Sunday, July 8, 2012

Fifty Shades of You Know What

     Why am I writing about Fifty Shades of Grey?  Because everyone else is, which I suspect is why everyone is reading this book.  We all want to be in the know, to be a little naughty at times.  I don't begrudge the author her success.  More power to any writer who can attract so many readers.  As a former librarian, would I have purchased this book for my library?  Yes, but based on demand for it, not from the reviews.  Would I withdraw it if some patrons protested?  No, because others want to read it and should not be censored.

     As for the book itself, I found the first fifty plus pages to read like a very mediocre romance novel.  One friend admitted she skipped all that and went straight for the goodies, not such a bad idea. Anyhow,the incredibly innocent new college grad, Ana, spends most of this section wondering if billionaire Christian Grey likes her or not, very childish, very high school Twilighty. This book started at Twilight fan fiction, and I do see the resemblance.  Then, she discovers he not only likes her but wants to make her his SM and Bondage submissive.  They negotiate a contract that has sexual acts in it I had to look up.  I guess I am a little innocent myself, but I don't want anybody training my anus!  Anyhow, the "plain vanilla" sex scene is very hot but somewhat ruined by all the Holy Craps and Holy Shits Ana is thinking as Christian takes her virginity.  His Oh Babys somehow don't fit a sophisticated man of the world either.  Then of course, on to kinkier things and his total control of Ana's life.

     The author tries to make Christian more sympathetic by hinting at an abusive childhood and an early introduction into perversion by an older woman, but he still comes across as one sick puppy.  Some worry this book and those that follow will convince young girls this kind of sex is normal.  I will give them credit for being a great deal smarter about sex than Ana and knowing the difference between an abusive relationship and a loving one.  At least, I certainly hope so.  I won't be reading the rest of the series as I have better things to do and read.  I suppose I will have ask someone younger and more into this if Ana brings Christian to the point of enjoying vanilla sex or merely escapes his controling clutches.


  1. Thank you for the education and warning! An old friend mentioned it in passing and here I was stupid enough to think it was for we older folk.I HAD been mildly interested. I think you kind of have to be masochistic to make it through the Twighlight books,(a relative begged me to not make her suffer alone through the first movie alone).Nope, fun is fine and dandy, but when the 'good' parts are BAD,it's not good!

  2. I actually read all the Twilight books - great openings and endings, very long soft middles full of teenage angst. As a librarian I understand their appeal to that age group,but many adults do find them tedious. I once sat next to a woman on a plane struggling to get through the first book and ended up selling her the copy of Goals for A Sinner I had in my purse. It's a quick read, I told her. Anyhow, I did finagle the improbable ending of the Fifty series out of my young pedicurist. She said it was very sweet, and I will take her word for it, though I do think men with tates like Christian Grey rarely change.