50 Shades of Silly

Does everyone know about “Fifty Shades of Grey?” It’s a wildly popular new novel that women are reading discreetly and openly, according to their relative shame or bravado about enjoying middlebrow porn.

I had no idea what the story was about but now I know there’s a sadomasochist relationship at its center. Big deal. Haven’t these women read The Story of O or Justine? The problem for me is that it’s being called “Mommy Porn,” which is condescending, like Mom Jeans.

The other problem is the bad writing. It kills me that people will pay money for bad writing. Not just bad, but hilariously bad. Here are some quotes I found:

Trepidation lances through me.”

“‘So I brought you here,” he said phlegmatically.

Hahahahahahaha! And yet some awful woman is making a fortune because she guessed that there was a huge audience for a dopey, safely perky adventure in bondage and discipline.   I’m mad I didn’t think of it.

Now that the book is a certified phenomenon, one will be called upon to take a position. If you condemn it, you’ll be scolded for being a prude or an elitist. If you read it and enjoy it, you’ll be dismissed as a sex-starved Mommy or a moron. Or wait, maybe you’ll be congratulated for being modern and having a strong libido!

I don’t mind the idea of dominance and submission in sex. I’m all for it. But why does it have to involve a billionaire with “unruly hair” and a heroine who says stuff like:  “I revel in his possession, his lust slaking mine.”

No no no no, you fucking idiot! “Slake” means to lesson the force of, to assuage. You mean the  opposite!

Can anyone give us a firsthand report on this book? Thoughts or arguments?

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41 Responses to 50 Shades of Silly

  1. CR says:

    It began as a Twilight fanfic….that explains everything.

  2. Helen says:

    I ordered a kindle sample and barely made it through. I had to read a fragment from Middlemarch immediately to detox my brain.

    As to why does it have to involve a young handsome billionaire- have you ever seen a movie where the hero doctor wasn’t a surgeon but a dermatologist?

  3. Witch Moma says:

    Daughter & her friends are ALL reading this. Old school idea. I sent them to Jerzy Kosinski’s “Pinball” & the movie “9 & 1/2 Weeks.” Bad old Mom. I’m sure there are even more ancient, sexier, versions of this story. Interesting way to ramp up your sex life for a while.

  4. Winterbird says:

    I wouldn’t read it with your eyes. I am very picky about my porn!

  5. Bevitron says:

    Hey, what about us sex-starved elitist prudes? I had never even heard of it before now. The idea sounds ho-hum, nothing new here, move along. I was thinking the same thing, Sister Wolf – damn, wish I’D thought of that. I’ve always thought I could write some porn that would really deliver, if I could work up to giving a shit about it. If anything should be well-written, porn should be, since it teeters on the brink of hilarity all the time anyway, just by its nature. Of course now my curiosity has been piqued, even though we’ve been warned, and I’ll have to check this fucking fuck book out.

  6. thriftstorelawyer says:

    nothing to say other than that a friend who is cycling through another abusive, destructive relationship just recommended it to me.

  7. dexter vandango says:

    What about a discussion of The Secretary with Maggie G and James Spader? I loved it..

  8. Hammie says:

    I think I saw it on the Today Show in February. What’s wrong with Anais Nin?

  9. David Duff says:

    I have a problem with S&M – my pain threshold is in minus figures so if a lady smacked my bottie I would burst into tears. And I’m such a wuss that if I was ever to pluck up the courage to smack a lady’s bottie, I would burst into tears as well! I think I’ll just stick to the good, old-fashioned, normal way of things, you know, both dressed in underwater swimming gear, that sort of thing.

  10. Sister Wolf says:

    David – Hahahahahahhahahahha! The thought of you bursting into tears has ruined everything fro me. Wait – maybe it’s turning me on.

  11. Sam says:

    If everyone is talking about it then it’s bound to be shit.

  12. Esz says:

    I hate hate hate bad writing. And these pulp sensations that the masses love

    I think you should read a book called Gordon- I don’t remember the author. I’ll be back with some links soon…

  13. Sister Wolf says:

    Esz – I read Gordon years ago! it was published by Olympia Press. Dark and funny and very well-written.

  14. D.R. says:

    “Read the best books first, or you may not have a chance to read them at all.”

    Henry David Thoreau

  15. D.R. says:

    David Henry Thoreau. I type faster than I think.

  16. Cricket9 says:

    Don’t intend to read it – ever, the bad writing induces vomiting.
    “Story of O” is well written, but extremely morose – everyone is going through the motions, people do things to each other, but nobody enjoys it – there is not one single orgasm in that book and not a speck of sense of humour. Boring!
    Besides, why is it always about submissive women? Anne Rice (she of the vampires and “Beauty” porn) says that there are tons of submissive men, very few dominant women, and that men read these books identifying themselves with the heroines, because a submissive man just wouldn’t do. A dominant has to be a billionaire with
    “unruly hair”. Mommy porn, indeed. Bleh!

  17. dexter vandango says:

    Mr Duff.. you’re just bone idle.. in every sense of the word..

  18. Andra says:

    Oh Duff, go and catch a squid!

  19. Suebob says:

    The only thing I know about this is that the female protagonist is named “Anastasia Steele.” Oh lord help me. I’d for once love a female romantic lead with a really boring name, like Amy Smith or Jennifer Carter. Or Sue Davis.

  20. Sister Wolf says:

    Suebob – “Fuck me now, and I mean now,” Sue Davis commanded as she straddled the muscular young Latino bartender, digging her nails into his smooth brown skin.”

  21. kate says:

    i thought both “story of o” and “9 1/2 weeks” were super boring. maybe i’ll find this book hilarious!
    this reminds me of the time i tried to read a romance novel but i had to stop after i’d come across the phrase “gurgled with laughter” (a woman, during sex, gurgling. spew.) twice. and then i skimmed the book and found it used more times!
    anais nin is the only porn i can read.
    is it really true that the book started out as a twilight fan fic?

  22. David Duff says:

    Bone idle, Dexter? Moi? Not at all. The ‘Memsahib’ regularly scored me ‘E’ for Effort once a month, er, back in the day, you understand.

  23. dust says:

    If they ever make a television adaptation of named novel, i hope James Franco gets the male lead. He’s got unruly hair.

  24. Cricket9 says:

    Oh, I love the commanding Sue Davis and her young Latino bartender!

  25. Sister Wolf says:

    Dust – Oh, good call on James Franco! He’s got the hair AND he can say things phlegmatically.

  26. Eliza says:

    In fairness, I heard an interview with the author on NPR’s Q with Jian Ghomeshi last night, and she’s more self-aware about the amateur writing and inexplicable success than many naysayers give her credit for. Jian kept quoting theories about feminism and submission from “cultural critics” like the poor man’s Paglia, Kate Roiphe, and the author kept shrugging them off, laughing that people were reading too much into escapist romance. All of us literay snobs really just want people to admit when something is terrible, not to justify it.

  27. EDK says:

    I was curious to read what was passing for S/M // Mommy Porn these days, so I gave it a read. It didn’t take that long to finish and the writing is horrid. The number of times the girl says “crap” is astonishing. Apparently, she’s an English major with a very small vocabulary. There’s also nothing beyond (fairly) vanilla play scenes. Ohhh! He tied her up with his tie and then wore it to a public event! Oh, they had sex in the bathroom during her period! Meh. Go read the Story of O, or find some good blogs…

  28. Ugh; “mommy porn” is obnoxious. For some well-written eroticism, I like Sarah Waters’s “Tipping the Velvet.”


    It reads beautifully on its own, but a careful reader will also notice how it riffs on Jane Eyre (but not in a distracting manner).

  29. JK says:

    Nothing “first hand” SW but talk about weird… it’s going around. Some poor lady down in Florida is getting hit with all manner of insults over her book and I’m thinking it likely a case of Googling Results (now that I think of it, sinced I’ve italicized that, you might get innuendoed yourself – sorries in advance ☺).

    Paywall or I’d link it. Might get by with some sort of search. I’d do it myself but my firewall’s blocking some stuff.

    How does a book about a “dropout prevention teacher” get confused with 50 Shades of whatever? Her name is Susanne Jacoby Hale.

  30. Hammie says:

    Sister, why are you not writing soft porn for housewives and growing rich? Let us choose the fantasy for each chapter

  31. drollgirl says:

    i read it. it is absolutely horrible. the writing is just awful. the author uses these words DOZENS and DOZENS of times:

    and worst of all….

    worst book i have read in a long, long time.

    sadly i bought the set of three. D’OH. expect a blog giveaway soon. or not. lol

  32. Andra says:

    Inner Goddess.

  33. Sister Wolf says:

    drollgirl – Oh god, what is an Inner Goddess??????? Am I better off not knowing? The flush and blush syndrome reminds me of the Harry Potter books, where everybody’s cheeks were always “reddening” or turning scarlet.

    Hammie – OKay good, where does the money come in? E-books?

    Miss Cavendish – I’m afraid to look but I’m gathering my courage.

  34. Srenna says:

    “‘So I brought you here,” he said phlegmatically.

    What would possess someone to dream up such a terrible sentence? And using any word with ‘phlegm’ as its root just seems sort of gross in the context of a book of this sort.

  35. Just a Girl says:

    Meh. I feel as though I heard mention of this book one day, and the next it was on everyone’s lips. I get the gist of it. S&M. Big whoop. I read the back cover of a copy belonging to someone at work and was not at all impressed. I assume I could write much better porn on my own, or at the very least, fantasize about it. I imagine the ‘heroine’ in the book to be your typical, perfect, tormented female, which I absolutely can’t stand. I’ll pass.

  36. I am embarassed to say that I actually read the book. (I have a boring life). Horrible writing. And the fact that Anastasia can have her first orgasm ever just by him playing with her breasts. Yea right. Give me a break.

  37. hammiesays says:

    You can’t put porn on an e-book. It has to be something you can hold in one hand.

  38. Nada says:

    So bad -“Baby, you’re so wet for me!”- so predictable and unrealistic. Maybe if I had the slightest urge to have my nipples clamped while being caned with the possibility of being anally fisted, I’d at least find it a bit titillating. @ Melissa- I had the same thought as you about how ridiculous it was that she had her first orgasm just by paying with her breasts.

    What strikes me most is the unrealistic character of “Christian Grey” – and talk about a soap opera name. Seems to me that this man with almost 10,000 employees who is a controlling and powerful executive with huge responsibilities would not have a need to completely dominate in his private life. I imagine this kind of guy would be paying sex workers to change is diapers and nurse him. I just think it’s more logical for him to be the sub, but then women wouldn’t be lapping it up- they’d be disgusted. I found this blog by googling “Fifty shades of silliness”.

  39. Dru says:

    Oh goodness, this piece of shit is a Twilight fanfic with a find-and-replace done to switch out the Twilight names with whatever the author came up with.

    And I’m not joking, by the way. I have the original fanfic (which got taken down from fanfiction.net once the author sold it, obvs) as a pdf after some fandom drama went down last year, and it is just the same thing, with minimal changes.

    And how technologically backwards do you have to be to not know that you can find stuff like this – only better-written – for free, all over the internet? Or have these people never heard of fanfiction at all?

  40. RedHeadFashionista says:

    I want my money back.

    Though reading it in the pub with a friend while we drank cider and laughed ourselves silly at the idea of a man getting you to sign a contract where he controls your diet, grooming habits and orifices and the idea that we are supposed to be turned on by the visual of said man removing a girl’s tampon before having sex with her erotic did make it slightly more bearable that I spent good money on that utter shit.

  41. maya says:

    Total garbage – I got the first tome as a gift when it came out, read the first page, threw it out of the window, called the person who gave it to me to ask why. She was laughing her head off. She said that she bet 50$ with her husband that I would throw it out. Need I say more?

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