EL James on ‘unexpected success’ of Fifty Shades as Freed is published

·2-min read

Fifty Shades author EL James has said the success of her novels was “totally unexpected”.

The author of Fifty Shades Of Grey said she hopes the final part of the Fifty Shades trilogy As Told By Christian, titled Freed, will continue the “thrilling, wild ride” for readers.

The new story, which is published by Penguin Random House UK on June 1, concludes the books from the perspective of Christian Grey, following previous titles Grey and Darker.

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James said: “My main ambition when I signed with Penguin Random House back in the day, was to see my books in high street shops. I had no idea they would be so successful – it was totally unexpected.

“It’s been a thrilling, wild ride ever since, and I hope Freed will continue that thrilling, wild ride for lovers of Fifty Shades.”

Freed will see Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele tie the knot and face the challenges of marriage together.

According to the publishers, “Ana’s defiant spirit continues to stir Christian’s darkest fears and tests his need for control” while “old rivalries and resentments endanger them both”.

James wrote the trilogy of parallel novels as a retelling of the events of her original Fifty Shades trilogy, with the intention of giving readers an insight into Grey’s thoughts and feelings.

Selina Walker, publisher at Penguin Random House UK, said: “The Fifty Shades Of Grey phenomenon is one of the most extraordinary experiences of my publishing career. The sheer speed of sales was simply breath-taking – at one point UK printers ran out of the silver ink used on the cover! I feel privileged to have been a part of it.”

Fifty Shades Darker European Premiere – London
Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan arriving for the Fifty Shades Darker European Premiere held at Odeon Leicester Square, London (PA)

The film adaptations of James’s steamy books, starring Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan, have made more than a billion dollars at the box office.

James’s books have sold more than 150 million copies and publishers said in 2019 that Fifty Shades Of Grey, the first in the trilogy, was the best-selling book in the UK since records began.

She published The Mister, her first new novel since the erotic publishing phenomenon of Fifty Shades, in 2019.

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