Thursday, November 30, 2017

Darker by EL James

Darker is book 2 in a series of books by EL James which is a retelling of her 50 Shades of Grey series. Darker is written from the perspective of Christian Grey. The book provides the context that many people were missing in the first series and answers questions about what Grey was thinking during different scenes. Some of the dialogue, like the emails, is a direct copy of what was stated in the original series, which is not that surprising since it is literally the same conversation. However, the intriguing part is finding out what happens with Christian when Ana is out of the room.

Because of the altered perspective we see more of who Christian is as a person. There are flashbacks to different points in his life which provided a basis for his behavior. The story also goes into more depth about how Elena, Leila, Ros and even Andrea, fit into his life. There is some foreshadowing about book three which is creatively tucked in.

This version of the series is more polished than the original. The silliness of Ana's internal Goddess has been replaced with a more sophisticated internal dialogue and Christians juvenile attitude is directly addressed. As a person, it's easier to connect with Christian and some of his emotional struggles as he works through his demons. Even with this more depth understanding, there were still some missed opportunities.

Taylor and Gail come across as almost third string characters, which given their roles I would have thought they would have been more fleshed out. Additionally, some interactions that happened in the first series were completely skipped in this one. The one I'm specifically thinking about is a missed opportunity because it could have hinted to a spin-off book.

Overall I enjoyed the story and the new perspective. I look forward to reading book three.