Friday, July 20, 2012

What I read in May (2012)

May was an extreme series bandwagon month, but it was fabulous!

The Fifty Shades series
Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James

I first heard of this book after reading an article about Barbara Walters scandalously asking her co-hosts if they "like it rough". I was curious, found out that it was a series, and instantly wanted in! I jumped on the library's waiting list for the ebook, and discovered that it would likely be October before I got my hands on it. So a friend lent me her files, and I spent the next week in a zombie-like stupor, ignoring all house work and misc domestic duties in exchange for falling for a mentally unstable fictional character. I feel no shame about this, friends. My only complaint is that this read as a fanfic (since that is where the books began), in that you could almost feel each chapter being individually posted, highlighting some sexual adventure each and every time to appease internet readers - and there was so much of it, so often, it felt highly unrealistic. I kept thinking - no one does this, not even fake people. That took some of the believability out of it for me, and after a while, I was so desensitized to what they were doing, that I was no longer shocked, but slowly getting annoyed.

Fifty Shades Darker by E.L. James

Now this book, I loved! I loved that Anastasia worked hard to get through to the core of who Christian is and why he is the way he is. It made their relationship a lot more valid and understandable. While Christian always thought more of Ana than his previous, uh "relationships", it doesn't change the fact that they started out with a weird slave-ish contract, and that didn't sit well with me. So to see them working through actual emotional hurdles and become something healthier was both satisfying, and soothing - morally. This book was thoroughly enjoyable to me - in every way. I loved it!

Fifty Shades Freed by E.L. James

While the final book was kind of predictable in the way things were wrapped up, who doesn't love a happy ending? I considered it a bit cheesy, but still loved it. I like seeing loose ends tied up in a happy way. Sorry if this is spoiler-y at all (though honestly, why haven't you read these yet?!).

The Hunger Games by Suzanne CollinsThe Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Speaking of being late to a party - I didn't pick up this book for nearly four years! I honestly had no interest in reading this series. Being one that hates to miss out on a cultural phenomenon, I picked it up and read the back cover no less than 10 times - trying repeatedly to get interested. Each time, I would decide I'd have no interest in reading about suffering and kids killing kids, and put it back down. I ignored every single recommendation, and only gave in after hearing about people loving the movie. So I decided to give it a shot. I didn't love it, but I did find it interesting - after getting a slow start. I'm glad that I'm "a part" of this now - I enjoyed renting the movie when it came out, and I look forward to the movies to come. I struggled with the ideas behind the games themselves, and spent most of the book stressed out, but after reading about the author's motivation behind the ideas, I respect what she was trying to get across, and appreciate the meaning behind it.

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

This was definitely my favorite book in the series. I enjoyed that there was a bit of happiness involved (what can I say, I don't like to read about unrest), and I also liked the team work and togetherness in most of the story. Despite there being hardship and struggles still present, there was a sense of hope and happiness within the story, and that made it an easier book to read. This book made the entire series worth it for me!

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