Review: Fifty Shades of Grey (Fifty Shades, Book 1) by E.L. James

fifty shadesDisclaimer: I read parts of the story as a fanfic called Master of the Universe. It was okay, but nothing special. Still when a fanfic becomes a mainstream published novel I expect the flaws to be fixed and the glaring irregularities to be corrected. I expect someone to say to the author, “Hey you, what were you thinking, this makes no sense” or… “There is no way on the face of this planet a guy like your hero would ever say or do….” So the fact that I didn’t see any of that irks me and my review reflects that. If you loved these books stop now. Here is what I hated:

It relied heavily on readers already knowing the dynamic and personality and characteristics of the Twilight characters, especially Edward and Bella. If you hadn’t read Twilight and fallen for the romantic pair’s unique story, going into the BDSM relationship of this book is going to send up red flags. Allow me to explain in detail…

Ana is a novice when it comes to men, dating, sex, and submission. So if you didn’t know Ana and Christian were fated for each other and that it was true love, you would tell this girl to run as far and as fast in the other direction as possible.

Who would want to be with a guy that says to you, “I love hurting you and I need to hurt you to be turned on around you?” When you (and I am really speaking for Ana here, not someone into BDSM) wants Christian to want her in a vanilla relationship? There are some screws loose. All the sex scenes read like sex for sex sake and not as a spicy hot romance story. Lots of telling about feelings, and little showing.

Then there was inner monologue hoo-hah that had me cringe in the fanfic that managed to make it to the final draft. Did anybody read all that inner goddess crap and actually like it? Seriously—it’s crap, trying to be cute. Ana has multiple personality disorder and is oft times schizophrenic. That’s not sexy.

After the inner monologue, comes the real dialogue. Can we say, awful? Not to mention quite painful to read sometimes. Christian Grey’s “Laters, Baby” comes to mind right away. Shoot me now. There is no way this guy would say that because he is a stoic, uptight, always-in-control billionaire making 100K an hour. So no, I don’t buy it—the poor grammar, or the stupid nickname. He’d call her something else or leave it at just plain old Anastasia.

That’s just a few of the reasons I don’t like this story. Have you read it? What do you think?

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆

[phpbay]fifty shades of james, 10, 377, “”[/phpbay]

Buy: Fifty Shades Trilogy Bundle: Fifty Shades of Grey; Fifty Shades Darker; Fifty Shades Freed

Journey from Reader to Erotica Author

by Eliza Gayle, guest blogger and author of Lucas: A Black Cougar Novel

To be honest it was a fast and furious trip. Despite my love for reading and my early adventures in fanfic, (although I had no idea the fact I was writing sequels to Star Wars movies was called fanfic back then) I had not really given much thought to becoming a writer.

From the very beginning it’s been all about romance. I used to hide in the corner of the library devouring Rosemary Rogers as a pre teen and eventually wound my way to Nora Roberts. I’ve never been a reader of Horror of Science Fiction so it wasn’t until Sherrilyn Kenyon started writing the Dark Hunters that I realized paranormal romance was awesome. I fell in love with Valerius and that was it for me I was hooked. I sought out more books to read and I kept my library hopping for quite a while. Then two things happened that changed my life.

I picked up a copy of the Romantic Times magazine and I found Ellora’s Cave. My first EC book was by Lora Leigh and I swear my eyes were probably bugging out of my head. I kept turning to my husband with that OMG, deer in the headlights look. I even commented to him “They can write that? Wow!” Yes, I was truly oblivious to erotica until that moment. Somehow I’d made it into my thirties unaware. But I loved it and the wheels started turning. I wanted to write some but I didn’t have a clue even how to get started.

This is where the Romantic Times magazine comes into play. I came across the advertisement for the 2006 RT Convention in Daytona, Florida where they offered a pre-convention beginner’s writers course. That was only an hour away from my childhood home and my mother had been bugging me to come for a visit anyways so why not? I took that course with Judi McCoy who I will credit forever with starting me on this crazy path that I love so much. Her realistic approach to the business is awesome and I couldn’t recommend it more highly.

I returned from that trip in May of 06 and sat down and began writing a story about shapeshifters in the North Carolina mountains. I finished it in September and put it away. I needed some distance from it before I began edits and I had a short story idea I was dying to write. The short I finished in two weeks and sent it off to two publishers. The first rejection came and I sent it out again. The story sold a few weeks later and thus Eliza Gayle was born and it’s been crazy ever since.

That very first manuscript? Well, I poked it and prodded it here and there until in late 2008 I finally got serious with it. It needed a lot of work but I couldn’t let go of the premise. After a few name changes and a couple of other hurdles that book is now called Lucas and is my latest release and the first in the Black Cougar Trilogy.

Here is the blurb:

Lucas: A Black Cougar Novel

Kira MacDonald is in trouble. Plagued by false visions and erotic dreams of a man she’s never met, she fears losing both her psychic powers and her sanity. The cure? Finding and bonding with her mate. The stubborn red-haired warrior might not want one, but fate has other plans, plans that include her rescuing Lucas Gunn.

As the Guardian of his shape-shifting clan, Lucas Gunn lived a quiet, solitary life. Until he was kidnapped, examined, and tortured. Now imprisoned, his only tie to the outside world is the memory of his dreams and the passionate woman who appears nightly in them. He thought she was nothing more than a vision. Then she came for him.

An uneasy alliance, a mating call that won’t be denied, rituals that must be honored, and unrelenting enemies who will stop at nothing to get what they want. It all comes together in the first of Eliza Gayle’s sensational Black Cougar Series. Passion and Pride. Duty and Danger. In the end, there’s really only one choice…for Lucas.

The link to read an excerpt is http://elizagayle.net/books/lucas

Buy: Lucas: A Black Cougar Novel

Follow me on Twitter @elizagaylebooks

Or on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/elizagayle