It's no surprise that I've fallen for a Mr. Christian Grey. Well, that's not entirely true, because he kind of scares the crap of out me. But I have been known to jump on a bandwagon or two, and I knew it was just a matter of time before I jumped on this one too.

A few thoughts on the Fifty Shades trilogy:

1. Confession time times a thousand: Fifty Shades of Grey started out as Twilight fan fiction. I have been known to read Twilight fan fiction {<---- see, please don't judge me...}. This was distracting for me, because everything about this book screams Twilight. The characters are almost exact copies {minus the whole vampire thing...} of those in Stephenie Meyer's novels. And since I've read Twilight fan fiction before, I know a lot of the scenarios and themes that people like to use when talking about Twilight. A lot of the stuff in this book I've read before, just in different writing, which really bothered me. I can't help but be a little frustrated with the fact that someone wrote this book and became so successful by piggybacking on someone else's story. I know Twilight well enough to see every. single. similarity between the two. She couldn't even come up with her own characters! But while I can get over this frustration and annoyance, I really couldn't help but feel distracted every time something came up that proved how similar the two stories were.

2. As much as number one bothered me, I did like the way she portrayed Anastasia's character. In Twilight, Bella is so submissive and weak, which is pretty ironic considering that Christian Grey wants to get Ana {Bella's counterpart} into a dominant/submissive relationship. Don't get me wrong, there were definitely times when Ana was annoying as...you know...but there were times when you, as a reader, couldn't help but feel sexy and strong along with her. I didn't know that I necessarily realized how weak some women are portrayed in literature. It's really a breath of fresh air to see a girl who is unsure of herself at times, but essentially confident in her abilities and doesn't really need a knight in shining armor to come save the day {even if he does, sometimes}. 

3. I'm going to be honest for a second and say that the sex really didn't bother me. It may have been a little more explicit than I expected, but I did know what the book was about when I bought it. What does surprise me, however, is how popular this is becoming. I joked on Twitter and Facebook the other day that I'm pretty sure Fifty Shades is some type of social experiment, because while sex has always been a pretty mainstream topic, this type of sex hasn't always been discussed. And it's almost a good thing, to bring a deviant {deviant = not necessarily bad} sexual lifestyle to the forefront of popular culture. I don't think James necessarily portrayed the BDSM culture in a negative light, only told a personal account of a fictional character's experience. And people are eating it up! Erotica like this has always been {secretly} popular, but I don't know that I've ever  heard of such an explicitly sexual book be talked about so openly.

4. And lastly, this book gives me hope. Because, let's be real here, if something as poorly written as Fifty Shades of Grey {and it's two sequels} can shoot to the top of the New York Times Bestsellers list, I can probably get published too. Someday. Right?

What did you all think? Have you read these books? Do you have any other book recommendations for me?


Britt said...

Guilty. I am totally obsessed with this series. I think your similarities between Fifty and Twilight are completely accurate. When reading Twilight I was always wanting something more and I think Fifty fulfilled what I was looking for. The sex didn't bother me either. At first I was like, okay this is different and intense, but there are people who enjoy the BDSM lifestyle. I started re-reading the series this past weekend and am enjoying it even more the second time.

I can totally see your name on the NY Best Seller List! I can't wait to say, I knew her when:)

Kate said...

I'm so glad you posted about this! I've heard so many people say that they liked this without really telling me what it was about. I'm probably not going to read it, just because I think the fact that someone felt like they needed to copy Twilight would make my head explode, but at least now I can make an informed decision! (and for the record, I enjoyed Twilight, just in a love/hate kind of way)

And you go girl! I can totally see you on the best seller list :)

Stephanie said...

I read these stories and as I was reading the first one, I thought to myself, I read a twilight fan fiction story JUST like this! Of course, after some digging I saw that it was that story, just with the names changed. I can't believe the following it's getting (although I completely get understand).

I agree with you that Christian is intriguing but also frightening!!

Lindsay K {lastyearoftwentysomething} said...

I just bought the first book! I didn't/haven't read Twilight, so it will be all new to me! I feel like maybe this trilogy is more of a "grown up" Twilight?? Can't wait to start reading! Thanks for posting this!

Candice said...

I'll probably finish the second book today. I can't help it. I think I have fallen in love with the idea of Christian Grey! I went to a job interview this morning, and even found myself relating the whole experience to the first meeting in the first book....ummm, issues!!!
I think its been so successful because it touches on the whole bad-boy turned good scenario that us females lap up hehe
So I'm definitely guilty!!!