As collegiate Anastasia Steele stumbles quite by chance into billionaire magnate Christian Grey’s office, we stumble into a heady, heaty and totally unbecoming love story. Wait!.. not really, it isn’t a love story or is it?? I had to know for sure…. I had stumbled upon this book quite by chance. My sister thought I should take a read of it and possibly pep up my rather tame existence. Hushed whispers, secret clubs and notorious reviews had of course almost introduced the book’s theme to everybody at large, one just didn’t want to be caught reading it. Who knows what depths of darkness will be revealed and unleashed on unsuspecting folks. One just didn’t want to appear reveling in THAT kind of a book, you know! However, the curiosity cat was too itchy to be contained and soon everyone, unabashedly, was with a copy in a quiet corner. Those spared by its infectious spread were promptly engulfed in after the movie trailers were released. Now not only did people wanted to know what all the scandal was about but how much of it will be portrayed on the larger screen. After having read just the first book, I found myself soaring, sore-ing with Anastasia Steele in more places than one, including a few between my temples. Here, is what I thought about the story….
- Uneven Stakes : It’s just not fair when you make a person so damn hot and so damn cold at the same time. Christian Grey is not only a multi-billionaire earning a hundred thousand dollars an hour, with global interests and a troupe of slick executives who nevertheless ‘Sir’ him all the time but he is also devilishly handsome, kind-hearted and generous i.e outside of his playtime. However, his chest cavity is quite empty, no heart, no emotions, no feelings. No way to show or receive love except through possession and control. Anastasia Steele is a college graduate, naïve, guileless and plain. Moreover, she has barely stepped out of her baby bloomers, with no previous relationship experience to know if what she is getting into is normal or not. From the beginning Mr. Grey astounds, pursues and indulges her with his pecunious charms. Though Ana cannot be completely guilty of falling for him only because of his wealth, they act like a very convincing bonus. There is also his well sculptured lips and jaw, the hang of his PJs and the sway of his walk. No, not love only infatuation….
2. The Kinky stuff – One really actually knew that there would be lots of descriptive kinky details and yes that was what had to be the selling point of the book. It was one libidinous moment after another. Far too many times have Anastasia and Christian lurched at each other for a quick one than it was easy to keep track of. Not to mention the really lengthy interludes of Christian’s fantasies which too one had to sit through. It left you both short-winded and aching, for me it was the nape of my neck. Had E.L James, just put the kinky stuff together the book would have sold just as well, it really didn’t need a story backdrop. Maybe it was the guilty pleasure of watching a young bud being nipped fiercely and suddenly that kept the pages turning. No, not love again….
- The BDSM class – Ok, agreed this was meant to be a love story, but E.L James is grossly guilty of marring the tenderness of a love story with the gruesomeness of BDSM details where only one partner is playing the role (here the dominant) and the other is just playing along. It manifests more like abuse than love. ‘This is what I am.’ ‘This what I can give you’. I am Fifty shades of f***p…. this is what I know… ‘ As Christian pleaded Anastasia to stay and sign the contract, the readers pleaded her desperately not to. So, after an intense introduction into intimacy, Anastasia stood up for what she wanted instead of being the passive giver, but did that not bring the first book to an end. As a reader, one too was taken on this incredulous journey of ‘What is he going to do next?’, ‘How much darker can Grey get’, ‘Maybe there is no grey, just black waiting to happen?’. With edge of seat anticipation we waited for Grey to get darker and darker in his Red Room. The worst he came up with was a thrashing. And that abruptly and suddenly put an end to the love story. Though the readers didn’t seem to have had enough of Grey, Anastasia seemed to. Definitely not love…..
- The emails – Best part of this love story were the clever email repartees that went between Mr. Grey and Ms. Steel. Anastasia who was shy and demure when with Christian turns quite witty and combative on the web. Though Mr. Grey keeps true to his suave yet eccentric self while emailing, Ms. Steel matches it with sassy and clever ripostes. This was one funny section of the book and can be used as an inspiration for further works. Here is where a love story may begin…
The book is no doubt a page turner, more as an education into the lives of BDSM and the obnoxiously rich than the lives of two people on a journey. Flashes of opulence here and there, indulgent installments of bedroom antics played out to full delight of the readers and the unknown future of the leading characters make sure, you are riveted the book for the next three sequels and more.