You've probably heard that Amazon is selling a pedophile guide called The Pedophile's Guide to Love and Pleasure. Outrage! Know what's really outrageous? Since the story broke this morning, sales of the self-published e-book have shot up by 101,000%.
This afternoon Phillip Greaves, The Pedophile Guide's 42-year-old author, said he'd only sold one copy of his guide to being a child predator. When TechCrunch wrote about the book just six hours ago, it was the 158,221st best-selling Kindle e-books.
But as of this writing, it's catapulted to 146th among all paid Kindle e-books. According to Amazon's "Mover's and Shaker's" board, that's an increase of over 101,000% in less than a day. Even as Mommy bloggers, tech bloggers and Twitter users call for an Amazon boycott over the title, The Pedophile's Guide to Love and Pleasure is selling like it was just announced as an Oprah Book Club selection.
People want to know what the fuss is about. (Or a surprisingly large portion of Kindle owners are pedophiles.) And what they're finding is sort of underwhelming. Sure, The Pedophile's Guide contains creepy instructions about how to use rubber gloves as condoms for little boys. And there's some muddled philosophical defense of pedophelia: "The nectar of love has been given from the hand of compassion and grace." But we can safely say this book will not convince a single regular person to become a child predator. Nor does it include a pull-out map of secret shops where already-existing pedophiles can buy underage sex-slaves or anything.
Are we being played? Greaves seems at turns a complete wacko and a craven entrepreneur, a perverted Tao Lin. He told the Smoking Gun that he was "manic depressive," and claims a drawn-out mental breakdown made him quit his job. But while speaking to ABC News about the near universal condemnation of his book he displayed some uncanny savvy:
"I can see where they would come to that kind of conclusion and to a certain extent I wanted that kind of notoriety to effect the book. ... I wanted it to effect sales," he said.
Let's just be thankful Greaves didn't make a YouTube book trailer.
It seems Amazon has caved after previously saying that remove the guide would amount to "censorship." The Pedophile's Guide has been pulled Whoops, the book is still there! And it's broken into the top 100 best-selling paid Kindle ebooks. As of this writing it's reached #65.
Update 2: Looks like it's gone for real now.
[Image of Greaves via The Smoking Gun.]