Fifty Shades Freed: Book Three of the Fifty Shades Trilogy
To review, Christian Gray has decided to work with Anastasia Steele on an in-depth profile of Gray. Gray has done his background on Steele very carefully - how else can a man of 27 have billions at his command with just a phone call? It takes preparation and that's exactly how we meet Ana Steele in Book One.
Young and impressionable, Ana is swept up by power and seeming invincibility of the powerful Gray. It is, as you expect, inevitable that Ana will fall head-over-heels for the magnate. She is especially attracted by his over-the-top sexual preferences. Indeed, Gray's sexual preferences work for her, at least at the start of their relationship that is pretty much where we end up in book 1.
Book 2 pushes the envelope several spaces to the left, right and center but there's also a noticeable change in Gray's behavior toward Steele. Gray is actually beginning to fall in love with her. That Ana has been in love with him for a long time makes things sweeter when she tells him that things will have to change; that he will have to change, if he wants to retain the love, trust and loyalty of a 22-year-old marketing beauty.
As she doesn't hear exactly what she wants to hear, Ana moves to the other end of the world, as far as a died-in-the-wool New Yorker believes, Seattle, where she settles into the boring life of an advertising account executive.
Author EL James, who has written this fast-moving and entertaining series, not only brings her readers along from one coast to the other with an easy command of the language, but she also brings her readers into Christian's erotic world of sexual experimentation, just as she brings Ana into the same world.
At first, it is a world that Ana finds fascinating but as we move deeper into book 2 we find two issues are crippling Christian. The first is that he finds he wants Ana, as he is head-over-heels himself but - and this is the second issue - Ana has issued an ultimatum that boils down to this phrase: "Her way or the highway."
Ana loves the erotic part of Christian's life but if they are to make a life together she needs a more "standard" love life, as well. It really must be love because Christian agrees quickly. And, just as it looks like things will be working out for the young couple, a ghost of Christian's life past (she's not really a ghost, just the love Ana has supplanted) steps into the picture and she begins to exorcise the erotic demons that are chasing our hero.
This brings us to Book 3, where the couple has made it. Christian believes he has beaten the demons of his past; the ones that Ana has asked him to beat, while Ana has accepted many of Christian's foibles. They are the quintessential power couple with a few problems to iron out but they are working at it.
And, that's one of the keys we have found to best-selling author E.L. James, whose trilogy has been on the New York Times best-seller list for some weeks now. The erotic scenes, as they are written, work very well and are a credit to the author. The descriptions are excellent and James leaves you wanting more. What more can any writer ask?
Some may argue that Ana and Christian could use a little more character development as the work moves towards its windup, but, the way the author James handles not only the expository sections as well as the erotic descriptions is so seamless that you don't need formal character development because you learn about each character through their conversations. It's a great feat of authorship to use each character's words to bring them and their issues to life.
About the only things we could find to complain about here is that we wish there was a Book 4 in the pipeline, as James happens to be a very good writer.