Plot Summary (From Amazon):
When unworldly student Anastasia Steele first encountered the driven and dazzling young entrepreneur Christian Grey it sparked a sensual affair that changed both of their lives irrevocably. Shocked, intrigued, and, ultimately, repelled by Christian’s singular erotic tastes, Ana demands a deeper commitment. Determined to keep her, Christian agrees.
Now, Ana and Christian have it all—love, passion, intimacy, wealth, and a world of possibilities for their future. But Ana knows that loving her Fifty Shades will not be easy, and that being together will pose challenges that neither of them would anticipate. Ana must somehow learn to share Christian’s opulent lifestyle without sacrificing her own identity. And Christian must overcome his compulsion to control as he wrestles with the demons of a tormented past.
Just when it seems that their strength together will eclipse any obstacle, misfortune, malice, and fate conspire to make Ana’s deepest fears turn to reality.
The last installment in the Fifty Shades trilogy had both good and bad, but I gritted my teeth and stuck it out for the duration. I’m glad that I did, mostly so that I understand all of the hype and the brilliant parody spinning around the interwebs right now.
Ana and Christian, after knowing each other for about five seconds, have tied the knot. The book opens during their honeymoon on the French Riviera, and the reader gets to share their marital bliss via flashbacks. All is not perfect in paradise, however, because Christian is still MOODY AS HELL and Ana is constantly worrying about pissing him off. Like, seriously. For the entire damn book. It gets EXHAUSTING.
This book reclaims some of the fun of the first book, with more time spent travelling and exploring Christian’s lifestyle, and less time with angsty introspection on the part of both characters. Ana also refreshingly gets her balls back, and resumes challenging Christian when he’s unreasonable (which is frequently.) Of course, this leads to loads more kinky fuckery, which is the entire point of all the things, right?
Some of James’ ideas of what constitutes sexy are just a little off to me- many of the outfits that she describes the characters wearing seem out-dated, included Christian’s fascination with teeshirts and black jeans. Or Ana’s reaction to said black jeans. Are we going for a James Dean thing here, or am I the one who’s out of touch? Ana’s transformation from awkward college student to society wife feels forced as well- she’s suddenly comfortable with going topless on a French beach? And she wears floor-length silk nighties? And dresses with stockings and garter belts on a regular basis? What about a pair of dress pants, sweetie?
Unfortunately, finishing the series forced me to rethink my original point about Fifty Shades not being Twilight enough… The other two books cover EVERYTHING, from the separation (which is far shorter in FS), to the engagement, wedding, psycho stalkers and more. Somehow, Ana ends the series still human (As human as she can get… I am still not convinced based solely on her super orgasmic abilities and apparent love of man-juice.) Hey, we even get a “Midnight Sun”-style epilogue from Christian’s point of view! That is not a rip-off AT ALL!
I also have to admit to being DONE with Christian Grey. Perhaps his personality is some womens’ cup of tea, but it does nothing for me. I don’t care what kind of issues he supposedly has from his effed up childhood and relationship with Mrs Robinson, it doesn’t excuse his ridiculous overreactions to everything. Punching a guy at a club for dancing with your wife? Stupid. Being almost completely incapable of communicating except for with your penis and whatever props you choose? VERY stupid. I’ll stop there so that I don’t spoil major plot points, but let it suffice to say that the character crossed the line from “dominating” to “complete and utter asshole.” Even the rose-colored epilogue did very little to bring him back into my good graces.
That said, if Jose/Jacob is still available, give me a call.
Amy , aka our fabulous webmistress, and I were reading this series simultaneously, and of course we had to discuss before I could start working on the last review. Even though the books have blown up (one of my coworkers had to go to FOUR bookstores last weekend to get a paperback copy), they’re still sloooooowly making their way into our little conservative corner of the country.
I had to ask her permission, because I just needed to share some of her insights on the story with you.
It was like yeah yeah they’re having sex…again, hey what about that crazy woman
stalking you guys with a GUN. Maybe you should take a break from all the
crazy humping and give her a thought or two. I was actually kind of happy
when Ana got beat up in the last book so there was a break from all the OMG
they’re having sex again!-ness.
And re: the similarities to the Twilight Saga:
“I didn’t care for Rosalie, but Kate has more spunk than her. Spunk in the feisty fiery sense. Not spunk like what is doled out 572 times in the series.”
Thank you for tagging along with me on this little foray into pseudo-erotica… We’ll now return to your regular programming of young adult, historical fiction, and fantasy. Though I may just have a slew of biographies on England’s royal family coming up.
Three out of Five Riding Crops