Last month, I finally got the courage to purchase it but it was out of stock at the nearest book store. I say courage because strange as it sounds, I felt embarrassed to be seen buying this novel. In the same manner, one feels when one buys a pregnancy test kit. Regardless of the fact that I am a married woman in her 40s, I still felt uneasy. One day all 3 novels of the trilogy found its way to my inbox c/o a generous blogger named Duds whom I have thanked profusely!
I had to get used to the fact that I had to read it on my desktop and not in the comforts of my bed. I'm not complaining because it had its advantages. One, I didn't fall asleep as I read it while seated. Two, I could click it off whenever I noticed I kept rolling my eyes from despair. A gesture that the erstwhile Mr GreY won't take too lightly.
The storyline itself is quite preposterous. A young virgin is swooned off her feet by a wealthy handsome control freak with a very dark personality. But he isn't a DOM type, he is only 27 years old! At 22, AnastaSia StEelE is quite innocent in every sense of the word. Yet once she becomes a willing victim to his perverted ways (even though she never did sign the contract), she turns into a nymphomaniac that can climax several times in one day. Geez. Now that's something else, right there.
Despite the poor writing style, the two main characters progress well. We are able to see some growth as there is a constant struggle between them to compromise. But in the process, they still retain their personalities however foolish (Ana) and convoluted (GreY) they may be.
I was pretty ambivalent about the rampant and quite graphic sex parts. It didn't get me all flushed (like Ana) nor evoke any arousal. Honestly, I've read more provocative books. But hey I don't make it a habit of including erotica among my reading list. let's just get that clear. I didn't think the sex was too much. In fact it just permeated how sickening the male character was. My main issue is the number of times she was able to climax. Alright, yes she is only in her early twenties and at that stage, we all know hormones are raging like wildfires but still it is way too unrealistic.
By using simple and basic words to narrate the story, the author has targeted the young adults market. A demographic that I feel would be too immature to handle such a seriously dark theme. It might give them the idea that it is perfectly fine to be a damsel in distress submissive type just because the guy is rich, attractive with a magnetic effect over you. It is never OK to be in an abusive relationship, period.
I end by stating that girls/women may think and even firmly believe that they can change a guy by manipulation BUT take it from me, it is best you give it a rest because it is quite impossible. You have to accept a person for who he is, warts, private playroom et al, and once you got that in the bag, it can be smooth sailing from hence forth. But in the process, you must also be responsibly mature enough to know it won't always be a smooth ride, there will be quite a number of challenges that will float your way. It is how you handle these obstacles that will ultimately define who you are.
I don't really love the book nor do I loathe it with a passion. I just read it with an open mind. I am reminded of the adage "One man's freedom fighter is another man's terrorist". So in this case, I'd have to say "One person's chick lit is another person's trashy novel".