A manuscript of EL James’s latest Fifty Shades novel has been stolen, according to its publisher.
Police have launched an investigation after Random House discovered that a copy of Grey had gone missing on Tuesday.
It is feared thieves may leak the novel, or sell extracts to the media.
The book, which re-tells the first instalment of the hit trilogy from billionaire Christian Grey’s point of view, is due to be released next week.
Random House and solicitors for the publisher would not give any other information about the missing book.
“We have no comment to make due to an ongoing police investigation,” a spokesman said.
The Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy has sold more than 125 million copies worldwide since the first book’s release in 2011.
When announcing the release of Grey last week, James said she wrote the new book after “thousands of readers” had written to her requesting to hear Christian’s point of view.
“Christian is a complex character and readers have always been fascinated by his desires and motivations, and his troubled past,” she said.
“Also, as anyone who has ever been in a relationship knows, there are two sides to every story.”
Grey will be published on 18 June – Christian Grey’s birthday.