Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
God, this book was emotionally exhausting to read.
I had so many issues with this book, and yet I could not stop reading it. I likened it to a bad car accident on the side of the road that you know you shouldn't look at...but you just can't help yourself. And yet, with all the problems I have with FSOG, I still ended up giving this a 4 1/2 star rating. I know that sounds insane, but i will do my best to explain how I ended up doing so.
Let's start off with what I didn't like about the book.
First and foremost - Anastasia. In a word, her character was insufferable. I understand that she was intended to be a very wide-eyed, innocent girl who is overwhelmed by both Christian and his lifestyle. But, instead of innocent she came off as just plain childish and bratty. I have a very hard time taking a character seriously who is unable to refer to her own body parts as something other than 'down there.' Also, her mood swings were unbelievable. One minute she is gushing about how much she cares about Christian, and how he makes her feel special, and that his 'kinky ways' were hot...and the next she's whining that he frightens her, he's a stalker and a deviant, and she needs to run to the hills to get away from him.
Being that the POV is from Ana's perspective, there is much focus on her struggle to understand why CG wants to "hurt" her. And while I get that his lifestyle was overwhelming, he did warn her in the beginning that she probably couldn't handle what he wanted from her. And the fact that she continually changed her mind about entering into the Dom/sub relationship, only ended up hurting Christian, and f'ing him up even more than he already was.
Other issues that bugged me:
* A lot of repetition. Be it the mantra of 'Don't bite your lip.' or Ana's constant 'Oh my'. By the end of the book I had learned to ignore them, but still...it was annoying.
* We all know by now that this started out as a Twilight fanfic. Which is fine, but sometimes the similarities were just glaringly obvious (Ana being so clumsy, CG being indescribably beautiful, the Washington/Seattle setting...some of the situations, even some of the dialogue was close to what was said in Twilight)
Having said all that...
In all my years of being a voracious reader, I can not remember the last time I devoured a book with as much intensity as I did Fifty Shades Of Grey. And then there is the fact that I absolutely adored Christian. As f'ed up as he was...he was still an amazing, and very captivating character.
Some readers have claimed that there were far too many sex scenes in this book. My reaction to that is, "Are you kidding me?" The whole reason most people are reading this book is for the sex, so don't try and get all prudish while reading a book about an admittedly watered down version of a BDSM relationship. :P
It might make no sense to anyone else...heck I'm still confused by how much enjoyment i got out of this book, despite the long list of problems I had with it.
I guess I can call Fifty Shades of Grey a guilty pleasure. And while I will no doubt be wanting to throttle Ana in the remaining two books, I still plan on diving into them with earnest.
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