google-site-verification: google935433b691795853.html KRISTY BERRIDGE: 2012-07-08

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Book Review: Fifty Shades of Grey by EL James

Where do I even start? Fifty Shades of Grey is like nothing I have ever read before. Yes, I have heard that this is Twilight fan fiction (though I don't know how anyone can really draw parallels between the two), and that it's soft-core porn and in some instances, vulgar and badly written. The only thing I can respond to those statements with is that you didn't read the same book that I did.
Yes, I cannot deny that Fifty Shades of Grey is littered with sexual content. No, I will not deny that some of the acts performed are seriously confronting and outside most comfort zones. But what I will say, is that the writing is the all important vehicle for a platform of choices between a somewhat damaged man and a seemingly innocent woman.
Confused? Let me start at the beginning.
Fifty Shades of Grey is a very cleverly written book focusing solely on the power play between Christian Grey,a self-made multi millionaire with a troubled past, and Anastasia Steele, a doe-eyed college graduate with aspirations in the publishing industry.
As directly scribed by EL James herself, Mr Grey if fifty shades of fucked up. He is possessive, emotionally withdrawn and used to getting exactly what he wants, and what he wants in this instance, is the virginal Anastasia - a conquest not quite ready to submit to the whims of his extensive dark side and the punishment that lack of submission rallies.
At first I hated the character of Christian Grey. I believed him to be depraved and overwhelmingly suffocating. I even abhorred Anastasia's lack of strength in her own resolve, flawed that a pretty face had weakened her own moral code and persuaded her to be treated in such a manner. But then something happened as I continued to read. It occurred to me that the real story was not the need for sexual dominance or submissive behaviour as long drawn out chapters of hasty and often overwhelming confronting acts would have you believe. It wasn't even about winning small victories in word play and contractural arrangements. This book was about two people drawn together by an all consuming passion and a mutual loneliness destined to self-destruct when the wanting of something they so desperately sought in the other, remained unattainable via their own admission of unrealistic expectations.
Yes, I saw something in each of these characters I had not expected the writer to show me - strength in Anastasia and a blossoming of self-awareness that may ultimately make her even more dangerous than Christian Grey. In the dominant, Christian Grey - ultimate submission, that aching desperation for acceptance to be consumed entirely by the love of someone without an agenda.
Fifty Shades of Grey is a novel about self-worth and self-awareness. I found myself opening to it like a flower, drinking in the fifty shades of its undertones and somehow floored by the level of enjoyment I received. I will be picking up the next two novels in this series, though diabolically different from my typical read, I feel I must know how this story ends, and I must understand why I could not book the book down.
I rate this story five fangs purely based on the shock factor, constant revelations, and the surprising undertone of such simple, yet surprisingly complex characters. I was intrigued, appalled and yet ...
Let me know what you think.

Synopsis:
When literature student Anastasia Steele is drafted to interview the successful young entrepreneur Christian Grey for her campus magazine,she finds him attractive, enigmatic and intimidating. Convinced their meeting went badly, she tries to put Grey out of her mind - until he happens to turn up at the out-of-town hardware store where she works part-time.
The unworldly, innocent Ana is shocked to realise she wants this man, and when he warns her to keep her distance, it only makes her more desperate to get close to him. Unable to resist Ana's quiet beauty, wit , and independent spirit, Grey admits that he wants her - but on his own terms.
Shocked yet thrilled by Grey's singular erotic tastes, Ana hesitates. For all the trappings of success - his multinational business, his vast wealth, his loving adopted family - Grey is a man tormented by demons and consumed by the need to control. When the couple embark on a passionate, physical and daring affair, Ana learns more about her own dark desires, as well as the Christian Grey hidden away from public scrutiny.
Can their relationship transcend physical passion? Will Ana find it in herself to submit to the self-indulgent master? And if she does, will she love what she finds?

Kristy :)