1. I’m a curious person so when something is recommended by friends and the Today Show and across Facebook and the Twitterverse, I can’t ignore it.
2. The book, which shall not be named because it certainly doesn’t need any more publicity, made its way onto my Kindle.
3. I’m very ashamed to admit this since there are so many wonderful books are out there that I haven’t read or even considered putting on my Kindle. Yet.
4. I haven’t put these wonderful books on my Kindle yet but I hope that I will one day soon, once I finally learn from my numerous Kindle buying mistakes. Like this one.
5. Back to the book that shall not be named: I thought it was ridiculous BUT . . .
6. I read the whole darn thing.
7. In two days.
8. And found it a little bit arousing, at moments.
9. Did I just admit that on my blog? Bad enough that I admitted to buying the book, but finishing it because it was exciting on a very physical level?
10. It’s probably too late now, but could my mother and mother-in-law and father-in-law please not read any more of this? Oh yeah. And my kids.
11. I wonder at my own admission since for all of the book’s woo-woo, I find the main characters, who participate in said woo-woo, to be about as realistic and fleshed out as two stick figures. One of them bent and broken with lots of fiery red welts, mind you.
12. And their relationship is completely not what I would ever want for myself or for my children. Or for anyone.
13. I’m talking about the relationship here. I’m not talking about the (cover your ears/eyes please, kiddies!) sex or the sex games.
14. I don’t care if two mature adults choose to play games that they both agree upon, even if they are not my cuppa.
15. And I completely get that a strong and powerful man like Mr. Grey of said unnamed book definitely can be appealing to many women, myself included, BUT not the selfish part. Or the violent part. Which are two of his largest parts. And the third large part that we know about, while valuable to a sex life, still doesn’t rank higher than somebody who treats me with respect. And interest.
15. Don’t we teach our children and claim to believe for ourselves that if somebody is thriving on inflicting pain on us, we not only say no and leave as quick as our feet will take us, but we immediately call the authorities and report a crime?
16. We give up too much of ourselves if we let others control us through pain or manipulation, even if the idea carries some level of thrill.
17. Lots of really stupid (and horrible) things can spark in us a certain thrill. But do we conjure up these thrills for others so they sound like something they might want, in their real lives?
18. I’m not talking about skydiving with all the safety gear, and perhaps a tandem, experienced diver. I’m talking about jumping off a building because somebody tells you that it turns them on.
19. It’s kind of thrilling to know you can turn somebody on. No matter who you are.
20. Foolish creatures we are, feeling somehow powerful because somebody is turned on by our acting out their fantasies.
21. If it’s your fantasy, fine. If it’s a mutual fantasy, fine.
22. But I read the book that shall not be named, and nowhere does it indicate in the book that any of the the stupid, painful, mildly thrilling things that the man inflicts upon our young (virginal) woman character are of her fantasies.
23. Because in the book, the girl does not actually appear to have her own fantasies. Or a mind of her own.
24. Which is at the heart of what frosts me about this extremely popular, highly successful piece of trash (yes, I said it. Sorry to those of you whom I love who loved this book. I still love you just not the book. And in this case, not your taste in this particular book.)
25. Women are not, and never were, blank slates.
26. Women are not men, have different qualities than men, but are not lesser than men.
27. And they have opinions, worldly opinions, domestic opinions, philosophic opinions, even if they have been taught to think or pretend that their opinions are not as important or valuable or worthy as those of men.
28. Which I hope isn’t happening too much in the 21st century.
29. But know that it is in many places.
30. It certainly has reared its ugly head in national politics and television pseudo-news.
31. And among certain public leaders, religious and secular.
32. So, I won’t apologize for getting on my soapbox here because I think we become what we tell ourselves we are.
33. Or what others tell us we are.
34. Having said all this, I would never tell anybody they can’t read this book.
35. I will tell people that I don’t like this book. That it makes me angry. That it makes me see my own weaknesses.
36. I did read the entire first book. Even bought the second one. But I won’t read that one.
37. Not because it’s beneath me to read it. Clearly, I fell victim to its powers in the first book.
38. I’m not reading it because I am ashamed that I am not as evolved as I’d like to think I am.
39. Sometimes I go for the easy over the hard (sorry that joke was too easy not to make.)
40. Sometimes I stop thinking about what it all means and just let myself follow the words of others, even if the big picture makes my skin crawl.
41. And I get that a lot of us read for escape.
42. I love novels because they allow me to escape to other worlds, other lives, other experiences unlike my own.
43. I wonder if I would feel differently if another book explored the same S&M theme but in a believable world with real, fully developed people that think for themselves.
44. I wonder if I would feel differently if another book explored the same S&M theme but told through the voice of somebody who learned something valuable through her experiences or grew or changed.
45. I’m doubtful I’d pick up the book even if it were different, simply because there are so many amazing worlds out there that I can escape into that would satisfy my needs better.
46. Those are the books I’d like to read.
47. I’m back to taking book recommendations from my small trusted group of family/friends, a few reviews written by authors whose view I respect, and suggestions from bookstore workers who know what I like to read, even though they are becoming a dying breed.
48. Which makes me sad because part of what makes the world of books so important to me is that I make connections with other people based on what books we love and hate.
49. So do you think that I am full of it? That I need to lighten up and just enjoy books like the one that shall not be named because it does have a certain thrill that has proven to draw me in, in spite of myself?
50. Or are you more selective in your book choices? Wouldn’t even have considered the book that shall not be named because of it’s subject matter or the way it portrays girls/women? Or something else altogether?
The main thing I don’t like about getting on my soapbox and shouting out my thoughts is that I often don’t get to hear about the things I haven’t considered in my diatribe, the things that might make me reconsider my opinion, or grow to see the world a little differently. And that is really what I want to do. Not just pour out the words but take some new ones in as well.
So let me know what you think. Pretty please.
I'd love to hear what you think. Share in the comments section at the bottom of the page.
Please share my posts with your friends by clicking on the FB, Twitter, or email share buttons found below. And if you like what you've read, click on the Facebook like button.
You won't miss a post if you sign up to receive my musings by email (see the sidebar on this page).