Fifty Shades Darker: Book Two by Entrenue - review by Velocifero

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Glutton for Punishment

If you're planning a trip into the woods anytime soon, consider packing this novel in your emergency kit in case you need to light a fire. The story inside is utterly worthless and the characters easy to hate. The plot goes in circles when the characters aren't too busy having sex. Save yourself and remember: Friends don't let friends read 50 Shades.
Published:
Pros:
Emergency toilet paper, excellent door stop
Cons:
Juvenile writing, awful portrayal of kink, terrible plot points
Rating by reviewer:
1
extremely useful review

About author

What can I say about E.L. James that doesn't involve phrases like, "utter embarrassment" or "probably shouldn't have a writing career"? If you read the first Fifty Shades book (and I'm so, so sorry if you did), you probably had an inkling already that it was based off of a piece of Twilight fanfiction at roughly a sixth grade level. If not, then perhaps a sampling of the writer's ineptitude will do.

You see, when the author runs out of prolific things to say, she often turns to some stock filler phrases to fill the void where actual content should be.

Out of a 350 page book...

"Oh my" is used 46 times
"Holy [crap/shit/fuck/cow]" is used 121 times
"Inner goddess" is referenced 59 times
"Subconscious" is referenced 58 times
"Kinky fuckery" is used 11 times without one hint of irony
She is guilted into eating somewhere around 43 times

Had enough? It gets worse.

"Mutter" is used 113 times
"Whisper" is used 251 times
AND THE WINNER...
"Murmur" is used a staggering 278 times, appearing on 79% of the book's pages.

You're welcome.
    • Dull

Content / Style / Audience

To say this book is about BDSM would be like saying toddlers using plastic kitchen sets are about gastronomy. That is to say, it is a watered-down facsimile of the original, a mere ruse in the shadow of the real thing. Don't believe me? This is the infamous installment of the series where Patrick Bateman/Christian Grey says, "Lovers don't need safe word," and somehow E.L. James and her editors all thought that was a good idea.

The book picks up where the first left off and - woe is me - Anastasia is simply heartbroken without her creeptacular ex-boyfriend of approximately two weeks, Mr. Christian Grey. My heart is breaking, truly. They make it a whole three days before they simply cannot stay away from each other any longer and must be on each other RIGHT NOW. You see, that's the real tragedy of these books - just when the plot starts to go somewhere at least vaguely interesting, E.L. James slams on the brakes because whoa, we just went three pages without sexytime. Yes, mere minutes after Christian Grey weeps and confesses his torture about his abused childhood, boom, it's business time. Bow-chicka.

Oh, but what is this? Some mentally ill ex-girlfriend is stalking around with a gun, possibly threatening their lives! Danger! Don't worry, everyone, Christian Grey's inept security team that not only doesn't find her, but fails to prevent a guy from later tampering with Grey's helicopter later. You want to call the cops? Psh, get your logic out of this book. By the time you get that far in the book, you're going to be rooting for the people with the guns.

Interestingly (and by interestingly, I mostly mean 'disturbingly') Ana's track record of getting sexually assaulted by every new man not working for Christian Grey continues, and somehow nobody is fazed. She and Christian argue a lot, but mostly it's the same thing: "Boo hoo, don't leave me!" "I won't leave you! But I'm not good enough for you!" "No, you are good enough for me! Please don't leave!" Ad. Nauseum. And then they have sex, but that's assumed at this point. At one point, it's suggested they'll go to church, which seems oddly out of place in a book about whipping and handcuffs while breathing hot seafood into each other's faces after a fancy meal.

I probably could go into the plot more, but what does it matter? Take the same banal characters and the same disturbing, abusive behavior from the first book and repackage it with a few barely-believable "twists", and you've got this horrifying piece of what I have fondly deemed "shit-erature".
  • Who / How / What
    [ ? ]
    Who might this product be best for? How is it best used? What are the best circumstances or situations for using this product?
    • Kindling
  • General
    [ ? ]
    Other tags that are useful and descriptive for this product.
    • Bdsm
    • Erotica
    • Fiction

Personal comments

Deep down, I'm still hoping desperately that this book is a piece of clever feminist satire, and yet it never comes true. I'm not really sure how or why I dragged myself bit by bit through this trainwreck novel, but I guess I'm a glutton for punishment, as the title implies.

I am disturbed that women find Christian Grey desirable, that his scary and controlling behavior is written off as merely eccentric or quirky instead of revealed to be dangerous and abusive. BDSM is not an excuse to patronize, condescend, or dehumanize your partner. It is not a defense to stalk them, to alienate them, or to manipulate them into sex. I can only echo my feelings from my first review, and that is to say that I worry for the vanilla couples who use this as an introduction to kink.

Ultimately, however, I will eventually and fearfully step into the final book when I've given myself sufficient time and alcohol to have forgotten what a heart-wrenching mess the first two in the series were.
Follow-up commentary
I went back and re-read most of the book and I'm still not quite sure why. I'm several hours older and still none the wiser. Please consider getting help if any part of your real-life relationship resembles this book.
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Comments
  • Missmarc
    Missmarc  
    Great review, thank you!
  • namelesschaos
    namelesschaos  
    Great review very entertaining.
  • animepanda89
    animepanda89  
    Great review!
  • smasmasma
    smasmasma  
    thanks for the great review!
  • Huff
    Huff  
    Great review. Thanks, I murmur.
  • Upyourreviews
    Upyourreviews  
    Awesome review. Sadly, I promised a friend who loves it that I'd eventually read it. Eventually includes the few seconds before I die though, right?
  • Velocifero
    Velocifero  
    Yes. Absolutely. Save this for your deathbed, and then take that opportunity to cough your dying breath on it out of spite! 8)
  • chicmichiw
    chicmichiw  
    Thanks for reviewing -- absolutely saved me the time reading. And to think I was close to caving after hearing the hype
  • LuckyLady
    LuckyLady  
    thanks for the review
  • himynameissteph
    himynameissteph  
    Thanks!
  • Cindi025
    Cindi025  
    thx for the review!
  • cgartman1989
    cgartman1989  
    THANKS
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