This is not a review of the book: Fifty Shades of Grey by E. L. James because I only read about 35% of it. I didn’t find the content objectionable, though it might have been—at least others have found it so. But you see, I like stories that explore the taboo, twisted, and offensive. The first 15 to 20 shades that I read were just too weak in the delivery to disturb my imagination. It didn’t get in my head or under my skin the way good “objectionable” literature should. I didn’t find the writing terrible either. Others have written scathing reviews of the style, voice, and repetition but I didn’t think it was all that horrific. I could have given it a good hate-read if it had been awful enough to disparage. It wasn’t. Sure, it had all the basic, errors made by mediocre, new-writers but It wasn’t horrible. I didn’t love it. I couldn’t hate it. It didn’t grip me so I just put it down. That’s all.
Except that’s not all! Somehow there are Fifty-Shades-of-Grey everything! And not just your predictable tee shirts, shot glasses, and bondage kits kinda “everything” either, but EVERYTHING everything!
Of most interest to Wander~Readers, are the tour and hotel packages (most in Portland and Seattle, where the book takes place). There are a lot of these popping up, especially now with Valentine’s Day and the Fifty Shades of Grey movie about to be released. Some of them are pretty classy (with a price tag to match). For an authentic experience try the Fifty Shades of Oregon vacation package which lets you and your lover spend 6 nights and 7 days living like Christian and Ana. Including luxury lodging, transportation, dining, wine and even a shopping spree! Or maybe you’d prefer the No Grey Area package at the Edgewater Hotel in Seattle which includes the use of an Audi R8 Spyder, just like Christian’s and a helicopter tour (no word on if your call sign is “charlie tango”).
For the fiscally conservative bondage enthusiast, you can find one and two night packages at many hotels. Try The Heathman in Portland where Christian and Ana spent their first night together. If you find your budget tighter than Christian’s knots, just bring home the Fifty Shades of Grey Gift Basket and take your valentine out to see the movie. The trailer is more emotionally engaging than the book started off to be (and I NEVER say that!)
For Wander~Readers who want a literary themed romantic get-away, you might do better avoiding the Grey experience altogether and try an Outlander valentine at Glenlaurel Inn or a Game of Thrones getaway at Ravenwood Castle. (Like 50-Shades, Outlander features a romantic lead scared by a sadist’s brutality and Game of Thrones has just as much forbidden romance and violence.) If you have your heart set on a dark modern romance set in the edgy and ambiguous world of BDSM, may I suggest Nine and a Half Weeks by Elizabeth McNeil? It also comes in an excellent movie form and the story was a real groundbreaking exploration of feminine sexuality.
Are you a Fifty Shades of Gray fan? What’s the attraction? What am I missing?
What are YOUR Fifty Shades of Gray Valentine’s Day plans?
Read ~ Write ~ Wander
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