Allow me to tell you about Fifty Shades of Grey.
Yes, I read it, and naturally, I have a few thoughts.
First of all, the story is less than compelling, but I think that’s pretty typical for this kind of book. OK, I guess it’s somewhat compelling–it did hold my interest, and I read the 500+ pages in just a few nights. Essentially, it’s a romance novel, and while I’m sure there are romance novels out there with great story lines, this one’s pretty basic.
Christian Grey, a young, successful, HOT, multi-millionaire with a disturbed past meets and falls for the innocent Anastasia, inviting her to enter into a dominant/submissive relationship with him, which includes a contract and a non-disclosure agreement. Not turn ons for me, but I suppose there are people who like legal documents with their sex.
Anastasia, who’s never had a boyfriend let alone slept with anyone, is so intrigued by Christian that she actually entertains this idea, not really knowing what she’s getting into. Ignoring the fact that neither of the main characters are particularly likeable, it’s just really hard to wrap your head around this scenario. I mean, you’re a virgin and you want to go straight to the sexual Olympics??? Then again, it is essentially porn, and any porn I’ve ever seen isn’t exactly plausible. Like–wait, what? They’re doing what???
So, yeah. This is like that, but in a book.
Let me just say, I felt like something of a sexual anthropologist reading this book. I mean, the whole thing really is fascinating, and I’ll admit, pretty hot.
- The main character, Ana, is a 21 year old college senior who has never had sex or even, ahem, “touched herself.” I find her sexual naivety to be slightly hard to believe, but OK, I guess this is plausible. The thing I don’t understand is how she could be completely inexperienced, only to be deflowered by Mr. Grey and have orgasm after orgasm. I mean, yes, it’s impressive, but not very realistic.
- The book isn’t particularly well-written. I’m no literary critic, but it was clear to me that this was a middle-aged British author trying to write American college-aged characters without researching. I mean, the girls say things like, “I’ll go fetch it,” in conversation. No one here talks like that. At one point, Ana asks Grey not to be cross with her. We don’t speak like that here in the good ol’ US of A. Sorry. So that bugged me.
- In spite of myself, I did like their flirty exchanges and part of me really did want for him to not be so screwed up so they could have a normal relationship. The potential was definitely there, if not for him being a complete lunatic.
- The fact that she wasn’t more disturbed by his need to control her was disturbing to me. At times, his need for control made me nervous for her, and all I could think of was how predatory and abusive he could be. That, coupled with her naivety, did kind of freak me out.
- *SPOILER ALERT* I liked the ending–mostly because she finally told him to get his sh*t together and left. It was realistic, and I liked that she stood up for herself. It was about damn time.
Complaints aside, Fifty Shades kept me up late into the night reading, so I didn’t hate it. In fact, I was incredibly entertained in the same way I am by all things Kardashian. All in all, I liked Fifty Shades–a lot–despite its shortcomings.
Have you read Fifty Shades of Grey?