By now, most of you EVE readers would have probably read or at least heard of E.L. James trilogy, Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, Fifty Shades Freed. I first heard of Fifty when I was in my hotel room in East London last May 2012.
As I was getting dressed the TV was on a morning show and I stopped doing whatever I was at, since they were talking about this racy book: Fifty Shades of Grey.
Although I am an ardent reader, erotic books were never my pick. But this time I was curious and intrigued. So as I was shopping around in one of the malls, close by Westfield Shopping Mall, I entered a WHS Smith and recognised the book I had just seen on TV. An entire section of the shop was entirely dedicated to Fifty so it was hard to miss. I did grab one and as I paid for it the woman at the cash commented that this book was selling fast.
On my return to the hotel lounge I started reading Fifty as I waited for my then other half to come back from University so as to head to the airport and return back to Malta. Not to sound cliché but I was hooked to my newly acquired purchase so much that I spent the 3 hour flight reading although I was knackered and could have done with a nap.
Whilst in Malta I went on a rant to buy the next two sequels since I knew then that together with many people around the world I would crave for Darker and Freed once I finished reading Fifty Shades of Grey. My mission was attained – I did read them all, hence, the following is my personal opinion re Fifty. Calling this trilogy ‘female porn’, ‘racy’, ‘erotic novel’, and so on and so forth does not do justice at all. And I’ll explain why. To me it is just a romantic 20th century love story whereby the author intelligently reflects the times we are living in and how dating, relationships and love come to existence. On the one hand Christian Grey, impersonificating the male part, is correctly depicted as the one who likes Anastasia Steele purely in a physical manner, at least initially, whereas Ana thinks of Grey in a more romantic way rather than for the sex alone.
What I really loved about Fifty is that E.L. James includes the email transactions between Christian and Ana whilst at work. And this makes the story feel real to the modern times we are living in and creates a sense of familiarity to the reader, at least that’s the effect it had on me.
When I did finish the entire trilogy needless to say within a few days of constant and obsessive reading I went back to my usual read but I missed the intrigue, the gripping nature, the love story that Fifty had. So one day to my utter delight I got a Facebook message (prompted by my numerous Facebook status updates re Fifty) from a renal patient of mine telling me that there is another trilogy similar to Fifty by Sylvia Day.
Sylvia Day is a US author who has been in the literacy scene but after the worldwide hype of Fifty she got to be regarded as the US version of the Brit author E.L. James. So I did buy Bared to You and ordered the other two sequels directly from the US since they were unavailable in Malta at that time. Now, Bared to You revealed, unlike my preconceived ideas written in stone, to be one hell of a good read. To me Gideon Cross and Eva were more real, in the sense that, at least they were both millionaires and came from the same social standing, rather than Fifty were you get the classic, rich boy meets poor girl, and they lived happily ever after. To me as a career woman, Gideon and Eva, were more in keeping with modern day society where women are climbing up the career and social ladder fast.
I am currently reading the second sequel Reflected in You which is once again gripping. To me Sylvia Day is an excellent author par excellence and any comparison with E.L. James is so out of line. She can completely stand alone and her trilogy should not be regarded and I dare say is not a spin off from the multi million book sales Fifty cashed in, literally.
To you, EVE readers who have read Fifty should read Sylvia Day’s triology and to those of you who have kept away from being sucked into Grey this Summer should read these books – a little Grey, in our busy and hectic lives, will certainly cause no harm to us women!
P.S. As I’m writing this article, waiting for my lecture to start, women behind me are discussing Fifty – Grey is certainly the new colour for women!