When unworldly student Ana Steele first encountered the driven, damaged young entrepreneur Christian Grey, it sparked a sensual affair that changed both their lives irrevocably. Shocked, intrigued, and ultimately repelled by Christian's singular sexual tastes, Ana demanded a deeper commitment; determined to keep her, Christian agreed. Now, together, they have more-love, passion, intimacy, wealth, and a world of infinite possibilities. But Ana always knew that loving her Fifty Shades would not be easy and being together poses challenges neither of them ever anticipated. Ana must somehow learn to share Christian's opulent lifestyle without sacrificing her own integrity, identity, or independence; Christian must somehow overcome his compulsion to control and lay to rest the horrors that blighted his past and haunt his present. Just when it seems that together their love can conquer any obstacle, tragedy, malice and fate combine to make Ana's worst nightmares come true.
(Amazon Product Description)
Okay, so if you are living under a rock and unfamiliar with this trilogy, I’ll give you a little background. Fifty Shades of Grey started out as Twilight fan fiction--very naughty Twilight fan fiction. As the author developed and revised, the characters became much more than Edward & Bella and the story became something completely different. The result is that even though there are no vampires and a heck of a lot more “adult” behavior, the adult fans of Twilight are getting their knickers in a twist over these books. :)
Okay, history lesson over. The truth is, when I heard that an indie published, BDSM erotic romance series scored a $5 million movie deal--I had to see what the fuss was about.
You can see the echo of Edward & Bella in Christian & Ana, but C&A were much more developed and (for the most part) realistic. Christian was the more interesting of the two by far. His psychological issues were fascinating. He could be ruthless and controlling one minute and completely vulnerable the next, but it was done is such a realistic and believable way. Watching him grow and evolve throughout the three books was a joy.
Ana was stronger and more likable than Bella, but I had a few issues with her character. First, she starts off as a 21 year old virgin who is completely innocent and within a very short time, she is begging to be trussed up and spanked. It was too radical of a shift, too quickly. Secondly, Ana kept talking about her “inner goddess” and her “subconscious self” like separate personalities inside her. Not only was in incredibly annoying, but each time the author mentioned these, it pulled out of the story.
Another thing that was a little off was the dialog. The author is British, so there was a tendency for some of the characters to use words or terms that didn’t fit people born and raised in the U.S. The result was I kept reading them with British accents in my head.
But even these couple of issues didn’t ruin the story for me. I really did enjoy reading these books. There is action, danger, suspense, lots and lots of sex and a total escape into a fantasy world that we will never live in. And in the end, isn’t that what reading is all about?
Overall, I give the Fifty Shades Trilogy...
Plot - 3 1/2 bookmarks
Character development - 4 1/2 bookmarks (Absolutely loved Christian. There is a scene in book two where he just slayed me!)
Love story - 4 bookmarks
Sex scenes - 4 bookmarks (For the most part, they added to the story)
Dream cast (otherwise known as who I pictured while reading) - I don’t think it’s possible to read these books without picturing Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart as Christian and Ana. I just saw the Cosmopolis movie trailer with Rob and his character is totally Christian. I’d die a happy woman if they could cast him in the Fifty Shades movies. Actually, all the characters were sort of echoes of who they were in Twilight, just older and more mature. Anna Kendrick (Kate), Kellan Lutz (Elliot), Ashley Green (Mia), etc.