Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Fifty Shades by EL James

Fifty Shades by E L James

I’ve finally brought myself to read this controversial trilogy, but after I learned of the lead male character, I’ve come to regret reading it. But because I’ve already started it, might as well end it and write a review on each book. And before I do that I’ll introduce the two main characters and give you a warning about the book or what to expect during the whole course of reading. Anastasia “Ana” Steele (21), from Portland, a freshly college graduate, no boyfriend since birth, loves to read novels, and thinks of herself very ordinarily and there is Christian Grey (27), from Seattle, adopted, a CEO of his own company Grey Enterprises Holdings Inc., he knows a lot of things except cooking, very gentleman yet cold, a control freak, and doesn’t do the girlfriend and love thing, he’s really mysterious.

Warning: In this book, you might need to familiarize yourself with terminologies on reproductive organs or the body itself so you would know where you are going, and methods of having coitus, but there is no need to worry if you feel uncomfortable Google-ing it, the book itself is an eye-opener, more like a modern version of Kama sutra with a twist of a story. And another one, if you decided to read the book, you’ll need to be always on guard when Christian Grey gets mad, because it’s going to be real hard, and I think it would be really painful for beginners. Take note also of Grey’s history. And oh… I hope the following won’t spoil you. Believe me I tried not to spill all the beans, but don’t worry, this is more like a synopsis. No details (or few details), no ending. One more thing, you can take your time reading it, but don’t take it slowly, don’t even linger at it, side effects might not be favorable.

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Fifty Shades of Grey
“I don’t make love. I fuck… hard.”
Ana was on her last year and was preparing for her finals in WSU. She has a friend, Kate, who was also a classmate, a roommate, and an editor of their student magazine. This friend has a scheduled interview with their university’s benefactor, Christian Grey in Seattle, but due to flu she asked Ana to do it for her. Ana met Grey, and she was smitten by him, Grey also showed vague interest on her. One day, on her workplace, Grey appeared out of nowhere, to buy some materials and speak with her. And then, they met again for a photo shoot which was for the student magazine. After the photo shoot they went to somewhere to drink coffee and talk for a few moments. Before they parted ways, Ana wanted more of Grey and got more interested in him, but Grey said that he is not the man for her. And then the day for their graduation nears, and they had a pre-celebration in a bar, Ana was drunk and called Grey. Grey rushed to her and brought her to his hotel suite, they slept together but nothing happened. When the morning came, Ana wanted to make love with him, but Grey refused only if she gives him her written consent which he will explains later that night. Ana took her leave from the suite with him, and while they were in an elevator, Grey kissed her. After Ana finished her work, she and Grey went to his place in Seattle. Grey explained to her what the written consent was all about, and it was a contract that she will never disclose to anyone what she will get to see or learn about him in a few minutes and that she shall subject to whatever Grey wants and follow the rules he sets but even so, the contract is negotiable, which they could revise and redraw or she may withdraws from at anytime she wants, and then Grey revealed first of his secrets. But as she was a beginner, Grey went easy with her. Surely, Ana didn't like the idea, but he likes him so much, and wanted more from him, that she is willing to submit herself to him but afraid of what might happen to her because Grey doesn't do more. Their sexual relationship continues for a month or so, but for the contract, nothing is final yet as Grey wants her to think carefully of it.

Personally, what I thought of this book is ‘It’s like the novel Twilight plus lots of sex written by a wild Jane Austen’. Obviously, this book is all about sex. Even so, I feel pity for Grey and sympathize with Ana. There is so much pain than to the pleasure it can brings, well the pleasure itself is very painful too, but I’m talking about the emotional pain here. Surely, love does wonder to a person, but like in the ending of this book one, which is a total tear jerker, you got to love yourself first and protect yourself from any harm.

There are few things I would also like to share. Grey has issues with wasted food and he doesn't want being touched. These are the things I would like to be enlightened about at the next books of this trilogy.

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Fifty Shades Darker
“Don't run, please - a little faith in me and a little patience. Please.”
It had been the most painful five days between them, but both of them agreed to a compromise in the end. Ana started working in a publishing company as an assistant to the commissioning editor, Jack, a guy who wants to be into her panties but believes in her potentials. But due to Grey’s over protectiveness, he bought the company. And then one day, a lady who looks like Ana appeared, she was once one of Grey’s past and now a threat to their relationship and lives. Ana felt jealous and insecured because that woman could give what Grey needs. Ana also meets the woman who introduced the world to Grey, whom she loathes the most for some reasons. With all the happenings, Ana felt like she needs to run, to be alone, and to be able to think things through, and this is what Grey fears the most. Grey, without a choice, revealed his darkest secret. All of this worries Ana, especially Grey because he thought Ana will finally leave him if she learns the reason behind why he’s doing it, his lifestyle. And to get a hold of her, Grey thinks of an idea – an offer, and also finally let Ana touches him. Ana understood him more now, the reason behind his fear of being touched and everything. It is now all love in the air. But one day something happened, just the day before Grey’s birthday and Ana thought she won’t be able to see Grey anymore.

Book two is more relaxing, but more shocking with all the revelations on Grey’s past. it is much better than book one, it focuses more on their individual issues, but of course there are still hot scenes, only that in a more subdued manner, to calm the raging hormones caused by book one. I felt lots of emotion in this book, but the most abundant is fear.

Spoiler: Someone is taking revenge. To be revealed in the next book.

Coming Soon
Fifty Shades Freed
“What the hell have you done?”
Their relationship went to another level, same as to their security because someone was after Grey, although that person was under police’ custody. Ana is as always stubborn and does not obey the control freak Grey. Grey got mad and had lost control and did what he usually does before Ana came in his life, Ana didn't like it and Grey thought she’s going to leave him again, luckily not, because Ana really loves him, although Grey didn't believe or accept it for some reasons. When everything seemed good between them, that girl from Grey’s past appeared again, and Grey didn't like it, because he didn't want anyone to hurt or bring harm to Ana again. And then Ana was shaken when she learned that her stepfather got into a car accident just a day before her birthday. But in spite of the accident, Grey didn't miss celebrating her birthday with all the special people around them. They were happy again, but it was taken right away again of the big announcement from Ana, Grey wasn't able to accept it because it was out of his control – his plans. Ana thought this could really end everything between them. Then another problem surfaced again and Grey thought she originally is after his money only.

In this book, I felt like climbing a mountain, at first it was boring and tiring but despite that I kept on going, see where it would take me, what I could take, and when I reached the top, I felt happy but at the same time scared, because it’s too high. I wanted to go down but I also wanted to stay there, I don’t want to leave, because if I do, everything is over, back to normal again.

Spoiler: The bonus materials is something to read for, gives you an idea on how Grey thinks.

If you’re asking me if I could recommend this book for you to read, hell ‘No’ is my answer. It’s very traumatizing even for someone like me who have read stories alike, so if you are not up to that kind of experience, please don’t,  but I admit it’s an eye opener, you’ll be able to learn lots of things and let prepare yourself for the future. I remind you I read this book because it intrigued me why it is very controversial, even though I knew that it is all about sex, I want to know the story behind it, and it never failed me, there was so much into it, and I’m now loving it. The book was also easy to read, you could even finish one book in one sitting, and in case you don’t know yet, there will be a film adaptation of this book.

P.S. After reading all the books, I've come to my final conclusion and over-all review of the story and of the writing style of the author. I also did a Wikipedia research on Fifty Shades. And I learn the fact that is was actually or originally a Twilight fan fiction, that is why the story and characters are somewhat similar with Twilight characters. The story is from the point of view of Ana Steele but the story focuses more on the life and struggles of Christian Grey. I like the twist and turns in the story just like how Ana describes Grey as her Mr. Mercurial, whom I also found myself confused to and get carried away at. But nonetheless, Grey is easy to love, his partner just need to be patient and reminds him always that he’s loved, oh I wish I could find someone like him minus his favorite hobby or lifestyle. What I didn't like was whenever something like problems or arguments that is too personal happens to Grey, he would run away from it and divert all his attention into sex, making issues unsolved – unfinished, which is obviously not a good thing. Regarding the writing style of the author, the story line is good. I like how she is able to draw lots of emotions in every book of this trilogy. And I am sad that it is over, I want more of it (the story not sex). Like I said, this book is really an eye-opener. My only criticism is that the words or phrases or idioms she used is not very American or I should say it is very English/British knowing that her characters are American, nevertheless, I learned a lot from it, makes me realize that reading is really good for my mind to function.

P.S. to P.S. I hate the inner goddess of Ana Steele, she is too loud, can't she just shut up and get into action instead.

“We aim to please.”

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