Employees of some bookstores have to be alerted that Fifty Shades of Grey by E L James and Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys have nothing to do with each other. James’ kinky erotica novel is the biggest publishing phenomenon of 2012. Between Shades of Gray is a phenomenon in its own right, landing on several 2011 year-end best lists, and even more impressively, getting teens to read about genocide in Baltic countries at the hands of Stalin’s regime.
Both James and Sepetys are currently on book tour. James is attracting huge crowds of people who want to hear her read from her spicy trilogy. Sepetys is drawing crowds interested in her YA novel about a young Lithuanian girl’s unspeakable struggles — but she’s also getting confused Fifty Shades of Grey fans who show up at her appearances by mistake. “The subject has come up at every high school and every bookstore I’ve been to,” Sepetys says with a laugh. However, she counts the title confusion as a positive. Many of the E L James fans who wander into her readings — most of them men, she notes — stick around and end up learning something. You can read more about the funny mix-ups in the current issue of EW, and you can read more about Ruta Sepetys’ novel below: READ FULL STORY