IT IS a tough time for any business, but Sharon Tucker has found that in spite of the recession this has been her busiest period in 20 years.
Her business? Adult entertainment. And according to the 40 year-old Southill woman, relationships across Limerick have been given a new lease of life, thanks to the publication of the best-selling trilogy, Fifty Shades of Grey, and its successors.
She has now had to hire extra staff in her store, Thelma & Louise on Shannon Street, to satisfy the public’s appetite to boost their sex lives.
“The book has opened up an awful lot of people’s imaginations. It’s just getting it out of the closet that old Catholic Ireland is gone. Women are more liberated. They’re happy walking in the door here, and it’s a friendly atmosphere.
“We had a woman in last week who is 67 years of age and has been married for 40 years. She said the book is just amazing, after what it has done to her sex life. I had another lady in today and she said ‘I’m appalled. Why wasn’t this around in my youth?’
“Women seem to be dragging in their boyfriends more now, and while they’re uneasy at first, but they soon relax. I’ve had calls from couple afterwards about how the books and the toys in the shop have changed their lives. The book is really doing the business,” she said.
The book has proved to be such a boon for business, that she is now giving away copies of it online, through a competition on their Facebook page, to keep customers coming back for more. Their mail order service has also increased. “We’re ordering more of everything, so it’s having a great effect for everyone. Our wholesalers have said they’ve never been so busy,” she said.
This is her first solo venture, and the store is now two years in business. She hopes to expand to Cork in the near future. Despite a recent dry spell, city booksellers have now had stocks replenished of the book which was previously unavailable to buy for weeks. Libraries in the city and county have also lengthy waiting lists for the book.