Review: Fifty Shades of Grey

Recap: A bestselling erotica novel that’s taking the female population by storm, Fifty Shades of Grey is, in fact, all it’s cracked up to be. The first book in the adult trilogy tells the story of Anastasia Steele, a naive, inexperienced college student who falls for a multi-millionaire, uber sexual businessman, Christian Grey. They meet when Ana interviews him for her school paper, as a favor to her roommate. But their unlikely chemistry leads to a dominant-submissive sexual relationship that has the two lusting for each other more and more.

For Ana, the kinky and aggressive sex is both frightening, but exciting. And with nothing else to compare it to, she considers his offer to sign a contract to be his Submissive, or Sub. While part of her feels like a sex slave, another part of her just can’t get enough of Christian Grey, who claims and proves to be fifty shades of [messed] up.

Analysis: When people talk about the book — which is the first in a trilogy about Miss Steele and Mr. Grey — the discussion centers on the kinky sex. The book is flying off the shelves, encouraging middle-aged women and housewives everywhere are starting to get their grooves back. But there’s more depth to the story than just sex.

Like any girl would, Ana falls for Grey. The story becomes less about sex and more about her attempt to “change” Christian and get him to open up. It’s what any girl who’s ever dated or liked a “bad boy” hopes to do. So women are reading this book not just to get in the mood, but to see if Ana is the one to finally turn a bad boy into someone good. Can she do it? If she does, there’s hope for us yet! She’s living every woman’s dream — having crazy sex with an older, gorgeous, playful but mysterious man who also happens to be rich.

The author E.L. James is British and began writing the series as Twilight fan fiction, and the Twilight similarities are evident — the controlling boyfriend, the innocent girlfriend, Ana’s nervousness and tendency to bite her lip like Bella. But just because it began as Twilight fan fiction doesn’t mean it should be a turnoff if you’re not a Twilight fan. If anything, the oddball writing is the book’s biggest flaw. James uses dumb phrases repeatedly, “Oh my!” and dictionary words, like bemusing. (Just say confused!) Also, Ana is a college student and doesn’t own her own laptop. Come on, E.L. James. What college student doesn’t have a computer or an email address?

But the sex, love, and lust are more than enough of a reason to look past the silly writing and get in the mood with this book.

MVP: Christian Grey. So complicated, so mysterious, so desirable. He’s every girl’s dream man, and yet, he’s the absolute worst boyfriend. As much as I hate him, I love him — again, a feeling that every woman has felt at one point or another.

Get Fifty Shades of Grey in paperback for $9.57.

Or on your Kindle for $9.99.

You can also get the whole Fifty Shades trilogy on your Kindle for just $29.99.

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11 Comments

Filed under Reviews

11 responses to “Review: Fifty Shades of Grey

  1. You speak on all the points I’ve of thought of reading this series! There’s a lot of details this author misses, but just to keep reading about Grey is enough for me to go back for more. I’m on the 3rd book now and it’s still delivering.

  2. On the radio in my town, men were calling in to say their wives reading this book gave them the best week of sex of their life. I thought that was hilarious so I may have to try it out. Thanks for your review, it’s done really well.

  3. Tom

    Wow, you sure are going easy on the writing! I know it probably doesn’t matter to most of its intended readership, but the prose here is AWFUL on just about every single level. Grade school level AWFUL.

  4. Sex sells…. I guess James is smart enough to market it, no matter how bad her writing is.

  5. Vicki

    I haven’t finished the book yet and not sure that I will. I am not a prude, but the beatings and mind games annoy me. Ana always saying holy shit, holy crap and holy Moses got on my last damn nerve. How many 21 year old girls say that? Oh my!! LOL

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  9. Charmaine

    Bought 50 shades of Gray on Friday and finished it on Sunday… kept reading the awful literature…. Ana’s ‘Virgin Mary character’ with her silly phrases and 100% orgasm rate was soooo irritating…. but still….. read the crappy 500 pages in one weekend! Oh my, Im confused!

  10. Pingback: Lara’s Top Picks of 2012 | Lara's Book Club

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