Question of the week: which book would you give the 50 Shades of Grey treatment?

Northanger Abbey

So, if you’ve been living under a rock for a while, you won’t have heard about 50 Shades of Grey, in which a former Twilight fan fiction writer decides to make explicit the implicit subtext of Twilight by writing a BDSM book featuring, ahem, a lot of restraint – but absolutely no copyright-infringing characters from Stephanie Meyer’s original works. I’m assuming you don’t live under a rock though, otherwise your internet access would be rubbish and you wouldn’t be reading this, so I guess this is all old news to you.

What might be news is that copyright doesn’t last forever and an enterprising publisher – Total-E-Bound Publishing (no, really) – has decided to follow the path trod by EL James by taking classic works and characters from out-of-copyright fiction (Jane Eyre, Pride and Prejudice, Sherlock Holmes, et al) and filling them with sex scenes as part of its ‘Clandestine Classics‘ range. The first of the ebooks are due to be released on Sunday, so you too can read about Catherine Earnshaw and Heathcliff’s bondage sessions or how Holmes takes care of Watson’s sexual needs, in the comfort of your own Kindle while you’re on holiday. No one need know.

But today’s question is therefore the simple but limitless:

Which work of fiction, classic or otherwise, do you think should get a 50 Shades make-over and why? Or do you think it’s all a bit silly and/or distasteful?

Answers below or on your own blog, please?

  • I live under a rock, but a fairly porous one. The wife is reading this nonsense and I had no idea it had anything to do with Twilight, but then I have no interest in populist women's fiction nor children's books.

  • Lisa Rullsenberg

    I think inserting new stuff like this is… well, pretty hopeless really. It makes 'Price and Prejudice with Zombies' seem like a subtle idea. Silly, distasteful and probably badly written.

    I guess, it COULD work on some of the less brilliant 'classics' (the really boring ones) but then, would we really care? And TBH I can't even think of any I'd condone this sort of shading on…

  • Clown Hammer

    Upton Sinclair's The Jungle. Because you can never have enough meatpacking in a book about the meatpacking industry.

  • Toby O'Brien

    Milne's “Winnie The Pooh” series. Let's see how nasty Piglet can get.

  • Toby O'Brien

    Milne's “Winnie The Pooh” series. Let's see how nasty Piglet can get.

  • Toby O'Brien

    Milne's “Winnie The Pooh” series. Let's see how nasty Piglet can get.