Flawed by Cecelia Ahern
Series: Flawed #1
Published On: March 24, 2016
Published By: Harper Collins
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Celestine North lives a perfect life. She’s a model daughter and sister, she’s well-liked by her classmates and teachers, and she’s dating the impossibly charming Art Crevan.
But then Celestine encounters a situation in which she makes an instinctive decision. She breaks a rule and now faces life-changing repercussions. She could be imprisoned. She could be branded. She could be found FLAWED.
Flawed is Cecelia Ahern's first attempt at YA and it just proves that she can write anything and do it well. As one of my favourite authors, I was of course excited to hear that she was delving into the world of YA but I was also a little worried. I've loved all of her adult works I have read and I was so worried I wouldn't love this. However, there was no need to worry as I absolutely loved this book.
With the popularity of franchises like The Hunger Games and Divergent, the dystopian genre has also become increasingly popular and a lot of the dystopian novels are starting to sound pretty similar. This one was different. I thought this was a really unique, fresh take on the dystopian genre. The story and society were nothing mind-blowing but I found it to be an incredibly interesting society and one that clearly emphasises the flaws in our own. The way in which Cecelia Ahern made the things we often take little notice of in our society, like treating others poorly because of their circumstances, into major plot points that make the reader stop and think was so well done. The society itself was explained well and clearly, and without any ridiculous info dumps.
A society like this one is so realistic that this book made an impression on me in ways I never expected. As I mentioned, it outlines the flaws in our own society, but also highlights the fact that this is what our society today is becoming. There are comments about the way in which Celestine's mother is portrayed in newspapers and magazines, with headlines about her legs or her outfit choices, as well as discussions about a wife being at fault when her husband cheats. These comments are commonplace in today's society and it becomes even more evident when reading this book in these characters' situations just how wrong, but accepted, these things are.
Though I think the plot and the society it takes place in are the main selling points of this book, Cecelia Ahern, one again, has written some great characters. She has a way of making her characters so likeable and relatable, even if they only say a few lines in the whole book. Celestine is a great main character. She is your typical average girl that doesn't want to be the face of any kind of revolution, as is now seemingly the norm in these kinds of books. However, I found it interesting that all of her thoughts and beliefs that she has held for her entire life get called into question and seeing her whole mindset change as she uncovers the truth. You watch her grow from a naive, protected girl into a determined, powerful young woman. Cecelia Ahern can also write some not so likeable characters though. Judge Crevan was one of the best written bad guys I've read about and I was actually pretty scared of him myself.
Like I said, the plot is what made this book great for me. You don't have the intense, action-packed scenes you may expect from a book like this, but there definitely is not a dull moment. Something happens on every page. Most importantly, for me at least, is that the plot portrays a really great message. You have a girl who is punished for standing up for what she feels is right and then has her entire world turned upside down because of it. At the same time, though, she could have just changed the lives of many others. It really calls into question just how far you would be willing to go to stand up for what you believe in and what you would be willing to sacrifice to be the voice for those who can't speak up for themselves. It also made me question quite how "perfect" I am. You see people throughout this book look down on the Flawed and treat them like nothing, just like people in today's society do to other groups of people. This is definitely a book that will make you think.
Overall, I thought this book was pretty perfect. I have read it twice now and loved it equally both times. It's very fast-paced, both times I flew through it, as there is something happening all the time, but it also makes you think a lot. It discusses a lot of important topics without making them the focus of the story. I just think this book was so well done and I can't wait to finish the series.