Thursday, May 31, 2012

Chapter By Chapter Synopsis: Fifty Shades of Grey: chapters 6-10

Chapter Six


In the Greymobile, Ana is all upset that Christian is saying nothing about their kiss. This is more than likely because the kiss just happened and there’s nothing really to talk about. Ana starts getting really irrational about how Christian is driving so perfectly and not talking and I’m like, what does she want him to do? Pull down her panties and start giving her a handy while they drive? He’s driving a car. Leave him alone.

The silence is soon broken by Christian taking a bunch of phone calls on speaker just to show how important he is. One of those people is his brother Emmett…er...Elliott, who apparently went home with Kate the night before. Elliott is a pretty nice guy, proving that Christian’s problems stem from sociopathy rather than his upbringing. Ana gets sort of jealous about how free and easy Kate and Elliott are with each other, and Christian’s like, “I’m not going to kiss you again unless it’s premeditated” and Ana is fine with that instead of wanting to run away.

Elliot tells Kate, “Laters, baby,” and you need to remember this because it will be in the book about ten thousand more times.

So, Ana and Christian have a date set, and it involves strapping Ana into a helicopter harness. Christian enjoys strapping her in, and then starts making comments about how she’s always biting her lower lip, and he wants to be the one to bite it, etc.

Basically, he wants her to control a nervous tick of hers because it drives him crazy, and he apparently has no self-control. Well, this is actually okay since Ana apparently doesn’t either.

Is the lip-biting thing a nod to how Kristin Stewart “acts” in Twilight? She’s all lip biting and twitchy and looks like she’s going to throw up every few minutes, which is somehow even more annoying than Bella Swan, so I’m just curious about this lip biting thing.

Ana asks if they’re going to make love, and Christian’s all, “I don’t make love. I fuck. Hard.” And he’s not going to do anything until she understands what she’s getting into.

I have this in my notes: “Oh, who am I kidding. i don't care how kinky the author wants things to get, if there's anything other than missionary in here, i'll eat my hat.”



Chapter Seven



Christian takes Ana to his playroom. She says, “The walls are dark burgundy giving a womb-like effect to the room.” Eh. Yeah. So sexy. Eugh. Jeez.

who's a cute widdwe ewephant? Who? You are! You are!


So, when I first read through this, I thought he had figured out that she was a virgin, seeing as how he knew everything about her from her clothing size to her address to her taste in books, but apparently he hadn’t figured it out yet, so I was really incredulous during this scene. I didn’t understand why he couldn’t just have sex with her regularly a few times just to get her acclimated, and then introduce the other stuff, so I found this whole scene really disconcerting.



Ana, to her credit, asks some good questions about the whole thing, and she wants to know what she gets out of being a sub. She gets him, of course.

All aboard the Bingley express


So, I’m not an expert at D/s. It’s not really a lifestyle I’m into, but I have known others who are into it. Some who have even kept subs in collars and whatnot. It’s an interesting lifestyle, but it’s not usually combined with sex. D/s is usually a fulfilling activity in its own right, and it’s not unusual for people who participate in the lifestyle to go for months at a time without having actual sex. I will say this again: Christian is into kink, not BDSM. He likes sex. Rough sex. He likes to spank and punish and order someone around, but at the end of the day, he likes sex. It’s what he’s after. The spanking and the ordering around is not enough for him.



He also wants to not really have much of a relationship with his sub. This again would be against BDSM guidelines. Doms and subs need to be able to trust each other implicitly, and you don’t get that sort of relationship from spending a few hours in a playroom on the weekends. If you are a sub, then your Dom has complete control over you unless you tell him/her to stop. If you don’t trust them to stop when you tell them to, then you cannot trust them. If you are a Dom, you need to trust your sub to tell you when to stop. When you don’t trust that other person, people get hurt. People who are in these relationships usually know more about each other than couples who have been together for fifty years.



Anyway, eventually Ana informs Christian that she’s a virgin and he freaks out quite a bit because he’s all about control, and this was something he hadn’t foreseen. I will admit that his reaction is mildly adorable. He’s like, “We need to get you de-virginized STAT!” Of course, he’s pissed that she didn’t tell him about it. What was she supposed to do? When was she supposed to tell him? When they first met? I don’t get this guy. He makes no sense.



Chapter eight



They have sex. Geez. About time. Afterwards, he goes all sad sparkley vampire and plays a song on the piano.

The only time it's acceptable for a man to brood while playing piano. Hi, Johnny.


Chapter Nine



Ana wakes up, turns on her music, and starts dancing around the kitchen. Of course Mr. Creepy comes to watch and order her around, but that’s what he does.



Ana finally calls Kate, which is about twelve hours later than she said she’d call her. I’m totally disappointed in Kate for not calling the cops. Really, Kate, this is what friends do.



Okay, before I say this next part, I just want to be honest about the fact that I haven’t read much about this book before I actually read it. I did know that it was supposedly about BDSM, and that it was based on Twilight, which isn’t much of a stretch of the imagination, really. But I didn’t know which direction the book was going in (see above, re: my thinking Christian had to know Ana was a virgin). But this was my thought process:



This book is about BDSM (supposedly).



It’s based on Twilight.



Twitards are all about fantasy and making men who seem perfect but are really deeply sociopathic.



BDSM makes sense in that context, HOWEVER—



There is no way that this story would have been popular if it was about actual BDSM AND SO



The book must be about Ana finding out what happened with Christian earlier in his life that led him to this path and must THEREFORE



Find a way to cure Christian of his BDSM preoccupation.



Note from the future: You are so good, baby. Laters.



I’m really sorry. Really, I am. I’m slightly disappointed that it turned out to be this way. But these are my notes:



“christian says he never had vanilla sex before, which makes me wonder if he jumped in only doing bdsm, which is sort of like trying to build a highrise without a foundation.






well, this book wouldn't be very popular if it was actually about kinky sex, so maybe ana is supposed to teach christian how to do vanilla.”



I do think it’s nice that Christian tells Ana that she’s beautiful and compliments her and whatnot. It really is a good thing to tell the girl you’re sleeping with that she’s pretty.



I have issues with Ana performing her first BJ perfectly, and that she’s done it in a full bathtub as well. I’ll admit that I started skimming once the sex got graphic, but this is a bit unbelievable. People need help with this kind of stuff, so either she’s been practicing on her own, or she’s a miracle worker because he gives her an A.



Christian really wants her to sign the contract. I would think that if he really had her sexual well-being at heart, he’d want her to have more experience. Oh, but he owns her virginity. Retch. Whatever.



His mom comes over and Christian wants Ana to meet her. I hope we learn why he’s so messed up.



Chapter Ten



His mom wears neutrals because of course she does. She seems like a pretty decent lady, though, and she seems to be pleased that Ana is there.



After Mom goes away, Ana answers her phone thinking it must be Kate, and it’s Jose.



Okay, so the night that Christian came to the bar to “rescue” Ana, he found Jose pawing at her and trying to kiss her, and Christian has hated Jose ever since. And now he’s all pissed off that Ana is talking to Jose, and Ana wants to know why, and it’s because she’s Christian’s, not Jose’s, and…yeah. Way to set feminism back three hundred years. Does Jose need to give him a goat and three chickens to make up for it?



Christian says that Ana wanting to discuss their relationship is defiant on her part. So is wanting to have friends and a social life and all that other stuff that Christian thinks she shouldn’t have because she’s “his” and he doesn’t need those things.



Okay, so one of the things that makes a lot of sense is that Christian wanted Ana to sign a nondisclosure agreement. I get this. Could you imagine if Bill Gates was into BDSM? Heck, could you imagine if Jared from Subway was into BDSM? The tabloids would have a field day. But Ana needs to talk to Kate. Not about the bondage, but just about the sex. Christian isn’t into this. He thinks Ana should ask him all of her sex questions. Yeah. This is how he is. So, finally, he’s like, “Be discreet.” She will.



He drives her home, and I have this in my notes: “he is obsessed with her eating. is this a thing in the twilight fandom? is it because of the first book when edward was all over bella to eat and drink her coke after she almost got raped? is this their gauge at how much a guy likes you? i am glad i don't know, but sort of wish i did.”



I don’t get the eating thing. He lords over Ana until she is too nervous to eat, and then she can’t eat, and he lords over her for not eating.



Ladies (and gentlemen…), if this is what your relationship is like, you need to get out of it. This is not an equitable relationship. I feel like I need to stress this over and over again. This is not a good relationship. If a guy (or girl) makes you feel badly about yourself, you need to walk away from them. It will be hard, but you have to do it.



Okay, so Ana and Kate talk about sex and all that, and then Jose calls and accuses Ana of liking Christian because of his money. This goes over as well as you think it would. We can’t like Jose of course. If we liked Jose, we might think that he’d be better for Ana, and if we thought someone would be better for Ana, then we'd think Christian wasn't right for her. It's this sort of logical fallacy that keeps us going in this story. "Well, who else can she be with?" because her being single is out of the question. Don't forget: if she doesn't snatch up Christian, she'll be a crazy cat lady in her thirties and she'll never be loved by anyone!



Later, Ana is able to eat without Christian nagging her. Big surprise! He’d better stay away from the Souplantation. I was there over the weekend, and someone had three huge pieces of bread on a plate in the busboy station. It was pretty shameful. I mean, it's a buffet. You take one piece of bread, and if you want more, you go back for more. How hard is this? But they had to take three pieces and only eat a half of one. There are starving children in Africa!



We find out that Christian Grey was taken under the wing of a much older Dom while he was in high school, and Ana (and pretty much everyone else in the world) considers this to be sexual abuse. Again, I have this as my note before I read the rest of the book: “I wonder if he would look at it that way? Since I predict that this book will be about making Grey less kinky and more normal, I guess we have to deal with his angst later.”



I am sooo good. Really.



Our last thought before the end of the chapter is Ana thinking she’d never know about BDSM if she didn’t know Christian. I actually want to know how she’s never known about it before. I knew about it by the time I was….fourteen? I think? Grow up, little girl.



Laters, baby. More to come.

10 comments:

  1. I love you. Marry me.

    I've been tempted to read this, really...but I'm going to pass. Pretty much definitive, at this point. I'd spend the book raging and throwing it, anyway, judging by this train wreck you've described.

    (Side note: could the eating thing be a conscious effort to show girls eating normally and still be desirable? Is this some misguided attempt to refute eating disorders as a way to stay beautiful? I could see the authors--I'm including Meyer in this--trying to be "proactive" in that way.)

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    1. That's possible. At one point, Ana muses that she's too skinny for a guy like Christian, and I took it to mean that she's just sooo skinny and perfect and the author is just trying too hard to make her perfect while she thinks there's something wrong with her, but maybe the author is trying to say that women with larger curves are more desirable.

      The second book also deals with some drastic weight loss on Ana's part and she's criticized for being too skinny, so maybe that's another way of looking at it.

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  2. Oh, I am loving this so, so much, I can't tell you.

    But out of all the things I love, I think my favourite bit is "His mom wears neutrals because of course she does."

    I suspect Ana spent her entire adolescence in a coma.

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    1. I just want to know who it was that decided neutrals=wealth. Like, Bella's allowed to wear blues and greens before she marries Edward, but then it's all oyster cocktail dresses and cream cashmere coats after that.

      It's funny because in the past, the more neutral something was, the poorer you looked. The poor couldn't afford to dye their yarn and linen, so the best they could do was bleach it in the sun. The rich were the ones with all the colors.

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  3. I am loving your reviews, but funny enough a lot of your critiques on Ana's innocent personality traits are things that my friends and I have dealt with (i.e. your "How did she not know about BDSM?" - I honestly didn't even know what the exact acronym stood for and I'm in my mid-20s. It just hasn't made an appearance in my life in any way for any reason until this point, so why would I?)

    Of course, I should add that most of my friends and I grew up in sheltered (mostly Asian and South Asian) households where even dating was something we didn't do (until, yes, I did in secret once I hit - oh the magic age in this book - 21). So, personally, annoyances though I had with this book it isn't TOTALLY hard for me to believe a girl could be innocent until her twenties.

    Just wanted to point that little bit out!

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  4. BDSM sure is about sex a (massive) lot of the time. Not in public clubs because more often than not it’s not allowed there, but the rest of the time, it sure is. Check out FetLife if you don’t believe me.

    (FetLife is Facebook for kinksters. It's almost all about sex!)

    It's probably not a good idea to make sweeping statements about a lifestyle you have no knowledge of.

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    1. I believe you. From what I can find, however, sex is not considered an essential part of the lifestyle. I am open to different groups having their own interpretations since obviously most things in life are fluid, but that is what I have found through my research . I do welcome your insights, and if you would like to add commentary on this book from your perspective, you ate very welcome to do so. I have asked for similar commentary from others who say they are into the lifestyle, so I won't hold my breath, but I really would love to see sometimes take on the book who is involved in BDSM.

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  5. Thank you so much for the wonderful book! I finished it a few days ago and cannot get it out of my head. It is pure magic. It was everything I hoped it would be and much more. Thank you so much.
    Fifty Shades Movie

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  6. Anastasia Steele
    Kristen Stewart has finally responded to rumors that she's a favorite to play Anastasia Steele.I m excited for the Fifty Shades of Grey movie.i cant wait for releasing date

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  7. OK, as someone who WAS into the BDSM lifestyle, I can tell you that the author googled everything. She has no first-hand experience. Christian may call himself a Dom, but no Dom worth his salt would go about establishing a relationship the way he does in this book. Expecting someone to sign a contract right away is irresponsible. Finding out their tastes and limits right away *is* responsible - however, as a total newbie, Ana didn't even know what a flogger was, nor a spreader bar. A good Dom would have taken the time to show her his toys and answer every single question she had before ever dreaming about a contract. And really the "kink" in these books is not kinky at all. It's just enough to make the average reader blush and giggle and have something to talk to their girlfriends about. I *can* say that the BDSM relationships that I was in did involve quite a bit of sex! There may be some that are not based on sex but in my experience, not the norm. I won't argue with you about your research cuz I don't think that's polite :) but is it possible that what you read was mostly based on online relationships?

    Anyway... other choice words I would have for Christian as a sub would be: you don't get your sub drunk in order to negotiate. Never ever ever. And if you have anger issues, you shouldn't be a Dom. Punishing a sub is fine, but NOT when you are angry. I did like it that he told Ana he would punish her if she rolled her eyes again, and then followed through - that was good. But then he rewarded her with sex. Not consistent.

    Those are just a couple of offhand thoughts I had - I've been thinking about writing a more detailed article or blog about 50 Shades from the point of view of a former sub/bottom, because I have the sinking feeling that it has attracted a fair number of people to the lifestyle, and the book is not a good guide.

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