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728 of 875 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Either you love it or hate it...
Okay one thing is clear about `50 shades of grey', you either love it or hate it. I read the book on impulse after a friend recommended it as `similar to twilight', so mind you I had no idea the book dealt with BDSM. My first reaction was `what the hell?!', I have to say it was clearly a surprise and not one I was entirely content with but 50-75 pages in why not...
Published on April 10, 2012 by lccilliyah

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23,865 of 24,789 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Did a teenager write this???
I really don't like writing bad reviews. I admire people who have the courage to put pen to paper and expose themselves to the whole world, especially those writing erotica. Having just finished this book, however, I feel compelled to write a review.

About half way through the book, I looked up the author to see if she was a teenager. I really did because the...
Published on April 15, 2012 by meymoon


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5 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars "Oh my! I'm blushing, biting my lip and rolling my eyes..."., June 17, 2012
By 
nood65 "halloween aficionado" (San Diego, Ca United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Fifty Shades of Grey (Paperback)
There's no need for my review. The last reviewer ("meymoon") absolutely nailed it. It held my interest enough to finish it but it really does sound like a silly girl wrote it.
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5 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Too much sex, too little plot, June 14, 2012
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I sat and read this book very quickly. It wasn't the sex that was the draw for me; I wanted to find out what happened to Grey that brought him to this point in his life. But that part of the plot is just a tease, and I will have to wade through two more volumes to find out what caused him to become so "sick". I have to call it what it is. He is not just a little perverted; he wants to hurt people in order to achieve sexual gratification.
I hope this is not another book being read by teenage girls. Think of the damage it could do if they mistakenly believe this is normal and the most exciting thing that could happen sexually.
Being plenty old enough to know better than to buy into this view of sexuality, I still would like to read the parts of the other books that tell about Grey's early life. But I doubt if I will buy them. Maybe someone will tell me later.
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5 of 10 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars porn culture, June 12, 2012
This review is from: Fifty Shades of Grey: Book One of the Fifty Shades Trilogy (Paperback)
This story is just porn. It shows the moral decline of a culture that glorifies cheating and totally narcissistic behavior. There is really nothing romantic about it.
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5 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "We aim to please, Miss Steele", June 7, 2012
This review is from: Fifty Shades of Grey: Book One of the Fifty Shades Trilogy (Paperback)
When asked about this book there are two responses. They are either "I absolutely loved it" or "I absolutely hated it". The question is, which category do you fall into? It really is that black and white, there is no grey (pun intended).

Which category did I fall into? I absolutely, positively loved and adored this book. My emotions completely ran the gambit while reading it. I laughed, gasped, smiled (many times) and even cried.

So why is it so black and white with Fifty Shades of Grey? The negative reviews seem mention the writing style of E.L. James. Honestly this did not seem to phase me at all, I even went into the book with this thought in my mind. Yes there are repetitive moments and I do believe Ana says 'Oh My...' a few too many times but then at the end of the day it didn't really bother me all that much. As this book is being told by Ana and we can all admit she is a very naive, innocent girl, I felt the style of writing was actually how Ana would be speaking and thinking in her head. I have never known myself to say 'Oh My...' but when I think of the situations that she found herself in I could see how this is a thought that would be in her head. So again, I was not at all phased by the writing or the style, I found it very easy to read and it flowed nicely.

Are the characters believable? In the world they have been written into... yes. Is it all that believable in the 'real world'... probably not. This is a work of fiction and therefore you are allowed to enter it's world and forget about your own for a little while.

Does this book have sex? Of course it does, you probably wouldn't be reading this review if you didn't already know that. Is this book only about sex? Absolutely not. This is a love story. A love story between a shy, self conscious girl and a broken, messed up boy. But I have faith they will help each other as the story progresses and that they will be happy. Am I a hopeless romantic? Yes Sir I am!

What can I say about the main characters... Christian and Anastasia (Ana)? I love them. It is that simple for me. I love them. I love how they interact with each other and found the eMails back and forth very funny. I love how one moment there is giggling and happiness and then the next it is all moody and thoughtful. I love how you can see them both growing together, helping each other and I want nothing more than for them to ride off into the sunset together. Isn't it every girls dream to have a knight in shining armor come to whisk her away upon a gallant white horse? Of course it is. However, the part the camera never focuses in on is the fact that the knight has a leather riding crop in his hand.
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5 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Guilty Pleasures, May 22, 2012
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This review is from: Fifty Shades of Grey: Book One of the Fifty Shades Trilogy (Paperback)
So, first and foremost, if we leave out the naught tid-bits I actually found parts of the book humerous, cute and fun. I've heard it compared to a R-rated Twilight...but I love Twilight and that is also a guilty little pleasure of mine. It's fun fantasy, plain and simple. It's imagination gone wild and romantic and obviously a lot of women dream of a character such as Christian Grey or we wouldn't all be eating it up. I read all 3 books and enjoyed them immensly, but of course it's fiction so I read it as a fiction novel, not as an autobiography of a virgin college girl who winds up with a wealthy unstable fetish freak. The books make me smile, and what women wouldn't want that kind of attention? I blush with Ana...oh if only. So, for those who are seeking something other than fantasies and sexual situations that will make your jaw drop, do yourself a favor, read something else. I loved it and have recommended it to my reading group...that will make for a delicious meeting at book club. :)
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5 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars If you like TWILIGHT and are over 18, this book is for you!, May 20, 2012
This review is from: Fifty Shades of Grey: Book One of the Fifty Shades Trilogy (Paperback)
Time to put this 1 star vs. 5 star controversy to rest-- a review by a very well read bibliophile.

Okay, so here is the deal. Yes the books are pretty poorly written. No need to relay the litany of repetitive phrases and words that every other reviewer has already hashed out ad nauseum. But with that said-- why are they so popular? Why could a high brow classics nerd like myself not put them down in SPITE of this? I've put some thought into the subject and here is what I came up with:

There was only one other series of books I have experienced that had the same elementary writing style and yet inexplicable addictive appeal-- Twilight. No surprise then that this series was started by a Twi-hard who admittedly said, "Hmmm I can write this exact same story-- but for adults-- and without that whole abstinence problem." There was no disguising the blatant "borrowing" that occurs here; man who feels he is a monster with a heart of gold, finds woman who teaches him to love -her and himself. Both series ran around 1800 pages-- both I read ravenously (Twilight in 1 week, and 50 in about 2). This seemed to be the pervading pacing for ALL the women I talked to then and now. For each series nearly EVERYONE I mentioned the books to replied with an enthusiastic "Yes! I am reading that right now too! Finished the first one in 24 hours!"

So what is the through line here-- how can books where everyone "rolls their eyes" at the clunky rudimentary style be spellbinding? Simple. They do something new-- something that literature has never dared to do before-- something we weak with bated breath lit nerds never dared even hope could happen; THEY GIVE US EXACTLY EVERYTHING THAT WE WANT.

Most books make you WORK for it. WAIT for it. STRUGGLE through countless misunderstandings and stubborn heroes and heroines for it. Work for the moments when your characters overcome their adversity and achieve those few blessed moments of peace and clarity when they finally do and say what they've been holding back for hundreds of pages-- Twilight and 50 Shades don't suffer from this particular literary requirement-- instead they give the reader exactly what she wants, from all characters at ALL times. It is Instant Gratification Literature. The new cyber age of I-Want-Everything-Right-Now has finally invaded the World of Literature. It is a completely new and unique experience for readers. When presented with a misunderstanding or a secret or a challenge, the characters never fail to reward the reader by saying and doing exactly what you wish they would. It's like an entire book made up of what would normally be just your favorite chapters in any other book.

So how can this be interesting? In a way, it's sort of devoid of drama. The style is like a dark romantic fantasy not a book. The conflict is somewhat secondary and not really driving the plot-- a novel idea, I know. So what IS driving the plot? Very intriguing characters, a desire to know what happens to them, and circumstances-- an very interesting premise for a story that leaves the reader wondering how they characters will live within and navigate out of it's seemly impossible constraints.

So with all that said, HOW can I possibly rate this poorly written, drama-less book as 4 stars? Because it entertained me. I was involved and entertained and unable to put it down for 2 weeks. What more are we asking of a story? Just like movies, there are ones that make you think, ones that explore the art form, and ones that just show you pretty people with lots of cars on fire. But really, why be snobby about it. They are all valid ways to spend $10, depending on your mood. and so was this. 50 Shades was exactly what it purported to be-- an addictive, though humbly authored, wildly entertaining book. Don't ask it to be Austen and you'll like it just fine.

**A Post Script on one bit I did find particularly entertaining-- The emails. While descriptive passages are not her forte, the email repartee was fantastic- witty, natural, and sharp. One thing worthy of props.
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5 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Surprised, May 19, 2012
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I decided to read this on the backside of all the "hype". I guess you could say that curiosity captured the cat. The storyline is stelar showing the rawest of emotions between two people and their polar opposite worlds that collide. I found it to be thought provoking and yes, "racey" at times, but, allowed myself to look past that to the story that was unfolding in front of me. Reading Book One was not nearly enough for me, I found myself reading Books 2 and 3 and still wanting more.

Thank you for the great read!!
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5 of 10 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Disgusting, and I'm not even talking the sex, May 19, 2012
By 
Karen (Kensington, MD United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Fifty Shades of Grey: Book One of the Fifty Shades Trilogy (Paperback)
Opened the book to take a sampling and happened upon the end of a violent encounter. The heroine was shocked at the violence, physically hurt and humiliated. She vowed the sort of "never again" thing and sulked off, only to be followed by a sweeter more pentinent guy who was worried about her. All her feelings seemed to mean nothing moments later as she is reminded how pretty he is and apologizes TO HIM before professing her love for him. I have no idea how this is different from a scene where a husband throws his wife across a room and is then sweeter and more sorry afterwards. If this makes one battered woman think that really loving someone means swallowing that all down and somehow loving them more for sharing what a monster they are, then this author should truly be ashamed of herself. For all of the readers who are lapping this sick drivel up, well, it gives me little hope for women of today. Perhaps she would have been less forgiving if he wasn't as pretty, or as rich.
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5 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fifty Shades of Grey, May 17, 2012
After reading all the negative reviews, I guess you can put me in the "moron" category. I have never before read a book of this type, "erotica", so to speak, so who am I to say if it was good or not? All I know is I enjoyed it, took it for what it was (a story) about two people of differing backgrounds and experiences, having an affair, and, eventually, a relationship. What's all the fuss? I'm sure the writer didn't expect he/she was writing the next great classic novel. Just take it for what it is..entertaining. If you don't like, fine. But apparently, plenty of others did. I enjoyed the first book, the next and the next. That's just how I roll..
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5 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fifty Shades Trilogy, May 17, 2012
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This review is from: Fifty Shades of Grey: Book One of the Fifty Shades Trilogy (Paperback)
*MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS*
I've read all three books of the trilogy, and although i must admit that it was a bit repetitive, the story was that of the ultimate love story between an unbelievable man and a young strong headed woman.
Christian's character is THE alpha male, Ana that of an innocent and strong willed woman.
The book does not dote on BDSM, Christian sexual nature is that of the unusual kind, however seeing that he is totally in love with Ana, he gives her choices all the time.
I don't for one moment think this book degrades woman or condones that women be told what to do or portrays women as defenseless, it's not disturbing at all. It's because of Christian's childhood he is the way he is, but he does not impose this forcefully on Ana...he lets her choose. Ana being new to the sexual activities, also indulges Christian, if she doesn't like something she lets him know and he obliges her..
I've heard/read comments saying that after all that women have been through for their independence why would such a book be popular.Women, even if they don't want to admit it, would like their men to be like Christian, he takes charge, takes care of Ana, talks to her,sees to all her needs. It's because Ana is independent and she don't allow Christian to engulf her with his ways, and he listens, because her needs and wants, he cares about.
You get caught up in the love story between them, their love emanates through the book, you feel Christian's overwhelming love for Ana.
The last book, ended the story very well, i don't think there is another fifty shades coming, because of the way it was concluded.
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Fifty Shades of Grey: Book One of the Fifty Shades Trilogy
Fifty Shades of Grey: Book One of the Fifty Shades Trilogy by E. L. James (Paperback - April 3, 2012)
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