***Disclaimer if you like Fifty Shades of Grey you probably shouldn’t read this***
As I said in my Keep It Fresh Award: “I love Neil Gaiman; I hate Fifty Shades of Grey”. Not that the fact that I love Neil Gaiman is relevant (but it does kind of soften the blow a little). It’s just a bit of a heads up cos I’m gonna go into full-blown rant mode. Because this book seriously sucks.
There was no plot, the characters were garbage and the sex scenes were nothing like what was promised! Ok, I take some of that back- there was something of a plot, and it revolved round Christian Gray being a creepy stalker. And fairly abusive. So I guess that also proves he has a character- even though that character is a total freak. And on some level Ana does have a personality. She has the personality of a weirdo that needs a rich billionaire to make her realise that she is actually a woman with a sexuality. Oh, and she’s also someone who seems to be doing ok with her life, has her sh*t together, but somehow has never got round to buying a laptop for Uni- err what?!? How did she manage that? (incidentally, if my flatmate had constantly been asking to borrow my laptop every time they needed to do an essay, I’d have told them where to go aka THE LIBRARY).Luckily Ana has all that lip biting to make her character well-rounded. *Bangs head against the wall*. You know- because sexy-lip-biting is totally a thing *heavy sarcasm*. Give me a break. It honestly just makes me wonder about how much lip balm she probably needs (seriously my mind wandered to this while I was reading- that’s how bored I was).
We get to watch Ana’s journey of self-discovery, with all the exciting scenes we enjoyed from twilight- like doing household chores… and reading contracts. I thought the parts in Twilight when Bella did her laundry were dull- but E.L. James takes dull to a whole other level. She includes grocery shopping and working in a hardware store as part of a book about sex. What, are we supposed to be turned on by that weird scene where Christian stalks Ana at her place of work, and asks her about ropes? Oh, c’mon! Is that supposed to be sexy??? It’s just a mixture of weird and mundane.
And no, I didn’t put a spoiler warning on, because there’s no way you can be spoiled for this book. Because nothing happens. It’s just two strangers making awkward small talk and having “kinky sex”- and not very often considering this is supposed to be a raunchy book. And when they do eventually get round to it, it’s actually quite off-putting. Because to be honest, it was either extremely awkward or bordering on rapey. Which I suppose is fine if that floats your boat.
Not that I think it was really written as a rape fantasy- which just put a huge question mark over *the whole thing*. In a way, (oh my goodness I can’t believe I’m getting into an in-depth analysis of this) rape fantasies work because they’ve got the whole “I shouldn’t want this, but I do” thing going on. But this was just uncomfortable. Because there was nothing sexy about when she was being pressured into doing things she didn’t want to do. Or when she actively was not enjoying it. It just made me wonder if it was actually consensual and if it counted as sexual coercion- which is not what I want to be thinking about when I’m reading a book like this. Seriously, if you want to read better erotica, you really don’t have to look far- the internet is free and google is easy to use :p
Besides, “oh my” and “holy cow” doesn’t really do it for me- and it shouldn’t do it for anyone! Also what is with the weird 90s “baby” and the fact that she hasn’t figured out how to do anything other than email on her laptop. Oh wait, I forgot- she didn’t have a laptop till her “saviour” Christian Grey came in and bought her one. But seriously- the writing is truly dismal. “My inner goddess is doing the samba”??!!? Who writes like that?
So yeah, this book left me completely cold. Not that any of this is new- people (and me in real life) have been ranting about this book for years. But at least now I’ve made my feelings clear.
As for the rating- what rating could I possibly give this- nope, no bananas for this book! It doesn’t deserve any! Maybe a banana peel thrown at E. L. Jame’s head though!