To remind you what’s all happened in Fifty Shades of Grey so far, Ariel wrote up a pretty nice summary yesterday. We last left our heroes having wanted to have sex, then deciding not to have sex, then having sex, then going for a bit of time not having sex because one of them wants to have kinky BDSM sex and the other just isn’t totally sure about it. Crazy, I know.
Anyway, now that everybody’s all caught up, we can get back to our fun summer reading!
Man, we can’t even go three sentences into a new chapter without me finding something to complain about.
For the first time in my life, I voluntarily go for a run. […] I put my hair in pigtails, blushing at the memories they bring back, and I plug in my iPod.
If Ana has never owned a computer, then how does she have an iPod?
I have a mind to run to the Heatman Hotel and just demand sex from the control freak. But that’s five miles
I don’t know which of this is more upsetting to me: Ana’s “well, I bet more sex with someone who doesn’t want the same type of relationship that I want will solve all of our problems” mindset, or the fact that a five mile run is enough to discourage guaranteed sex. Ana continues to perplex any sane reader with her internal dialogue during her run. She discusses how the BDSM contract is legally unenforceable, which is good, because I was wondering if the book was going to acknowledge this at any point, so YAY points for that! But then Ana immediately goes on and on about how why Christian’s sexual tastes are the way they are is such a mystery even though he’s explicitly told us his sexual origin story so BOO come on, Ana, I just gave you points.
Also, remember how Fifty Shades of Grey was originally Twilight-fanfiction before E L James changed all the character names? Well, Christian Grey shows up in Ana’s room unannounced.
“Good evening, Anastasia.” His voice is cool, his expression completely guarded and unreadable.
When hasn’t his expression been guarded and unreadable?
Finally, my medulla oblongata recalls its purpose. I breathe.
Who thinks like this?
I’m all deer/headlights, moth/flame, bird/snake…
Once again, I feel the need to emphasize that this is actually, word for word, what is written in the book. It’s like James couldn’t decide on just one saying and decided to just list all of them. And for that matter, since when is the bird/snake thing an expression? When’s the last time you heard anyone ever say “yeah, I was just a bird being attacked by a snake, man”?
“I was going to email them to you, but you interrupted me.”
Is… is this dialogue? I suppose “coitus interrupts” is technically a sentence, since there’s a noun and a verb and that’s really all you need. But… is this… what is this?
Oh and then they have the book’s weirdest sex scene thus far!
So let’s break down this sex scene and analyze how sexy it is, step by step!
- Christian ties up Ana by her wrists to the headboard of her bed. Alright!
- Christian strips in front of Ana and then blindfolds her with her own shirt. So far, so good!
- Christian leaves the room. Um… okay?
- Christian comes back with a glass of wine, takes some of it in his mouth, and then kisses Ana so it all pours out of his mouth into hers. OH GOD I AM VOMITING EVERYWHERE OH GOD
- Christian pours wine into Ana’s bellybutton? What?
- Christian teases Ana with sex for a few more pages, slowly masturbating in front of her in response to her literally begging for sex, then flips her over, slaps her ass, and “plunges inside me” as “I come instantly again and again, falling apart beneath him as he continues to slam deliciously into me”. I give up.
After Christian leaves, Ana has a conversation with roommate Kate that actually tops how weird all of that was.
“What’s wrong? What did that creepy good-looking bastard do?”
“Oh, Kate, nothing I didn’t want him to.”
Could this have been written any more awkwardly? It turns out, yes, because the chapter ends with a completely tonally out of place phone call between Ana and her mom about her husband breaking his ankle, and then there’s a series of rather boring emails between Ana and Christian save for:
- Christian freaking out at Ana with “GO TO BED, ANASTASIA”… at a quarter past midnight…
- Ana reacting with “Oh… shouty capitals!” which I felt was worth mentioning.
Ana and Christian exchange more emails, arguing about that whole submissive-dominant thing, where Christian (somewhat fairly) points out that the whole point of a submissive is, well, being submissive, and does so in the nerdiest way possible: emailing her a whole fucking dictionary definition.
To which Ana (somewhat missing the point but also making a fair point), responds with this:
Please note the date of origin: 1580-90. I would respectfully remind Sir that the year is 2011. We have come a long way since then.
Yeah, it’s 2011! People have email addresses now!
And so Ana is back at work and yet another boy is expressing interest in her, because, you know, she’s such a misfit, you guys! Anyway, she tells him she has a date with Christian Grey and he backs off and her subconscious “makes a very vulgar and unattractive gesture at him with her fingers”. Oh, no, wait, that was her inner goddess. It’s getting difficult to keep track of Ana’s schizophrenic alter egos.
Ana leaves for her date and talks to Kate on her way out.
“Wish me luck.”
“You need luck for a date?” Her brow furrows, puzzled.
Okay, surely this isn’t abnormal. Even if Kate isn’t aware of the whole BDSM sex slave thing that’s really going on, surely the notion that dates aren’t exactly guaranteed to go well and it is nice to have someone wish you luck if you’re nervous isn’t a particularly weird thing. But I digress, because Ana has her hot date with Christian Motherfucking Grey, and it’s got all kinds of great flirtatious banter! Nah, I’m lying! It’s all absurd and horrible!
“Anastasia, it doesn’t matter if [the contract]’s legal or not. […]”
Uhhhhhhhhhhh, kind of?
“Is there a store you go to? Submissives R Us?”
The 90s called. They want their jokes that weren’t even funny back then back.
“I’ve never had [oysters].” Ever.
“Really? Well.” He reaches for one. “All you do is tip and swallow. I think you can manage that.”
Now I have a mental image of Ana picking up Christian and tipping him over when she goes down on him.
He can’t stay away from me? What?
Seriously? Have you gone a day without seeing or hearing from him during this entire book? How is this confusing?
“Because I want all your pleasure.” His voice is husky but determined.
Does huskiness somehow imply a lack of determination? Because if I had to guess, I’d have assumed it was the other way around.
No one is going to dictate to me what I eat. How I fuck, yes, but eat… no, no way.
Honestly, these are decent priorities, and I endorse them.
And so the chapter concludes with Ana deciding she needs some time away from Christian to make this decision about getting all BDSM with him for three months and has a really awkward goodbye with Christian and then cries a lot. Now, to be fair, I can understand the crying. This is a pretty big letdown, even if she saw it coming.
Um, what were we talking about again?