Thursday, April 26, 2012

What I'm Reading Thursday

Fifty Shades of Grey

Yes, I have succumbed to the feeding frenzy at the trough of Mr. Grey.

As an author, I think I need to stand up and take notice when another author attains this level of success. What has she done that sparked such a buzz? Is the book a literary marvel, or is it just blind luck the book is as popular as it is?

I think 50 Shades is a perfect example of how a book doesn't have to be technically sound to be entertaining. The dialogue tags are, at times, distracting, and the words the characters use sound like they were pulled from a thesaurus (who uses the word profligate in everyday speech?), and Mr. Grey's behavior as a Dom master doesn't always line up with how Doms treat their Subs. Not that I'm a practitioner, but I have been doing a lot of research in this area, because I have a couple of hardcore BDSM characters in my books, as well, and I definitely want to represent them accurately. But I digress. With these small foibles aside, 50 Shades is quite an entertaining read. I love how well the author brings Christian Grey to life. I can see him, hear him, and I feel like I know what he would do in any circumstance.

I will say this: I am almost finished with the book (about 80 pages left), and the amount of sex is getting a bit much. I love a good sex scene, but I want story, as well, and as of last night's reading, I feel that we tipped the scale to the this-is-too-much-sex side of that equation. Does that mean I won't read the other two books? No. I will read them. I'm just saying that I want more focus on the STORY between the characters. I know the sex is part of it, but I'm beginning to feel like Mr. Grey is a bit of a sex addict and it's disturbing me. Seriously: morning, noon, and night? Every day? And isn't Anastasia sore by now?

I know Mr. Grey is a Dom, but being a Dom does not automatically mean a person wants to have sex all the time. That is not what being a Dom is all about. BDSM does not automatically mean "wanton sex fiend who needs and thinks about it 24/7." I've even heard true practitioners say that in the true art of Dom and Sub, sex isn't even the end game. Meaning that the Dom/Sub relationship has more to do with control, giving/receiving pain/etc, than sex.

So my post sounds more anti-50 Shades, but that's not the case. I really have enjoyed the book. It is very entertaining. I'm just pointing out that I don't feel it represents the BDSM community quite accurately and that the balance between story and sex is a tad too sex-heavy for my usual tastes. BUT! The sex and physical displays between Ana and Mr. Grey are creative. I actually read things I've never read before in an erotica piece. So, kudos there!

Overall, I would give this book 4 out of 5 stars, and that's saying something since I am usually a very picky reader. I mean, hell, I gave Lover Reborn 3 1/2 stars, and J.R. Ward's BDB is my favorite book series. I obviously see something in this book to give it 4 stars if I gave my fave author 3 1/2 on her latest venture.

Happy Reading!


  1. Very interesting take on the book, Donya! I finished the first then went on to the second but had to stop reading for essentially the same reason--too much sex. I literally just got bored and haven't gone back to it. I might at some point, we'll see.

    I must say I am surprised you rated this book higher than Lover Reborn. My goodness, I'd love to know why you didn't enjoy Reborn that much. :)

    Happy writing,

    T. A. Grey

  2. Well, T.A., now that I'm nearing the end of Fifty Shades (yes, I was rating it 4 out of 5 stars based on where I was in the book when I wrote this), I would have to say I'm inclined to lower my rating to more of a 3. Interestingly enough, this book started out strong, but got weaker as it went. Lover Reborn started out a bit weak for me and got stronger. So, in the end, they rate out about equally. However, I would rather a book end strong than weak, so Lover Reborn gets the extra 1/2 star for that. I mean, I'm 20 pages from the end of 50 Shades, and I am mentally begging for story, not more sex.