Fifty Shades of Grey – book review

Fifty Shades of Grey (Fifty Shades #1)Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

As the Queen of bandwagon hopping, I had to get my hands on the book that sold out of Minneapolis bookstores. Minnesotans have incredibly good taste and I want to be up to speed on pop culture for my next visit home. Since it is between printings, I downloaded the first in the Fifty Shade Trilogy: Fifty Shades of Grey via Kindle to my iPad. This is actually my first read on my iPad and I think it will take a while getting used to location instead of page numbers, although I did like that it show percentage finished. It gave a strong sense of accomplishment.

Having recently watched Morgan Spurlock’s The Greatest Movie Ever Sold I was acutely aware of product placement in this book. The cover could easily say Fifty Shades of Grey sponsored by Audi, Apple, Pinot Grigio, Bollinger, Sancerre, Blanik gliders (which they unfortunately spelled Blahnik, like the shoes), Piper Aircraft and Diet Coke. I think the author missed the boat by not finding a designer who specializes in white linen dress shirts, black jeans and leather riding crops. Oh, have you listened to the soundtrack to the book? You can check out my version on Spotify:

The author being British should have really staged her book outside of London. Her grasp of location and dialects is completely lacking. Even though Anastasia, the Protagonist, is a fan of English Literature it is highly unlikely having grown up in Montesano, Washington that she would uses phrases like getting sussed and wandering about. “I ponder as I trail after my mother through the supermarket with the shopping cart. As we browse the raw meat cabinet, my phone rings.” What is a raw meat cabinet? This phrase reminded me of the spam in my inbox. There were many such phrases in this book. One could even wonder if the author was a native English speaker. There is a lot of gaping (17), gasping (46), lip biting (28) and breath hitching (18) and not so much real activity, just a lot of confused and shocked expressions.

Apart from phraseology, Anastasia as a heroine makes Britney Spears look like a rocket scientist, although she keeps alluding to her impressive GPA she doesn’t seem very clever. The thin plot, horrible punctuation and grammar are all part of this new trend of “Do it now! Quickly! Before we all die!” There is apparently no time left for editing in the publishing industry. Did I just read the author is auctioning off movie rights? *blogger gasps*.

OK, there must be something right with this book. I would definitely defend it from being called mommy porn because no one ever called our mothers equally smutty Danielle Steel books porn. The only difference I can see is the use of expletives.

It was an intriguing read and just like Twilight it drew me in. I have read several reviews suggesting that the author just did a search and replace of Anastasia for Bella but I think that is a huge disservice to Stephenie Meyer who did a wonderful job of creating the Twilight universe. Fifty Shades is enticing, and if I was forced to make comparisons, I would say it is more like Batman and Cinderella star in 9 ½ weeks.

Oh yeah, I do intend on reading the next one because who knows we might die soon and I can’t wait for the grammar police to get on this.

**Note: Blogger never did get around to reading proceeding books and gets a thank you note every day from her eyes.

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