FIFTY SHAMES OF EARL GREY by Andrew Shaffer (aka Fanny Merkin) a review
FIFTY SHAMES OF EARL GREY –a parody by Fanny Merkin (aka Andrew Shaffer)
FIFTY SHAMES OF EARL GREY (release date July 31, 2012) 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 edibles, 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 or the pseudonym (Andrew-I think), 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 Grey.
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 by 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, while 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.
Copy supplied by publisher
reviewed by Sandy