Fifty Shades of Grey- a book review

Fifty Shades of Grey- a book review

April 1, 2013 3 By Pramathesh Borkotoky
Fifty Shades of GreyName of the Book: Fifty Shades of Grey
Author: E.L. James
Publisher: Arrow Books, Random House

Genre : XXX Porn

Rating : Poor

Before I start, I must say that this book is not for children. Parental supervision is advised in case someone is interested as it might lead to irreparable damage to their mental state.

I generally avoid writing mean reviews and if I have to do it I avoid publishing it. Since, this book made record breaking sales, I had to write this review so as to warn people away  from what I went through. Some books are painfully torturous, but I read them as that gives me an idea about the difference between good and bad books. This was one of those.

Like all authors who write in the genre of erotica, I appreciate the courage of the author to attempt a book, in fact a full trilogy in this genre. I really enjoy reading erotica and my experience regarding this genre was till now very good. Authors in this genre generally have a very good sense of humor and terrific command over the language letting our imaginations to wander into wild horizons while moving the story cleverly.

In this case however, nothing of that sort happens. The story moves painfully slow and the author leaves nothing for imagination add to that huge amount of errors right from character building to narration to the sense of geography and demographic characteristics. Everything is unreal. There is high level of immaturity displayed in the book. The male character is a billionaire (or probably multi-billionaire), a self made man, an American man who speaks fluent French, plays piano like the masters, connoisseur of classical music, knows classic books by heart,  athlete, trained pilot, drop dead gorgeous, has an enviable…(never mind that), a great lover in bed with immense amount of stamina. In addition to being rich, he also feels for the poor and works for eradicating of world hunger.Can you imagine that? If that was not enough, he is only 26 years of age. The advantage of being rich is shown by that he is never working. He is either having sex, e-mailing the female character, or busy tracking her in that particular order. It is like the so called “dream man” of a frustrated teenage girl.

The book in the attempted erotica genre is known for it’s explicit sex scenes, so I am coming to that now (pun not intended). Every page has a sex scene and it is described in detail. It feels good for the first time but it feels frustrating to see it happening every page and it no longer appeals to the reader. Also, I wonder how easily the female character has an orgasm, even just by a gaze of the male character. The author must have been writing porn prior to this book or must have been a porn addict to give so much importance to sex in such detail while not giving attention to any other aspect of the book.

Now coming to writing part, although the story is based in the US but the book is filled with everything British, the language, the idioms used, the choice of books and movies and the male protagonist’s family is so much classy like the British.

If that was not enough, then there are the repetitions. The female character has a limited usage of words even after having a wide range of word stock,  and they are mostly “Jeez”, “Oh my” or “Oh Crap”(can be intensified into “holy crap”, double crap” or “triple crap”).  Practically, in every page when she is not having sex she either “blushes” or “flushes” in different shades of red like crimson, scarlet, stars and stripes red (only a girl can imagine that color). The male character mostly “cocks his head to one side”,  “quirks up his lips” or his “mouth presses in a hard line”. Characters don’t talk to each other but “murmur”, “mutter” or “whisper” and at often times, “smirk”. The expressions include “rolls his/her eyes” (or “eyes rolling”), “pursing lips” and mostly “raise their eyebrows”, “gasp”, “breathe hitches” and so many “grins” and “frowns”.

The story if any moves awfully slow and if it had been edited well, the book could have been a well written short story. A probable reason for the trilogy might be that it was originally self published and it did not go through the regular editing process of facts checking and trimming of unnecessary parts.

The book has an attractive cover but don’t let the temptation overcome you and  stay away from this “triple crap”.

P.S. – The Book has been booked under the genre XXX porn and not under erotica not because of the explicit erotica but due to the overuse of explicit sex depiction combined with the bad quality of writing.

P.P.S. – The record sales of the book proves that nothing sells like sex. Period.

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