9/12"Laugh out loud...If you are looking for a funny book to share with friends, look no further...If Austin Powers and Ace Ventura had a love child, it would be Earl Grey." Kirkus Reviews, August 2012"[Shaffer] skewers both E. L. James' Fifty Shades of Grey and Stephanie Meyer's Twilight in his debut novel." Blogcritics.org, 7/28/12"Shaffer persuades his readers to notice the flaws in our current society. He challenges us to question who we are idolizing and what the effects of such adoration could be...Shaffer's writing is fast-paced, fresh, and entertaining...[It] will have you giggling until the conclusion." Bookriot.com, 8/1/12"There is SO MUCH FUNNY!...Folks who read Fifty Shades will recognize that Shaffer's plot loosely follows the same plot that dragged Ana and Christian along, but there's still plenty of fun to be had here if you haven't read that awful novel." The Hollywood Reporter, 8/09/12"Unlike so many Fifty Shades parodies that are no more than quickie one-joke cheap ebooks, Earl Grey is a complete book from a traditional publisher. This is a full-length and thought-out piece of work...[Schaffer] captures the rhythms of the original but exaggerates E.L. James' literary ticks to great effect...Fifty Shames of Earl Grey is the literary equivalent of a good Saturday Night Live skit and the perfect gag gift for anyone a little to obsessed (pro or con) with Fifty Shades." The Daily Beast, 8/09/12"At first glance, some of us might be dumb enough to think Fifty Shames of Earl Grey is just another clone of the original successful series and buy it for that reason alone. Others will howl at the witty ploys Fifty Shames evokes to poke fun at E.L. James's series." Cedar Rapids Gazette, 8/12/12"[Shaffer] steeps the trilogy's signature elements in a boiling pot of wacky water, straining it into a brew that slides warmly down your throat, only to bubble back up in spurts of laughter." Hudson Valley News"Give this one to someone who's read Fifty Shades of Grey." National Post (Canada), 8/11/12"We're giggling as we read Fifty Shames of Earl Grey...It's hackneyed, glib, goofy and LOL ridiculous but even so, like all of Weird Al's shtick, it's still better than the original." New York Post,8/19/12"Shaffer skewers the S&M god of the original." CNBC.com, 8/23/12"The funniest take on a best seller since Harvard Lampoon's Bored of the Rings." VH1.com, 8/24/12"Kind of the perfect beach read for the end of summer and the end of your obsession." Alternative Press, October 2012"An LOL parody of that creepy book your aunts have been tryin' to get your mom to read." Bookviews blog, September 2012"It probably helps if you read James' book, but it doesn't matter because Shaffer's is a madcap piece of fun." Seattle Times, 9/16/12"Perhaps the greatest homage." SheKnows.com,9/18/12"Just what the doctor ordered for fans of the uber-successful trilogy...Laugh-out-loud funny...Such a fun read." Sacramento Book Review, October 2012"Broad enough to appeal to people that have never read Fifty Shades...Funny, but also thoughtful. There is some great social commentary hiding between the words." Portland Book Review, 9/21/12"A ridiculously funny parody...This book may make you laugh until you cry." January, 11/7/12"In a market that seems clotted with mashups and parodies, Fifty Shames of Earl Grey actually exceeds all expectations. This is due entirely to the rapier wit of author Andrew Shaffer...The writing is sharp and seemingly effortless...Shaffer has done a splendid job." Allure,February 2013"Just like the original but intentionally funny."

About the Author

Fanny Merkin (aka Andrew Shaffer) is known for causing trouble via his Twitter alter egos, @evilwylie, @andrewtshaffer, and @EmperorFranzen. He reviews romance, erotica, and women's fiction for RT Book Reviews magazine; his own writing has appeared in many publications including Mental Floss and Maxim. Shaffer is the founder and creative director of Order of St. Nick greeting cards. 50shames.com

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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Lesley (My Keeper Shelf) on 6 Aug. 2012
Format: Paperback
"I'm a Dungeon Master, Anna."
What? My inner guidette screeches to a halt on her hamster wheel. I have no clue what he's talking about.
"What exactly does a Dungeon Master do?"
"I'm into BDSM, " he says.
"Is that a workout thing, like Zumba?"
"No, Anna it's not anything like Zumba. BDSM is a live-action role-playing game: Bards, Dragons, Sorcery and Magick. I play with women in my dungeon and things can get...a little hot."
"Is there no air conditioning in your dungeon?"

As a big fan of the Fifty Shades trilogy I loved the whole lets poke fun at naive Anna, controlling and stalkerish Earl Grey, drunken BFF Kathleen and friend Jin and his My Little Pony fanfic (he's deep into the "brony" scene) as well as the occasional laugh at the expense of the sparkly vampires and the legalities of "reworking" of fan fiction. If you're a fan of the series you will get all the in-jokes and chuckle along and if you hated the series you'll still get all the in jokes and will probably feel a bit superior when you realise how easy it is to take the piss out of the books (and you will probably still chuckle along and maybe roll your eyes a bit- not unlike the original Anna)

My favourite bits:
The constant references to Earl Grey's incredibly long fingers.
Anna's tantalising nose picking habit.
Dim witted Anna's confusion over how elevators work and amazement of buildings that are made of steel.
Earl's buying of Walmart with a touch of his Blackberry so that Anna can take an early break.
Earl's use of his helicopter to transport Anna from Walmart straight across the street to Starbucks.
Earl's love of all things Tom Cruise related.
The gazing gazingly into each others gazing eyes.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Sarah (Feeling Fictional) TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 24 July 2012
Format: Paperback
I'm a huge fan of the Fifty Shades series but as much as I loved the books I also love to hate them - there are so many things about the series that irritate me that I laughed a lot while reading the books. So of course as soon as I heard about the parody Fifty Shames of Earl Grey by Fanny Merkin (aka Andrew Shaffer) I wanted to read it. The author has certainly put his own unique twist on the story that we are all now so familiar with and he does a great job of highlighting the things I found ridiculous about the original books. I love the way he has also managed to blend in some jokes about the Twilight series considering this is a parody of a story that started out as Twilight fan fiction.

I think anyone who loved the series will find themselves amused by Fifty Shames of Earl Grey, especially if you are open enough to accept the problems with the original books. Anyone who hated the books will probably adore this though as it will point out all of the things you didn't like about the book in the first place but in a much more humorous way. I don't recommend reading this unless you've read at least the first Fifty Shades book though as I don't think a lot of the jokes would make as much sense if you're not familiar with the characters and storyline.

I don't think I've ever come across an explanation for BDSM that made me laugh as much as this one did:
"I'm a Dungeon Master, Anna."
What? My inner guidette screeches to a halt on her hamster wheel. I have no clue what he's talking about. "What exactly does a Dungeon Master do?"
"I'm into BDSM," he says.
"Is that a workout thing, like Zumba?"
"No, Anna, it's not anything like Zumba. BDSM is a live-action role-playing game: Bards, Dragons, Sorcery and Magick.
Read more ›
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Cookie's Princess on 21 Mar. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I laughed so much I was crying could not see to read.. this book has to be read.... It is Brilliant if like me you thought 50 shades was over rated this manages to make fun of all the right bits! ...Move over Christian Grey there is a new kid on the block... make way for Earl Grey..
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By AislingSiobhan on 19 May 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
So much better than the actual series of books. Bought this for a friend for a laugh, and was surprised by the fact that as satirical and badly written as this one was it was still more enjoyable and amusing than the 50 Shades of S***. Maybe because it was intended to be, this time.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book is so hilarious. I was reading it at night in bed and just couldn't hold my laughter. 'My heart pounded and pumps blood into my organs because that's what hearts do.' pissed myself haha MUST BUY!
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By J. Farr on 3 Nov. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Not much better written than the original, the style is very disjointed. But it was much funnier. There were places where I laughed out loud.
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By Amberrosia on 9 Oct. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book made me regret reading the original a little less.i would highly recommend reading this boom to anyone who has read Fifty Shades Of Grey and wishes they didn't. This book makes it worth it.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Fifty Shames Of Earl Grey is a lot like the crime against literature it is taking the piss out of, with the same story outline (older control freak with way too many problems wants to possess simple-minded virgin) and the same character set up (older control freak, simple-minded virgin, best friend that only exists to fill up page time, friend-zoned childhood pal etc.) But this version of the story is much more entertaining, the descriptions were so over the top exaggerated that it put me in mind of a Naked Gun film, and I really liked it. It was a quick and easy read and I giggled all the way through it. Believe me, you haven't lived until you've been tambourined by Earl Grey for stealing mead.
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