Book Review: Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James

April 27, 2013 Review 0 ★★

This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
Book Review: Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. JamesFifty Shades Of Grey by E.L. James
Series: Fifty Shades Of Grey #1
Published by Vintage on 2011 May 25
Genres: Erotica
Pages: 356
Format: Paperback
Source: Borrowed
Buy on Amazon

When literature student Anastasia Steele goes to interview young entrepreneur Christian Grey, she encounters a man who is beautiful, brilliant, and intimidating. The unworldly, innocent Ana is startled to realize she wants this man and, despite his enigmatic reserve, finds she is desperate to get close to him. Unable to resist Ana’s quiet beauty, wit, and independent spirit, Grey admits he wants her, too—but on his own terms.

Shocked yet thrilled by Grey’s singular erotic tastes, Ana hesitates. For all the trappings of success—his multinational businesses, his vast wealth, his loving family—Grey is a man tormented by demons and consumed by the need to control. When the couple embarks on a daring, passionately physical affair, Ana discovers Christian Grey’s secrets and explores her own dark desires.

Erotic, amusing, and deeply moving, the Fifty Shades Trilogy is a tale that will obsess you, possess you, and stay with you forever.

This book is intended for mature audiences.

Hiyaaah! It’s good to be back. I’m sorry if it has been so long since I last posted. I got so busy with all the things going on IRL. Anyway, getting on with this book review, I’d like to share with you a little bit of information about my views on books like Fifty Shades of Grey. For a long long time, talk of sexuality among women has somewhat been labelled as very unbecoming of a lady or inappropriate behavior in accordance to the norms of the society. Admit it or not, people are more forgiving if it’s men expressing their sexuality than seeing females exploring this very interesting aspect of their lives.   This is the reason why that at a young age (prolly 13), I got curious with the subject and my mind started asking questions.  However, the topic of sexuality in our home is kinda forbidden because my mother is a conservative devout Catholic and hello World, this is Philippines. So I sought my answers through “unconventional” ways which included sneaking and watching my father’s porn movies and reading romance short stories. xD And before you start asking, no, I did not have the opportunity to look or read Playboy magazines.  At the age of 17, my mother accidentally gave me a porn book which was entitled “Jennifer” by Anonymous.  I’m kind of sure that she was not aware that it was a porn movie translated into a book. The book was kind of scary because it really describes the different methodologies of doing sex and it also served as a mind opener for me.  

I don’t know if you agree with me but reading books like these made me more aware of the importance of understanding sexuality and well, you know killing the curious cat in me which I think helped in preventing me from trying the real thing at a young age.  

Anyway, I’m really bringing you to a different course. So here’s my review for Fifty Shades of Grey.

Fifty Shades of Grey was introduced to me by an office friend and during that time, I wasn’t really looking for something to read other than what has been on my to-read-books list.  To tell you the truth, I am at the phase of my life now where I’m already contented about what I’ve learned about human sexuality from the books so I’m directing my efforts in reading dystopian, sci-fi and fantasy-adventure novels. I only managed to read FSG because curiosity got the best of my office friend and she actually shelled out the money to have the book.  And after she was finished, she lent it to me so I can read and totally relate with her story of the book. So one night, after my shelves ran out of books to read, I finally found myself reading FSG.

To be honest, I was not quite impressed with how the book turned. I cannot bring myself to relate to Christian or to Anastasia. It saddens me that the book which had so much potential failed to arouse in me that kind of passion experienced by Anna.  I give this book 2.5 stars.


The OC in me tells that FSG’s plot is dull and poorly written like E.L. James was just in a hurry to make some scene where she can insert the sexual intimacies of Anna and Christian.  I think the book was just highly publicized and it actually projected an image that it’s really good but honestly speaking, some of the romance short stories that I’ve read which have almost the same subject matter are far better than this one.  What I only admire in FSG is that E.L. James is really detailed with movements that you can vividly picture what has been going on with Anna and Christian.  And of course, I also admired how E.L. James described the methods and the sexual gadgets that were used.  Although I have to say that some of the scenes really disgusted me that I almost puke. 

Another reason that I don’t like about the book much is that I’m hardly convinced of what kind of lesson it’s trying to convey to the readers.  I don’t want to put spoilers here so you better read and judge the book. 


I don’t know about you but I’m quite sure with myself that there’s no character that I liked in this book. Anna’s character is as empty as my gaping mouth as of this moment.  Why do I have this feeling that E.L. James only created the girl so that Christian can have someone to practice his BDSM tactics?  And Christian, he’s just a sex starved maniac who has no redeeming qualities at all. Of course, he’s handsome, he’s rich, gallant and all that but I could never consider him as my hero no matter how “good” he is in bed.  Some of his sexual moves left a bitter taste in my mouth.

Interactions and Dialogues 

Perhaps, with the previous paragraphs that I’ve written, you already have an idea as to what I’m going to write here.  E.L. James did not really strive hard to make the interactions and dialogues of the characters a reason to fall in love with because I am not impressed with how the characters interact with each other. I do not even find Anna or Christian’s dialogue to be witty and charismatic. 

Overall Impression

I am greatly dissatisfied with the book which is maybe one of the reasons why it took me so long to make a review even though I’ve finished reading it 3 months ago.  I am only making a review because I want to share to you that even if I do not like the book, it doesn’t mean that I’m condemning the readers for reading it. ( Again, there’s nothing wrong with exploring and understanding your sexuality.  And it would never be wrong if you find the courage to read the book and decide that you like it, that it made you understand one part of yourself a lot better.)  And of course, to vent out my frustrations with FSG.  I was actually expecting so much from it and I thought that I’d fall head over heels in love with Christian and cry with Anna but at the last page, I ended up not liking it.  And I was left in the middle of something where I questioned myself, why did I waste my time reading it? Why did I have to spend my time with Anna who’s will is weaker than her own knees?  Why did I have to spend my time listening to a shallow bully like Christian who only knows how to f**k hard?

I’m not sure if I’m going to read the next two books. But because I’m an OC bookworm and would like to put closure to what I’ve started, I might just read them but that would really take a loooooong time.  My sister has already sent me an e-book for Darker and Freed but it’s just sitting in one of the folders of my desktop.

Before I end this review, I’d like to say again that if you want to read Fifty Shades of Grey, go ahead and do not let this review influence your decision.  It is always good if you read it and share your insights here.  I always love a healthy discussion. 😀

Thanks for visiting Wayward Kitsune.

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