50 Shades of Huh?

The trilogy sweeping the nation. 50 Shades of Gray, 50 Shades Darker, 50 Shades Freed.

I admit, I’m one of those weird people that once everyone jumps on the bandwagon for something, I avoid it like the plague. I know, crazy. I did the same thing with Harry Potter (which I now love) but it took seeing the first two movies on television before I even thought about trying to read the books.

On vacation in May, everyone, and I mean everyone was talking about these books. Even the hubby said I needed to read them. I flipped through the book and it didn’t ‘call’ to me. Avid readers/writers know what that means.

I’ve done a little investigating and found out it was initially a fan fiction piece based on Twilight and it was written by a Brit. So basically, it started as the story of Edward and Bella getting their freak on.

Not being a fan of Twilight, this was another strike against the book for me. Like I said, I’m a little weird. I don’t want to think about Robert Pattinson tying Kristin Stewart to a bed post while he spanks her. *shudder*

Anyway, so far two of my friends have read the books and been somewhat disappointed. I do to want to say much about the story because I haven’t personally read them. One interesting thing about the phenom is the fact that it’s helping drive the sales of independent authors with books in that genre. So, even if I don’t end up reading them, the rabid readers looking for more or kinkier or whatever, they’ve helped other authors make a living.

I’m not knocking those who’ve read it. Though I have to admit I love the Amazon ‘commercial’ Saturday Night Live did about it for Mothers Day. I’m writing this from the phone, so unable to include the link. (easily at least).

Tell me, what do you think about this series?

13 thoughts on “50 Shades of Huh?

  1. Weighing in…
    I read and very much enjoyed the Fifty Shades books. (I know, I’m in the minority…and probably a bit odd) I think I’ve discovered a bit of the reason some people are not connecting with the characters or are not enjoying the story’s flow. James writes a great deal of what I call ‘British humor’ (not an official term, just what my sister and I decided to name all things Monty Python/Benny Hill – ish) The inner thoughts of her heroine, Ana, had me laughing out loud!

    Now. There was waaaayyyy too much sex going on. I actually skipped a few scenes. (Seriously, does anybody do it that much? Sounds like a nightmare…lol. Chafed lady-parts or something…Sheesh! I’d have sent Christian to the garage …or a massage parlor. Ha!) The climax in their relationship was too contrived also. But I loved reading about a young woman who finds herself in a situation where she’s basically in over her head, yet she stands her ground on the issues she feels passionately about, confronting a much stronger personality with trepidation, but determination. I also applauded the author for having her heroine want MORE from a relationship than sex.

    I did not read Twilight, nor will I. It was a stretch for me to read this series. I’ve heard James’ work started as fan-fic, but I’d say it is far removed from Twilight, which is YA…and Fifty Shades is about as far from YA as one can get. Ha. I’d also like to mention that my son’s friends (the girls) readily admit to having read the Fifty Shades books, most with parent approval! Go figure. Now…that doesn’t necessarily bother me. Our culture is schizo about sex, if you ask me (not that you did…lol.). Store racks are full of provacative clothing, song lyrics are laced with sexual themes – yet heaven forbid they read about it! Oh well. Makes me glad to have only boys left in the house. My son has no desire to read the Fifty Shades debaucle. Phew. :}

    1. LOL Nadja! I happen to like British humor – when done by a British character. From what I read, Ana has never left the US. I know she’s an English Lit major, but unless she was homeschooled with absolutely NO friends, I don’t think she’d talk like a Brit. I guess I saw Christian as mentally abusive and a serious stalker. Yes, Ana stood her ground. Somewhat. Then there’s that old time romance good time ending. The inexperienced, virgin college girls lands the state’s most eligible bachelor who happens to be a billionaire, plays a piano like a concert pianist and speaks perfect French.

      And everyone I’ve talked to who’s read the books says they end up skipping the sex scenes. I ended up skipping a few and I’ve read a few erotica books. To me that says 90% of the sex was unnecessary and that James had a decent story without it all. But I still feel like her characters – especially Ana – needed more developing. Maybe they did in the later books. I only made it to page 6 of the second one and couldn’t take it anymore. 🙂

      I haven’t read Twilight either, nor do I plan to. Apparently her fan-fic piece still had the character names Edward and Bella in it and there was such an uproar from the Twi-hards that she took it off their site, changed the name and added more sex, then put it on her site. Whatever. 😉 She’s helping the little indie writers when people go looking for more books about erotica.

      Thanks for continuing the discussion!

    2. Thanks for weighing in, Nadja. It *is* nice to hear from the “other side”. Funny though, I really enjoy British humour! I just couldn’t get past the writing; if it’s the kind of book that’s going to make me want to skim, well… I’ve got way too many other books on the To Read pile.
      I just think it’s sad to see so many women reading it on the train in to work – I feel like giving them a list of good erotica to read instead. And if they just want a really really good book that happens to have sexual scenes… they should all be reading Outlander!

  2. I’m in the same boat as you – I’ll avoid stuff just because it’s overly popular (I only read the Harry Potter books after the third one was out and my sister had borrowed them from a friend. Then I thought it was time to give the books I’d been criticising a chance to defend themselves. And they did! And how!).
    But I try to to be fair. So I’ve read the first chapter of Twilight, The Da Vinci Code, and Fifty Shades. Blecch. Sorry, not a very educated response, is it? But it’s just not my cup of tea. And the writing is… Well, let’s just say it’s not even close to Diana Gabaldon and leave it at that 🙂

    1. Blecch covers it just fine! lol. I didn’t even try to read Twilight. I was turned off once I found out the vampires sparkled and could be out in the sunlight. That’s just not right. I happened to like The DaVinci Code. I’ve read two other Dan Brown books since then and have enjoyed them. Okay, truthfully? How many people get close to Diana! 😀

      1. 🙂
        I think the Dan Brown thing is a little different – I used to read Sidney Sheldon all the time, for instance. Sometimes certain books appeal to you at different moments in your life. Others are timeless – I reread my favourite YA books all the time!

  3. I’m reading the first book at the moment, but I don’t think it’s a bad as everyone is making out lol. Ok, there’s a bit of repitition and the sex scenes are beginning to bore me. But, I love the character, Christian Gray. He’s very complex, and I’m enjoying finding out more about him. Now, whether I will have changed my mind by book 3, who knows lol.


  4. I read the first book and enjoyed it (hey I like Twilight) but, the slipping of British phrases was distracting. I couldn’t get into the second book b/c it was too much of the same. One day I may go back & read the other two. Probably when the movie comes out. I need full blown hysteria to jump on a bandwagon. Although I did avoid Harry Potter until the marathons on ABC family. Now I’m a huge fan.

    1. I decided to read the first book. Some good, some bad. But like you, I only read about 6 pages of the second one and put it back down. It didn’t appeal at all. Took an online workshop Friday night where the moderator said it would “behoove” (love when people use that word) writers to read it because obviously there something being done right in order to sell 20 million copies.

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