Joint Review & Giveaway: Fifty Shades Freed by EL James

The Fifty Shades Freed blog tour continues today here at The Book Pushers where MinnChica and I talk about the third and final book in the series!

When unworldly student Ana Steele first encountered the driven, damaged young entrepreneur Christian Grey it sparked a sensual affair that changed both their lives irrevocably. Shocked, intrigued, and ultimately repelled by Christian’s singular sexual tastes, Ana demanded a deeper commitment; determined to keep her, Christian agreed.

Now, together, they have more – love, passion, intimacy, and a world of infinite possibilities. But Ana always knew that loving her Fifty Shades would not be easy, and being together poses challenges neither of them ever anticipated. Ana must somehow learn to share Christian’s opulent lifestyle without sacrificing her own integrity, identity or independence; Christian must somehow overcome his compulsion to control, and lay to rest the horrors that blighted his past and haunt his present.

Just when it seems that together their love can conquer any obstacle, misfortune, malice and fate combine to make Ana’s worst nightmares come true. Alone and desperate, she must face down the poisoned legacy of Christian’s past.
*blurb taken from author’s official website*

Lou: We started our first discussion about the Fifty series in our past book discussion here. Each of us felt that the series was like crack, but there were obvious faults within the series such as inconsistencies, and way too much content that should have been cut in half. With how the second book ended, I thought how could the 3rd finish it off. What was there left to tell? After reading Freed, I can’t think of a single reason why this story was published. It had no plot that brought the story together. It was just more of Fifty and Ana drifting along with no purpose. And because of that I’m a angry reader because I don’t know why a book would be released that had NO purpose to it whatsoever. It’s not unknown that this series was originally fan fiction. And guess what. With this final entry, it felt as if nothing had changed and it did read like fan-fiction. A very very bad one.

MinnChica: I loved the first two Fifty books, and I thought that James left enough loose ends that the potential for a third story was there. I wanted to find out what more would come from the Mrs. Robinson character, who the person was trying to kill Christian and the romantic in me was hoping to see more of a deeper connection between Ana and Christian. But like Lou said, this third book felt pointless, seemed to have no direction and – in my opinion – was poorly written. I think this series could have been wrapped up in two books, and don’t feel as if there was any decent resolution to the story.

Lou: I agree, Minn. There wasn’t any decent resolution to the story, and I felt as if this book was more of a gravy train ride. What annoys me so much is that this book felt as if it was a first draft of a story. In most books, there is a plot driving the story along whether it be external, internal, or both. There was none of this in Freed. It was just more of Fifty and Ana fighting, and the first part of the book was such a snore fest because as far as I was concerned, it was just blocks of writing. There’s not much to explain about what the plot of the book is and how it played out because there isn’t one. Mrs Robinson’s character just blew away quietly in the wind without any real impact. We have a subtle secondary storyline with Ana best friend and Fifty’s brother, but that drifted away also. And Fifty was just a total and complete arse in this book. How he treats Ana after she reveals she’s pregnant, I thought it was despicable of him in his treatment of her.

MinnChica: In the first two books it was obvious to me that Christian was damaged, he had some serious emotional problems, but with the end of the 2nd book I honestly thought that he would be given a chance to really grow up emotionally in the third book. Boy was I wrong! If anything, it seemed to me as if Christian became even MORE emotionally stunted. He was a total jerk at every turn, he never once seemed to look at things in a second way, and quite honestly his behavior in this story ruined the whole series for me. I don’t want to read about someone who takes one step forward and then about twelve back. It was disappointing.

Lou: It was like Fifty had to go back and be his damaged self to add tension to a lack lustre story. I just didn’t get this book at all because I still can’t find a reason for the actual story. Fifty gets treated of his dominant and BDSM tenancies by the cure of Ana. The way in which Fifty got into the BDSM scene was so incredibly messed up that I honestly thought it was safer for him not to be practising it. It’s still a horrible message to send out though that Ana cured him of that. The ending of the book just made me laugh so hard because it was like a Harlequin ending, but one that was outdated so many years ago.


[spoiler]Babies! The ending is that Fifty and Ana become a normal loving family and raise babies together and they are all super duper loved up.[/spoiler]

End Spoiler.

Talk about how to kill your story as far as I’m concerned.

MinnChica: In regards to the BDSM, I didn’t see it as Christian getting “cured” by Ana, because they still partook in some “kinky-fuckery” but I was more upset that during their few BDSM scenes, Christian didn’t seem to have any care for how he treated Ana. He was cruel and mean and in it for his own f-ed up agenda. It was hard to read… I thought the end was a bit of a cop-out as well. I wasn’t very impressed at all on that front. One of the other things that constantly drove me NUTS during the story was that Ana’s assistant Hannah was constantly having the spelling of her name changed. Half the time it was Hannah, and the other half it was Hanna. Little things like that just reinforced my thought that not a lot of time was spent on the editing and cultivation of this book. =(

I will admit though that there were a few scenes that I enjoyed in this book. There were tiny snippets into Ana and Christian’s life that I was pleasantly surprised by. Ana giving Christian a haircut, some of their moments on their honeymoon, the few times Christian would play piano for Ana. For me, those small scenes just showed me that the potential for a wonderful story was there, but the execution lacked.

Lou: It’s like the British slang that was used throughout the book, despite it being in an American setting. It’s obvious no decent editor had gone through this book, and it’s something that the author should have picked up on. Fifty was very cruel to Ana, and he came off as abusive that left me with a sour taste in my mouth. After reading this final book, I wouldn’t recommend this series at all now. When you release a book, you make sure it’s the best as it can possibly be. I don’t want to read or pay for a book that looks like it still belongs in the fan fiction world. If I want to read fan fiction, I’ll go to their sites. All in all, what a cock up of this book was. I can’t recommend this book because it is crafted poorly.

I give it a F.

MinnChica: All in all I was horribly disappointed in this book. I was expecting the same level of wonder and excitement that the first two books in the series gave me, and instead I found myself constantly frustrated and annoyed while reading. Christian came across as a spoiled and spiteful child and Ana never seemed to grow a pair enough to stick up for her basic right to be treated like a decent human. Like Lou, I can’t recommend this book to anyone. I think the first two books will still hold a special place and are worth the read, but the third book is not worth the ridiculous price.

I give Fifty Shades Freed a F. 🙁

Although we didn’t care for the book, many people have. The blog tour continues tomorrow over at Reading Lark.  We are lucky enough to be able to offer a giveaway an e-copy of Fifty Shades Freed on behalf of The Writer’s Coffee Shop Publishing. Please leave a comment to be entered to win. Open internationally and ends February 5th. Good Luck! 

23 thoughts on “Joint Review & Giveaway: Fifty Shades Freed by EL James”

  1. Even though you didn’t care for it, I still want to read it. Thanks for the opportunity to win the book.

  2. Geez guys,
    That was a rather harsh review but everyone is entitled to their own opinions. I loved it!

  3. Care bear stare is all I could think in regards to the ending of Freed. This trilogy was more vanilla than anything and Christian is just an emo, spoiled rich boy stalker when all is said and done.

  4. I will keep thoughts about review to myself. Everyone, indeed, has a right to voice their opinions.

    I just want an ebook. Thank you for opportunity.

  5. @Lou:

    I’m happy to see you give an honest review with points to back up your opinions, that’s exactly what I like to see.

  6. Thank you for the honest review, I have heard alot about this series and I am still very interested in reading it. Thanks again!

  7. Perversely, I’m glad it’s not that good 🙂 I can’t bring myself to spend another £7 for an ebook, especially not a very good one, so I’ll wait to read it. Maybe they’ll reduce it in price, maybe I’ll win it… Who knows ;))) Great review as always!

  8. Wow, yall are the first to actually say that you didn’t like the book. In other words, you haven’t drank the Kool-Aid. I still want to read it. Great review even though you didn’t like it. Honesty in a review…refreshing.

    Marika Weber

  9. Interesting review, thanks for being honest with it. I am still intrigued enough to check it out, just so I can read the ending of Christian and Ana myself.

  10. Thanks for the review, I have been watching this book on the blogs and wanting to read it based on those.

  11. I’m sorry to hear that you didn’t like this book, but because I have heard lots of good things about it, I’d love the chance to find out for myself whether I like it or not! Thanks so much for the giveaway and the very honest review 🙂

  12. I’d love to win #3. I wish I had read earlier that Fifty Shades of Grey was one of BookPusher’s notable mentions for 2011 — I might have found it earlier.

    Altho I can see some places where I might have an editor’s twitchy red pencil, I found the story to be very absorbing. It is hard to sustain a book right to the end it seems tho, so thanks for sharing your perspective.

  13. Everybody’s personalities are different from each other. There are books that I like and don’t like but it doesn’t mean everybody hates the book just because I hate it. Who knows?

  14. Great review, ladies! You both explained what didn’t work for you beautifully. Of course many readers are still interested, despite the negative review–a book that elicits a strong response always draws more interest. I hope the commenters stay respectful.

    No need to enter me. 🙂

  15. Great review. Thanks, I appreciate it when the blogs I read often for reading reviews give me their honest & DETAILED feedback.

    No need to enter me either. The 1st book was fun but the 2nd was just meh for me. I will stick with those memories and not read anything that will tarnish an already fading Fifty for me. He was delish for a moment.

  16. I’m always struck by the stark differences in people’s responses to these books. It seems they either love ’em or hate ’em. I haven’t read very many reviews wherein they gave them a C+.

    Your review was well done, ladies. Thanks for being honest, and no need to enter me in the drawing.

  17. I have heard so many different opinions about the third book. Still, I must admit that I enjoyed the first two books. I am intrigued. I want to read the final book.

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