I've been blogging for around seven years (I literally remember when all this was fields) and every so often I'd get nominated for something, which is always lovely, but I'd never win and I'd tell myself that awards don't really matter. But to be completely honest, I wanted a goddamn trophy. (The stolen Best Political Blog trophy from the 2011 Irish Blog Awards on a shelf at home doesn't count.) And now I finally have one! And it says Red Lemonade on it and everything! I'm so delighted and well done to all the other bloggers on the night.
And now, onwards to volume seven!
(Catch up: Vol. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6)
Christian and Ana get dressed and Christian is wearing a "cable knit sweater" draped "artfully" over his shoulders like the complete dickhead he is. We're then put through a completely pointless and excruciating two pages of car shopping because Christian has decided that Ana needs a new car now that her Audi is covered in paint. He brings her to a Saab garage, asks her what colour she wants, overrules her decision and then Ana tells us he's "God's gift to women". In which case, God really hates us, you guys.
They go for lunch, because YOU MUST EAT ANA, so Christian drives them to the marina.
"We'll eat here. I'll open your door," he says in such a way that I know it's wise not to move, and I watch him move around the car. Will this ever get old?
Nahhh, abusive relationships in which you have to modify your behaviour to the point that you can't let yourself out of a parked car without fear of your partner flying off the handle are SO SUPER GREAT!
They walk arm in arm along the waterfront to the bar where they'll be eating.
"So many boats," I murmur in wonder.
Imagine! BOATS. In a MARINA. You can tell she went to college.
In the bar, they're greeted by a dude called Dante, who knows Christian and who Ana describes as "black and beautiful" and decides "I like him immediately." I just want to point out that back when Ana first met Franco the hairdresser a few chapters ago, she said "Franco is small, dark and gay. I love him." ANA IS TOTALLY COOL WITH MINORITIES AND GAY PEOPLE YOU GUYS, SHE'S SO GREAT.
Then there's an incredibly depressing exchange between her and Dante that shows just how beaten down and Christian-dependent she is.
"What would you like to drink, Anastasia?"
I glance at Christian, who regards me expectantly. Oh, he's going to let me choose.
"Please, call me Ana, and I'll have whatever Christian's drinking."
Apart from the fact that she's in a situation where she's surprised to be "allowed" to choose what she wants to drink, when she's actually given the opportunity she automatically defers to Christian anyway. BUT THIS BOOK IS SOOOO FUCKING ROMANTIC AND HE'S HOT SO IT'S FINE. I swear to god. I should be drinking shots while reading this steaming pile of wank.
They have chowder and beers for lunch, during which they actually talk like normal people, about things like their favourite films and books and stuff that you'd normally cover on a first date. Afterwards, Christian brings Ana to his big shiny catamaran called The Grace, after his non-crack whore mother and there's a guy already on board called Liam McConnell, or Mac as he's known.
"How's she shaping up, Mac?" Christian interjects quickly, and for a moment, I think he's talking about me.
"She's ready to rock and roll, sir," Mac beams. Oh, the boat, The Grace. Silly me.
Anastasia Steele. Too stupid to live.
Christian gives Ana a tour of the cabin and it's the usual EL James style of description, where, for example, the bedroom "is all pale blue linen and pale wood". Almost every goddamn time she describes a person or a place, it's always "all" something or other. "The ballroom is all chandeliers and monkey butlers", right now I'm "all foaming mouth and repressed urges to punch things." It really gets on my tits.
They sail to some nearby island and Mac promptly goes ashore in a small boat because it's time to make way for some fucking and apparently Ana is "so bold" and "so brave" because she unzips her boyfriend's pants. SUCH COURAGE. SOMEONE NAME A NATIONAL HOLIDAY AFTER HER, QUICK. Two pages of riding later, they finally finish when Christian, as usual, tells Ana to come. I think almost every sex scene ends with Christian saying "That's right...give it up for me" or some variation thereof. And another weird thing is the amount of times he says "come" to Ana in regular conversation. If they're going anywhere or doing almost anything, Christian will take her hand and say something like "Come, let's eat", "Come, let's go" or just "Come," like he's training a dog. He does it 48 times! And that doesn't even include the times that they're boning!
After all the boat sex, Ana lies there looking at Christian getting dressed, and does her "I can't believe this man is mine" thing, which I think she's done after every single sex scene so far. We get it Ana. You can't believe it.
Would I leave him now that he’s admitted he loves me? I gaze up into his clear gray eyes. Could I ever leave him again – no matter what he did to me? Could I betray him like that? No. I don’t think I could.
NO MATTER WHAT HE DID TO ME. That's one hell of a chilling line. And for argument's sake, what if it's not something he does to Ana? What if he drops-kicks a puppy right in its cute little puppy face? WHAT THEN, ANA?
He is an exceptional lover, I'm sure - though of course, I have no comparison. But Kate would have raved more if it was always like this; it's not like her to hold back on details.
Yes Ana, you're the most specialest lady in the world and the sex you've been having is the most amazing sex in the world and far better than anything stupid Kate might have ever had.
When they're getting off the boat, Ana thanks Christian "shyly", even though they've been constantly banging throughout this book so I find it hard to believe that it's even possible to be shy at this point. And then this is Ana saying goodbye to Mac: "I shake his hand shyly." STOP BEING SO FUCKING SHY YOU UNBELIEVABLE PAIN IN THE HOLE.
Oh! But! Important detail! We find out that Taylor's first name is Jason. That's about the only interesting thing in that whole chapter.
They go for dinner and Ana asks Christian if he has any friends, which he doesn't because he's an unbearable prick. Or busy with his company, whichever. Ana then brings up the playroom and is disappointed when Christian says he doesn't want to take her there again, because she left him the last time he did. Ana can't seem to make up her fucking mind, because she didn't want all the BDSM stuff earlier and now she's disappointed that Christian is actually giving her what she said she wants. Also, at this point in the book, the word "carefree" has been used three times within half a page. That poor editor, locked in the boot of EL James's car.
When they get back to Christian's apartment, he gets all tense and back on the lookout for Leila, so he reverts to being all snappy at Ana.
But his attitude makes me smile. I want to hug myself - now this man, all domineering and short with me I know. I marvel that I would have found it so threatening only a week or so ago when he spoke to me this way. But now, I understand him so much better.
Oh it's TOTALLY FINE, because now she's USED TO IT. THAT'S SO MUCH FUCKING BETTER. I SWEAR TO GOD. THIS BOOK.
When they get upstairs, Ana jokes with Taylor about how she was Mrs. Taylor the previous night, as they had checked into the hotel using his name. Christian gets angry because he's a jealous man-baby and takes Ana aside, saying "Don't be friendly with the staff or flirt with them. I don't like it." WAHHH STOP BEING NICE TO OTHER PEOPLE, YOU'RE ONLY SUPPOSED TO BE NICE TO ME.
Ana mentions that she's getting her clothes ready for work the next day and Christian acts like she's just announced that she's off to ride Taylor.
"Work!" Christian exclaims as if it's a dirty word, and he releases me, glaring.
He tells Ana he doesn't want her to go to work and they argue back and forth, with him telling her that she doesn't need to work for a living (because he's so rich! He sets fire to hundred dollar bills to light his cigars! Which are wrapped in money!).
"Do you think I'm going to stay here twiddling my thumbs while you're off being Master of the Universe?"
|A regular day at the office for Christian.|
They eventually agree that Ana will go to work, but she'll be accompanied by Sawyer. (Not Taylor, now that he's on Christian's shitlist for smiling at Ana.)
He takes Ana on a tour of the apartment, so we can see all the rooms that EL forgot to include in the first book, because this place is like the fucking TARDIS or something.
Along with the playroom and three spare bedrooms upstairs, I’m intrigued to find that Taylor and Mrs. Jones have a wing to themselves – a kitchen, spacious living area, and a bedroom each.
A wing to themselves!? Are Taylor and Mrs Jones doing it? THEY TOTALLY ARE. DETAILS PLEASE.
Also, apparently there's a wine cellar in the apartment, which is impressive seeing as it's a penthouse and therefore on the top floor, whereas a cellar by definition is below ground level. I guess when you're as rich as Christian Grey, logic and reality don't apply to you.
They end up in the library/billiards room and play a game of pool. Ana is actually quite good at it and she bets Christian that if she wins, he has to take her into the playroom again. We get a page and a half of every goddamn shot they take during their game, interspersed with Ana waving her arse at Christian while lining each one up. He wins and announces that he's going to spank her and ride her on the pool table. (Called it.)
Holy shit. Every single muscle south of my navel clenches hard.
Like her calves? Have her legs just spasmed? Wouldn't that make her fall to the floor? Dammit Ana, I thought we were making progress when you said vagina earlier, now you've gotten even more vague than "down there". MUST TRY HARDER.
Also: WILDCAAAARD! *kicks a table over*