21 March 2016

ARC Review: Flawed (Flawed #1), Cecelia Ahern

Flawed

Title: Flawed
Series: Flawed #1
Author: Cecelia Ahern
Published: 24/03/2016, HarperCollins Children's Books
Pages: 400
Source: Netgalley
Format: Ebook

Rating: 4/5

"The stunning YA debut from internationally bestselling author Cecelia Ahern.

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.

In this stunning novel, bestselling author Cecelia Ahern depicts a society in which perfection is paramount and mistakes are punished. And where one young woman decides to take a stand that could cost her everything."

Wow! What can I say? Flawed is a unique take on the classic and popular genre that is Dystopia. At 400 pages long, it is a surprisingly quick read and I sped through it in 5 nights.

Flawed is set in a dystopian world where everyone has to be absolutely perfect at all times. Set one foot wrong and you will be branded (and by branded I mean literally with a poker!) as Flawed and treated as a second class citizen. The smallest of things, such as telling a little white lie, will result in this branding. It sounds bloody terrifying! True it is a strange concept, but in practice, this worked perfectly in Cecelia Ahern's story.

Weirdly, this world scares me stiff. The repeated use of Highland, such as Highland Castle reminded me strongly of Scotland. Is Flawed set in Scotland? I'm inclined to think so, but I'm not completely sure. I've never read a dystopian set in Scotland and the description of Highland Castle seemed very similar to Edinburgh Castle.

The protagonist is seventeen-year-old Celestine. She is pretty likeable and relatable in small ways. She's grown up believing she has to be absolutely perfect at all times. She believes she is perfect and has done perfectly at being perfect. Until one event changes everything. She is found to be Flawed. All she does is show compassion and kindness and this leads to her suffering horrifically. No adult should have to go through what she went through, never mind a seventeen-year-old girl. (I advise you not to eat between 30 and 40%.) I had tears streaming down my face just reading about her ordeal.

Flawed is told from Celestine's perspective. I felt her pain and her struggle as her world was turned upside down so clearly. I didn't find her story all too predictable. I was never sure of where the story would lead, partially due to Celestine's quickly developing mistrust of everyone. As Celestine struggles with her trusting people, there are obvious twists and turns as she tries to work everything out.

The ending was fantastic and very climatic. There was a lot going on and talk about cliffhanger! So many plot points are left dangling. And I NEED to know what happens next.

However, I did find the pace to be quite slow and dragged out in places. A lot of the story revolved around Celestine getting used to her new lifestyle. But, this didn't mean that I wanted to put the book down. On the contrary, I was completely hooked and would have read all day and into the night if I could. I needed to know if Celestine would be okay.

I also wish that there was more development in the secondary characters. I learnt bits and pieces about them all, but they still felt rather flat. I would particularly love to know more about Carrick.

Flawed gives out the fantastic message that nobody is perfect. We all make mistakes, suffer any consequences and learn from them. The only thing anyone is perfect at is being perfectly imperfect.

Flawed is a promising start to what appears to be a fantastic new dystopian series. It is a brilliant YA debut for Cecelia Ahern and completely different to anything I would relate to her. I would definitely recommend Flawed to fans of YA, dystopians and Cecelia Ahern.




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