Series: Fifty Shades #1
Published by Vintage on April 3, 2012
Genres: Contemporary, Erotica
FINAL DECISION: I enjoyed this book as pure entertainment. It’s not particularly deep, and the characters are sometimes frustratingly dumb, but there is the spark of something there that just kept me reading.
THE STORY: College student Anastasia Steele does her friend a favor and goes to interview businessman Christian Grey. He is young, and she is drawn to him. The attraction between them is immediate and different from anything they have experienced. But Christian has secrets and erotic sexual tastes that Ana has no experience in understanding. As they begin a relationship, Ana is not sure that she can give Christian what he wants or whether Christian’s own demons will keep him from giving her what she needs.
OPINION: This book has a lot of problems that people have slammed it for, but honestly, I find something about the story compelling. I enjoyed it and thought that the story was entertaining. The story sometimes feels like an old-fashioned romance with a lot more sex. Many people won’t like Ana, who is pretty naive and helpless throughout the book. Christian, who is mysterious, controlling, and keeps secrets, is essentially unknowable to Ana. There is a lot of sex in this book as the emotional relationship between the characters is moved forward by their sexual relationship.
The book began as Twilight fan-fiction, and I see the similarities. This book has many of the same weaknesses in character as that series. At the same time, it is also immensely enjoyable as a read.
WORTH MENTIONING: This book is highly polarizing, even as it was commercially successful.
CONNECTED BOOKS: FIFTY SHADES OF GREY is the first book in the Fifty Shades series. This book ends on a cliffhanger, and one needs to read all three books in the series to get the complete story.
STAR RATING: I give this book 4 stars.