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Customer Review

17,940 of 18,783 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Bestseller? Really???, March 25, 2012
This review is from: Fifty Shades of Grey (Fifty Shades, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
I enjoy erotica and heard so much about this book that I had to give it a shot, but I'm five chapters in and just can't take it anymore. This has to be the most appallingly atrocious writing I've ever seen in a major release. The pseudonymous British author sets the action (such as it is) in Washington State... for no reason than that her knowledge of America apparently consists of what she read in "Twilight"... but the entire first-person narrative is filled with Britishisms. How many American college students do you know who talk about "prams," "ringing" someone on the phone, or choosing a "smart rucksack" to take "on holiday"? And the author's geography sounds like she put together a jigsaw puzzle of the Pacific Northwest while drunk and ended up with several pieces in the wrong place.

And oh, the repetition...and the repetition...and the repetition. I'm convinced the author has a computer macro that she hits to insert one of her limited repertoire of facial expressions whenever she needs one. According to my Kindle search function, characters roll their eyes 41 times, Ana bites her lip 35 times, Christian's lips "quirk up" 16 times, Christian "cocks his head to one side" 17 times, characters "purse" their lips 15 times, and characters raise their eyebrows a whopping 50 times. Add to that 80 references to Ana's anthropomorphic "subconscious" (which also rolls its eyes and purses its lips, by the way), 58 references to Ana's "inner goddess," and 92 repetitions of Ana saying some form of "oh crap" (which, depending on the severity of the circumstances, can be intensified to "holy crap," "double crap," or the ultimate "triple crap"). And this is only part one of a trilogy...

If I wrote like that, I'd use a pseudonym too.

Like some other reviewers, what I find terribly depressing is that this is a runaway bestseller and the movie rights are expected to sell for up to $5 million. There are so many highly talented writers in the genre... and erotica is so much more erotic when the author has a command of the language and can make you care about the characters. For examples, check out the "Beauty" trilogy written by Anne Rice under the pen name A.N. Roquelaure, or any stories by Donna George Storey or Rachel Kramer Bussel. Just stay away from this triple crap.

*UPDATE*: Thanks to the many other perturbed readers who have shared their own choices of the most annoyingly overused phrases in this masterpiece. Following up on their suggestions with my ever-useful Kindle search function, I have discovered that Ana says "Jeez" 81 times and "oh my" 72 times. She "blushes" or "flushes" 125 times, including 13 that are "scarlet," 6 that are "crimson," and one that is "stars and stripes red." (I can't even imagine.) Ana "peeks up" at Christian 13 times, and there are 9 references to Christian's "hooded eyes," 7 to his "long index finger," and 25 to how "hot" he is (including four recurrences of the epic declarative sentence "He's so freaking hot."). Christian's "mouth presses into a hard line" 10 times. Characters "murmur" 199 times, "mutter" 49 times, and "whisper" 195 times (doesn't anyone just talk?), "clamber" on/in/out of things 21 times, and "smirk" 34 times. Christian and Ana also "gasp" 46 times and experience 18 "breath hitches," suggesting a need for prompt intervention by paramedics. Finally, in a remarkable bit of symmetry, our hero and heroine exchange 124 "grins" and 124 "frowns"... which, by the way, seems an awful lot of frowning for a woman who experiences "intense," "body-shattering," "delicious," "violent," "all-consuming," "turbulent," "agonizing" and "exhausting" orgasms on just about every page.
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Tracked by 31 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 1000 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Mar 25, 2012 3:40:52 PM PDT
Mayflower says:
LOL. Love your review. I agree with every word.

Posted on Mar 25, 2012 6:02:32 PM PDT
How many times did she use the word "clamber"?!? I agree completely with your review!

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 25, 2012 6:07:43 PM PDT
Rissa says:
Me, too. I read the first 10% (as my Kindle measures it) but I got tired of Ana blushing every two sentences when she is with Christian. It was almost as bad as Edward Cullen's "crooked smile."

Posted on Mar 25, 2012 9:55:31 PM PDT
Ahhhh the Beauty trilogy. I should re-read that. :)

The good news is that the movie won't resemble this trainwreck. They never do. Exit to Eden was a great book but the movie was a comedy!

Posted on Mar 27, 2012 8:08:52 AM PDT
A. Estrada says:
Fantastic review! I wish I'd read it before buying the book. Thank goodness I only wasted $$ on the first one.

Posted on Mar 31, 2012 8:31:46 PM PDT
latebloomer says:
And don't forget Selena Kitt. Hot (times 10) and thought-provoking and well-written.

Posted on Apr 23, 2012 7:59:03 AM PDT
Gigi says:
I agree completely- her "inner goddess" really started to drive me crazy early on, and boy, she sure keeps mentioning it! What I found most irritating and repetitive is how often Ana would "peek" up at Christian. Every other page it's, "I peek up at him; I blink up at him; I peer up at him through my lashes, I grin up at him"...even when they are laying side by side in bed, she still peeks up at him. STOP PEEKING! JUST LOOK AT HIM! YOU'RE NOT A LITTLE BABY.

Posted on Apr 26, 2012 5:43:51 PM PDT
greta says:
Your review is absolutely spot on! Thanks for putting it in words for me.

Posted on Apr 29, 2012 8:45:47 AM PDT
Peaeyed says:
Exactly what I thought. You forgot to mention the word "murmur", I cringed every time it was used.

Posted on Apr 29, 2012 10:45:40 AM PDT
Liz W says:
Your review had me laughing out loud! I wish I had read more reviews like this before I wasted my money on this garbage. I want know our society is coming to when this is a "national bestseller?" My inner goddess is throwing up now. Won't be continuing the trilogy.
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