Shades of Grey by E.L. James
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
So I read the fan fiction version of this a long time ago and wanted to wait until it was sufficiently out of my mind before I read the new version - but you just never forget somebody like Christian Grey. That being said, I loved it just as much as I loved it the first time around - and that's saying a lot. I once again stayed up until way into the wee hours, read it every spare second of the day - and a lot of seconds that I really couldn't spare. But you just can't put down a book like this. When I read this as fan fiction it was my first experience reading anything about BDSM (to the point that I, like Ana, did a lot of google searches) - and even though I've read quite a few since, this is still my favorite.
I just like the perspective, the honesty with which Ana struggles with it and the reactions she has along the way. I loved how shocking Christian was - like calling her virginity a "situation". I loved their witty conversations (especially the emails). And I loved the anguish, the love, the depth of the characters, and the darkness of Christian's past.
I was really grateful I was able to read both versions since I could enjoy it with the original names and take from that the parallels in personalities, to now when I can read it with completely fresh names and as the truly original story that it is. I even think I learned to appreciate the inner goddess this time around since I remember that being my only complaint in the fan fiction version and for some reason her dancing and name calling didn't bother me so much this go-round.
This goes down as one of my all-time most memorable books - and I'm not wasting anytime jumping into book #2!
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