Here is the thing. I have a sappy, romantic, cheesy side and I'm not afraid to say so. The cheese in this one was so over the top, even I had to shake my head. Especially this whole "The lone wolf never had a girlfriend and certainly doesn't want a wife, but he doesn't know yet, that I'm the last coke in the desert, so it'll be happily ever after soon enough" was driving me up the walls. But it was still bearable.
The writing was mediocre, sometimes even good, at other points so awful I wanted to ball my eyes out. The repetitions drove me nuts. There wasn't really a lot of skill behind it all, but that is true for many books and I'm not that easily offended. So it still could have been a 2-3 star read.
But. And that is the thing that makes me stark, raving mad. So mad that I would have tons of white foam all around my mouth, would I be that kind of gal. I'm not. The kind of gal, that is. But raving mad, seething, furious - yeah, that is an adequate description of my inner goddess - fu you very much - whenever I think about that series. And it has nothing to do with the characters specifically. Yes, Gray and what's-her-name are not the most likable persons in the world. Or the smartest, strongest, most complex characters I ever encountered. But what drives me up the walls and makes me want to punch somebody hard with a chair, is the pure audacity of the author.
What the hell do you think you are writing about?! BDSM? BDSM my ass!! And while I think it is absolutely admirable how members of the BDSM scene smile at this depiction of D/S- relationships, and basically ignore it, I am not that reasonable. Or feel that generous.
These stories are insulting, offensive, despicable to everyone who ever even had remote contact to the BDSM scene. This whole thing is so badly researched I wanted to puke over it all the time. For one, "Safe, sane and consensual" is not just a suggestion. So whatever you do with your Dom or Sub, it is negotiated and determinded beforehand, not while you're at it. Secondly, a BDSM relationship, any realtionship between a Dom and Sub is unique, a bond shared based on needs and preferences. It is not about pain and humilitation. This can be part of it, but it damn well is not the freaking crux of the matter!
And most importantly, it is NOT a choice to have a preference for domination or submission. This is an intergal part of the sexuality of a lot of people and I find it disgusting how that notion is twisted around in these books. It is NOT a perversion. It is NOT a sickness. It is NOT something you have to be ashamed of, and it sure as hell is not the ultimate result of a young boy being seduced and abused by an older woman when he was way to young. It is not the choice of somebody to damaged to have a "normal" sex life and I can't stress enough how utterly enraged and disgusted I was while I was reading about Christian basically has to Overcome his need to dominate what's-her#name all the time, and after eveything is said and done, with the right woman he can choose to be less dominant and more "normal".
FU, E.L. James for this beacon of light, exhumed from a long time ago in a far away land. This is the place where lesbians only need a real man, bisexuals are a myth on the way to gay-town and gay men in a relationship always have to be a "woman" and "man". Also, a Dom always wants to hurt you in the bedroom, but is happy to let you go on with the rest of your life on your own. Sure. And he is absolutely happy to have a partner who has "no submissive bone in [her ] body, but is playing the role badly, because she chose to do so.
If that is hat you really think, what you really believe in, then please play with something toxic, that will enable your eyes to see the real world and your synapses to work right again.
I'm not a Dom, and I'm definitely not a Sub, and I can't choose to be either. But I'm offended on all of my nearest and dearest's behalf, because this is the worst no-go I've encountered in a very, very long time. Everybody who thinks now they know something about the BDSM scenes and D/s relationships: Please think again and read something else!