Book Review: Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James

Book Review: Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James (Book  #1 in the Fifty Shades series)

Format: ebook

First Published: 2011

Genres: Contemporary Romance, BDSM, erotic romance

Synopsis (from Goodreads)When literature student Anastasia Steele is drafted to interview the successful young entrepreneur Christian Grey for her campus magazine, she finds him attractive, enigmatic and intimidating. Convinced their meeting went badly, she tries to put Grey out of her mind – until he happens to turn up at the out-of-town hardware store where she works part-time.

The unworldly, innocent Ana is shocked to realize she wants this man, and when he warns her to keep her distance it only makes her more desperate to get close to him. Unable to resist Ana’s quiet beauty, wit, and independent spirit, Grey admits he wants her – but on his own terms.

Shocked yet thrilled by Grey’s singular erotic tastes, Ana hesitates. For all the trappings of success – his multinational businesses, his vast wealth, his loving adoptive family – Grey is man tormented by demons and consumed by the need to control. When the couple embarks on a passionate, physical and daring affair, Ana learns more about her own dark desires, as well as the Christian Grey hidden away from public scrutiny.

Can their relationship transcend physical passion? Will Ana find it in herself to submit to the self-indulgent Master? And if she does, will she still love what she finds?

Erotic, amusing, and deeply moving, the Fifty Shades Trilogy is a tale that will obsess you, possess you, and stay with you forever.


I’ve been wanting to read this book for many months now. It’s been recommended to me by many people but it cost a little more than what I like to pay for ebooks. But when I saw it was a finalist in the romance category for book of the year on, I could not stop myself from buying it.

The book tells the story of how Anastasia Steele meets and falls in love with billionaire and brilliant wizkid, Christian Grey. Ana, the narrator, just finished with university and about to start the new chapter of her life in the real world meets Christian and gets more than she bargains for.

I didn’t find out until after I’d finished reading that this book was originally a Twilight fanfiction but I’m not surprised. The heroine is self-pitying and whiny and at times, down right annoying. It also explained why there appeared to be such an age difference between the characters despite chronologically only being 3 or so years different. Ana is naive, immature and incredibly innocent – not just with regards sex.

The highlight of the novel for me was the email conversations between Ana and Christian. It provided the only opportunity to get some slight insight into Christian and much comic relief. The flirty tone and witty comments in those emails amused me greatly.

At 356 pages this book felt never ending and yet the ending came as a bit of a surprise to me at how abrupt it was. It leads perfectly up to the sequel Fifty Shades Darker. It’s an interesting look at a Dominant/submissive relationship where the sex between the two is vanilla and relatively kink-free.

I was a little disappointed with this novel considering all the hype surrounding it but then again, Twilight wasn’t my cup of tea.


2 out of 5

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