Dozens of book fans started lining up as early as midnight outside Barnes & Noble at the Galleria in Edina to get a wristband for Thursday evening's Fifty Shades of Grey book signing.
Author E.L. James will be signing copies of her hit book starting at 7 p.m., but fans will need a wristband to get in. At 9 a.m., organizers began handing those out to throngs of excited readers.
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Women from across the Midwest flocked for the chance to meet the author.
"We're from Fargo. We drove about three and a half hours, and we just had to," explained Larayne Longtine.
More than 100 fans were waiting to pick up the wristbands by the time the doors opened, and the will get right back in line later on Thursday night. James will sign books for two hours, but there is no guarantee everyone will get to meet her. She'll sign up to three things.
The Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy has been dubbed "mommy porn" by some, but for others, it has been liberating. Billionaire Christian Grey's kinky adventures with his young girlfriend, Anastasia Steele, have opened up a number of topics many women previously considered taboo -- but that doesn't mean all fans are willing to fess up to their affection for the adult lit to just anyone.
"I'm not ashamed to say I read it," Kelly Lamke explained. "I don't discuss it with people who probably aren't into it."
Lamke and another fan drove in from St. Cloud, but they told their children they were traveling to a work seminar instead of a book signing.
Despite its rising popularity, a handful of libraries have banned the novel due to its erotic nature. That hasn't prevented women from grabbing the book off of store shelves and beginning book clubs to discuss sex and how to better couples' lives in bed.
The female phenomenon of "50 Shades of Grey" (MyFoxBoston.com)
In fact, that may be the secret to the book's success. According to fans of the series, the books have re-ignited the love lives of millions of couples.
"Get the book and read it. It'll help you, I guarantee it," said Deann Michels, of Hazelton, Iowa.
50 Shades of Grey: The pros and cons of the top-selling book
Fifty Shades of Grey is at the top of most women's book list these days, but along with the good comes some bad. Adrienne C. Laursen, LMFT, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and owner of The Engagement Coach, discusses the pros and cons of being swept away by Mr. Christian Grey.
Read more: 50 Shades of Grey, pros and cons