Sunday, July 26, 2015

50 Shades of Grey by EL James



I read this book because I wanted to see what all the fuss was about.  The book that started out as fan fiction to the Twilight series.  The Mommy Porn of my generation. I wanted to read it before I watched or attempted to watch the movie - that's my M.O. I always read the book first.  And quite frankly, after I was about two chapters in, I was like "Why the HELL is this so popular?"

The story is told from Anastasia Steele's perspective - known affectionately to her friends as Ana. She's living in Seattle and a senior in college, just about to graduate and is a virgin (of course) who hasn't had any sexual interest in anyone whatsoever - that just doesn't seem right at ALL. Wasn't she a teenager at one point?  I'm pretty certain that teenagers, with their raging hormones, have sexual interest in anything that moves. So yeah, doesn't make sense. She meets Christian Grey, the sexy business owner right away because she has to interview him for the graudation edition of the college newspaper. She's pretty much smitten and intimidate at once - mostly by his intensity and his money. He seems to be somewhat of an enigma as well. She learns after he grooms her by buying her a first edition of one of her favorite books, rescuing her from drunks, showing up at her work and taking her ona helicopter flight that he's into BDSM.

This book was laughable at best and terrible at worst. It is terribly written and utterly and disappointingly predictable.  It perpetuates damaging stereotypes of sexuality and sexual identity in general and about BDSM specifically. The characters are flat and boring and there is NO conflict in the book that is resolved. Really - vanilla v. BDSM?  The prose is robotic and boring. Childish even. There is no room for nuance in this and I felt like either the author herself didn't understand nuance or she thought that I, as her reader, couldn't be counted on to understand nuance and subtlety. It is uniformly predictable and utterly boring.  

Ugh, this book is so not worth your time or money.

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