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Fifty Shames of Earl Grey

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Young, arrogant tycoon Earl Grey seduces the naïve coed Anna Steal with his overpowering good looks and staggering amounts of money, but will she be able to get past his fifty shames, including shopping at Walmart on Saturdays, bondage with handcuffs, and his love of BDSM (Bards, Dragons, Sorcery, and Magick)? Or will his dark secrets and constant smirking drive her over t Young, arrogant tycoon Earl Grey seduces the naïve coed Anna Steal with his overpowering good looks and staggering amounts of money, but will she be able to get past his fifty shames, including shopping at Walmart on Saturdays, bondage with handcuffs, and his love of BDSM (Bards, Dragons, Sorcery, and Magick)? Or will his dark secrets and constant smirking drive her over the edge?


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Young, arrogant tycoon Earl Grey seduces the naïve coed Anna Steal with his overpowering good looks and staggering amounts of money, but will she be able to get past his fifty shames, including shopping at Walmart on Saturdays, bondage with handcuffs, and his love of BDSM (Bards, Dragons, Sorcery, and Magick)? Or will his dark secrets and constant smirking drive her over t Young, arrogant tycoon Earl Grey seduces the naïve coed Anna Steal with his overpowering good looks and staggering amounts of money, but will she be able to get past his fifty shames, including shopping at Walmart on Saturdays, bondage with handcuffs, and his love of BDSM (Bards, Dragons, Sorcery, and Magick)? Or will his dark secrets and constant smirking drive her over the edge?

30 review for Fifty Shames of Earl Grey

  1. 5 out of 5

    Misfit

    I'm guessing most folks know the basics of The Fifty Shades of Grey books, originally written as fan-fiction of the Twilight series: mousy Bella and control-freak Edward got a new setting and a hot sex life. Fifty Shades was eventually picked up by money-grubbing publishers, publishers who supposedly edited it, and history was made, although after reading it for myself, I'm reminded of The Emperor's New Clothes. Does everyone love these badly written books because the hype says they're supposed I'm guessing most folks know the basics of The Fifty Shades of Grey books, originally written as fan-fiction of the Twilight series: mousy Bella and control-freak Edward got a new setting and a hot sex life. Fifty Shades was eventually picked up by money-grubbing publishers, publishers who supposedly edited it, and history was made, although after reading it for myself, I'm reminded of The Emperor's New Clothes. Does everyone love these badly written books because the hype says they're supposed to, or are they afraid to go against popular opinion? Say it ain't so. Speaking of money-grubbing publishers, I spotted a chat on Amazon mentioning that the lending option for the purchased Kindle editions has been turned off (which I can't confirm because I will not put even one penny in their overstuffed pockets). With that kind of hoopla and a big fat movie deal in the works, you knew it just a matter of time before the spin-offs and spoofs started, didn't you? A book with characters stolen borrowed from a best-selling author is just begging to have the tables turned on it (I would so love to see what the folks from the old Carol Burnett show could do with this material). I found this Listmania on Amazon that shows there's been several spin-offs already written - but the one I wanted to get my hands on was Fifty Shames of Earl Grey by Fanny Merkin AKA Andrew Shaffer (a big thanks to the kind folks at Net Galley and Perseus Books Group, Da Capo Press for giving me the chance to read this). Anywho, the *lovers* this time around are Bella Ana Anna Steal and Edward Christian Earl Grey. Bella Ana Anna is still the klutzy college student andEdward Christian Earl Grey the gazillionaire business man. Instead of being fifty shades of effed up, Edward Christian Earl's got a list of fifty shames, including shopping at Wal-Mart on Saturdays and a bizarre fascination with Tom Cruise and his older movies (lol). Instead of constantly biting her lip, this time Bella Ana Anna is a compulsive nose-picker (which is a big sexual turn-on for Edward Christian Earl). Edward Christian Earl doesn't stay at the Heathman Hotel, it's the Holiday Inn... And just wait until you find out who Edward Christian Earl's adopted father is :D I think you've got the gist of it, and I'm not going to spoil by going further (the twist on the infamous tampon scene was hilarious ). Wish I could quote, but unfortunately I can't until I get my hands on a finished copy. I can promise a belly full of laughs, and strongly urge you not to read this one on the plane or the train - unless you want everyone looking at you funny when you start laughing your arse off. Available July 31 according to the Amazon page. Personally I think the Kindle price is a wee bit too high, but you'll definitely get your money's worth in laughter. But wait - there's more coming. There was a preview at the end for the next book in the series, Fifty Shames in Space. I can't wait :)

  2. 5 out of 5

    Traveller

    Oh, dwarling..* I get up and look in the mirror. My hair ...- oh, my hair! It's... really naughty hair. It insists on going in all directions while I sleep. So, I say a mantra every night: "Must flatten hair...must..." ..but it never works. I say it anyway. Who knows, one morning I might wake up with flat hair. This is a very important thing in my life. To wake up with neat, flat hair. I know today is going to be a very important day for me. It's the day I'm going to meet him. I just don't know it y Oh, dwarling..* I get up and look in the mirror. My hair ...- oh, my hair! It's... really naughty hair. It insists on going in all directions while I sleep. So, I say a mantra every night: "Must flatten hair...must..." ..but it never works. I say it anyway. Who knows, one morning I might wake up with flat hair. This is a very important thing in my life. To wake up with neat, flat hair. I know today is going to be a very important day for me. It's the day I'm going to meet him. I just don't know it yet. A whole lot of unimportant stuff happens, and then I walk into his office. I see HIM, and I trip over my own feet at the shock of it. ..at how magnificent, how sexy, how stunning, how manly, how masterful he is. ..and when he walks away, I trip over the coffee table because I cannot take my eyes off that tight butt in those tight pants. A whole lot of other unimportant stuff happens, and then, he saves me from being my usual klutz self when I almost walk in front of a car, and then he kisses me. It's the first time I've been kissed, so I faint. Then a whole lot of other unimportant stuff happens, and then I have a load of orgasms. So many orgasms, that I unfortunately cannot remember which one came first, (hehe heh, 'came' geddit?) plus I can't quite remember what came in between. Oh, yes. I have to eat certain food, and wear certain clothes, and work out at certain times of the day, and hmmm.. Well, anyway, that's what comes more or less in between the comes, I mean between the, between his, er.. between my.. umm. Between. Oooh.. Oooh. Aaah. Holy cow, I never knew that down there could be so between...so coming, I mean sooo holy ...I don't mean so full of holes -- okay, that as well,-- but, I mean, so filled up, with, with HIM. Holy cum. I blush and chew my lip. Oops! I hope I haven't given away any spoilers... PS, I forgot to say. Now, I actually like my hair looking all fu..., I mean, looking like I had slept with somebody. (When actually, we weren't really sleeping, tee-hee!) * The five stars are ironic stars, dwarling...

  3. 4 out of 5

    karen

    i don't know if it is just because i read A Coupla Shades of Taupe: A Parody first and may have reached my supersaturation point with fifty shades of gray parodies, but this one was not as amusing to me as the other. there is something almost too easy about it, the way it is really easy to write bad theatre d'absurd, you know. for example: an attractive blonde behind the receptionist's desk smiles at me as i walk in. i assume she's the receptionist, because i can't think of any reason she would b i don't know if it is just because i read A Coupla Shades of Taupe: A Parody first and may have reached my supersaturation point with fifty shades of gray parodies, but this one was not as amusing to me as the other. there is something almost too easy about it, the way it is really easy to write bad theatre d'absurd, you know. for example: an attractive blonde behind the receptionist's desk smiles at me as i walk in. i assume she's the receptionist, because i can't think of any reason she would be sitting behind the receptionist's desk. unless maybe she's filling in for the real receptionist, who could be on her lunch break. but then i remember: it's almost two, and i doubt anyone takes their lunch breaks that late. so this must be the actual receptionist. that, to me, is just placeholder humor. it isn't funny necessarily, but it is absurd enough that it can fool you into thinking it is funny. but it's not. and it is too "easy." and there is a lot of that type of writing in the book. but there are "actual" funny things, too. -this is amazing. i'm in a helicopter with earl grey, the most handsomest man on the planet. and now he's the most handsomest man in the air! i peer into the distance, and can see the space needle in faraway seattle jutting above the skyline. we're up so high, and the sun is so bright - "earl!" i shout. "what!" he shouts back, over the roar of the helicopter's massive blades. "watch out for the sun!" "what!" "i said, WATCH OUT FOR THE SUN!" he shoots me a puzzled look. "what? i'm not wearing sunscreen," i say. he shakes his head. "nevermind," i mutter. he probably knows how close to the sun we can fly without getting burned. i hope. -"you're a mystery to me, baby," he says, biting the tip off the banana. i blush. "oh, stop." "no, it's true," he says. "i have no idea what's going on inside that pretty little head of yours..." "to be honest, i have no idea either," i say, looking down at the table to avoid his powerful gaze. "most times, my mind is just an ongoing, present-tense first-person monologue. it's like i'm writing a novel, constantly, but only in my brain. a really bad novel." -it's ten in the morning and earl grey is long gone from the bed. he hasn't completely abandoned me, because i'm still wearing earl's shirt from last night; it's like i've skinned him and am wearing his flesh. only it's less creepy by like a million times. and i think that is part of why i liked taupe better than earl grey. taupe truly embraced the sickness. it was gross and dark and gross some more. this one was a tamer comparison that incorporated more of the twilight source material, but i just never really got into it. a lot of my reservations had to do with the inconsistencies in the character of anna. she is horny and in charge of her sexuality one minute, idiotically innocent the next; it just doesn't wash. i know it is foolish of my to require character-consistency from a parody of a book that was pretty crappy to begin with, but i do. i require it. i didn't laugh out loud once while reading this, although i smirked a few times. this is smirky humor. if that is your thing, read this one. if you like sickfuck humor, read taupe.

  4. 4 out of 5

    ♡Karlyn P♡

    This was a HILARIOUS parody of Fifty Shades of Grey, it nailed so much of the absurdity of that story! In Fifty Shames of Earl Grey, Anna Steele is an airhead virgin college student who meets the bazillionaire stalker Earl Grey, and soon gets pulled into his sick and twisted world of BDSM - erotic role playing for Bards, Dragons, Sorcery and Magick. This story pokes so much fun at all the whacked out parts of Fifty, including Ana's lip biting problem (now a nose picking problem that turns him on This was a HILARIOUS parody of Fifty Shades of Grey, it nailed so much of the absurdity of that story! In Fifty Shames of Earl Grey, Anna Steele is an airhead virgin college student who meets the bazillionaire stalker Earl Grey, and soon gets pulled into his sick and twisted world of BDSM - erotic role playing for Bards, Dragons, Sorcery and Magick. This story pokes so much fun at all the whacked out parts of Fifty, including Ana's lip biting problem (now a nose picking problem that turns him on, lol!), the many over used phrases like his long fingers and eye gazing, the infamous 'contract' and tampon scenes, and of course the erotic sex he likes rough and kinky. It also pokes fun at fan-fiction, Dr Drew, E.L.James, and Twilight!! OMG, I busted a gut listening to this book. (Thanks Tantor for the audiobook ARC!!) The laughs come so fast, I will need to re-listen to this as I am sure I missed a few while I was laughing so hard. The audio book narration was also AWESOME. Allyson Ryan has a great voice and was able to pull of this kind of humor and parody. Her Anna was spot-on as a nitwit heroine, and her male voice for Grey sounded sooooo stalker-ish, LOL. Highly recommended for a great laugh. :-) If you've read Fifty, and know a bit about the books history as Twilight fan-fic, you can't go wrong. (Audio book ARC provided by Tantor. http://www.tantor.com/BookDetail.asp?...) ETA: The author has the first three chapters on his blog. They are what sold me on wanting to read this story, well worth the quick read. http://www.evilreads.com/fifty-one-sh...

  5. 5 out of 5

    Alex ♈

    Please skip this review, if you are a true fan of FSOG. I read a cool parody book yesterday and then I remembered this masterpiece, which I already read a couple of years ago. So, I reread it. And I laughed like crazy, or maybe I’m just crazy *lol* Hilarious. OTT hilarious. I read 3 FSOG books and I could connect almost every dot *lmao* Warning: some readers may find this book offensive. It’s very harsh, very. Not always sophisticated humor, some odd and 2 very odd jokes (wrong hole & dead bird), t Please skip this review, if you are a true fan of FSOG. I read a cool parody book yesterday and then I remembered this masterpiece, which I already read a couple of years ago. So, I reread it. And I laughed like crazy, or maybe I’m just crazy *lol* Hilarious. OTT hilarious. I read 3 FSOG books and I could connect almost every dot *lmao* Warning: some readers may find this book offensive. It’s very harsh, very. Not always sophisticated humor, some odd and 2 very odd jokes (wrong hole & dead bird), these 2 are the reason I took 1 star off. Elevator, Walmart, pink Crocs & silver thong and of course Pacific Ocean – I choked on my tea… okay, okay, I say the truth… I choked on my wine! With this one line, spoken by the h, they covered my overall opinion about the original: For the first time in my life, I have found my purpose: to be a doormat for this ridiculously wealthy, attractive, impossible-to-resist man.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Anzu The Great Destroyer

    It all starts with a story of a lonely girl moving to a cold rainy town. She’s supposed to be with her dad, whom she doesn’t really like. She’s a shy girl, doesn’t have any friends or any boobs. Her new truck looks like a drunken lobster, and her school seems like a prison full of weird country kids. It all seems to lead her towards suicide until one day when she sees the most perfect being in the universe. He is the Master of the Universe. Lots of teenage angst filled pages later they kiss and It all starts with a story of a lonely girl moving to a cold rainy town. She’s supposed to be with her dad, whom she doesn’t really like. She’s a shy girl, doesn’t have any friends or any boobs. Her new truck looks like a drunken lobster, and her school seems like a prison full of weird country kids. It all seems to lead her towards suicide until one day when she sees the most perfect being in the universe. He is the Master of the Universe. Lots of teenage angst filled pages later they kiss and decide to be together forever. Even if it involves multiple satanic rituals, our emo girl stops at nothing in order to be with her Master. Until one day when madness possesses him, and he twists her neck, drains her blood and buries her in his back yard. Now the emo girl’s spirit haunts Yung Adult books and is aiming even higher. She’s aiming for Erotic Romance novels! I’ve been full of anger since the day I read tried to read Fifty Shades of Grey, and I failed to find a way for releasing this anger. Yes, writing a review helped, but it wasn’t enough. I remember there was a time I was angry about the Twilight movie(s). Of course, Twilight does not even come close to Fifty Shades of Grey. Anyway, back then I watched Vampires Suck, which is a fine parody of Twilight. I loved it. And I felt freed, in a way. However, Fifty Shades of Grey needs something stronger than that. It’s a true boss fight, and you know, when fighting bosses, you need big cojones. Well my dear Fifty Shades of Grey eat this! Let me tell you something. Writing this review is pretty tough because I’m barely containing myself from quoting the whole damn book. It’s hilarious! I laughed so hard I had tears in my eyes! Anyway, let’s pick on the best stuff in there. Anna Steal Facts: - Fifty Shames of Earl Grey victim heroine; - LARP (Live-Action Role Playing) rookie; - LARP name: Labiamajora; - Favorite show: Jersey Shore; - Never used the Internet; - Nudist parents; - Picks her nose when idle or nervous; - Favorite tea: Earl Grey Tea; - Virgin and never masturbated. Ever. Earl Grey Facts: - Fifty Shames of Earl Grey stalker hero; - BDSM (Bards, Dragons, Sorcery and Magick) master; - BDSM name: Elfin Warlord Sliverin; - His headquarters are shaped like an erection; - Vin Diesel is his bodyguard; - Has a malecrush on Tom Cruise; - Loves Nickelback; - Shops at Walmart; - Gets turned on by women who pick their nose; - Loves to hide under his prey sweetheart’s bed. The best thing that came out of Anna Steal’s mouth. My opinion: “Have you ever had a normal relationship?” “You’re my first,” he says. “And, hopefully, my last.” “The way you say that sounds like you’re planning to kill me,” I mutter. He laughs. “I would never kill you,” he says. “I might pay someone else to, but I would never do it myself.” “That’s reassuring.” Earl Grey’s opinion: His penis. The best thing that came out of Earl Grey’s mouth. My opinion: “Do you have a philosophy of business?” I ask. “No man is an island,” he says. “Islands are made of dirt and rocks and trees. I don’t know any people made of such things. Therefore, people are not islands.” Anna Steal’s opinion: Earl Grey’s penis. One of my favorite parts of the book was the complete unexpurgated Earl Grey’s Fifty Shames list. Words simply fail me. For those of you who know what I’m talking about, my favorites are #20, #26 and #50. *wink* I’m going to repeat myself, but oh what an amazing weapon this book is! I laughed my ass off and managed to cure the disease I got from touching Fifty Shades of Grey. Thank you Andrew Shaffer *shakes his hand* thank you for making me whole again! *birds singing in the background* *camera zooms out* *focus on Anzu jumping in the grass* *image fades out* The End But holy fuck Fifty Shames #1! Does that mean what I think it means?? Oh fuck I have to read the other two Fifty Shades of Grey books!!! No. Just no. Please! Anything but that!!! I’ll do anything just please don’t make me do it!! Hold on a minute! Past Anzu, this is Future Anzu, the one who finished reading Fifty Shames of Earl Grey. You don’t have to read the whole series to get the jokes! Fifty Shames #1 actually covers the entire Fifty Shades series and the coming one is called Fifty Shames in Space. Nothing to do with the Fifty Shades series! You are free Past Anzu! Free! Now GTFO. Here’s the cool excerpt that was in the end of the book: Fifty Shames in Space The closer I get to climaxing, the more my nipples ache to be touched. Finally, it is too much to bear. I fumble with my top, in a desperate attempt to free my breasts as I ride Earl to my pleasurable destination. One touch is all it will take to send me over the edge. Earl, sensing what I’m trying to do, wraps an arm around me to cup my left breast—but his long fingers find the jetpack’s emergency booster switch instead. I am shot three hundred yards across the jungle, where I crash-land into a tree. It is the best orgasm of my life. When I trek back through the jungle and find Earl, there’s not much left of him. The direct blast from my jetpack’s single thruster cut him in half at the waist. My poor Earl Grey is now fifty shades of messed up . . . *** Does Earl Grey survive? Find out in Fifty Shames in Space, the moderately thrilling sequel to Fifty Shames of Earl Grey. Twice the sex, twice the excitement, and twice the sex! Can’t. Wait. ARC courtesy of Da Capo Press via NetGalley.

  7. 5 out of 5

    new_user

    I won't count the embarrassing number of times I gabbled that Fifty Shames of Earl Grey was OMGhilarious, I'll just explain why Andrew Shaffer's- sorry, Fanny Merkin's struck five stars of comedic gold with his Fifty Shades of Grey parody. Culturally relevant, cheeky, and absurd, Shames pokes fun at romance tropes, Anna and Christian, and EL James- a treat for romance readers who haven't seen a pop publication for them since Everything I Know About Love I Learned from Romance Novels. Shames's hum I won't count the embarrassing number of times I gabbled that Fifty Shames of Earl Grey was OMGhilarious, I'll just explain why Andrew Shaffer's- sorry, Fanny Merkin's struck five stars of comedic gold with his Fifty Shades of Grey parody. Culturally relevant, cheeky, and absurd, Shames pokes fun at romance tropes, Anna and Christian, and EL James- a treat for romance readers who haven't seen a pop publication for them since Everything I Know About Love I Learned from Romance Novels. Shames's humor resembles the Scary Movie flicks, except that shtick's much funnier in text, where our imaginations supply better props, effects, and realism, a better contrast between the real and impossible or unlikely. A ridiculous Anna and Earl Grey cracked me up, best of all the pokes at romance tropes, for example the running gag about Grey's long fingers, seen on romance heroes everywhere. "Everything he says makes me want to make sandwiches with him, even the part about playing with lottery tickets as a kid. Is it because he’s so good looking? Is it because of his incredibly long fingers? Or his tousled hair? Or his incredibly long fingers?" "I need Earl Grey. I need his kisses, I need his long fingers, and I need his slicked-back hair..." "'Thank you,' I say to Earl. If his fingers weren’t so freak-ishly long, I would be dead right now." "I watch as he pulls his credit card out of his wallet using his long fingers, which I swear have to be longer than his forearms." Alluding to the "battling tongues" line seen verbatim in romances when referring to a kiss: "Our mouths create an airtight seal, and our tongues battle it out for supremacy. His is the more dominant tongue; I let my tongue go limp and submit fully to Earl Grey." And the long looks: “Hello, Miss Steal,” he says, gazing at me gazingly with his gazing gray eyes. In Anna's self-deprecation, age difference, exaggerated awe of money and Seattle, Shaffer satirizes Shades, as well as references to fanfic, inner goddesses, and Grey's control issues, another running joke. He buys her school, her job, and when she eventually confesses that she's a virgin, says, "I know, Anna. I’ve read transcripts of all your therapist appointments from the time you were sixteen until last week." We mustn't forget the innuendos and euphemisms. "Are you ready for my love gun?" The love scenes alone are worth 1000 bucks. Also, look up "Merkin" and "pasta puttanesca." I think most humor books are corny and/or attempting to tell a real, bona fide story when they shouldn't. Comedian biographies? C'mon. Shames is a laugh-a-minute exercise in pure absurdity and -sometimes blue- satire from a sharp wit! I was laughing out loud. Mission accomplished. Recommended to anyone with a sense of humor! You do not need to have read Fifty Shades of Grey, but you'll enjoy this more if you're vaguely familiar with romance clichés. Read it before everyone's told you all the jokes! Not for the prudish. Duh.

  8. 5 out of 5

    AH

    I’m still laughing… Ms. Merkin aka Andrew Shaffer has nailed it! Her parody of that other book is hilarious! Fifty Shames of Grey captures the essence of the two main characters very well. Edward Christian Earl Grey is rich, powerful, and a Dungeon Master! Yup – he’s a master of live action role playing. His type of BSDM involves bards, dragons, sorcery, and magick. Complete with the prosthetic ears! Bella Ana Anna Steal is her usual klutzy, clueless self. She even has an Inner Guidette doing ba I’m still laughing… Ms. Merkin aka Andrew Shaffer has nailed it! Her parody of that other book is hilarious! Fifty Shames of Grey captures the essence of the two main characters very well. Edward Christian Earl Grey is rich, powerful, and a Dungeon Master! Yup – he’s a master of live action role playing. His type of BSDM involves bards, dragons, sorcery, and magick. Complete with the prosthetic ears! Bella Ana Anna Steal is her usual klutzy, clueless self. She even has an Inner Guidette doing backflips and running on a hamster wheel, and even makes fun of Anna repeating herself. Anna works at the local Walmart store. She lives in a Portland duplex with Kathleen Kraven, a 38 year old alcoholic addicted to bad television. Her bud Jin is a “brony” – he even has a website dedicated to My Little Pony. And get this – Jin writes My Little Pony fan fiction! Anna is easily impressed by Earl’s affluence. Earl’s wealth knows no bounds and he basically buys anything and everything in order to get closer to his Anna. He even buys Walmart so that he can be Anna’s boss and give her a break so that they can have their first date. Let’s face it, a helicopter ride to the nearest Starbucks (across the street!) to drink a cup of tea as a first date? Impressive. Earl Grey is so rich that he not only has a helicopter at his disposal, he also owns an F-14 Tomcat. Back in Earl’s apartment there are more impressive sights to behold. Earl has a lovely library with a secret doorway to his Room of Doom, or as Anna calls it his “Dorm Room of Doom.” A few scenes stood out for me – Earl and Anna at his private island, complete with his own version of Jurassic Park. There is a memorable dinosaur riding scene. The author comes up with some creative uses for tampons as well. Spanking becomes a whole new experience – a very giggly one. At the end of the book there is an extensive list of Earl’s fifty shames. Very funny. I loved the references to the fan fiction. Well done! This is a pretty short book and a fast read, perfect for summer reading by the pool. Do not read this book in front of your computer, especially while drinking coffee. Is this book for everyone 18+? Sure, why not? I think that people who have read the fan fiction and have some knowledge of that story will enjoy it the most. The author has some subtle references to that work and readers in the know will enjoy those the most. If you’ve read the other published book and liked/hated it, you will get some good laughs. If you haven’t read the other book or the fic, this can still be funny but some of the jokes may not make sense to you. And now for the good news….There is a sequel planned and there is an excerpt at the end of the book – Fifty Shames in Space! Favorite quotes: “I spend the rest of my night doing schoolwork. After striking a match and lighting a candle, I sit down at my desk with my quill pen and parchment to write an essay for my ethics class on the legalities of fan fiction.”“He hands me his shopping list and I lead him through the store in search of the item. Duct tape? Plastic wrap? A hack saw? Who is this guy, Dexter?”“For the first time in my life, I have found my purpose: to be a doormat for this ridiculously wealthy, attractive, impossible to resist man.” A draft of the first 3 chapters of this book is available on the author’s website. Here’s the link. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for a review copy of this book. Review posted on Badass Book Reviews.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Adita ✨The Slumbering Insomniac✨

    ★★★★★★★★☆☆[8/10] DNF @ 40% Contradictory rating? My point, precisely! Before I know it, we’re off the ground and soaring above the parking lot. The people are so small from this height; they look like ants (although they’re wearing clothes and have two legs instead of six). This is amazing. I’m in a helicopter with Earl Grey, the most handsomest man on the planet. And now he’s the most handsomest man in the air! I peer into the distance, and can see the Space Needle in faraway Seattle jutting a ★★★★★★★★☆☆[8/10] DNF @ 40% Contradictory rating? My point, precisely! Before I know it, we’re off the ground and soaring above the parking lot. The people are so small from this height; they look like ants (although they’re wearing clothes and have two legs instead of six). This is amazing. I’m in a helicopter with Earl Grey, the most handsomest man on the planet. And now he’s the most handsomest man in the air! I peer into the distance, and can see the Space Needle in faraway Seattle jutting above the skyline. We’re up so high, and the sun is so bright— “Earl !” I shout. “What!” he shouts back, over the roar of the helicopter’s massive blades. “Watch out for the sun!” “What!” “I said, WATCH OUT FOR THE SUN!” He shoots me a puzzled look. “What? I’m not wearing sunscreen,” I say. He shakes his head. “Nevermind,” I mutter. He probably knows how close to the sun we can fly without getting burned. I hope. As we begin our descent, I get butterflies in my stomach. I close my mouth, because I don’t want to pull a Kathleen and spew chunks all over Earl. He lands the helicopter at the Starbucks across the street from Walmart. The parody of all parodies. The victory of ⏩Good over evil. ⏩Self righteousness over selfishness. ⏩Humour over humdrum. ⏩Brilliance over shoddiness. ⏩Beauty over ugly mess. ⏩Prudence over plain misery. ⏩Earl Grey over Christian Grey. This is the day I finally got to bury the shame. My self loathing finally ceased to exist and was replaced by a new sense of victory. Pride, even. Years of lugging around the burden of the unspeakable had finally got a closure. I started reading very late in my life. For almost 20 years, nothing existed out of school and curriculum and science, for me. I never gave noncurricular(if you can call goodreads that) books so much as a second glance. One day in college, all of a sudden, I found myself at the receiving end of a dare. The dare: "Read Fifty Shades of Grey". Given how much of a naive and law abiding and socially withdrawn student I was, my bullies couldn't come up with a better version of "let's go poke some fun at our class clown/nerd". And I buckled under pressure. And that's how my book sojourn began. Not quite the fairy tale beginning you'd have imagined, but shaky starts don't always mean riding-the-rough-waves career. Do they? If there's one good that came out of this horrible dare, then that's the rekindling of my passion for reading; in a frantic need to put as much distance from the world's most trashy novel of the century as possible. I was mad at myself for so readily becoming a scapegoat. I was appalled by how some people can summon the guts to make money out of spoiling so many people's precious little time. Books like FSoG deserve to occupy the fag end of the lower rung of the book hierarchy. Any place above the measly and menial position is an insult to the world of literature. And, that's where Fifty Shames of Earl Grey enters the picture. To save the face of literature. To wipe the gripe off the minds of thousands of harebrained women who fell prey to the world's worst Junk-lit, albeit unwittingly. Thank goodness, I can finally put my past behind me and move on. This parody doesn't need your complete attention to spread its fragrance; just your acknowledgement. You can give that much and a hats-off, if possible.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Kruti

    Kudos to Fanny Merkin aka Andrew Shaffer! I found myself laughing on every page. I’ll be honest I usually shy away from parodies for the simple reason that good parodies are hard to come by. But this...Fifty Shames of Earl Grey manages to address all that I found utterly ridiculous in FSoG. It even steps it up a notch and mocks Twilight and the general legality of fan fiction. There’s even mention of 16 & pregnant, Snookie from Jersey Shore and Dr Drew. I swear this book should come with a warni Kudos to Fanny Merkin aka Andrew Shaffer! I found myself laughing on every page. I’ll be honest I usually shy away from parodies for the simple reason that good parodies are hard to come by. But this...Fifty Shames of Earl Grey manages to address all that I found utterly ridiculous in FSoG. It even steps it up a notch and mocks Twilight and the general legality of fan fiction. There’s even mention of 16 & pregnant, Snookie from Jersey Shore and Dr Drew. I swear this book should come with a warning label. WARNING: Not to be read in public places! Seriously, it pokes fun in all the right places and will have you laughing so often! I’m not going to summarise the story for fear that I may accidentally spoil things for you. However, I will leave a few of my favourite quotes below. Do NOT click on the spoiler button if you haven’t read the book. (view spoiler)[ "I growl with frustration at my reflection in the mirror. Damn my hair – it’s fifty shades of fucked up… As I brush my long, brown hair, the girl in the mirror with blue eyes too big for her head stares back at me. Wait...I don’t have blue eyes! Then I realize I haven’t been looking in the mirror. I’ve been staring at a poster of Kristen Stewart for five minutes." "HOLY MOTHER EFFING SPARKLY VAMPIRES IS HE HOT....he's the kind of guy you want to write a fanfic about." "After striking a match and lighting a candle, I sit down at my desk with my quill pen and parchment to write an essay for my ethics class on the legalities of fan fiction." "I gaze into his gazing eyes gazingly like a gazelle gazing into another gazelle’s gazing eyes." [I dare you to say that out loud as fast as you can!] "For the first time in my life, I have found my purpose: to be a doormat for this ridiculously wealthy, attractive, impossible-to-resist man." "It’s a legal move, but one only a prick who wants to piggyback off someone else’s hard work would do." (hide spoiler)] I received an ARC of this book from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Stacia (the 2010 club)

    Have you ever seen the preview for a movie which made you so excited to see it, only to find out when you watched the actual movie that the best parts were already shown in the preview? This is how I felt about Fifty Shames of Earl Grey. The 3 chapter sneak peak was extremely funny. Unfortunately, the humor started to wane the further I read. I have no clue how this concept will work as a trilogy. Even though I enjoyed parts of the book, it's apparent that most early readers found Shames somewha Have you ever seen the preview for a movie which made you so excited to see it, only to find out when you watched the actual movie that the best parts were already shown in the preview? This is how I felt about Fifty Shames of Earl Grey. The 3 chapter sneak peak was extremely funny. Unfortunately, the humor started to wane the further I read. I have no clue how this concept will work as a trilogy. Even though I enjoyed parts of the book, it's apparent that most early readers found Shames somewhat more entertaining than I did. The gay jokes got old fast and it seemed like some of the sexual vibe was removed in favor of playing up other pop-culture references (come on...there could have been SO much more comic gold squeezed out with the contract and the sex scenes, although I did absolutely love the bit with Earl pulling things out of Anna like he was a magician). I will give props to the writer for working in some Twilight references though, since Fifty was originally a Twi fanfic. I thought Jin's character was probably the most brilliantly sketched in the entire book, and it was fun to see more of a play on Jacob than what was shown with Jose in Fifty. Honestly, I think Fifty Shames would have been much more amusing had it been condensed into a summarized version of highlights, instead of a full length novel. I found myself skimming by the halfway point and as I read this line, it made me nod my head in agreement : Pacing ourselves isn't such a bad idea, especially since we still have more than half the book left. Some Highlights : The receptionist hands me a security badge that says virgin. Is it that obvious? "How did you know -" "That you're a first-time visitor here at the Earl Grey Corporation?" I walk through the glass doors and into the lobby, which is floor-to-ceiling glass and steel. This fascinates me to no end, because buildings back in Portland are made of grass and mud. "No man is an island," he says. "Islands are made of dirt and rocks and trees. I don't know any people made of such things. Therefore, people are not islands." Wow. Was this hot guy a philosophy major in college? When he's not in school or doing homework, Jin spends his free time reading and writing My Little Pony fanfic. He's deep into the "brony" scene. "I'm a Dungeon Master, Anna." What? My inner guidette screeches to a halt on her hamster wheel. I have no clue what he's talking about. "What exactly does a Dungeon Master do?" "I'm into BDSM," he says. "Is that a workout thing, like Zumba?" "No, Anna. it's not anything like Zumba. BDSM is a live-action role-playing game : Bards, Dragons, Sorcery and Magick." He lowers his gaze. "We need to talk about something," he says. "The baby," I say. He nods. "The baby is fine. But..." A wave of relief floods over me. "But what?" "I ran some tests, and your baby is a sadist. Just like his father."

  12. 5 out of 5

    Sandra

    The review can also be found on my blog. This satiric, snarky, sarcastic, over the top story based on the mega-bestselling Fifty Shades of Twilight Grey nails all the key points of absurdity of the book it parodies, as well as the Twilight saga from which it came. And then some. The cover alone is hilarious, especially the hand holding the cup with the pointer, middle and pinkie finger extended. If you don't know what that hand gesture means, please look it up under "shocker" on Urbandictionary.c The review can also be found on my blog. This satiric, snarky, sarcastic, over the top story based on the mega-bestselling Fifty Shades of Twilight Grey nails all the key points of absurdity of the book it parodies, as well as the Twilight saga from which it came. And then some. The cover alone is hilarious, especially the hand holding the cup with the pointer, middle and pinkie finger extended. If you don't know what that hand gesture means, please look it up under "shocker" on Urbandictionary.com! From the first few lines, I was laughing, giggle-snorting and crying (because I was laughing so hard). "I'm Edward Cullen. I mean, Earl Grey." [quoted from the original chapters posted online.] And it only gets better from there. The parody starts out much like the fanfiction/published novel by introducing us to Bella Swan Anastasia Steele Anna Steal (!!) who is preparing to interview bazillionaire enterprise mogul hot stud Edward Cullen Christian Grey Earl Grey as a favor to her sick friend Rosalie Hale Katherine Cavanaugh Kathleen Kraven (who in this parody is a 38 year old perpetual student-slash-journalist alcoholic pothead). The author immediately reminds us of the origin of FSoG by casually and humorously mentioning the actress who portrayed Bella Swan in the Twilight movies. Bella Swan Anastasia Steele Anna Steal appears to be quite the airhead, naive and virginal, a notion that is nearly instantly invoked. The parody follows along similar plot lines as the fanfiction-turned-published book, but continually makes the key scenes and themes ever more ridiculous. For example, Bella's Anatasia's annoying lip-biting habit in FSoG is turned into Anna constantly picking her nose. Instead of an inner goddess, she has an inner guidette. Thankfully, her subconscious is just that in this parody - sub-conscious. Edward Cullen Christian Grey Earl Grey has a list of fifty shames instead of being fifty shades of effed up. And what a list it is. He shops at Wal-mart on Saturdays, likes bondage with handcuffs, and professes his love of BDSM (Bards, Dragons, Sorcery, and Magick). Pointy prosthetic elven ears included. He also has a fascination with Tom Cruise, and you just wait until you see who his adopted father is. I nearly choked from laughter when reading that. All the main characters from the 'book' are present - Jacob Jose Jin (who is a Brony, wants Anna to be his and might even be offered a contract to publish his My Little Pony fanfiction as an original novel, via a "small Australian vanity press" *snickers*), Anna's mom and stepfather, her distant father as well as Earl Grey's biological mother. The first sex scene, in which Anna loses her virginity, will have you howling with laughter. And then there's the infamous tampon scene. Never have I laughed so hard and for so long as when I read that. Tears of laughter were running down my face. Fanny Merkin aka Andrew Shaffer intelligently, with tongue firmly in cheek, uses perfectly timed zingers in almost every paragraph to not only poke fun of the ridiculousness of the 50 Shades book, but also to reference things that those who know the history of the fanfiction-turned-international-book-sensationhype will easily pick up. I wish I could quote from the ARC but I'll have to wait until the final published version is available. Just know, that if you loved FSoG, you will likely get a chuckle or five out of this parody. You should read it. If, on the other hand, you hated the original book or the fanfiction from where it came, you'll be laughing your butt off, and this is definitely the book for you. Very well done, Mr. Shaffer. Thanks for the hours of laughter from your utterly brilliant book. I am one of the lucky ones who were provided with an ARC from the publisher (mine via NetGalley). Thank you, Perseus Book Groups and DaCapo Press.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Lakshmi C

    3.5 My Little Pony stars Let me start off by saying - I have nothing against 50 Shades of Grey. I read the series and it introduced me to the BDSM romance genre. I was reluctantly fascinated by Ana & Christain, I blame Twilight. But my curiosity is a feral beast and this was what I discovered : This book takes the original story, tweaks the characters and ruthlessly edits the parts that added depth and romance to the story. This was silly and had me chuckling out loud. Perfect when you need to unwi 3.5 My Little Pony stars Let me start off by saying - I have nothing against 50 Shades of Grey. I read the series and it introduced me to the BDSM romance genre. I was reluctantly fascinated by Ana & Christain, I blame Twilight. But my curiosity is a feral beast and this was what I discovered : This book takes the original story, tweaks the characters and ruthlessly edits the parts that added depth and romance to the story. This was silly and had me chuckling out loud. Perfect when you need to unwind. Earl Grey is a bizzare mix of Edward Cullen, playboy and nerd. He is aware of his issues and convinced that money can make his problems disappear. Anna was clueless, absent minded, inappropriately funny and she didn't take anything seriously. She was not timid around Earl Grey and spoke her mind. Try this if you want an alternate version where Anna does not have esteem issues. The book also raises an important question - can two flawed individuals build a healthy relationship? That's for you, the reader to decide. But the best part about this book has to be Jin, who plays José All of us are familiar with José or similar characters - good looking guys who are content to adore the female lead from the sidelines. But this always changes when the male lead walks in. The old friend is broken hearted - he may move abroad, get engaged to another relative or friend, be conveniently killed off or just live with our sympathy. But Jin was different. Apart from Anna, he was passionate about My Little Pony. He's dedicated, enjoys it and chooses this as his philosophy for life. Jin spends his free time reading and writing My Little Pony fanfic. He’s deep into the “brony” scene. Who knew that there were so many male fans of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic? Never let go,” I say, looking into his beautiful gray eyes. “That could be problematic,” he says. “I’ll have to let you go at some point. What if I have to pee? What if you have to pee?” “Um, excuse me? Could you guys get off me, please?” the homeless guy underneath us says. “I was never too worried that he could take you from me. Remind me later to cancel the hit I put out on him, though,” The author also provides a comprehensive list of Earl Grey's shames...Totally worth it. The book sneaks in some sly references to Twilight. I hope this book had a sequel where both these storyworlds would merge and create a delightful hybrid.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Cyndy Aleo

    While I may request a fair amount of titles from NetGalley, there are few review copies for which I keep refreshing my email, hoping for approval. Andrew Shaffer/Fanny Merkin's Fifty Shames of Earl Grey was one of those titles. I'd read the three sample chapters Shaffer had posted earlier on his blog as "Fifty-One Shames" and I was eager to see if the wit he'd demonstrated in those early chapters could be sustained over the entirely of a book. Ostensibly, Fifty Shames of Earl Grey is a p While I may request a fair amount of titles from NetGalley, there are few review copies for which I keep refreshing my email, hoping for approval. Andrew Shaffer/Fanny Merkin's Fifty Shames of Earl Grey was one of those titles. I'd read the three sample chapters Shaffer had posted earlier on his blog as "Fifty-One Shames" and I was eager to see if the wit he'd demonstrated in those early chapters could be sustained over the entirely of a book. Ostensibly, Fifty Shames of Earl Grey is a parody of the best-selling trilogy beginning with Fifty Shades of Grey. Fifty Shames stars Anna Steal and Earl Grey, a Walmart cashier and billionaire tycoon respectively who meet and inexplicably fall in love. Anna is dumb as a post and Grey -- well, Grey has his 50 shames, which he believes isolate him from the rest of the world. Shaffer has filled the book with obvious plays on the book, but as someone who did no more than skim the story when it was in its original form as a Twilight fan fiction, I can assure you that you'll still find the book funny without it. More than a simple parody, it skewers American culture and the associated cult of idiocy that appears to have led to what most have admitted is a poorly written book sitting atop the best-seller charts for months. I'm hard to please when it comes to comedy, but found myself laughing out loud frequently when reading Fifty Shames of Earl Grey . Shaffers's wit draws from pop culture far beyond the novels he's meant to be parodying, and the intelligence behind the gags and the research behind some of the plot points (I really don't want to spoil anything for potential readers) surprised me for a book written so quickly to take advantage of the other books' press. Here's hoping Shaffer has a long career ahead of him in parody and satire, this generation's Jonathan Swift.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Christine

    Who doesn't love hot Earl Grey? It makes everything else seem inferior. Excuse me for a moment. There, I put the kettle on. What did you think I was doing? I truly needed a laugh, and this book (which I brought because of Misfit's review and the author's comment on a dicussion) provided it. In order to enjoy it, you don't need to have read Twilight or Fifty Shades of Grey, just have a passing knowledge of both as well as the urban fantasy romantic trend that gave birth to them. The book isn't mean Who doesn't love hot Earl Grey? It makes everything else seem inferior. Excuse me for a moment. There, I put the kettle on. What did you think I was doing? I truly needed a laugh, and this book (which I brought because of Misfit's review and the author's comment on a dicussion) provided it. In order to enjoy it, you don't need to have read Twilight or Fifty Shades of Grey, just have a passing knowledge of both as well as the urban fantasy romantic trend that gave birth to them. The book isn't mean spirited, so even if you like the above mentioned, you should still enjoy this book. The story centers around Anna Steal (note the name) and her relationship with Earl Grey. Mr Grey works in a steel and glass erection the likes of which do not exist in Anna's home of Portland. Sadly, all is not tip toe though the tulips for these loves; there are a few cow patties in the field. He is older than she is, and he does have 50 Shames (#15 is the worse). The book sends up every cliche you have ever seen about a socially inept girl and the rich man who deicides she is the one. The book is sly and witty. It also has my new favorite line "I gaze into his gazing eyes gazingly like a gazelle gazing into another gazelle's gazing gaze" (33). Look at it this way, even after finding out that the author worked (or did some work) for Maxim magazine, I still liked it. Thank you so much Fanny Merkin (cough) and Andrew Shaffer! There is also a Christmas story for free on kindle!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Alicia (is beyond tired of your *ish)

    Andrew Shaffer: *reads about Fifty Shades of Grey* This is popular and people are book shaming, but it can't be that bad… Bella Ana: Oh, look something shiny! Oh, look a boy! Edward Christian: This girl looks like my birth mom. I want to go all sadistic on her! Andrew Shaffer: . . . what? Edward Christian: I will stalk you to the ends of the earth. Bella Ana: Oh my! I get off on brushing my teeth with your toothbrush. *swoon* Andrew Shaffer: . . . no, really. Am I being punked? A monkey could fling be Andrew Shaffer: *reads about Fifty Shades of Grey* This is popular and people are book shaming, but it can't be that bad… Bella Ana: Oh, look something shiny! Oh, look a boy! Edward Christian: This girl looks like my birth mom. I want to go all sadistic on her! Andrew Shaffer: . . . what? Edward Christian: I will stalk you to the ends of the earth. Bella Ana: Oh my! I get off on brushing my teeth with your toothbrush. *swoon* Andrew Shaffer: . . . no, really. Am I being punked? A monkey could fling better crap than this! (Actually, you can read some of his real thoughts while he was reading it here.) So now we have Fifty Shames of Earl Grey. A hilarious parody of the improbable bestseller written by Shaffer as Fanny Merkin – a name I didn't realize was a joke in and of itself until I saw Gisellelx's status update. The same goes for the cover of the book (hint: look at how he's holding the tea cup…). That is just a prelude to what you can expect reading the actual book. Bella Swan Ana Steel Anna Steal, Wal-Mart employee, meets Edward Cullen Christian Grey Earl Grey, richie rich business man, when she interviews him for Boardroom Hotties as a favor to her roommate Rosalie Kathleen (oh, yes, the book has great moments of name misuse). Grey is immediately drawn to Miss Steal and begins stalking courting her. Anna is amazed by shiny objects his attention and quickly falls for him in return. What follows is the hilarious and utterly ridiculous story of them coming together and working through Edward Christian Earl's "fifty shames." The book is filled with some of the worst and hilarious that pop culture has thrown at us recently (including Dr. Drew being…well, Dr. Drew, Jersey Shore mostly represented by Anna's inner guidette, 16 & Pregnant, and a very special Brony!). Unlike a lot of parodies I've read, however, this one never strays from what is actually being lampooned. Merkin underscores everything that makes Master of the Universe Fifty Shades of Grey an awful fan fiction "book." Anna's stupidity. What a sociopathic nut job Earl is. The overly incredible situations, each increasingly unrealistic and ridiculous. Reading this bordered on mentally exhausting because Merkin does a great job of highlighting the semi-literate, grade school writing of FSoG and the mind-numbing stupidity of the characters, especially Anna. The only thing this parody was missing was an obscene amount of ellipses. The best part of the story is that an opportunity to make a dig at how unethical and wrong it is to steal from another author and publish one's fan fiction is never missed. Most of the book is eminently quotable, whether the line is just plain funny or made hilarious by the insight behind it. For those of us suffering through the popularity of FSoG it is, in a word, fantastic! I was provided an ARC of this book through NetGalley.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Kelly H. (Maybedog)

    There's a sequel in the works, Fifty Shames In Space, and I'm not sure what the point would be because this book was kind of a one joke wonder. That's not to say it wasn't funny, it was. And there were plenty of pop culture and nerdy references to keep me entertained. But there was a lot of the same thing. Which may have been the point but it did get tedious after awhile. I only finished to say I did. I haven't read Fifty Shades of Grey nor have I been able to read more than a future chapters of T There's a sequel in the works, Fifty Shames In Space, and I'm not sure what the point would be because this book was kind of a one joke wonder. That's not to say it wasn't funny, it was. And there were plenty of pop culture and nerdy references to keep me entertained. But there was a lot of the same thing. Which may have been the point but it did get tedious after awhile. I only finished to say I did. I haven't read Fifty Shades of Grey nor have I been able to read more than a future chapters of Twilight (I tried, really I did) so I not sure how much was mediocre writing and how much was playing on the mediocre writing of those two books. In fact, reading this made me really curious about Fifty Shades because if each of the events in this book is making fun of a scene in that book, I can't even imagine how it got published let alone became popular. It sounds ridiculous. Everything is ridiculous from the fact that Anna rides her bike from Portland to Seattle in 3.5 hours (that's about how long it takes to drive the route) to Earl buying a state university so Anna doesn't have to do work and still graduate with honors, to a ride in a helicopter to a place that is right across the street from where they were picked up. First of all, Anna is a naive idiot. She believes everything Grey says and always with joy and wonder. She doesn't question anything. Grey has a beyond-extravagant lifestyle, at one point draining the Pacific Ocean to rescue a car that has been submerged. There were plenty of references to the characters in Twilight and the similarities between them and the characters in this book. Anna is constantly getting confused like in the opening scene where she is looking in the mirror and then realizes she's looking at a poster of Kristen Stewart. Grey's skin seems to sparkle in the sunlight. He doesn't mind and actually enjoys her menstrual blood. Oddly, there is almost no BDSM in this book. The extent is (view spoiler)[one scene where her wrists are tied to one bedpost during sex and one place where he's spanking her and she's laughing. Only her sides hurt and it's from laughing. (hide spoiler)] . Anna is very complacent about all of the sex and even thinks it's mild despite being a virgin who has never even touched herself sexually let alone masturbated. The weirdness comes from where they have sex, not what they do. It's very vanilla sex. I've heard 50 Shades is mild but if it's this bad, I have no idea why people think it's at all titillating. There are constant fake references to sex, "There's a word starting with F I want to do with you" which turns out to be something innocuous but she's disappointed because she thought it was going to be another word starting with F that was also innocuous. When they do have sex, all body parts are referred to with euphemisms like "party favors" and a "Katy Perry." The side references are fun for nerds such as Grey LARPing during sex and rolling a 20 sided die to determine how much to spank her. Other Seattle references abound like going to Eddie Vedder's house and constant references to Starbucks. At the end, not only is there a silly index but also a list of Grey's Shames. Some are quite funny. There are only a handful of BDSM entries, though, which makes sense given the bland nature of the sex here. Other's are things like "Team Jacob" (#26), "Shopping at Walmart on Saturdays" (#1), "16 and Pregnant" (#48), and "Nickelback" (#23).* Basically this is a funny light read but don't expect too much. Certainly don't go looking for funny BDSM scenes as you'll be disappointed. *Why does everyone dog on Nickelback? I mostly listen to alternative and pseudo punk music like Muse, Rise Against, Death Cab for Cutie, Silversun Pickups, Awolnation, Modest Mouse, The Shins, etc. and I don't think Nickelback is bad. They're certainly no worse than half the crap on the Pop music charts. It's a band I don't mind that my kids love so we listen to it. I guess I have a shame, although I'm not ashamed of it. Obviously someone likes them because they keep selling albums but why does everybody still claim to hate them? I thought Rockstar was quite funny.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Sandy S

    FIFTY SHAMES OF EARL GREY –a parody by Fanny Merkin (aka Andrew Shaffer) ***SPOILER ALERT--BIG TIME*** FIFTY SHAMES OF EARL GREY is a parody based on the Fifty Shades trilogy by E L James. Following a similar storyline to the original novel, we are entertained with the knowledge that when all is said and done, we can laugh at ourselves and, of course, others. Fanny Merkin (aka Andrew Shaffer) writes with plenty of humor, but unless you have read the Fifty Shades Trilogy, some of the humor will be FIFTY SHAMES OF EARL GREY –a parody by Fanny Merkin (aka Andrew Shaffer) ***SPOILER ALERT--BIG TIME*** FIFTY SHAMES OF EARL GREY is a parody based on the Fifty Shades trilogy by E L James. Following a similar storyline to the original novel, we are entertained with the knowledge that when all is said and done, we can laugh at ourselves and, of course, others. Fanny Merkin (aka Andrew Shaffer) writes with plenty of humor, but unless you have read the Fifty Shades Trilogy, some of the humor will be lost. I would suggest a thorough read of the Fifty Shades Trilogy before embarking on the copious quantity of parody novels. I found myself laughing in several spots, if for no other reason, than the comparisons to the original storyline. Remember how Ana likes to bite her lower lip? Well, her little fetish in Fifty Shames is shameful indeed and one that should NOT turn anyone on, but apparently Earl Grey has many shames. (you can find ALL 50 shames listed at the back of the book). The main characters are still present and vaguely disguised. Anna Steal is the virgin heroine who first agrees to conduct the interview with Earl Grey on behalf of her BFF-the now 38 year old perpetually drunk and stoned Kathleen: Jin as her long suffering male friend Jose, who is no longer a photographer but promotes a website for men who love MY LITTLE PONY (Brony-brothers for ponies) and of course, Earl Grey-the billionaire corporate mogul who likes to partake in a game of Dungeon Masters and practices BDSM-Bards, Dragons, Sorcery and Magick. (insert giggle here). Oh and watch out for Earl’s affinity to role playing-he takes the faery tale to a whole new level!! Christian/Earl's need to protect Ana/Anna at all costs will find him purchasing a series of well known retailers and educational institutes-all in the name of -obsession. Maybe Anna should quit while she is still ahead!! Remember the obsession with food?-there are plenty of passages that involve food and the play by play as the couple engages in eating a banquet of food, will have you thinking about many sitcoms on late night TV. We meet Anna’s mother and her 6th husband, both who are practicing nudists, and never wear clothing no matter what the occasion. But there is a twist to Earl Grey’s storyline surrounding his mother-apparently she wasn’t a drug addict as first explored, but there is an addiction none-the-less. And look, she is still alive-just like Elvis-but maybe not for long. As for some of the storyline premise, the Charlie Tango incident combines with the final scene where we find Ana on the warehouse floor after the extortion plot, and of course, fans of Twilight will liken some of the hospital scene to Bella and Edward’s storyline. Fanny Merkin (aka Andrew Shaffer) and yes, I am still not sure who is the actual author (Andrew-I think) or the pseudonym, likens many of Earl’s characteristics to Edward Cullen (yes Carmen, I said Edward). When Earl first meets Anna he introduces himself as Edward Cullen, but as the storyline nears the end, there are more similarities to the Twilight saga. And look, is Earl Grey sparkling in the sunlight? Wait til you follow Anna’s pregnancy and meet their newborn baby Chris. Overall, FIFTY SHAMES OF EARL GREY is strictly a parody. Not to be taken seriously, but a humorous look at a $1,000,000 ( or perhaps billion by now) selling trilogy that many people cannot fathom as to why. The media has aided the promotion of the Fifty Shades phenomenon but labeling the novels ‘mommy porn’ (which in my opinion, it is a far cry from porn or even erotica) and the humorous renditions and skits (ala Saturday Night Live) will continue to keep E L James on the number one best sellers lists. Many critics and reviewers have attacked the content and quality of Fifty Shades et al, but no one ever said it would win a Pulitzer. And like many of those who have never read the trilogy by E L James, but still have an opinion, well everyone is entitled to an opinion, even if they should not. ;) Fifty Shames takes a light-hearted look at a number one seller and if you have read the original series, you cannot help but laugh out loud during some of the more popular scenes and passages. see all of my reviews at : thereadingcafe.com

  19. 4 out of 5

    Michael

    I’ve not read many parodies before but Andrew Shaffer is mildly amusing on twitter so I thought I’d give his book ago. Fifty Shames of Earl Grey is an obvious dig at Fifty Shades of Grey but it also has fun with the Twilight fanfic elements as well; clearly pointing out the similarities of the two books with lines like; “I’m Edward Cullen. I mean, ‘Earl Grey.’ Have a seat?” This novel reminds me of a Leslie Nielsen style parody with the farfetched and over done humour, but that’s what makes it s I’ve not read many parodies before but Andrew Shaffer is mildly amusing on twitter so I thought I’d give his book ago. Fifty Shames of Earl Grey is an obvious dig at Fifty Shades of Grey but it also has fun with the Twilight fanfic elements as well; clearly pointing out the similarities of the two books with lines like; “I’m Edward Cullen. I mean, ‘Earl Grey.’ Have a seat?” This novel reminds me of a Leslie Nielsen style parody with the farfetched and over done humour, but that’s what makes it so much fun to read. Earl Grey is billionaire with fifty secret shames; some of them involve his love of BDSM (Bards, Dragons, Sorcery, and Magick) while others are even worse, like his love of Nickelback. Obviously this is never going to be high literature with lines like “Moan,” I moan. “Moan, moan, moooooooan.” but is this book suppose to reflect the literary flaws of 50 Shades and Twilight or is this just meant to be a fun read? I’m not going to think too much about it, I went into this book for a fun read and that is how I will review it. I’ve heard people claim that Edward Cullen and Christian Grey are hot but none come close to Earl Grey because “HOLY MOTHER EFFING SPARKLY VAMPIRES IS HE HOT”. Let’s face it Andrew Shaffer had a lot of fun with this book, from the pseudonym (Fanny Merkin) to the cover and everything in between. It was awkward and unexpected, I had so much fun reading this book, I don’t normally highlight but my kindle version of this book has over thirty different highlighted passages in it. I really enjoyed what Shaffer did with this book; highlights for me included the Spanking scene with the Count from Sesame Street and the Cleo sex quiz (which I really want to read the other 200 pages of). I’m looking forward to Fifty Shames in Space but right now I need a sandwich.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Jen

    Whew, what a ride! Crude at times, funny pretty much always and exactly what I needed right now. Got this a looooong time ago at BEA 2012 and just got to reading it now. I needed the laugh now, so I’m not upset I waited this long. It didn’t age at all, at least not in my mind. Legit, every page had something funny on it. If I had stopped to comment on them all, I would basically have given the entire book away in spoilers. It is so over the top! If you need a quick read and a lot of laughs, I hi Whew, what a ride! Crude at times, funny pretty much always and exactly what I needed right now. Got this a looooong time ago at BEA 2012 and just got to reading it now. I needed the laugh now, so I’m not upset I waited this long. It didn’t age at all, at least not in my mind. Legit, every page had something funny on it. If I had stopped to comment on them all, I would basically have given the entire book away in spoilers. It is so over the top! If you need a quick read and a lot of laughs, I highly recommend this book. 4, you will giggle, stars!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Lexie

    Prelim Review: This book took me just over 2hrs to complete and had me laughing for almost the entire time. Knowledge of the source material (either Fifty Shades of Gray or Twilight--take your pick) isn't really necessary to get the humor, though some of the funnier bits are best found funny if you do know one or the other. Shaffer (or 'Merkin') does a really good job at poking fun at everything under the sun in regards to the whole Fifty Shades travesty. Up front--I read the first book, under du Prelim Review: This book took me just over 2hrs to complete and had me laughing for almost the entire time. Knowledge of the source material (either Fifty Shades of Gray or Twilight--take your pick) isn't really necessary to get the humor, though some of the funnier bits are best found funny if you do know one or the other. Shaffer (or 'Merkin') does a really good job at poking fun at everything under the sun in regards to the whole Fifty Shades travesty. Up front--I read the first book, under duress and simply because I was tired of people telling me to read it. At least after reading it I have every right to criticize it. Moving on, this is just pure fun. The sex is awkward and about as hot as table water, the characters are basically interesting because of how they mock Christian Gray and Ana Steele (or Edward Cullen and Bella Swan, again take your pick) and Earl Grey is about as screwed up as Christian Gray just with less sexual assault as a kid. Full review to be posted at Poisoned Rationality

  22. 5 out of 5

    Katie(babs)

    I laughed so hard my stomach hurt. Every page made me giggle and Andrew really keeps the tone exactly like the real Fifty Shades of Grey. The Cosmo like questionnaire that is a play on the contract between Christian and Ana will have you dying, including the first love scene. If you're a fan of Fifty Shades or just want to laugh yourself silly, I recommend you pick this one up. I laughed so hard my stomach hurt. Every page made me giggle and Andrew really keeps the tone exactly like the real Fifty Shades of Grey. The Cosmo like questionnaire that is a play on the contract between Christian and Ana will have you dying, including the first love scene. If you're a fan of Fifty Shades or just want to laugh yourself silly, I recommend you pick this one up.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Sherry

    I laughed, I cried, and I peed my pants a little. I've read only the original "Twilight" book -- none of its sequels nor a word of the "Fifty Shades of Grey" trilogy -- but Andrew Shaffer's parody had me in hysterics in public places. It reads like a "Naked Gun" movie. I laughed, I cried, and I peed my pants a little. I've read only the original "Twilight" book -- none of its sequels nor a word of the "Fifty Shades of Grey" trilogy -- but Andrew Shaffer's parody had me in hysterics in public places. It reads like a "Naked Gun" movie.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Allison Dickson

    I had the pleasure of receiving an Advance Reader Copy of this book in the mail yesterday, and I dove into it immediately. It didn't take long to finish, not only because it is a relatively short book, but also because it was difficult to put down. Eccentric and mysterious billionaire Earl Grey sweeps the naively moronic Anna Steal off her feet, and the craziness of their courtship ensues. He can buy entire corporations with a casual swipe of his Blackberry, but Grey has a lot of emotional bagga I had the pleasure of receiving an Advance Reader Copy of this book in the mail yesterday, and I dove into it immediately. It didn't take long to finish, not only because it is a relatively short book, but also because it was difficult to put down. Eccentric and mysterious billionaire Earl Grey sweeps the naively moronic Anna Steal off her feet, and the craziness of their courtship ensues. He can buy entire corporations with a casual swipe of his Blackberry, but Grey has a lot of emotional baggage that makes him believe he's a sadist outcast, not the least of which is his list of "shames," which include shopping at Walmart on Saturdays, stealing WiFi from the neighbors, using a PC laptop with an Apple sticker covering the Dell logo, having a man crush on Tom Cruise, and thinking Heath Ledger was "just okay" as the Joker. I don't want to give away any of the gags, because I truly believe they are best enjoyed without spoiler. Nearly every sentence contains a pratfall or play on words that makes you snort out loud so often that you will probably need to keep a tissue on hand. I don't recommend reading this book in bed with someone who is trying to sleep, nor do I think it's a good idea to have it in hand when you're eating, drinking, or sitting anywhere in public (unless you want to look like a loon). Fifty Shames of Earl Grey reads like a Naked Gun movie that hooked up with an episode of 30 Rock. I have not read the Fifty Shades trilogy, of which this book serves as a delicious parody, but I knew enough about it to get the jokes. It also helps if you're somewhat familiar with Twilight. But even if you don't get all the jokes, it's no reason not to pick this book up. Fifty Shames has it all. Nickelback and Jersey Shore jokes, erotic LARPing (Live-Action Roleplay), twenty-sided die, sex on a dinosaur, inaccurate Pacific Northwest geography, and bronies. That's a neologism for a hot guy who loves My Little Pony, in case you didn't know. Andrew Shaffer has brilliant comic timing and a sense of the ridiculous. He paces the story and the humor in such a way that it never feels weary or heavy-handed. The jokes are crude, but they aren't sophomoric. He's also just a plain good writer who knows what he's doing. Lampooning is an art unto itself, and Shaffer is a master. I highly recommend this book, and look forward to any sequels and/or spin-offs that may come from it.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Pam Pho

    I think everyone who reads Fifty Shades of Gray should then be required to read Fifty Shames of Early Grey. I think that those of us who wanted MORE will love the humor in this parody. If I were to begin writing in my favorite quotes all 224 pages would have to be transcribed here. There isn't a paragraph left without a punchline. I think everyone who reads Fifty Shades of Gray should then be required to read Fifty Shames of Early Grey. I think that those of us who wanted MORE will love the humor in this parody. If I were to begin writing in my favorite quotes all 224 pages would have to be transcribed here. There isn't a paragraph left without a punchline.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Amanda The Book Slayer

    4.5 Stars! Recommendation : This book is for anyone who enjoys laughing. If you have read or heard about ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ you will want to read this parody no matter if you loved or hated it. Like Earl Grey, I must confess one of my many shames. I have had this ARC copy since June, I believe. I started reading it then and loved it. However, I think I put it down for an ARC that I had been waiting for. It wasn’t Earl’s fault, just that well… his many shames caught up with my many shames and 4.5 Stars! Recommendation : This book is for anyone who enjoys laughing. If you have read or heard about ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ you will want to read this parody no matter if you loved or hated it. Like Earl Grey, I must confess one of my many shames. I have had this ARC copy since June, I believe. I started reading it then and loved it. However, I think I put it down for an ARC that I had been waiting for. It wasn’t Earl’s fault, just that well… his many shames caught up with my many shames and it has taken many months to finish and review. As I like to say, it is better to wash the car than air dry it. lol Okay, not at all what I would say but this book just seems to bring out my madness. Therefore, I decided to review this book differently. Ahem. I am exercising my right as a reviewer.(Book Reviewers Const. art I. §4) My review This book was ________. Please fill in the blank as you see fit. The end. This isn’t the worst review that I have given. It isn’t the best review either. But a review is a review, no matter how small. You may walk away from this review or continue reading because I had so much fun with the first review I had to give it another try. Review Attempt #2 Warning: The story you are about to read has everything, nothing to do with the actually book I am reviewing. It all likelihood my mind is slowly deteriorating. This is how I picture this book was conceived. No actors were hurt or maimed in the telling of this story. This does not reflect on Andrew Shaffer or any other human being other than me, which is sadly not a good thing. I must tell you that….. 1. I am not a writer and 2. I butcher grammar in the most disasters ways. Continue at your own risk. A starless night set in the Deep South. Why starless because everyone knows that is when you sit on your porch and watch the fireflies dance in the darkest dark of the night. Two friends sat in contemplation of the world as we know it. “What did you think of all that 50 shades shit?” Sally said. Why Sally? Because I said so. I mean doesn’t everyone have a friend or cousin named Sally? That’s what I thought too. Back to my story. “Who the hell does E.L. James think she is, the queen of Kinkey Fuckery?!” Andrew looks out at the darkest dark of the night in July while drinking his moonshine. “The book made bleep bleep look like a monkey. I mean come on, the man has never contracted a slave in his life. The red room of pain?! I just can’t …” “Drewy, we all can’t be Masters of the Universe like you.” Sally took the jug of moonshine. It didn’t even faze her as she took a long hard pull, or did it? Andrew scratched the mountain man bread on his chinny-chin-chin and contemplated this so-called “BDSM”book. He knew all the ins and outs of that world being the Master and all that shit. Should he write a letter to this author and send a book with all the corrections to his world made? He shook his head no. Too much work for a woman who obviously sucks at doing research. How about starting a petition? Strip the book! He could make a call to arms on various websites and at all his play parties. A rally on Time Square? Down with the man, I mean woman! This shit is not it! If you want kink visit this link. ww.kinksrus.do.me.right “I know that look. Those wheels are spinning through those muddy thoughts with nowhere to go.” Sally half said, half burped. Maybe… no that would never work. But it might, his thoughts drifted on the wind in the darkest dark of the night. What if he were to write something so profound, so daring that even the gods would weep. Yes, that was it! He would write his version of Christian and Anna. The heavens would open and Angels would sing with joy from the beauty of his work, his words. And so in the darkest dark of the night in July, Andrew and Sally drank to their hearts content while writing the most beautiful story ever written about love and kinky shit. The heavens wept when his work was done. Their laughter and delight could be heard throughout the world. For Andrew stuck it to the man, I mean woman. He showed her the error of her ways through patience and … humor. I give you 50 shades of Fucked up Earl Grey. I think this attempt was better than the first, however, I am not sure the publisher or author would count this as much of a review either. Maybe my third try will do it. *Snicker* Do. It. Attempt #3 also known as the Real Slim Shady Review. With parodies of 50 shades being released right and left, I feel it is my duty to point out this was the first! Before you pick up some Jane Eyre or the Pride and Prejudice 50 Shades wanna-be you need to go for this one instead. I remember the day that I first opened this book. I was standing in line at Wal-Mart, yes I shop there because I am poor and it is cheap people, waiting for my turn to check out. This particular day all the lines were extremely long and I believe I waited about 30 minutes. You think I am lying?! I promise you I am not. When in a stressful situation you must find something full of humor to get you through. I wouldn’t want to completely lose it to my shopping-cart-rage. It’s true, shopping-cart-rage happens. Have you seen people on Black Friday?! I see you nodding your head, that shit is scary! Run like the wind, Bullseye! I choose right when I started reading an ARC of Fifty Shames of Earl Grey. I was laughing so loud that people were staring. That my also be due to my lack of clothing as well. Hey, nudist have it right. (just kidding I believe in clothing. Rah! Rah! Clothing!) It all started with the first few lines. I growl with frustration at my reflection in the mirror. My hair is fifty shades of messed up. Why is it so kinky and out of control? I need to stop sleeping with it wet. As I brush my long brown hair, the girl in the mirror with brown eyes too big for her head stares back at me. Wait…my eyes are blue! It dawns on me that I haven’t been looking into the mirror-I’ve been staring at a poster of Kristen Stewart for five minutes. My own hair is fine. I am sure that most of you have read Fifty Shades of Fucked Up. If you have not than you have at least heard of it. The story line of Fifty Shames is quite similar but hilariously different. For example: Welcome to The Earl Grey Corporation. …is ginormous 175-story office building that juts into the cloudless sky like a steel erection. I walk through the glass doors and into the lobby, which is floor-to-ceiling glass and steel. This fascinates me to no end, because buildings back in Portland are made of grass and mud. A little while later… ‘You’ll want to take the elevator to the ninetieth floor.” I stare at her blankly. We don’t have elevators in Portland. “This will be my first elevator ride. How do they work, exactly?” A little while after that… I step onto the elevator, push the button marked “90,” and the magical box hurtles up toward Mr. Grey’s office. It’s like an amusement park ride, only it’s free, you don’t have to stand in line for two hours, and no one’s thrown up all over the floor. Why don’t I introduce you to the man of the hour, Mr. Earl Gay Grey. HOLY MOTHER EFFING SPARKLY VAMPIRES IS HE HOT. …he’s the kind of guy you want to write fanfic about. He’s so attractive and long fingered that I find it hard to concentrate on asking the questions Kathleen has written down for me. He’s like a really rich caveman. Me. Want. Anna! The bulge running down the side of his pants leg is quite noticeable. Then I notice a similar bulge running down the side of his other pants leg. Either he has a banana in each pocket, or he’s really happy to see me. He’s not wearing his joy-buzzer, but his touch is still electric. I cannot just introduce Earl without Airhead Anna. Here are some of her finer moments. I haven’t put much thought into my future yet. I’be only had four years to contemplate it. She’s talking about the time I squatted and peed in the kitchen. It was only the one time, and I was on shrooms. I think he’s literally asking if I want milk or sugar for my tea, but he could very well be asking if I want them for my ass. “No thanks,” I say. “I like my tea like I like my men,” I say. With the same name as my tea. But I realize that might be too forward, so instead I say, “Black.” “Most times, my mind is just an ongoing, present-tense, first-person monologue. It’s like I’m writing a novel, constantly, but only in my brain. A really bad novel.” This book just gets better and better. It is hard to decide what to put in this review and what to leave out. If you wanted all the funny lines well… that would be the whole book. If you wanted all the funny scenes, well… that would be the whole book again. Now that I have introduced the characters and where they will meet for the first time I find that the next step would be to mention an overview of what you can expect. What to Expect When You’re Reading 50 Shames. 1. Grey is the new Pink. 2. Anna’s guidette may or may not be one of her multiple personalities shining through. 3. Jay-z & Vin Diesel make an appearance. There may be more big names as well. 4. The brony code : Friendship and Kindness. Brony on, my friends. (If you actually get this in the context it is meant, you are one kinky bastard.) 5. Airplanes Helicopters in the night sky are like shooting stars. 6. Beware of the Unicycle. 7. Repeat after me: I am a doormat. 8. Top Gun, enough said. 9. Nudist Unite 10. The ‘Room of Doom’ 11. LARPers (Live Action Role Play) 12. Who Drained the Pacific Ocean? 13. Alcohol-Soaked Tampons 14. Diving Accidents Kill People 15. Vampires Among Us I have to stop my review because if I continue the whole book will be in it. I will leave you with some sage advice from Anna. Air is like cable TV: you don’t appreciate it until you don’t have it. I hope you enjoyed my three attempts at reviewing this spectacular book. I loved reading every minute of it, even if I did put it down for a few months. I wanted to take a second to say thank you to Perseus Books Group via Netgalley for allowing me to have a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I am terribly sorry it has taken so long to get it to you.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Anushka

    One word : Hilarious Those of you who have read 50 Fifty Shades of Grey will enjoy this thoroughly and if you haven't, good for you. Don't ever do that mistake. But now I think finally all my sufferings that I went through have paid off, this one was an absolute gem. There was never a dull moment in this book and for a parody, it was fairly well written. I really loved it when Twilight was also roped in while making a spoof, being an avid hater of both Stephenie Meyer and E.L. James, this boo One word : Hilarious Those of you who have read 50 Fifty Shades of Grey will enjoy this thoroughly and if you haven't, good for you. Don't ever do that mistake. But now I think finally all my sufferings that I went through have paid off, this one was an absolute gem. There was never a dull moment in this book and for a parody, it was fairly well written. I really loved it when Twilight was also roped in while making a spoof, being an avid hater of both Stephenie Meyer and E.L. James, this book was a laugh riot for me. Like in 50 Shades, Christian used to be turned on when Ana bit her lower lip, in this one his button was when Anna picked her nose and that was so goddamn hilarious, and here instead of a list of rules Earl Grey had prepared a 1,200 pages long quiz. One of its question was - I am: a) Team Edward b) Team Jacob c) Team Edward does Jacob xD This book is filled with these ridiculous references to Twishit, 50 Shades trilogy and fanfics in general. This para was my favorite and its actually very true (about Grey's character) - “You act like there’s something wrong with you, like everything you enjoy is embarrassing or scary. News flash, Mr Grey: This isn’t 1950 or whatever. Your sexual tastes aren’t as shocking or as deviant as you think. Neither is anything else you like. Maybe if you didn’t take your fifty shames so seriously, I wouldn’t be so compelled to laugh at them. In the end there is a list of 50 things Earl Grey is ashamed of and it gut-busting funny but I actually agree with one of them - I really don't get Mad Men either. (What's so great about that show?) :\ And, in acknowledgements he even thanked S. Meyer for inspiration. Fanny Merkin is seriously the coolest parody-writer! If you've read and hated Twilight & 50, you HAVE to read this! I leave you with my most liked quote- " I gaze into his gazing eyes gazingly like a gazelle gazing into another gazelle’s gazing gaze." xD

  28. 5 out of 5

    Steph Sinclair

    Very fun read! Just what I needed right now. :)

  29. 4 out of 5

    Ren Puspita

    UPDATE : The publisher just accept my request via netgalley! Oh,yeah!! Oh, LOLOLOLOL!!! Maybe I'll read this first, then read Fifty Shades of Grey. Just to entertain myself #smirk UPDATE : The publisher just accept my request via netgalley! Oh,yeah!! Oh, LOLOLOLOL!!! Maybe I'll read this first, then read Fifty Shades of Grey. Just to entertain myself #smirk

  30. 5 out of 5

    Lolly's Library

    *e-ARC provided by the gracious folks over at NetGalley.com* Disclaimer: I really shouldn't have read this book. After all, not only have I not read the original, Fifty Shades of Grey, I have no intention of ever doing so. Ever. Not even if I were paid a million dollars to do so. Not only does the blatant “I can't believe how much money I'm making off the herds of people buying my books and I barely had to put any thought into writing them!” attitude of the author disgust me, the whole phenomenon *e-ARC provided by the gracious folks over at NetGalley.com* Disclaimer: I really shouldn't have read this book. After all, not only have I not read the original, Fifty Shades of Grey, I have no intention of ever doing so. Ever. Not even if I were paid a million dollars to do so. Not only does the blatant “I can't believe how much money I'm making off the herds of people buying my books and I barely had to put any thought into writing them!” attitude of the author disgust me, the whole phenomenon of “mommy porn” is vaguely disturbing. I mean, if you want to read erotica, read erotica; don't dress it up as some sort of pseudo romance crap to make yourself feel better about what you're reading. Anyway, to the review. This parody of Fifty Shades stars Anna Steal and Earl Grey as the stand-ins for Bella/Ana and Edward/Christian. Anna is the clumsy ingenue who catches the eye of the dashing Earl Grey, googolplexionaire* and all 'round enigma (when he's not being emo boy). As you might guess, everything from the original novel is here, just turned on its head: Earl Grey is into BDSM--that's Bards, Dragons, Sorcery, and Magick, similar to straight BDSM only with fairy wings and prosthetic elf ears; instead of biting her lip, Anna picks her nose, a habit which Earl Grey finds endearing and sexually stimulating; she lives in a duplex with Kathleen, a 38 year-old permanent adolescent who's addicted to alcohol and terrible reality TV, and her best friend is Jin, a “brony” who writes My Little Pony fan fiction and has just gotten promoted to forum moderator at a My Little Pony website. Anna also has an “Inner Guidette” (probably due to her love of Jersey Shore) to provide commentary for her adventures. Although I'm pretty sure the original didn't have Brent Spiner or Dr. Drew Pinsky in it. (Earl Grey rescues Brent from the Saturn dealership where he'd been working as a salesman and gets Brent to work for him as his 'android butler', which was the closest thing Earl Grey could get to a real android. And Dr. Drew is a pervert, at least according to Fanny Merkin.) However, the biggest flip-flop from the original is that Anna is no longer the wide-eyed virgin, but experienced in the ways of coitus, and Earl Grey, far from being the depraved sex maniac, is actually pretty tame when it comes to sex play. When I initially began reading Fifty Shames, I was laughing my ass off at nearly every page. The blatant “get a load of this” swipes at Twilight and its ilk, the ridiculous “shames” Earl Grey reveals to Anna (his bro-crush on Tom Cruise, his love of shopping at Walmart on Saturdays, Nickelback, Bud Light, just to name a few), not to mention the way Earl lovingly tells Anna to remove her finger from her nose... it was all just too funny. And the way the book tore into- hell, eviscerated all the story elements of Fifty Shades? As George Takei would say - "Oh my!!" Yet, after a while, I began to laugh less and frown more. Not necessarily at the book, which, when looked at objectively, was still just as humorous and sly. No, what made the funny go out of the book was the reality behind the parody: firstly, the blatant plagiarism of Twilight by E.L. James even as she protested that she did nothing of the sort, then changed her mind, claiming that her novels were original works and, in her humble opinion, literary genius (“It's only fan fiction! Oh, wait, you want to pay me so much money to publish it that I can make a money pool and swim around in it like Scrooge McDuck? In that case, it's an original story of mine, nothing to do with Twilight, no siree Bob, so let's do it!”), and secondly, the “romance” being promulgated by Fifty Shades which began in the original original, Twilight. That “romance” being the idea that abuse isn't abuse, it's merely the man being manly and protecting his woman (and the woman knowing her place and obeying her man); that stalking is actually romantic and sweet and just shows the great love on the man's part in that he can't stand to be away from his woman for even a moment; that jealousy is normal, even to the point of not allowing the woman to have male friends or talk to other men or even have power over her own body. Yeah, yuck. So, thinking about all that kinda took the fun out of the book; my stupid brain can be such a buzz-kill at times. However, those are all my problems. Once I was able to divorce those thoughts from what I was reading, I was back to hooting and chortling. Seriously, this is not a book to read out in public, unless you have the confidence to laugh like a loon and not give a damn about the people staring at you. And people will stare. Fifty Shames of Earl Grey is fast, fun, and utterly hilarious; not only that but, from what I can tell based on the reviews of Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shames perfectly captures the essence of that novel and completely rips it apart, with spot-on caricatures and sly, snarky, and very pointed language. Highly recommended (though probably not to fans of Fifty Shades; I don't think they'll appreciate the humor). * A googolplex is a really big number. A googolplexionaire is a guy with so much money, it's obscene. Fits Earl Grey to a tee.

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