A Book I Hated (11)

button 30 Day Book Challenge

Welcome to the Moonlight Library’s 30 Day Book Challenge!
This meme intends to generate discussion, so please feel free to add a comment.
This particular challenge is taken from the 30 Day Challenge Archive on Tumblr.

Day 11 – A Book I Hated

I don’t like to use the word ‘hate’, but if I did, it would sum up how I feel about a poorly written book framing domestic, physical, and emotional abuse as romantic, and starring the most horrible characters I’ve ever read about.

Fifty Shades of Grey by EL James

Fifty Shades of Grey (Fifty Shades, #1)

Oh please. Initially I couldn’t even make it past 4%. Terminal velocity in an elevator? Really?

But then I picked it back up and tried to see why so many people love this book. I gave up a second time at 25%.

Christian is just as bad as Heathcliff and Ana is just as bad as Cathy (‘romantic’ leads from Wuthering Heights, my favourite classic), but they don’t have seventeenth century expectations and rules fostered on them.

Our abusive male lead and his brain dead ingénue are not in a love story.

I’ve read recaps from the Snark Squad and I often have to stop because it makes me feel physically ill. Christian is an emotionally and physically manipulative abusive egotistical child who rapes Ana, and Ana is so insufferably stupid that she convinces herself she likes it and that if only she can break down his walls he’ll let her touch him. Ana often feels the need to get away from Christian for her own safety, Christian gaslights Ana, and the story is written in such a way that he’s always right. I’m surprised Ana can even tie her own shoelaces. Nothing about this is romantic or sexy and it makes me feel ill when I read it.

Not only are the characters despicable but the story is one of the worst I’ve read and the writing talent is so sub-par I honestly struggle to see how anyone can critically enjoy this. Any and all plot elements introduced are conveniently forgotten or remembered when it suits the plot only, and the idea of a contract which isn’t even legally enforceable and serves only to give angst or be forgotten just makes me want to stab my own eyes out.

I’m utterly disgusted by this book. I don’t have a problem that it started off as fanfiction, only that tit seems to parody romance with over the top characters with absolutely zero subtlety nor suspense, and sells itself as BDSM when the most adventurous thing that happens is mildly vanilla. It’s a promise of controversy then delivering banality, and that’s probably why it’s so popular, because the readers think they’re so controversial and don’t realise they’ve been duped. This isn’t BDSM because the sub (Ana) is not in charge. When she’s supposed to use a safe word she forgets it (because she’s fucking stupid) and then Christian gets mad at her because it means he can’t trust her.

Because of the controversial nature of this opinion I will be moderating all comments. If you don’t have anything nice to say don’t say it.

Otherwise please feel free to comment on which book you loathe.


About Nemo

A lover of kittens and all things sparkly, Nemo has a degree in English Literature and specialises in reviewing contemporary, paranormal, mystery/thriller, historical, sci-fi and fantasy Young Adult fiction. She is especially drawn to novels about princesses, strong female friendships, magical powers, and assassins.

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4 thoughts on “A Book I Hated (11)

  1. S. L. Bond

    I completely agree. The fact that people view this book as sexy in any way is really disturbing and it makes me sick to think that such a blatantly abusive, manipulative man can be seen as attractive. No matter how you slice it, this isn’t a healthy relationship and the fact that it’s as popular as it is really concerns me.

    1. Nemo

      Thank you for putting it in such a succinct way! I just hate everything about it, the most important one being that it’s terribly written.

  2. Eve

    I so deeply worry about anyone who considers the way Christian and Ana interact to be romantic, enjoyable, or even remotely healthy. They are SO DEEPLY MESSED UP.

    And I can enjoy messed up relationships in the right setting! I love Joker/Harley! But I think that’s because at no point do the writers of Batman try to play them off as healthy or normal or right–they own how psycho they are, and I think that’s the difference to me.

    It’s the same problem I had with Twilight, which makes sense, since it’s basically Twilight With Sex Scenes.

    And you’re right…it’s SO badly written D:

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