No, I haven't read the book.
No, I haven't watched the movie.
First, let me state, I am not against erotica. I like good erotica, well written erotica. I am against erotica that glamorizes abusive behavior.
Do I plan to read the book?
After reading the summary of what the book is about, at this link:
no, I have no interest in reading the book. In fact, if I knew nothing about the book or the author, and received a request via my book review blog to review this book, based on the description at the link above, I would say no and decline to review it. And I would note, the book blurb on Amazon and what the above links says, paint two very different pictures of the book's content.
From what I'm learning, I would say the above link paints a very accurate picture of the book's content.
Do I plan to watch the movie?
Nope, no way. From what I've heard, the movie is a watered down version of the book, and I'm not interested in either.
What concerns me about all this:
I'm concerned by how big a deal this book has become. I'm concerned by the influence it may have on our society at large and on individuals. I'm concerned with the message it seems to send.
The author herself calls this book her midlife crisis, written large, and including her fantasies.
It's fiction, yes, but it's dangerous fiction. Cases of people imitating fiction are not new. Remember the old saying, 'A case of life imitating art'. Well, this is one book that no one should strive to imitate. If anything, it should be a warning to naive young women to beware of men like Christian Grey.
Abuse of any kind is not okay!
Of course, there may be an outcry from the BDSM community, directed towards those criticizing this book or the movie. Now I've personally edited books that include BDSM elements. I've read those books. I think what is depicted in this book is more abuse than BDSM.
So let's move on to a breakdown of the reviews for this book:
The following is copied from the Amazon website, by me, today, February 15, 2015
Note the following breakdown by me, of the reviews:
5 star - 13,541
4 star - 3,283
3 star - 2,707
2 star - 2,497
1 star - 7,188
So this book has almost as many bad reviews as it does good ones. That should tell people something. Because no, it's not normal for a book to have that many bad reviews. A truly good book won't have that many negative reviews. The good reviews will far outweigh the bad reviews.
The following video was shared by a friend on a facebook post that I made. Here's a bit from the info about it, on youtube:
Published on Feb 12, 2015
What do readers of Fifty Shades of Grey have in common? A recent study showed strong correlations between health risks in women's lives - including violence victimization - and consumption of Fifty Shades of Grey material. Stefan Molyneux speaks with Dr. Amy Bonomi about the study's findings and what can be learned from the popularity of Fifty Shades of Grey.
Dr. Amy Bonomi is Professor and Chair of the Human Development and Family Studies Department at Michigan State University. Dr. Bonomi’s research focuses on the long-term health effects of domestic violence, dating violence, and child abuse, and the intimacy dynamics/processes that keep violent relationships intact.
I would not recommend this book or the movie either.
If you want to read erotica, check out the following authors, who I can recommend wholeheartedly:
Books should be fun, books should be entertaining, books should be informative. But when books influence people in a negative way, or glamorize a particularly destructive type of behavior, then books can become a bad influence.
Why this book has become such a runaway hit is beyond me. From what I've read, the writing isn't that great. So it must be the subject matter? And if it is the subject matter, then that doesn't say much about us as a society, now does it.
A subject for another day:
The sad state of the moral fiber of our world today,
and the total lack of manners and etiquette and tact in our world today.