Sunday, July 19, 2015

Inbetween: 50 Shades of Grey

I've succumbed, relented, given in to finally reading 50 shades of Grey.
Trust me, it's a rare thing for me to do. Whenever a certain book is being blown entirely out of context merely because it seemed to be the one thing all people want to read at the same time, I'm always the one choosing the book others neglect. Peer pressure usually doesn't have any effect on me. I still never read the Da Vinci Code, another one of those blockbusters that shook the billboards a few years back (probably never will, either).

I guess the only explanation I have for me giving in and reading this novel, is the right mindset when I was browsing books in the library. Partly I blame the books I was reading.. The Sorrow of Belgium is kind of torture in its own magnificent way and I desperately reached for my safe word which to my own surprise happened to be Grey (instead of Yellow ) you'll understand when you read this novel.

I have to confess, when I was growing up I used to raid my mother's closed for her historical, romantic novels, the kind you could buy at every supermarket, each with a tantalizing cover.
Knowing I shouldn't be reading those novels, made them just the more desirable.

50 shades had much of the same effect, although I don't have any closet to worry about. I felt like I was reading something I shouldn't, but it relaxed me more than I could say for the bomb shells that I have been reading lately. There's only so much serious literature one can talk before you just beg for someone to tie you up and whip you with a flogger.
50 shades was a welcome change of scenery.

Now about the book itself.
Does it surprise you when I confess I laughed more than I should? I've read reviews of this novel, most of them burning the thing to cinders, others seeming to have seen the light (none of them inbetween, no one seeing the humor in this book like I did, or maybe I just haven't been reading the right reviews).
Well it's been referenced as a glorification of our rape culture (google it, if you are interested) and as a means to explore a somewhat darker side of sexuality.
To each its own, I guess, but for me this novel couldn't get any better. I admit, the sexual scenes were quite descriptive and good and there are a lot of them. The parts I used to search in my mother's novels when a was an early teen, seemed to be popping at you at every turn in 50 shades.
I don't mind, but if I would've bought this book, I wouldn't keep it in a closet where my daughter might find it in ten years are so. I'm glad that I was introduced to erotica in a more romantic setting, even though it seemed like porn in my inexperienced mind. Imagine a thirteen year old reading 50 shades, impressionable as they are? I think it cause as much damage as the way sex is portrayed on internet.

So, 50 shades, undeniably, only for experienced eyes, preferably not only sexually experienced, but literary as well. Otherwise you do get BDSM workshops all over the place or ranting how this book destroys the equality of gender. Doesn't anyone get how funny this book is?
E.L. James kind of splatters it all over the book..
Maybe a few examples?
Well, for instance, the protagonist, Ana Steele, still is a virgin, allthough being 21 and graduated from college. I'd say, good for her, but highly improbable. Still respect to those still out there finding their right mate, but she is supposed to be very good looking, although with a low self esteem (which in my opinion should've accelerated her sexual bloom, instead of slowing it down) and enough male attention. Each of the guys she meets wants her. Even in her job interview you get the sense she didn't get the job solely because of her degree and experience.
Then, the not eating, damn, if I would go without food for so long, I'd be dead and buried. Or at least extremely pissed, because an empty stomach is a dead set prescription for trouble in my book. And why his determination to make her eat, (her plate should be empty, he doesn't like wasting food? Why doesn't the multimillionare doesn't like wasting food, while the table is filled with every kind of delectable and he throws money at her in every which way? Because he was traumatized in his early childhood?) Well, Grey, I'll let you know one thing! It isn't healthy to be forced to eat everything on your plate, its prone to even cause obesitas later in life. But I suppose that with the exercise he and Ana are getting, she'll burn enough calories to be able to eat a horse or two.
There are other examples, but I've given enough spoilers and I do want you to read this novel. Don't get me wrong, it's a good novel, if you read it in the right mindset.
It could turn you on, well, I'm mighty sure it will turn you on, even if you are ashamed of it. Trust me, E.L. James knows her business. It's the sex life we all want, apart from the BDSM, of course, but it's so unreal that it can only exist on the pages of a book or the cinema screen.
And to close this quite long review, once you start, you will not want to put it down until it's finished.