Newest Review: ... sex or no sec, but its execution is poor. Maybe it has since been corrected, but my first edition copy had several spelling and grammar ... more
Fifty shades of Grey
Fifty Shades of Grey - E L James
Member Name: louisechackett
Fifty Shades of Grey - E L James
Advantages: great characters, makes you feel like you could be them, easy to read, filthy in parts
Disadvantages: The sex may be too much for some
One night I get a message on my Blackberry from one of my friends that says "You like reading right?" to which I reply "Yes....." wondering where this is all going and she informs me that she has been reading a book which she thinks I will like but it is a bit "mucky" (her words not mine!) She went on to tell me that the author had apparently taken some inspiration from Twilight which I adore and so I took the plunge and bought fifty shades of grey by EL James. I have to say I hadn't heard much about the book until my friend mentioned it but having looked online I have seen that in some places there have been talk of it being banned and it has certainly been marketed as a bit of filth. I have to say from the onset that yes whilst there is sex in this book in my opinion it isn't over the top and there is a whole lot more to the book than just sex as it has excellent characters who I found myself caring about.
The book tells the story of literature student Anastasia Steele as she interviews young entrepreneur and millionaire Christian Grey and the attraction that is clear between them from the very start. Being rather innocent Ana doesn't believe that this gorgeous, sexy and somewhat intimidating man could be interested in her at all but it turns out that she has got very much under the skin of Christian. Christian has some demons which pretty much seem to consume him and he has a deep need to control and this spills over very much in to his sex life to which he introduces Ana.
From the onset with this book I have to say that I was completely hooked and I actually read the 514 pages in less than a week in total as I just wanted to get to bed each night and have my fix of fifty shades. The book is very easy to read and so it doesn't becoming a chore to read or anything and it is so very detailed that you can almost feel like a character yourself or imagine yourself as one of them at the very least. There are twenty six chapters in the book and these vary in length really but each one had me gripped for the most part. There was one chapter which focuses on a contract with rules in which Christian would like Anastasia to sign and follow as she becomes his submissive and this was all a little bit much for me to read as it was a bit boring for me if I am honest but this was just one small part of the book. The text flows easily and I would find myself thinking just one more chapter each night and would end up reading on and on until I literally needed to shut my eyes and sleep.
Whilst the book is centred around a deal in which Christian would like to make with Ana about him becoming her dominant and her his submissive there is a whole lot more to the story than just sex and this is why it gripped me I think. As we go through the book we see Ana's hope that Christian may just want a "normal" relationship, we see how confused she gets by his ever changing moods and her struggle to understand him. I would like to see things from Christian's point of view too I think and how he feels at certain times but I suppose this just adds to the attraction to the mysterious Mr Grey.
Anastasia Steele is a likeable character and I am sure most women could see part of themselves in her as she is completely in awe of this man whom she is clearly smitten by but whom she also thinks she isn't good enough for. I am sure all women have felt that at some point in their lives and so it immediately allows you to understand and go through the emotions that Ana goes through in the book. As Ana is inexperienced sexually we get to see her learn with Christian and it is not all about the S&M with him, in fact the bulk of the sexual activity in the book isn't actually centred around that at all.
Christian Grey is a hard character to explain I have found simply because I want a man like Christian in my life! Despite all of his issues which are touched upon briefly in this book and I believe will be developed more in the following two books we learn that Christian has had a troubled past and finds it hard to be loved himself. Even though he has very specific sexual desires we see real touches of a gentle and soft Christian and it makes you really warm to this man. Having spoken to my friend, looked on twitter and such like there is a resounding "yes please" when people are asked would they like to sleep with Christian despite knowing all his issues and I have to say I tend to agree!
I love reading the little emails which are sent between Ana and Christian as they add some small bits of humour in to the story line which can often be serious and dark. Ana finds it easier to talk to Christian openly via email and again I think this is something I kind of empathised with as a woman who has perhaps been so scared to lose someone that you don't want to always say what you think on the spot. The way in which Ana and Christian often refer to each other as Miss Steele or Mr Grey almost makes me long for a boyfriend who would do the same in all honesty! It is weird how this book has really got under my skin but it is a good thing as well I think as I prefer to really experience a book than just read one and not be blown away. This kept my interest and left me wanting more.
As my friend had told me that the book did contain some S&M and such like I was a bit unsure as to whether it would be my kind of thing at all and I have since tried to explain it to other people who look at me as though I am mad when I say that I want a Christian Grey in my life but there is so much more to Christian than the need to dominate a woman and to be honest even in the scenes in which he is being dominant and Ana is being submissive it is done in a way which isn't over the top at all and still seems to come across as being incredibly sexy. The sex scenes in the book are very detailed and so you would need to be aware of this before you read I think and I have to say I couldn't sit at work or on a train or something and read this book because in parts I was visibly squirming because the author has done an excellent job of making you believe that you have once been in Ana's situation I suppose. I liked reading about how Christian showed Ana how things were done and how he referred to this as "vanilla sex" which is just your bog standard, basic stuff I suppose! The term has certainly stuck with me and I know it has with my friend too and there is another term "laters baby" which I will now always associate with this book too.
I ordered books two and three of this trilogy when I was half way through fifty shades of grey and I have to say I am so glad that I did this because as soon as I finished book one I needed to read book two. Whilst I was aware that there had to be some form of resolution following Ana and Christian going their separate ways I have to say I genuinely felt Ana's pain in that moment and credit to the author for having the power to make her audience feel that way. From what I have read online there is talk of making the book in to a film and I only hope that if they do they manage to do the book justice. You can pick up the books from amazon for just £3.99 each including free super saver delivery and I would certainly recommend it.
Thank you for reading my review!
Summary: A book which totally gripped me and left me wanting more