My Thoughts (So Far) About Fifty Shades of Grey

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On Saturday night after a busy day with my little girl, I decided to relax and unwind by finally purchasing the controversial book, Fifty Shades of Grey, written by E L James. I used the iBook feature on my iPad to download an electronic version of the book and even tweeted that it was time for me to see for myself what the buzz was about.

I first learned about Fifty Shades of Grey during a Today Show segment that discussed how downright “nasty and sexual perverted” the book was. It seemed that all of America already knew about the book and it was heralded as porn for the Desperate Housewives sect (otherwise coined as Mommy Porn by the media). I found it puzzling that some people were up in arms over a book written by an adult for adults that included graphic sexual situations. I could see if it was a book written for teens or children, but it isn’t. Not sure what the big deal was, I made a note to read the book myself.

I mean, as a pop culture enthusiast who makes it a point knowing everything that pertains to the latest buzz, I needed to read it for myself and make my own judgment.

The book has been banned by several public libraries across the United States and that also made me snicker. Erotica and sexually explicit has been in our libraries for years (see Lolita, which was written about an underage teen girl  having sex with a grown man). Again, a book written about sex between two consenting adults isn’t something that is for the prudish, but should definitely not be banned from the library.

As a teen and young adult, I read books that went into great detail about sex and included some pretty graphic scenes. Urban erotica author Zane came to prominence in the early 2000’s, and her books were very explicit as well as graphic, and was even turned into a cable after dark series. I don’t recall and cries about banning Zane, so I still couldn’t fathom what the big deal was about Fifty Shades of Grey.

I am more than halfway through the book, and while I have blushed at some of the graphic details in the text, it’s nothing to get anyone’s panties in a bunch about. Yes, there are scenes of dominance and submission, but nothing inhumane or graphically violent, or downright OMG worthy.

I think Fifty Shades of Grey is embarrassing for some because it’s key demographic (Caucasian women who are housewives) may not be having the type of sex that Anastasia (the lead female character) is having in the book. Doing whatever it takes to please a man sexually (and consensually of course), may cause some people in this group to raise their eyebrows. Even in this day and age, sex is still a taboo subject in some circles, and because of this, some are not comfortable discussing (or reading) about a couple who enjoy their sexual pleasures.

There is also the theme of the female character submitting herself wholeheartedly to the male character. If anyone should be speaking about this book, it should be the members of the feminist movement. But the Today Show, and all of these other talk shows and entertainment shows speaking about how taken aback they are of the book. Puh-leese!

{Much to do about nothing…}

The tone of the book is somewhat condescending. The main female character is a virgin and is swept off of her feet by the male lead character who is rich and powerful. She succumbs to the male, allowing him to project his will onto her. In doing so, she actually finds out that she enjoys sex and the emotional and physical bonding it brings. Yes, it takes this guy for her to see all of this. He is her savior, and she should be glad that she met him and he gave her the opportunity to discover good sex.

I can see why one would have a problem with the overall “tale” and how it’s spun. But the media is focusing its energy on the sexual trysts in the book more so than the theme.

With me being midway into the book, I am still waiting for the page that is going to make me say, “Yeah, now I see what all of the hub bub is about”. So maybe it’s still too early for me to speak out on my thoughts about the book. But I am rather disappointed so far about the controversy against the actual text I am reading. It’s like the pundits are talking about a different book.

Is Fifty Shades of Grey a good book? Hells yeah. It’s sexy, provocative, and I am enjoying it thus far. Does it deserve all of this media attention? Perhaps, not.

Have you read Fifty Shades of Grey or the other two books in James’ trilogy, Fifty Shades Darker and Fifty Shades Freed? Were you totally grossed out and appalled? Let’s say you!

Photo credit: EW


  1. says

    I’m just going to copy what I posted on Google Plus:
    “I’ve read the trilogy. It’s steamy staleness. After reading a few of the sex scenes, I was no longer interested in that part of the book and just wanted to see how they got to their “happily ever after”. The writing was atrocious, but I liked the story.”

    For the most part, I thought Anastasia was a stupid girl. She didn’t understand that you shouldn’t seen sexual emails through the company computers?! Really?

    Anyway, I suspect that by the time you get to the 3rd book, you’ll be bored with all of the sex talk and flipping pages just to get to the end like I did.
    DanielleJÃ�´s last blog post ..Childhood Memory – Grandma’s Biscuits

    • says


      Can I already say that I am a little more than halfway through the book and have grown tired of the sexual tyrsts. It’s like there is so much of it that you get immune to it and it loses it’s “edge”. Seems too contrived. I do like the book for the most part, but of course, it’s all fantasy.

  2. says

    I am on book 3 and have abandoned for now because I’m bored with the story. I don’t think there was a need to have three books. I think the writer is a bit unimaginative when it comes to the sex scenes because they really don’t differ. The writing is horrible mainly because again- unimaginative- She over uses phrases over and over.

    I do like the subplots but the writer doesn’t explore them too much.

  3. says

    I read all three. I found myself skipping the sex scenes for the most part after awhile because they were somewhat incredulous. Also the writing is a bit redundant but there is a plot (eventually) and it was enough to entertain me during my rides on the train. There is a love story somewhere in there and at times, it made me smile.
    Aisha G of HartlynKids�´s last blog post ..Cookie Fairy Sweets Interview and GIVEAWAY!!

  4. says

    Fifty Shades of Grey is on my summer reading list but I’m in no real hurry to get to it. I figured the buzz was a bunch of hype over nothing. In my opinion its the 2012 version of Erica Jong’s “Fear of Flying”. I might suggest FSOG for my book club’s next selection. I’m sure it would make some interesting discussion.
    KimÃ�´s last blog post ..Allow Me To Introduce Myself…

  5. says

    I’ll read it just to see what all the noise is about. But isn’t that how most people discover good sex – by having it with someone? Can’t get with the whole savior thing in this case.

  6. Lloyd says

    Ya know I read the first one because of hearing the hype, then read the next two. In the course of 3 days I read all 3 books and there was just no OMG moment at all. In the third book there is an Admission by the male lead (Christian) that was not unforeseen but other than that it’s just a fun trashy read. It’s seriously twilight for adults and I think that’s the problem, people wen in expecting a sweep you off your feet love story but instead got a story about 2 consenting adults (albeit one who is emotionally damaged) who know what they like in the bed room. That level of sexual comfort is not found in most of modern America because most people are not happy with yet sex lives. I say read it and decide but banning books is generally frowned upon. Just saying

  7. says

    Interesting, I’m glad you posted this because a friend of mine just told me about it and said I should read it. I had never heard of it until she mentioned it.

    So currently, it’s on my list to get into…

    Although, as far as its explicitness, even without reading it, I can’t imagine it being SO BAD that it warrants being removed from libraries. Really?? With the sexual crap on TV, in movies, and print, you’d think people will he immune by now anyway.

    And maybe the housewives who are complaining should be taking notes to keep their husbands at home ROTFL! Just kidding…ahem…

    Ok, let me stop…haven’t read it yet so maybe I’ll write about my experience whenever I get done. :-)

    Oh and Zane’s books were some of my favorite erotica genre books. The show was just ayight tho…

    Kesha BrownÃ�´s last blog post ..Dating – Law of Attraction Style

  8. says

    I absolutely LOVED the trilogy. Fifty Shades Darker is even better than the 1st book. It was not so much about the sex but more the connection and the trust this relationship seemed to have right from the beginning. You are intrigued by the Grey character but I do agree with a few readers that suggest that this may have been a little demeaning to the female character. Overall though…excellent read!!!!

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