NSFW Warning – If you’re offended by the f-bomb, I must warn you that this article will contain it, as it is part of the title and verses of the subject matter.
A book that began as a viral PDF on the internet was finally published yesterday, giving families everywhere the opportunity to own a hard copy for their children’s library. “Go the Fuck to Sleep,” by Adam Mansbach is a children’s book for adults. Advertised as the “secret anthem of tired parents everywhere,” the book itself lives up to all expectations.
Last year, a PDF of the book leaked online and advance orders began coming in at a rapid pace. Before U.S. publication yesterday, the book had already amassed 100,000 advance sales and will soon have over 400,000 copies in print after its fifth printing.
The book is currently #1 on Amazon.
Of course, the book has drawn controversy from some who clearly don’t get the joke. A group called Family First has asked booksellers in New Zealand not to stock the book, and some groups in the States are also upset about it. Family first has said –
While in an adult context, the book may be harmless and even amusing, we have grave concerns about its effect on aggressive and dysfunctional parents, and also on children who are attracted to the book. Because the book looks like a children’s story, it could easily be mistaken by children as being for them. Some parents may even foolishly read it to their children. As well as that, the offensive language and the tone of the conversation is also concerning. Verbal abuse is a huge concern and can be very damaging to both children and adults.
But that hasn’t stopped the book from becoming an enormous hit, and here’s the best part – its audiobook has been narrated by Samuel L. Jackson. Available on audible.com, an Amazon affiliate, for free, it features one of the best ever purveyors of the word “fuck” in top form.
All the kids from day care are in dreamland
The froggie has made his last leap
Hell no, you can’t go to the bathroom
You know where you can go? The fuck to sleep.
Beautiful. This is bound to go viral, and fast.
Update: YouTube took down the full reading due to a copyright claim from audible.com, so here is a clip of it.
If you want to actually see Jackson read a few verses, the AV Club has it.
And then there’s this – something that makes my heart leap. The great filmmaker Werner Herzog has also given us his interpretation of the book. As part of the “Live From the New York Public Library” event, Herzog read the story to delighted audiences last night. Audio from the event has been posted on YouTube. It’s a delight.