Katiebird Reviews: Fifty Shades Darker and Freed by E.L. James

Fifty-Shades-of-Grey freed and darker



Fifty Shades Darker

Daunted by the singular sexual tastes and dark secrets of the beautiful, tormented young entrepreneur Christian Grey, Anastasia Steele has broken off their relationship to start a new career with a Seattle publishing house.

But desire for Christian still dominates her every waking thought, and when he proposes a new arrangement, Anastasia cannot resist. They rekindle their searing sensual affair, and Anastasia learns more about the harrowing past of her damaged, driven, and demanding Fifty Shades.

While Christian wrestles with his inner demons, Anastasia must confront her anger and envy of the women who came before her and make the most important decision of her life.

Erotic, sparkling and suspenseful, Fifty Shades Darker is the irresistibly addictive second part of the Fifty Shades trilogy.

Fifty Shades Freed

When unworldly student Anastasia Steele first encountered the driven and dazzling young entrepreneur Christian Grey it sparked a sensual affair that changed both of their lives irrevocably. Shocked, intrigued, and, ultimately, repelled by Christian’s singular erotic tastes, Ana demands a deeper commitment. Determined to keep her, Christian agrees.

Now, Ana and Christian have it all—love, passion, intimacy, wealth, and a world of possibilities for their future. But Ana knows that loving her Fifty Shades will not be easy, and that being together will pose challenges that neither of them would anticipate. Ana must somehow learn to share Christian’s opulent lifestyle without sacrificing her own identity. And Christian must overcome his compulsion to control as he wrestles with the demons of a tormented past.

Just when it seems that their strength together will eclipse any obstacle, misfortune, malice, and fate conspire to make Ana’s deepest fears turn to reality.

I know that it seems pretty late in the game to write a review for these books, but it had been years since I had read them. When I reread the first book before the movie came out, I didn’t expect to become so attached to the characters again. Seeing them portrayed so well on the big screen just reinforced that feeling. I left the book I had started, to reread both Darker and Freed, because I just couldn’t focus. I needed to finish the journey started…

Katiebird's review

The second book, Darker, is my favorite of the three books for a number of reasons. First, we get a glimpse into Christian’s sad childhood in the prologue. Just that tiny window of time stayed with me through the book and really affected my reaction to Christian going forward.

Mrs. Lincoln. Seriously hate this character. The way that both Ana and Christian’s mother deal with her made me happy. I will say the character development for the main characters as well as the secondary characters is why I felt the books getting better and better. I still felt the same emotions rereading this book, so that is the second reason why it would be my favorite.

I know some people didn’t like the way Ana acted at the beginning of the book, but I was reminded that she is young and in her first serious relationship. Her reaction seemed pretty normal to me.

The ending is so unexpectedly sweet and romantic…

The last book, Freed, was the perfect ending for a series. There was nothing lacking. I loved it. I was moved by Christian finally getting what was really wrong with his relationship with Mrs. Lincoln. The first two books, he was still defending her and what she brought into his life. Ana changed his perspective. I adored the scenes with Ana being the strong one.

*****spoiler alert****

Made with Repix (http://repix.it)

Excerpt from Chapter 12:

When I wake he’s curled around me, sleeping peacefully. I relax and enjoy his enveloping heat, his skin on my skin. I lie very still, not wanting to disturb him.

Boy, what an evening. I feel like I’ve been run over by a train–the freight train that is my husband. Hard to believe that the man lying beside me, looking so serene and young in his sleep, was so tortured last night…and so tortured me last nigh. I gaze up at the ceiling, and it occurs to me that I always think of Christian as strong and dominating–yet the reality is he’s so fragile, my lost boy. And the irony is that he looks upon me as fragile–and I don’t think I am. Compared to me I’m strong!

But am I strong enough for both of us? Strong enough to do what I’m told and give him some peace of mind? I sigh. He’s not asking too much of me. I flit through our conversation of last night. Did we decide anything other than to both try harder? The bottom line is that I love this man, and I need to chart a course for both of us. One that lets me keep my integrity and independence, but still be more for him. I am his more, and he is mine. I resolve to make a special effort this weekend to not give him cause for concern. 

This book takes us on a roller coaster ride with twists and turns that surprised me in my first read, and still held my attention this reread. The ending is bittersweet, because we get to see into their amazing future, but I still hated to see it end.

If you saw the movie, but still haven’t read the rest of the series….what are you waiting for?? The elevator doors closing is really only the beginning of Christian and Ana’s incredible journey to love and happiness. This series is a love story, where lightness conquers darkness.

My favorite song from the soundtrack is Sia’s Salted Wound.

Tamie did fabulous reviews when each book was released. Please check them out here and here.

Anyone else compelled to reread or read the other books in the series after seeing the movie?






About katiebird

I am a huge reader of young adult, new adult, and paranormal romances. I also have an acute fondness of Robert Thomas Pattinson. I love that I get to share with everyone my love of reading.

2 thoughts on “Katiebird Reviews: Fifty Shades Darker and Freed by E.L. James

  1. Nickie Adler says:

    Like you, the second book was my favorite. I also read all three before the movie came out. However, even thou this sounds weird, this was my fifth time reading them. When E. L. James started her book signing tour in the US, her first stop was Miami, and I was there so I could meet her. I didn’t start the books til then. As well as the movie did at the box office, I do hope they continue with the other films. Katiebird thanks again for this wonderful review.


    • katiebird says:

      Glad to hear that I wasn’t the only one compelled to reread. This was technically my third time reading, because I read it the first time before they were published. I feel like I’ve been in love with these characters for 4-5 years now. 🙂


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