Review: Darker (Fifty Shades of Grey as told by Christian #2) by E.L. James

Title: Darker
Author: EL James
Publisher/Year:  Knopf Doublbeday Publishing 11/28/17
Length:   560 Pages
Series:  Fifty Shades of Grey as told by Christian #2


Their scorching, sensual affair ended in heartbreak and recrimination, but Christian Grey cannot get Anastasia Steele out of his mind, or his blood. Determined to win her back, he tries to suppress his darkest desires and his need for complete control, and to love Ana on her own terms.

But the horrors of his childhood still haunt him, and Ana’s scheming boss, Jack Hyde, clearly wants her for himself. Can Christian’s confidant and therapist, Dr. Flynn, help him face down his demons? Or will the possessiveness of Elena, his seducer, and the deranged devotion of Leila, his former submissive, drag Christian down into the past?

And if Christian does win Ana back, can a man so dark and damaged ever hope to keep her?

My Thoughts

It’s been ages since i’ve read the series if i’m honest, but i actually recently came across Fifty Shades Darker on TV so it was nice to have this alternate POV come to life after i’ve seen it on the big screen.  All that being said, we fall right back into the story and world that Ms James crafted for us all those years ago, where we see how the roller coaster of life and romance for Christian and Ana unfolded.

There’s something to be said about getting into the head of Christian and having the story unfold from his POV since we’ve had the fortune to truly grasp it from Ana’s side before.  Where there was so much focus in the past on her innocence and how naive she was both in romance and in work, well we see the flip side of the confident and controlling Christian.  His life outside of her was so different and a mystery before, so we get to see some of what made him tick.

True to form we get a lot of the same romance, but instead of experiencing it like we have in the past we get to see it taken through control and dominance.  The scenes that we had before were from the girl who wanted hearts and flowers and this time we get to see them from the man who needs control and power in his life to thrive.  It gives the story a completely different feeling.

Personally i’m curious if we would ever get another story line from Ms James – something that didn’t revolve around the Fifty series, but i guess that’s likely something that we’ll have to wait on given that there’s still one more installment of the series that hasn’t been written from Christian’s side yet and i’d imagine that i’ts coming.  There’s so much heat and passion left to come out from this couple from Christian’s side of things for sure and i think that we would be lucky to get that culmination to the story since those of you that have read the original trilogy, i’m sure you recall all the craziness that goes on, and there’s bound to be a lot of angst and anxiety wrapped up in it.

On that note – have a happy thursday (a snowy one here at least) and enjoy!

Review: Grey (Fifty Shades of Grey #4) by E.L. James


Title:  Grey
Author: E.L. James
Publisher/Year: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group 6/18/15
Length: 423 pages
Series: Fifty Shades of Grey #4


In Christian’s own words, and through his thoughts, reflections, and dreams, E L James offers a fresh perspective on the love story that has enthralled millions of readers around the world.

Christian Grey exercises control in all things; his world is neat, disciplined, and utterly empty—until the day that Anastasia Steele falls into his office, in a tangle of shapely limbs and tumbling brown hair. He tries to forget her, but instead is swept up in a storm of emotion he cannot comprehend and cannot resist. Unlike any woman he has known before, shy, unworldly Ana seems to see right through him—past the business prodigy and the penthouse lifestyle to Christian’s cold, wounded heart.

Will being with Ana dispel the horrors of his childhood that haunt Christian every night? Or will his dark sexual desires, his compulsion to control, and the self-loathing that fills his soul drive this girl away and destroy the fragile hope she offers him?

My Thoughts

I think that we have all been waiting a long time for a continuation of sorts to this saga and i for one really enjoy getting to see a story from the other side – the male lead POV.  it’s something that i’ve come to enjoy a lot when authors decide to treat us to it, and in this case, it’s no exception.

What we have here is the way that Christan has processed things throughout the development of his relationship with Ana and i have to say that there’s somethign to seeing that the ‘monster’ actually has a heart and to see that it wasn’t just about the D/s relationship with him, and that he was as troubled with ‘wanting more’ with Ana as she was in making the decision to be with him.

What i was most curious to see though is at what point we were going to drop off in this story.  meaning was it just going to be his POV from the first novel or for the complete series, and given that it was like 400+ pages. i was even more curious.  That being said, i think that we get a thorough version of things, and i’m thrilled that we got to get into Christian’s head for a bit .

The other nice thing that EL James does for us is that we get these flashbacks of sorts, of when he was a child before being adopted and then of some of those moments with him and his new family when he just became part of the Grey brood.  We get to see how his mind processed what was going on then, and how hard it was, which of course gave him a ‘rough start in life’ – as he puts it to Ana all the time.

Part of me wishes that we had more of his POV – and i wonder if we’ll get it, but if we don’t, at least you get the same level of heat and passion – you get to see the control that he has when he’s with her – to give Ana the flowers and romance that she wants – yet at the same time, he’s got the Dark and Stormy bits of the very sexy controlling Dom that he is.

We have the hot scenes in the ‘red room of pain’ here – we see how amazing he is at his craft, and at the same time, we see that there’s such a strong romantic inside, one that has this amazing passion and chemistry with Ana, that it just leaps off the pages and you want to hope for the best for them.  And all that being said – it was a great read to wrap up my weekend.  Have a great Monday all and a nice week!

the re-reading of Fifty Shades Trilogy

now that i’ve found myself back into the romance/’erotic’ (gasp) genre, i felt the need to revisit 50 Shades of Grey. I’m proud to admit that i read it before it was even talked about to the extreme levels that it is now.  i came across it when it was first published all those months ago, and i actually told my book reading friends about it just as the hype was starting to build.  Ironically, when i was reading it the first time around, i got the heavy sex context of it, but i picked up a lot more on the actual story and found myself drawn to that more so than the graphic quality.

in my second pass at reading it, i really delved more into that, and was actually impressed with things that i remembered and little details that i didn’t.  if you take out maybe 50% of the sex, you still have that element of the story, but you have a really good plot.  there are a few things though that i think about a lot of time that i wonder if we would ever get those things answered (assuming that E.L. James decided that maybe after writing the stories from Christian’s perspective that she’ll do additional stories).

1) Mia / Ethan – what’s the deal there?  did they enjoy that first lunch?  were they just thrown together every time after that because of Christian and Kate’s tie to the relationships?  Did Ethan like Mia?  we know she liked him

2) secondary characters – i think that there could be some great plot lines developed over a few of these guys.  maybe we can get a story about Kate/Elliot going?  since they are quite major/minor characters – i think that there’s at least one book there.  what about Taylor?  What about Ros? or Elena?

3) what’s the tie from Jack Hyde and Mr. Lincoln?  why did he post bail?  was it really just jealous?  was that the motivation there and that he wanted to get revenge from Christian having the ‘affair’ with Elena?  I feel like there’s more for some reason.

Lastly, in reading about the development of the movie and how they are still in talks about how this can be made into a PG/PG-13 movie vs. an R – i definitely see how it can be done.  i think that there’s much more of a story there than people want to think about and yes there’s sex, but that’s not what it’s really about.  it’s just a piece of it.

we’ll have to wait and see – but what i DO know is that after reading those post chapters of Fifty Shades Freed – i kind of feel like the christian POV stories will be great.