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An Adult Book Review

With all the hype surrounding the book trilogy Fifty Shades of Grey, and having just finished reading it, I feel compelled to give my two cents.

I have read several on line reviews, blogs, articles and interviews about the books.  I wanted to get a feeling for how people were responding to the series.  Even though you’d think that being #1 on the New York Times Bestselling list would speak for it self, opinions are vast and surprisingly dogmatic.

I’d like to begin by stating that I’m not a mom, and so the term “mommy porn” is not applicable to me.  I am however, a newly married, healthy & fit 37-year-old woman.  I feel that regardless if you think the books were well written or not, your place in life, age, experience and sexuality play a strong factor in your opinion of the books – obviously.  I have read erotica before (that’s what these books are) and it doesn’t bother me.  As long as it’s consensual and safe, I’m mature enough to say “to each his own” in regards to what others like to practice in the bedroom.

I’m not going to give you a synopsis of the story.  There are plenty of reviews that do and I’m sure if you want to know you’ll look it up.  I will, however give you my thoughts on the books.  To start, I was greatly surprised at the number of references I am familiar with.  Such as cities (Seattle and Portland), specific locations (The Heathman Hotel & Escala), musical references I know, as well as specific products I have (Audi & Apple).  That may not sound like much, but the list goes on.  Also, it’s one thing to read about Hogwarts in a fantasy fiction book, it’s another to read of cities you know and visit often in a fiction novel.  It felt oddly eerie and slightly real to me, I must admit it played with my mind a little.  What’s more, I recently found out, the author has never been to Washington state.

I greatly enjoyed the character development, plot twists and abundant lifestyle.  It became largely about the storyline for me and not about the erotica.  In fact, half way through the second book, I simply started flipping past the sex scenes because I was impatient to know what was going to happen next.  I found a few little things annoying, namely character “flaws” but I let them go because they were deliberate choices made by the author and there for a reason.

To be honest, I’m not sure what all the media hype is about.  These books are no different than anything else out there that is not appropriate for children.  We are all consenting adults, as in the books (and as it should be) so why are peoples knickers in a knot?  If you don’t like it, don’t read it!  These books present nothing new, nothing that has not been already done.  In fact, an article I read about why libraries are banning the Fifty series presented the point that the Dragon Tattoo series is in libraries and some of it’s content is far more questionable as well as violent.  I personally find the abuse and violence from the Tattoo books far more troubling than the consensual “play” in the Fifty series.

All in all, I enjoyed the books and am kind of sad I’ve finished.  I wish people would just chill out.  I guess what gets me is the uptight naysayers, and judging purists.  There is really nothing wrong with these books.  Either you want to read them or you don’t.  And the one thing none of us can deny is the books standing on the New York Times Best Selling list.    Now I’m on to a Dan Brown book that is sure to provide excitement, but it’s simply not the same kind.

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