Fifty Shades of Grey

Just a heads up – this post is not suitable for your mom. Or my mom.

Especially not my mom.

So. Fifty Shades of Grey. Yup, I went there. Not of my own freewill or anything. I was coerced into reading this, forced by a group of girls who don’t hear ‘no’ very often.

I don’t actually know this about them, but I’m assuming. They were very persuasive.

Anyway, you know how it is. You get together to discuss a book, you have a couple of glasses of wine, some excellent hor d’ouevres and next thing you know you’re in the bookstore picking up a copy of erotica, avoiding the knowing looks that the guy ringing you up is giving you. He knows. You should know better.

Fifty Shades of Grey apparently started as Twilight fan fiction. So there’s a clumsy girl and a hot guy that is way out of her league and it takes place in Seattle and that’s about where the similarities end. Because while Twilight is all “wait until you get married to have sex” , Fifty Shades of Grey is all “let’s get kinky.”

Christian Grey is a complicated (and super wealthy) man – after a super secretive, not-so-ideal childhood he has developed certain, ahem, sexual tastes.

He’s not so much into a relationship as he is looking for his next Submissive to bow down to his Dominant. In exchange for being his sex toy he will gratify you in ways you never knew possible. He’s into bondage and using sex toys and all manner of things that a) you probably didn’t know existed and b) you never thought you’d be reading about on the afternoon bus with a bunch of unsuspecting commuters. Anastasia Steele is conflicted between her desire to satisfy Christian and her love for him that wants to see this turn into a long term relationship.

I felt like I was doing something so wrong on the bus to and from work every day. I think most people that have read it do so on an e-reader, but not owning a piece of 21st Century witchcraft, I had to read it in the open. I tried to angle my book away so that no one could read over my shoulder (Like you don’t do this; I practically give myself neck injuries craning to see what others are reading on transit) but then I was putting the cover right out there, and then it’s just a matter of a quick google search for those of you that are so inclined.

They are talking about turning this into a movie (not sure what kind of movie) and Chris Hemsworth has been thrown out there as Christian. I think we can all agree that this would not be the worst thing ever.

In the end, I enjoyed it (in more ways than one). It ends abruptly (kind of like this post) and I hate that I’m going to have to read more of these but I need to know what happens right?



The Hunger Games

The Hunger Games trilogy. Are you on board yet? You’ve seen it though right? Dismissed it as mere fodder for the Twilight crowd?

Like you didn’t love Twilight yourself.

I’ve been there. I basically make it a rule that anything my younger sisters would read, I’m not touching. Something about taking literary recommendations from 12 and 15 year olds that doesn’t sit well with me. But naturally I will force my superior book taste on them.


So The Hunger Games mania is in full swing. You can’t go into any book or grocery store or even scroll through Twitter without running into it. Lots of Twilightcomparisons for the movie, lots of movie executives gleefully rubbing their hands together, anticipating another ridiculous windfall.

I have to say, they are probably right.

These books, they get to you. They make you obsess and you read them back to back as if they are one giant book, the last chapter of the first feeding seamlessly into the first chapter of the second and so on. My bus rides to and from work are so quick when I’m reading these babies. I have no idea where I am half the time, and I’ve definitely been late to one function because I postponed my getting-ready time in favour of finishing Book 2. Basically, Suzanne Collins is a genius.

So it’s the future and we’ve all basically destroyed ourselves in this crazy bloody civil war and out of the ashes of that comes a new country, Panem. Panem is split into 12 districts, most of which are living hand to mouth. And once a year, to remind everyone about the power of the Capitol, there is a Reaping. One boy and one girl from each district is chosen as a tribute to participate in The Hunger Games. Basically a super twisted Olympics whereby children between the ages of 12 and 18 fight each other to the death. Katniss Everdeen volunteers to protect her little sister Prim and well…there’s a lot more to it but that’s the gist.

Initially, when I heard a description of what exactly these Hunger Games were all about, I was totally put off. The idea of reading about kids killing each other is naturally completely abhorrent. And I can’t really explain why it isn’t except that, aside from the actual Games, the things that happen in the books, have happened in history and I don’t think we should shy away from teaching our kids about it.

That said, if your kid has read it, maybe give it a read yourself so that you can talk about it. When I finally finish Book 3 (Mockingjay), I plan to give my sister a call and ask her just what she thought about these books. Because they are a mindf*ck.

In a good way.

And if you have no kids, give them a read, go see the movies. You’ll enjoy it. Just like you said you wouldn’t love Twilight. And look at you now. Yes, you Team Edward.