Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Not-Quite A Book Review: 50 Shades of Grey

There are some books that you just can't bring yourself to read.

Cookbooks, for example, or the dictionary...or books describing Hitler's sexual obsession with feces, or your mom's diary detailing her first sleepover date with Dad.
Or the Twilight series, which was written for 12 year old girls with no grasp of what an actual romantic relationship is like. And now, 50 Shades of Grey...which I just heard is apparently a fan fiction of Twilight? God kill us all. Please. Do it now before this gets made into a movie.

"Everyone" is reading it? No. Unsatisfied, bored housewives and bondage fans whose preferred genre is clearly lacking in variety are reading it. That's it. Everyone else is backing away slowly while snickering.

People say it's an erotic novel...but from the many reviews I've read (both good and bad), it appears to be the literary equivalent to a book with Fabio on the cover - hardly worth calling a novel, and certainly not worth more than $1.99 on your supermarket checkout rack. I'd sooner consider "Barney's Art Project" literature than this drivel.

It's certainly not hailed as "literature" by anyone who has read a grown-up book.

I did find about 4 positive reviews which ultimately made it sound like nothing more than sad, pathetic dross, written by someone who doesn't understand plot or character depth, decent dialogue or emotional growth. But according to its fervent (probably unemployed) readers, the plot holes were nonexistent and the characters were intriguing - and the book was excellent because it was super duper fascinating to see how the relationship played out. Really now? I consider watching someone lose her entire miniscule-to-begin-with personality to be rather depressing, not enthralling.

Ultimately, I found this gloriously hilarious review which pretty much sums it up as the piece of crap high school girl chick-lit that it is...And I just don't understand why people subject themselves to this type of BS when there is actual good literature out there, or even just fun chick-lit that doesn't make you want to simultaneously masturbate with kitchen utensils while crying into a box of Kleenex and vowing to stop hating yourself someday.

I'll leave you with the words of Katrina Lumsden of the above review:

"It's this kind of ignorant trash that sets feminism back decades. Women who defend this book are, however unwittingly, participating in some of the most blatant misogyny I've ever witnessed, giving the impression that some women enjoy being debased, abused, and controlled (outside of a consensual dom/sub relationship).
This is not a book about BDSM, this is a book about one sick, abusive man and his obsession with a young, naive invertebrate. It's a book about a girl who has absolutely no sense of self, who sacrifices any pretense of individuality in order to hold onto a man who doesn't even show her the faintest glimmer of respect. It's about two attention-starved individuals with the emotional maturity of toilet paper convincing themselves that their relationship is 'like, the best thing ever, OMG'.

It's trite, insulting, and dangerous. I fear for any impressionable young women who read this and think that this is how an ideal relationship should operate. If nothing else, it should be issued as a guidebook to mothers around the world to show their daughters the kind of man to avoid at all costs. This book does good men (and indeed, all of humanity) a disservice."

No thanks. I'll stick to books with characters who have souls.

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