A YouTube reading of the world's most controversial book, by a former Play School presenter, has gone viral: But you could get fined for quoting it
It's the viral children's book for adults that's hitting a chord with some parents but offending others. Since its launch in Australia, even a Play School legend is having fun with it.
For starters, in case you've been sleeping: "Go the F--- to Sleep" is strewn with "F-words" and is about a parent telling their child to, well, go to sleep.
After it soared to the top of bestseller lists, readings of the book went viral. Audios by Samuel L. Jackson and Kevin Pollack have been followed in Australia by former Play School presenter Noni Hazlehurst -- who shot to Internet fame after a YouTube posting.
But be careful –- in spite of calls for the book's banning in Australia being ignored, you could be fined here for reading it aloud.
It started out as a Facebook comment by American author Adam Mansbach, but soon became a fuss. A pre-publication, viral marketing campaign saw pdf versions of the book inundate inboxes. (What's that? Internet piracy is actually good for marketing?)
The 32-page picture book soared up amazon.com's bestseller list a month before its publication. It has since hit the top of The New York Times' bestseller list and the movie rights have already been gobbled up by Fox 2000.
Then Audible Inc., which is marketing the book, snapped up that foul-mouthed screen gangster, Samuel L. Jackson, to read the book –- and offered it this week as a free download. Within a couple of days, 160,000 versions of the book had been downloaded, reports cnn.com.
What's the big deal? This parent's vex is: "A frustrating part about something we love very much," Adam Mansbach told CNN. "(But) a lot of these frustrations are not permissible to talk about. We're not completely honest because we don't want to be bad parents."
The Australian play goes viral
Since its launch in Australia last Monday, former Play School presenter Noni Hazlehurst has given a no-holds-barred rendition of the uncensored bedtime story. Her familiar, warm voice has been heard more than 30,000 times on YouTube since being posted a few days ago.
And the former Play School presenter is making no apologies for her language. "(Parenting) drives us crazy, and sometimes we get scared," she told smh.com.au. She would know: she put her two sons (now 17 and 23) to sleep for many years.
The Family First party has made unsuccessful pleas for the book's ban in Australia and New Zealand.
But say it softly, OK?
The book's Australian release coincides with a new law in Victoria that gives police powers to issue discretionary $240 on-the-spot fines for –- yep, you guessed it –- swearing.
"Fair #$%% dinkum!" roared The Age.
Protesters in Melbourne over the weekend wore T-shirts emblazoned with swear words (but they made sure they didn't say them).
Lucky they weren't talking about the world's most popular book. Or, with 14 "F-words" littering the text, they certainly could be poorer for reading it.