Tuesday, August 21, 2012

50 Shades of Grey chapter 15 in which I am too drunk to come up with a good title.

A quick note before we get started. I've been having some spam-bots wandering into my corner of the internet lately, so the spam filters are getting a little... Twitchy. If you make a comment and it doesn't show up, as strange as it sounds, make another saying so. I see all comments in my inbox, but it doesn't mention that it filtered some to the spam folder. If you comment again I'll know to rescue your previous comment.

Right! Onto chapter 15! I have high hopes for this chapter despite the boring and tedious never ending that last chapter was. Why? Because Ana just said yes. They have to be close to the banging all the time, right? The rest of the three books will only be a series of sex acts, right? Right?! Please? I'm also starting this chapter with a drink in hand. Because I don't work tomorrow. The Boy is going to be confused when he comes home from work and I'm half in the bag. Now, ONWARDS!

Grey turns up looking good in leather (yeah you do) with a bottle of champagne. Ana drools a little and then apologizes that they only have tea cups as everything else is packed. I now want to have a grown up tea party, but tea party like when I was little, and instead of juice have hard liquor. Grey then finds the books Ana is planning to give back to him.

Crap… this is probably going to be a fight.

That is her first thought. They are barely even dating and she's expecting a fight over every little thing. WHY DO WOMEN IDEALIZE THIS RELATIONSHIP? I was talking to a friend of mine who's on book 3 of this series and she made me feel a little better "I don't find him or the relationship even a little attractive. The only appeal of Grey is that he's hot and rich." which is still concerning that this is so popular, but less scary. She also added on "Plus it's hot how open he is about what he wants in the sack." which I actually am not scared by. I'm not into Grey, but sexual empowerment? Hell yeah.

So Grey comments about HOW PERFECT the quote is and says that he bought them for Ana and he'll go easier on her (her request) if she keeps them. He's her Dom now so she doesn't need to think about these things, just accept them and be happy. Ana however has a surprising back up plan.

“So they are mine to do with as I wish?”
He eyes me suspiciously, but concedes.
“Yes.”
“In that case, I’d like to give them to a charity, one working in Darfur since that seems to be close to your heart. They can auction them.”


Well played, Ana. Well played. However because it's Grey that won't work quite so simply.


“I’ll think about it,” I murmur, I don’t want to disappoint him, and his words come back to me. I want you to want to please me.
“Don’t think, Anastasia. Not about this.” His tone is quiet and serious.


Again, encouraging her to be mindless. He doesn't want a girlfriend or relationship, he just wants some beige blob to boss around. I'm confused that he keeps saying how much he likes things about HER (her ready wit, negotiation skills, ability to make a point) but when ever she does anything, dismisses her.


You can pretend to be a car, like his other possessions, my subconscious makes an unwelcome vitriolic return.

And Grey then kisses her and says he's going to buy her lots of things and she should learn to get used to it and like it because he can afford it and wants to.

‘Ho’ my subconscious mouths at me.

SHUT UP ANA'S SUBCONSCIOUS YOU'RE AN AWFUL HARPY! This chapter I am playing the drinking game of "Every time I yell at a characters as I read, I drink!" so far we're at two. One for Grey telling Ana not to think, and one for Ana's subconscious. Don't worry, I'll write up a proper drinking game in the future.

Ana tells Grey that it makes her feel cheap (don't give into your harpy of a subconscious! Shove a ball gag in her mouth and then let Grey do the same to you!) and Grey is all "STOP THINKING YOU SILLY WOMAN! YOU'LL LEARN TO LIKE IT! DON'T WORRY WHAT OTHER PEOPLE THINK!" I'm sure this book will end with the two of them riding off into the sunset, but let's pretend they don't for a moment. This is Ana's first relationship. If she and Grey split, how damaged will she be when it comes to dating another guy? Will she expect lavish gifts in exchange for emotional availability?

“It’s pink,” I murmur, surprised.
“Bollinger Grande Année Rosé 1999, an excellent vintage,” he says with relish.
“In teacups.”


I'm just putting it up here because I feel I should point out the parts that make me giggle. Again, I'd be using watermellon jolly rancher vodka myself, but I am so planning a tea party. There will be tiaras and candy necklaces and copious amounts of hard liquor.

Ana then tries to talk about the soft limits because they're still up for negotiation, but Grey wants to talk about Ray. He's a taciturn man! Ana just wants to get this over and done with so he can get her over and do her (heyo!) but Grey wants to get chatty. So they talk about the move, where he says he would help but he's picking his sister up from the airport in Seattle early Saturday. Bets on if his sister will be Ana's NEW BFFF or if she'll be an OBSTACLE? I want to say obstacle because that fits the genre better, and Grey has one sister to Edward's two. Grey's sister could be Rosalie OR Alice. I'm hoping for an antagonist, personally. Grey then gets prissy over Kate and Elliot for no real reason (he doesn't approve of his brother sleeping with someone close to his girlfriend would be my bet). Grey is just pumping Ana full of champagne and goes from grilling her about her interviews at publishing houses (I still think he's going to try to force her to work for him) and then changes the topic to the soft limits. Then he asks her if she ate and she's all "YES! GOD!"

He leans forward and holds my chin, staring intently into my eyes.
“Next time you roll your eyes at me, I will take you across my knee.”
What?!
“Oh,” I breathe, and I can see the excitement in his eyes.
“Oh,” he responds, mirroring my tone. “So it begins, Anastasia.”
My heart slams against my chest, and the butterflies escape from my stomach into my constricting throat. Why is that hot?


And another drink. Not because of Grey, surprisingly. I kind of get that one, I think, but because Ana is questioning WHY she finds it sexy. Because you like the thought of being spanked? There is nothing wrong with a good spanking, Ana. Specially if you've been a bad, bad girl.

“Anal intercourse doesn’t exactly float my boat.”
“I’ll agree to the fisting, but I’d really like to claim your ass, Anastasia. But we’ll wait for that. Besides, it’s not something we can dive into,” he smirks at me. “Your ass will need training.”
“Training?” I whisper.
“Oh yes. It’ll need careful preparation. Anal intercourse can be very pleasurable, trust me. But if we try it and you don’t like it, we don’t have to do it again.” He grins down at me.


"I'd really like to claim your ass. But first, TRAINING MONTAGE!!!" I have mixed feelings on this. On one hand, I get the character and author intent here. It makes SENSE that Ana is freaked out over going the rocky road. It also makes sense for an erotica author to want to write anal, so she needs to come around with a reason to get around it. What bothers me is that Ana is saying "No I don't want to do that" and Grey's response is "No you'll love it!" when BDSM is largely about consent and negotiation is a huge part of it. Grey is, ONCE AGAIN, ignoring what Ana wants and pressuring her into things. I could have forgiven, "I want to claim that ass, so how about this: We'll try some little things, like, a finger, and if you like that, then we can try more, if not, then it can go on the limits, okay?" instead he goes on how she'll go through a whole training montage and THEN if she doesn't like it she can say no. She shouldn't have to. She should be allowed to simply say "exit only".

Ana however is probably in the bag, as she's had about four tea cups of champagne in the last... Hour? Maybe? And simply questions how Grey knows anal is so great. Naturally, he has taken it up the butt.

“Have you done that?” I whisper.
“Yes.”
Holy crap. I gasp.
“With a man?”
“No. I’ve never had sex with a man. Not my scene.”
“Mrs. Robinson?”
“Yes.”
Holy shit… how? I frown. He moves on down the list.



I'm just glad he didn't say "NO THAT WOULD BE GAY" though I'm sad that Ana's first thought is "how?". With a fist and/or strap on and/or dildo, Ana.

“Okay… swallowing semen. Well, you get an A in that.”
I flush, and my inner goddess smacks her lips together glowing with pride.


Smacking her lips together enjoying Grey's semen which must taste like candy. DRINK! (I'm counting my yelling "WHAT")


“More?” he asks.
“More.” And I’m suddenly reminded of our conversation earlier today as he refills my cup. Is he referring to that or just the champagne? Is this whole champagne thing more?


I'm confused by this passage. Is she implying the champagne is him trying to be "hearts and flowers" or if the champagne is symbolic of him offering more then... His wang. Grey then starts to go over sex toys and has to explain that "eggs" are not REAL eggs and then laughs and laughs at Ana. Ana gets upset at him laughing at her and he apologizes through his giggles. DOUCHE. (drink). She stays upset until he gives her the puppy eyes and then he moves the conversation along.

“Right – bondage,” he says, returning to the list. I examine the list, and my inner goddess bounces up and down like a small child waiting for ice cream.

So Ana's subconscious is a shrieking harpy and her inner goddess is entirely dimwitted and often reacts to things by bouncing or clapping or dancing. I've been glossing this over, but I feel the need to point it out. EL James has been listing the excerpts from the e-mail/contract (Grey pulled out another printed version, by the way.) which we have read like, 40 times now.

“Don’t laugh at me, but what’s a spreader bar?”
“I promise not to laugh. I’ve apologized twice.” He glares at me. “Don’t make me do it again,” he warns. And I think I visibly shrink... oh, he’s so bossy.


DOUCHE! (drink). Ana is nervous here, and kinda drunk, you should at least pretend to give a fuck what she thinks/feels Grey.

“Okay… Well gagging me. I’d be worried I wouldn’t be able to breathe”
“I’d be worried if you couldn’t breathe. I don’t want to suffocate you.”
“And how will I use safe words if I’m gagged?”
He pauses.
“First of all, I hope you never have to use them. But if you’re gagged, we’ll use hand signals,” he says simply.
I blink up at him. But if I’m trussed up, how’s that going to work? My brain is beginning to fog… hmm alcohol.


I am suddenly terrified of Grey. He's been extremely predatory/date rapey with Ana so far but now he's getting her drunk to negotiate this, and being dismissive of her concerns. "Oh, you'll never have to use the safe word! Don't worry!" arg. He's basically gas-lighting her! Also editing, shouldn't that "hmm alcohol" be capitalized on the hmm? Did EL James not even have a proof reader? So Ana insists that she's nervous about gagging, but not ruleing it out. Grey makes a note of it. I'm glad that EL James is trying to show negotiations. I really am, but how Grey responds to Ana makes me nervous for the people who read this book and go "I'M GONNA GO GET ME SOME OF THAT!" so if you know anyone getting into it, here is is a really great article from a super awesome blog about BDSM.

Then things get... Stupid. Again.

“Do you like tying your submissives up so they can’t touch you?”
He gazes at me, his eyes widening.
“That’s one of the reasons,” he says quietly.
“Is that why you’ve tied my hands?”
“Yes.”
“You don’t like talking about that,” I murmur.
“No, I don’t. Would you like another drink? It’s making you brave, and I need to know how you feel about pain.”


I dislike that Ana needs to air every little thought she has when it comes to unraveling this "dark kinky man". Can't she just... Realize that? It seems super awkward a thing to just ASK (I am also making a lot of typos at this point for those of you playing along at home!). His "It's making you brave which is good because now we need to talk about pain" bit irks me, though I'm not sure why. It may be that I feel his intentions for getting Ana drunk are sinister, but I know that isn't the author's intention, but the conflict between how the author wants me to view Grey and how I actually do are just making him seems MORE sketchy in my eyes, not less. So Grey asks how Ana feels about pain, and she's all shifty and awkward because she doesn't have a sphere of reference. Wait, isn't Ana supposed to be SUPER clumsy? I was never "physically punished" as Grey puts it, as a kid (or more commonly known as BEATEN! WHAT THE FUCK?) (drink) but I AM very accident prone, and I work in kitchens*, so I feel I would "have a sphere of reference" because hey, I've hurt myself before! One time I fell down a giant flight of concrete stairs so epically people stopped to stare and didn't move on until I got up because they were sure I had a concussion/broke my neck for sure!** So if Ana is even SORT of clumsy, let alone as clumsy as she claims to be, I am... Suspicious, that she has no frame of reference.

“Goes with the territory, Anastasia. It’s what I do. I can see you’re nervous. Let’s go through methods.”
He shows me the list. My subconscious runs, screaming, and hides behind the couch.
• Spanking
• Paddling
• Whipping
• Caning
• Biting
• Nipple clamps
• Genital clamps
• Ice
• Hot wax
• Other types/methods of pain


Everything he goes over looks like this. We get THE WHOLE LIST AGAIN and then they discuss what Ana was upset about. Nipple clamps are off the list, which Grey is fine with because it's caning that REALLY hurts!

“We can work up to that.”
“Or not do it at all,” I whisper.
“This is part of the deal, baby, but we’ll work up to all of this. Anastasia, I won’t push you too far.”


Again, Ana is saying "I'm not okay with this" and Grey is saying "Don't worry it'll be fine". Ana insists she's worried about punishment in general and Grey promises to be gentle with her and they'll go super slow. So Grey tells her that there's one more thing he wants to go over then he's taking her to bed.



Ana is shocked but excited, and Grey's all "Come on, you don't get hot negotiating contracts?!" No, Grey, because Ana is an alien that was at least raised by humans, and not in a cult like you! (drink).

“Well then. Look, earlier today you were talking about wanting more,” he halts, uncertain all of a sudden.
Oh my… where’s this going?
He clasps my hand.
“Outside of the time you’re my sub, perhaps we could try. I don’t know if it will work. I don’t know about separating everything. It may not work. But I’m willing to try. Maybe one night a week. I don’t know.”
Holy cow… my mouth drops open, my subconscious is in shock, Christian Grey is up for more! He’s willing to try! My subconscious peeks out from behind the couch, still registering shock on her harpy face.
On one hand, I'm glad Grey is being a little flexible here, on the other, I'm distressed that Ana has started to call her subconscious a harpy because I WAS DOING IT FIRST! THAT IS MY GO-TO INSULT!*** (drink) However I feel Ana's relationship with her subconscious is really indicative of a very deep level of self loathing. It's a little sad. So, Grey tells her he'll try for "more" on ONE CONDITION! SHE EAT THIS NEW BORN BABY! Nah, he has a grad gift for her, which will be some sort of fancy car. MAYBE he'll have bought her another Beetle, or a mini, something that suits what she likes, but I'm betting on an Audi or something. 

Parked outside is a red hatchback car, a two-door compact Audi.
CALLED IT! I hope Ray shits a BRICK when Ana tells him that Grey bought her a FREAKING BRAND NEW LUXURY CAR! Ana is, well, upset, and wrestling with herself. 

“Anastasia, that Beetle of yours is old and frankly dangerous. I would never forgive myself if something happened to you when it’s so easy for me to make it right,” he trails off.
...
“I mentioned it to your stepfather. He was all for it,” he murmurs.


Pineapple, what the hell is going on here? I don't even know! (Also, drink).

“It’s a gift, Anastasia. Can’t you just say thank you?”
“But you know it’s too much.”
“Not to me it isn’t, not for my peace of mind.”
I frown at him, at a loss what to say. He just doesn’t get it! He’s had money all his life. Okay, not all his life – not as a small child – and my world-view shifts. The thought is very sobering, and I soften towards the car, feeling guilty about my fit of pique. His intentions are good, misguided, but not from a bad place.
“I’m happy for you to loan this to me, like the laptop.”
He sighs heavily.
“Okay. On loan. Indefinitely.” He looks warily at me.
“No, not indefinitely, but for now. Thank you.”


And then Ana kisses him on the cheek and calls him sir. You know what, I need to stop and talk about Ana letting Grey's past influence how she feels. First off, she is making a lot of assumptions on what he has been through, and how it has affected him. Secondly, it shouldn't matter. His intentions would have been coming from somewhere "good if not misguided" to start with. Him being "tragic" is influencing Ana in a way that makes me uncomfortable. He's still just a person. Well, no, he's a warlock, but he's person shaped.


He kisses me passionately, forcing my lips apart with his tongue, taking no prisoners.

Again, what does this mean? He punches her teeth out with his tongue? 

“It’s taking all my self-control not to fuck you on the hood of this car right now, just to show you that you are mine, and if I want to buy you a fucking car, I’ll buy you a fucking car,” he growls. “Now let’s get you inside and naked.”
She's certainly had enough champagne for that to sound like a good idea!
“Please don’t be angry with me,” I whisper.
His gaze is impassive; his gray eyes cold shards of smoky glass.
“I’m sorry about the car and the books,” I trail off. He remains silent and brooding. “You scare me when you’re angry,” I breathe, staring at him.
This needs repeating. 
“You scare me when you’re angry,” 
RUN YOU STUPID GIT! (also drink. Twice.) Grey then takes a deep breath and tells her to turn around, he wants to get her out of that dress. Arg. 
“I like this dress,” he murmurs. “I like to see your flawless skin.” 
 
My first thought was "creepy" my second thought was "Man I wish I had flawless skin. Why do fictional characters get all the awesome but totally underrated traits?"

“You smell so good, Anastasia. So sweet.”

That's because she's sweating champagne now.

“You. Are. Going. To. Have. To. Learn. To. Keep. Still,” he whispers, kissing me around my nape between each word.
 
Why. Is. That. A. Good. Thing? Does he WANT a dead fish?

“No bra, Miss Steele. I like that.”

So, bet's on Ana's cup size? She can't be bigger then a B if she can get away with that. I was a C cup for a very long time and I basically couldn't wear halter dresses because I couldn't go bra-less, or strap-less bras. I've since discovered halter bras. That was a good day. I've been struggling to get a strong grasp of what Ana looks like. Ana herself keeps saying she's awkward and gangly and her eyes are too big and her hair does this thing- but Grey, and every other male in the cast are all over her, so I think we're supposed to look past Ana's self esteem here and see that she's a babe.

His hands reach round and cup my breasts, and my nipples pucker at his touch.

Want to know what's a sexy word? Pucker. Definitely sexy. 

I obey immediately, and my breasts rise and push into his hands, my nipples hardening further.

How do you think nipples work, EL James?


he starts to extend my nipples with his long fingers

Is he hoping to cut glass with them or something?

I gasp at the exquisite, acute, pleasure/pain.

Is that seriously how you're going to sell us on pain during sex, James? Really?

“I don’t think you’re ready to come yet,” he whispers, stilling his hands, and he gently bites my earlobe and tugs at it. “Besides, you have displeased me.”
Oh… no, what will this mean? My brain registers through the fog of needy desire as I groan.


It means he's about to finger blast you.

His fingers hook into my panties at the back, stretching them, and he pushes his thumbs through the material, shredding them and tossing them in front of me so I can see… holy shit

 Holy shit indeed. What the HELL were her panties made of? Ratty old granny panties held together by wishful thinking? Does he have a fucking knife?! Sigh. Drink. So he starts to finger her a little and is all "AW YEAH SUPER WET RIGHT AWAY! UNDRESS ME SWEET GIRL!" Sweet girl is a weird pet name, right? That's not just me?

He puts his finger in his mouth. “You taste so fine, Miss Steele.”

She also tastes like candy. Everyone in this book always smells/tastes sweet. I WANT PEOPLE TO SWEAT DAMN IT! (drink) So Ana goes to take his shirt off, uncertain where to start because SHE'S NEVER UNDRESSED A MAN BEFORE! Has she never baby sat? Undressing a grown up, not that different then undressing a child. Just saying. Less crying. Usually.

 Oh… this is news… I can touch with clothes. He takes one of my hands and places it against his erection.
“This is the effect you have on me, Miss Steele.”
I gasp and flex my fingers around his girth, and he grins.


HE IS STILL WEARING JEANS HOW THE HELL ARE YOU MANAGING TO GET A GRIP AROUND THE ACTUAL PENIS? PHYSICS! Also drink.

“I want to be inside you. Take my jeans off. You’re in charge.”
Holy fuck… me in charge. My mouth drops open.


This is strange to me. Or rather, this is strange to me at this point in time. Grey has spent the last 15 chapters trying to get Ana to be his sub. He has gone to great lengths to try to get this. So now that she has officially signed on, he's celebrating by... Letting her be the dom this time? I would understand his motivations here if this was six chapters later, but here? It strikes me as awkward. I think EL James just wanted Ana to be clumsily fumbling around with Grey's boner rather than him guiding her.

Oh the possibilities… my inner goddess roars, and from somewhere born of frustration, need, and sheer Steele bravery, I push him on to the bed. ... My inner goddess is going to explode.

Things Ana's inner goddess has been: A child, a cheer leader, a light bulb, a salsa dancer, and now a bomb.  So Ana climbs up on Grey and starts clumsily undoing his fly and tugging on his "oh so happy trail".

“You’ll have to learn to keep still,” I scold, and I tug at the hair under his waistband.
His breath hitches, and he grins at me.
“Yes, Miss Steele,” he murmurs, eyes burning bright.


OH LOOK SHE'S SO COY AND FUNNY! Blech. Drink. Is he doing this so he can show Ana how to properly sub?


I fish out both foil packets that I find and lay them on the bed by his hips. Two!

Why is this shocking? Two makes sense for Grey. Ignoring the implication of he plans to bone her THAT HARD, sometimes condoms break, or you accidentally start off putting it on the wrong way so you need a new one, or any number of other reasons you need a new one halfway through.

I tug down the zipper, and now I’m faced with the problem of removing his pants… hmm. I shuffle down and pull. They hardly move. I frown. How can this be so difficult?

Seriously Ana? Seriously? Drink.

Holy Moses, he’s all mine to play with, and suddenly it’s Christmas.
“Now what are you going to do?” he breathes, all trace of humor gone.


TIE HIM TO THE BED AND GIVE HIM A PURPLE NURPLE! DO IT!

I suck, hard.

Buzzkillington. So she slurps on his wanger for a bit and Grey tells her to stop because he doesn't want to come yet.

I sit up, blinking at him, and I’m panting like him, but confused. I thought I was in charge? My inner goddess looks like someone snatched her ice cream.

Again, Ana's inner goddess is going past obnoxious into creepy and childish. Seriously, what the flunch?

“You’re innocence and enthusiasm is very disarming,”

"Now put on this princess dress and draw me a picture with these crayons!" drink.

“Here, put this on.” He hands me a foil packet.
Holy Crap. How? I rip the packet open, and the rubbery condom is all tacky in my fingers.


Is it a Canadian thing where they show you how to do this in the 9th grade sex-ed class? Because that was when I actually saw it. Also when she describes the condom as "all tacky" my first thought was "shit the package must have been punctured, because that sounds dried out and expired.". EL JAMES YOU ARE NOT PAINTING GOOD IMAGES.

He really is a fine specimen of a man, looking at him is very, very arousing.

Well, I'm glad you're getting turned on, because I'm sure as hell not. So Grey pulls Ana onto his dick because she's daunted at hopping on and riding that shit.

And he’s inside me, sheathed to the hilt, and he holds me in place, for seconds… minutes… I have no idea,, staring intently into my eyes.

Drink. One, "sheathed to the hilt". Just, read that again. I don't even have a joke to make. I just want to point it out. Also, do I have this right? Ana is just sort of sitting on his dick, staring at him for so long she looses track of time? Dude, bust out your phone and start playing Angry Birds or something.

“You move, Anastasia, up and down, how you want. Take my hands,”

DRINK. Seriously, they've fucked before, she needs to be told? That's sort of... Intuitive, isn't it? Also I assumed this was "take my hands and put them somewhere sexy."

I clasp his hands, holding on for life.

So, Ana is straddling Grey, holding his hands in her own, staring at him as she starts to bounce on his dick. None of the mental images I'm coming up with here are any good guys.

I am fucking him. I am in charge. He’s mine, and I’m his.

You'd be fucking him even if you weren't "in charge" Ana. I don't think you're using that phrase right. Also the "YOU ARE MINE" thing has always struck me as creepy. My ex used to try and say that. I'd be all "Dude no. I'M mine. You can have you. Not as awesome, but this shit is already dibbed". However it's this thought that makes Ana come, which is... I don't even...

I collapse on to his chest, overwhelmed, somewhere between fantasy and reality, a place where there are no hard or soft limits.

IF YOU ARE THAT BOTHERED BY THEM WHY ARE YOU EVEN HIDFSHPESRIUHBSI

And that is the end of the chapter! I'm gonna go lay down now. Comments/drink recipes always encouraged and appreciated! Till Thursday!


*When I told my brother I was going to cooking school he paused, "Wait, do YOU are going to be around knives, open flames, and boiling oil all the time?" "Yes?" "Well, nice knowing you." >:( I AM INVINCIBLE!
**Other then some epically bruised and battered legs I was totally fine. I didn't even rip my tights! Some how. Those tights are invincible. I was admittedly a little disoriented at first, but once I was on my feet I was fine. Still, INVINCIBLE!
*** I feel "bitch" is unfeminine, and, well, uncreative. So I use harpy. Plus it's a LOT more fun to yell.

17 comments:

  1. I didn't get to read this on vacation after all. After I saw the one copy sitting in the living room and commented, they disappeared. I saw book 1 in BIL's GF's room and book 3 in MIL's room. I love your reviews, but now I cringe knowing my MIL has read this stuff.

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  2. More than anything, "He's mine I'm his" reminds me of the Guy Love song from Scrubs.

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  3. I find the idea of getting an "A" in sexual performance kind of creepy, actually, since 1) I'm not in first grade anymore 2) I get that people judge each other during sex, but letter grades are a bit excessive.

    And if I had to be graded on my sexy skills, hopefully the boy would not say "Well, of all the many erotic talents you bring to the table, I'd say you have swallowing nailed." How would you even get a "C" at swallowing? Not choking on things is a basic survival instinct. Most importantly, if Ana did get a "C" at swallowing, would she have to bring that report card home for her parents to sign?

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  4. Grey then starts to go over sex toys and has to explain that "eggs" are not REAL eggs and then laughs and laughs at Ana.

    So what are they then? (Doesn't seem right (less than usual, I mean) to laugh at her for not knowing when even hanging out on the Internet hasn't taught me.)

    Nipple clamps are off the list

    How am I supposed to take her at all seriously as a self-insert when those are the one thing on that list she definitely doesn't want to do, rather than remembering childhood games involving hair clips and seeing them in a whole new light? (I mean, um...*innocent whistling*)

    (This really is having more of an effect on my suspension of disbelief than it should. It's not actually strange, I just think it is. Besides, at this point I shouldn't have any suspension of disbelief left.)

    forcing my lips apart with his tongue
    [...]
    He punches her teeth out *with his tongue*?

    It says "lips", which would be easier to force apart than teeth. (I think. I haven't actually tried.)

    Is it a Canadian thing where they show you how to do this in the 9th grade sex-ed class? Because that was when I actually saw it.

    If I were her, I think if nothing else I would've at least watched that Planned Parenthood video on how to put on a condom as part of the "research".

    I hear a lot of schools don't demonstrate condoms, or do much of anything else.
    In hindsight, it surprises me how bad my sex ed was. We always took pride in not being the fundie kind of homeschoolers, yet to this day I have not actually seen a real live in-the-proverbial-flesh condom. (I'd buy some, but it seems like a waste of money to buy a pack of things I have zero desire to use and can't easily be passed on to someone who can make use of them. (Maybe I should try looking in my parents' bedside drawer next to the lube.))


    *counts* Twenty drinks? ...are you okay?

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    1. A "drink" is a swig, not a proper drink/shot. Over all it was about about 5/6 proper drinks. Which sounds like a lot but is within my range of what I can drink with no ill effect.

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  5. What exactly are eggs, if anyone knows? My first thought was anal beads, but I figured it would say "anal beads" if that's what was meant.

    Excellent review as always! You're a brave, determined person to keep going with this. I admire you for that, and your alcohol tolerance.

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  6. To my (limited) understanding, they are chicken-egg-sized-and-shaped things made out of plastic (or something else less likely to break than eggshell) and placed up a lower orifice of your choice.

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  7. The fact that you read this book without suffering alcohol poisoning is impressive by itself - I don't think I could get that far without a serious rethinking of the drinking rules.

    Also, EL James, I hate you, I hate you, I hate you. The very basics if consent say that you don't do what Christian Grey is doing - get the girl drunk so she'll have lowered inhibitions, then take advantage of her. Consent says that you negotiate all of it stone-cold sober, and then stick to it, even when she's drunk. Knowing Grey, he'll use her drunken consent to get what he wants from her when she's sober and not at all paying any attention to her protestations. This is seriously frakked.

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  8. I've finally realised what gets me about this whole inner goddess/subconscious thing - it is super fanfictiony. I don't know if anyone else encountered the same trend, but back when I read fanfic, one of the key elements of any terrible romance fic was that one or both of the main characters would have a completely independent 'subconscious' voice that allowed them to conduct Zany And Hilarious inner dialogues.

    Ignoring the bits that scar me deeply, I am also not at all clear on what the deal is with UltraDom Grey suddenly putting all the control in her hands. Continuity of character, James--what did you do with it?

    Things that made this bearable: the reappearance of the Whatnapple, and the mental image of Grey busting out Angry Birds while she's busy being lost in the Astral Plane of Sheathing.

    (Also, when I finally get around to making you a Quick Guide To Proofreading poster, proper capitalisation when using an ellipsis will be high on the list, just under then/than.) ;P

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  9. I counted. 15 times where they MURMUR or breathe or whisper. I get that this is supposed to be erotic and whatnot, but don't these people ever just TALK to each other? So infuriating. I hate this book so much. And this is just from quotes you've pasted. This is scary.

    And the subconscious and inner goddess? I hate you so much. Ana needs a whole lot of medication to finally quiet all those hateful voices making her crazy.

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  10. I cannot stand the inner goddess bullshit. That and the use of delicious for things that aren't food. It's like E.L. James watched Sex and the City and thought Cary Bradshaw was how every single group of college girls in America act like/want to be like. She even has Kate going into journalism (an English major would not serve you all that well there). Is Grey supposed to be Big? Because their relationship seems just as immature for their ages.

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  11. That question about pain is bullshit. First, of all think about this for a minute, what does "How do you feel about pain?" even means?! Who responds to that with "Oh, pain that's awesome! I stubbed my toe the other day and had a BLAST!" Pain during sex, however has entirely different context and how would she know, if she's never tried it? they could start out with something like light spanking or paddling, and if she's into that, do other things, but asking her like that, makes no sense. If he asked like "Which of these you tho=ink you might be into?" than that's another thing, altogether.
    Anyway, that's my little rant - awesome re-cap, as always!

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  12. Yes, it probably is a Canadian thing, them showing you how to use a condom correctly. I went to a high school where my guess is that the only reason they didn't teach abstinence-only sex education is because they weren't legally permitted to do so. Of course, the administration made up for that by teaching us about STDs and absolutely nothing else. I mean it. I was never taught how to use a condom (I didn't even know that female condoms even existed until college), never taught how to use a tampon. I learned more about sex from my senior year psychology course than I did from the sex-ed week of Health class.

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  13. Again, they keep having distinctly not-bdsm sex.

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  14. “No. I’ve never had sex with a man. Not my scene.”
    Not my scene, man..... stolen directly from Starsky and Hutch.

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  15. so glad I'm not the only one who thinks "I'm yours"/"you're mine" is creepy. That phrase... it just bothers me so much. You are yours, not mine. I am my own person, I am not yours.

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