Saturday, July 7, 2012

Isn't it romantic...

"[...] but books are still unrivaled in their capacity to evoke fantasies and fuel the erotic imagination. A book does not allow the reader to be just an observer; it requires the intrinsic complicity of the mind, which stages a mental production based on the often sparse notes of the author, fantasies woven by words forcing the reader to bring into play his or her own desires or experiences.
     Having said this, what are we to infer from the sudden bestseller popularity of Fifty Shades of Grey and the two sequels that compose E.L. James’s trilogy? In spite of their sophomoric tone and less than lucid writing, the story of (the oh, so beautiful) Christian Grey and Anastasia Steel, and their cat and mouse sexual game of sadist predator and virginal prey, has touched a chord in the collective imagination of readers, most of whom are women. [...]
     What is interesting about erotic books is the reflection they create, the image in the mirror that can be glimpsed when so many come to drink from the same well at the same time. The image we get from E.L. James is an affirmation of the willingness of women to forgo cynicism when it comes to love. We like stories where guilt is followed by redemption and sex is tied to emotion, not pornographic tales of domination and submission. Having a traumatic backstory to explain the inexplicable, and having love transform a would-be predator, are formulae that have worked throughout the history of romance literature and obviously continue to do so. We can expect E.L. James's version to beget many followers. Let us hope that the offspring of this erotic rebirth arrive better spoken."
— Gioconda Belli, Los Angeles Review of Books

Buy all of E.L. James's books here...

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