I don’t know whether I’m getting the credit or the blame for convincing my good friend Nancy Freund to read 50 Shades of Grey. But what she says in this video book review is true — I did suggest that she read the phenomenon that is the novel.
In any case, I have relied on her to fill me in on the plot. And I’m gobsmacked to see myself and my own latest novel in the video. Thank you… I think.
I hope everybody enjoys Nancy’s review. She’s an editor, reviewer, poet, novelist, new publisher, and experienced high school English teacher. She knows what she’s talking about.
Scene: a supermarket.
Gal behind me at the checkstand: “You’re a writer — have you read that book everybody’s reading? 50 Shades of Grey?”
Me: “No. But I grabbed a friend’s Kindle from her hands and got a look at it. Christian Grey was giving the girl a priceless old copy of Tess of the D’Urbervilles. And rides in his helicopter.”
I wondered if I should clarify to this gal that my friend is an editor who bought the book for research purposes, because she needs to be culturally current. I decided that sounded ludicrous, though it’s true.
Me: “Have you read it?”
Gal: “I’m almost done. It’s not well written but it’s lighthearted fun. But I do keep wondering… is it really possible for people to have so much sex?”
Me: “My friend said that toward the end of the book her main thought was… ‘Not the riding crop again.'”
Gal: “That book’s going to affect everything about how you work from now on. How is your writing going to adjust?”
Me (suddenly feeling faint): “I don’t know, but I can promise you it won’t involve riding crops.”
At which point I ran out of the supermarket and didn’t look back.
Only when I got home did I realize: too late. I’ve already written a scene that involves not just a riding crop but a helicopter and a priceless old piece of memorabilia. It’s chapter one of The Dirty Secrets Club.