Sunday, November 11, 2012

Oh, the shame

I was rearranging some stuff in our home office slash guest bedroom this morning and came across my college diploma. I opened the green holder and took a gander. My Bachelor of Arts - English degree was conferred upon me by George Mason University. The diploma also includes lettering embossed in gold: "with distinction" - added because of my high GPA. (Me so smart!)

I need to mail it back. I do not deserve to keep it any longer. I have a confession to make: I'm reading "Fifty Shades of Grey."  Each time I'm part of a gathering of women, the book eventually comes up in conversation and, without fail, I'm the only one who has not read it. I guess I wanted to see what all the buzz is about. Now, normally when the whole planet is into something, I dismiss it. I know that sounds snooty, but I offer you the song "Macarena" as proof. Something can be universally adored and still suck ass.  However, I also got curious about the buzz on "Downton Abbey" and, as it turns out, the series is amazing. I watched three episodes in a row last weekend and was in heaven. 

Now, with "Fifty Shades of Grey," I wasn't completely in the dark. I knew that critics mostly hated the book. I'd heard that the prose is pretty awful.  I was curious, but didn't want it sitting on my bookshelf for the next decade. I also didn't want to check it out from the library. Then I remembered: P has a Kindle Fire. I bought it for him for his birthday. He does not use it to read books. He uses it to play online poker with strangers (and cuss loudly at them because, when he loses, it is only because "those motherfuckers got lucky").

I downloaded the book and have read about half of it. I had to make a solemn vow to delete it when I'm done. 

Yes, the writing is . . . not good.  The main character says things like, "Double crap!" Some of the dialogue is downright painful to read (and not because the topic relates to BDSM). Anyway, I'll finish it but I doubt I'll read the whole trilogy. I don't think my pride could take it.

I feel like I should dig out some Faulkner . . . re-read "Light in August" or something. Maybe tackle some Dickens and Steinbeck. 

I'm sorry for letting everyone down like this, reading low-brow fiction and all. :::sigh:::

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

It's OK Claudia. Now you can come to book group in February (don't be fooled by the fake book title Amy is going to submit to the newsletter). I got sucked into the "Twilight " saga this way. The writing was so bad, but I just couldn't stop! My friend says the pages are laced with crack.

Angela Z said...

The library doesn't even have it--the selection committee based their decision on the reviews. It wasn't censorship. Nope, none of that. Just because it was reviewed poorly. If you read every book in our library, you won't find any clunkers because apparently we only buy books with stellar reviews. Anywho....
I bought it from Target and of course the writing sucks, but it was compelling enough to finish. I slogged through the next two just because I can't stand not knowing how the story ends, but by the third one I was skimming every sex scene to get to the blasted end. At first, it's titillating..but after reading about days and days of doing the dirty upwards of seven times a day (yeah, right...not even in my youth when I wasn't exhausted by kids)...it just started to read like blah blah blah stroked blah blah blah on the precipice blah blah stung blah blah...but I digress. I had to read it to see what all the fuss was about too. And because I was super annoyed that the library refuses to buy it. Because of the reviews.

Sammy said...

I too got pulled in! And was horrified by the terrible writing, and by the fact that I kept reading anyway. And like the above commenter, I read the second one because I couldn't stand not knowing what happened. With the third book I read the first chapter and the last two chapters. It's a terrible, terrible book. I was so ashamed that I couldn't stop reading.

The Lovely One said...

The writing is terrible! It became painfully clear to me about halfway through the second book that I was only reading it for the smut!

If you want to read something just as naughty but slightly better written, you could try the Bared to You Series by Sylvia Day.