Book Review: Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L James

Book 1 of FIFTY SHADES Trilogy.

I am going to start this review with a WARNING.
This is a very adult book and one that is aimed over 18’s.
This review does NOT CONTAIN adult material and you have been warned.

*SUMMARY from Goodreads:

When literature student Anastacia 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 when she works part-time.

The unworldly, innocent Ana is shocked to realize 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 resists Ana’s quiet beauty, wit, and independent spirit, Grey admits he wants her – but on his own terms.

Shocked yet thrilled by Grey’s singular erotic tastes, Ana hesitates. For all the trapping success – his multinational businesses, his vast wealth, his loving adoptive family – Grey is a man tormented by demons and consumed by the need to control. When the couple embarks on a passionate, physical, and daring affair, Ana learns more about her own dark desires, as well as 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 still love what she finds? Erotic, amusing, and deeply moving, the Fifty Shades Trilogy is a tale that will obsess you, possess you, and stay with you forever.


As for one of my recent reads (more reviews coming soon, of course!) :) It’s the book on everyone’s lips, a book that I think has been making the rounds so much, everyone is sick of it, regardless of whether they’ve read it or not. Never one resist the hype of good read, or rather the claim of “Mommy Porn,” it’s Fifty Shades of Grey. (And if you’ve read the book, that last word will surely have another layer of meaning for you.) So, I’m guessing that you’ve heard of a little book called Fifty Shades of Grey that’s rocketed it’s way to the top of all best seller lists everywhere, and doing so in record time. With more than 1.2 million copies soled every week and a movie in the works, the Fifty Shades phenomenon shows no sign of flagging.

And yes, I did read it. Actually I finished reading all the three books in E.L James Trilogy. How did it come about that I would decide to read this book that is sooooo far out of my comfort zone, you may ask? Look, don’t judge me!! Curiosity. I wanted to know what all the hype was about. So, I have to admit that I went into reading this book with a VERY OPEN MIND. This was mainly due to knowing what the subject matter was and hearing so much about this book along with an equal mix of good and bad reviews. Some people passionately hated this book and others thoroughly enjoyed it. Well, I actually am one of those that enjoyed it.

My iBooks: Fifty Shades Trilogy

Every time I walked in a bookstore, Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L James is quite often a book I first see on display. In many of the stores I’ve been in to, it has been the top seller at that location and when you’re ready  to purchase a copy it’s always been out of stock. I was intrigued by the fact that it was popular in store and talked about everywhere online. However, at first I was really reluctant to grab a copy of the book, since there are a number of mixed reviews. One of my best friends found an e-book copy online, so she sent it to me, and I ended up reading it on iBooks, which I usually hate doing, but I’m getting used to it. :P

What makes the book a best seller? My only guess is that it deals with topics that people can relate to: love, lust, jealousy, and broken families. I’m sure, there’s more! Innocence? Wealth? Control? Yeah, those are there, too!

E.L James Fifty Shades of Grey, anticipating an entertaining page-turner, a modern-day love affair. Having no further background in the porno reference, I was stunned-shocked-at what waited in the pages before me. Not because of the explicit sex scenes, but rather the terribly underdeveloped characters and story line – this novel send to all about the value of love within a relationship.

Now, there are even talks of a movie deal with Ian Somerhalder expressing interest, Matt Bommer or Channing Tatum offering themselves to play the role (Yes, please!! :P). By now, I’m sure you know that Fifty shades is based on Twilight fan fiction, there are some parallels between both books.

Please STOP if you don’t want anything about the plot revealed. SPOILER ALERT!!!!

The novel opens with protagonists, Anastacia Steele, stepping in for her BFF Katherine Kavanaugh, to interview a wealthy and powerful “multi-billionaire” Christian Grey, for an article for the school newspaper. Ana and Kate are both graduating in a few weeks and Christian Grey is scheduled to deliver the commencement address. Ana shows up for the interview and the picture of young woman completely unsure of herself, uncomfortable on her own skin, is painted. Clumsy and naive, Ana literally face into Grey’s office. He is amused and gives a stare that makes her “flush-crimson” – which she will literally do many times in the book. Grey seems to be intrigued with Miss Steele. Their interaction doesn’t stop there. Kate insists that Mr. Grey meet them for a photo shoot for the article, after the shoot Grey asks her to join him for coffee. This is when we start to get a glimpse into the background of both characters.

At only 27 years old, Grey is portrayed as someone well beyond his years. A perpetually-single, unattainable, billionaire playboy with both a helicopter and private jet. Ana is everything like the Twilight heroin Bella Swan – painfully aware of her shortcomings, put together as very immature, inexperienced girl and a woman with a thesaurus vocabulary and a moderately smart mouth. Eventually, warnings about his dark secrets, Christian Grey tells Ana who he really is – a sexual deviant who likes to dominate his women into submission-literally. Required to sign a contract, that locks her into a set of rules. And then it’s time for big reveal! The plot thickens. 

Moving on.

The first main character, CHRISTIAN GREY, has had a hard start to life and this has in turn made him into a very controlling and egotistical man human being. He’s never let a person into his life and has always been the one who set the rules. I found Christian’s character just captivating and sweet. You can’t help but be affected by him and his strong personality and confidence. That is until you realize that he is actually a needy boy who is scared of being rejected and alone. 

This fan made stuff!! This is NOT REAL!! :)

The other main character, ANASTACIA STEELE, is an innocent and timid girl who gets completely overwhelmed when she meets Christian. He is totally out of her league but she finds herself drawn to him in a way she has never felt with another man before. I got a bit annoyed with Ana’s character but I think it was just because of repetitive writing and the way some conversations were structured. And a lot of talks about her ‘subconscious’ and ‘inner goddess’.

In the latter part, the relationship of the two grows stronger, but more confusing. Ana becomes a bit more believable as James gets her stride in character development and it turns out the Christian has a bit of soul. I’m not ashamed that I really liked it and as with the Twilight, I quickly devoured all three books in a matter of days. James sex scenes are not incidental , they are the meat of the plot, the crux of conflict, the key to the both characters. It is a book with a more sex on it.

First, let me get the “bad” out of the way. Could it be that there was an actual STORY there? Well, dear readers, yes there is. Besides all the hype about the erotica, there is a story, there is a romance and there is a character development. There’s even a little humor thrown in for good measure with  the flirty email exchanges and the addition of Ana’s Inner Goddess who acts out every now and then. I’m not going to say that book was perfect — there were some overused words and repetition of adjectives and I got a bit sick of seeing same lines and expressions all the time but I didn’t let that interfere with my enjoyment of the story.

Let me discuss the “good” part of the book. With the stresses of every day life, I was quite happy to be able to pick up a book without having to think too much and just sit back and enjoy. Fifty Shades of Grey is definitely not a scholarly read. It was entertaining enough to keep me interested to the end. The story goes like this: clumsy, naive, and book-ish coed meets attractive rich man who is so taken with her that he just has to have her. Mix in stubbornness, gift giving, lip biting, gasping and a story is born.

All in all, it is addictive, funny, shocking and sexy. I found myself jumping onto the next book straight away, although there is no cliffhanger it still leaves you wondering what happens next. You will read this book perhaps record time. Take that as you will, but keep in mind that page turner sell, and if that’s anything to go by, it’s one of the factors of this book success. 

Fifty Shades of Grey will not go down in history as one of the classics, but it will be remembered for all the hubbub and steamy parts. Do I recommend it? If you thought Twilight is good and wanted more then yes, you will enjoy Fifty Shades of Grey.

Read it already? Liked it or Hated it? So leave time to read all three at once! Be the Judge!! :)) Here’s the website to know more about the book, updates and the author. 


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