Flawed is one of the perfect books Cecelia Ahern has ever written. It’s her first YA (Young Adult ) . Those who don’t know what YA stands for no need to worry. Young Adult is genre of fiction for readers from 12-18. It mainly deals with friendship, first love, relationships, and identity. And Flawed is a combination of all the four. First of all I would like to appreciate Cecelia Ahern for getting out of her comfort zone.
“I am a girl of definitions, of logic, of black and white. Remember this.“
That is all the first chapter says. The novel goes through the perspective of Celestine North and the lines said earlier is by her. That’s enough to deduce her character. She is a model daughter and model student. Her life is picture perfect. She is dating Art Crevan, the son of Judge Crevan. Bosco Crevan is the head judge of a committee named the Guild. Now let me explain you the system of guild. It is a system to inquire and punish people who are accused of being Flawed. The flawed are common citizens who have made moral or ethical mistakes. It’s like a different version of common judicial system. The crimes are different and so are the punishments.
Wanna feel chills on your spine, listen to this.
On the first day of trial which is called the naming day, the judges decide whether the accused is flawed or not. If yes, the crimes he/she did is named in public and a brand F is seared on one of the five parts of the person’s body. The branding location depends on the crime.
1. Bad decision – The temple
2. Lying – The tongue
3. Stealing – The right palm
4. Disloyalty towards the Guild – The chest over the heart
5. Stepping out of line with society – The sole of their right foot.
They sear this brand to the body of the people.
Don’t think the punishment ends here. Nope. It’s just the beginning. The branding is how it begins. Lives of the flawed people are restricted, controlled and strictly monitored. They lose all their privileges. Whistleblowers are police like figures of Guild, who arrest and control the flawed people. They are authoritarian. Some people are appointed like supervisors to the flawed to do surprise visits and inspection. They make sure the flawed are not wearing their favourite clothes or not eating tasty food. Or they are not outside of the house past curfew time. Basically those monitors make sure that the flawed are not leading a normal or happy life.
Remember Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne. Just like that in here the flawed are asked to wear an arm band with a red letter F on their sleeve so as to identify them in a crowd. No more than two flawed can stand, sit or talk together. They are not allowed to eat what they like or wear their favourite colours. They are not allowed to stay out of the house after 10 pm.
Our girl, Celestine is in full favour of this system, because she believes it is necessary for a flawless future generation. Her mother is a model in high demand and her father is the head of a news channel. She has one younger sister and brother. The perfect family. Her life takes a turn for the worse when she helps an old flawed man on a bus. After that all of a sudden she is the centre of attraction. ‘Judge Crevan’s son’s girlfriend is on trial for a flaw’. The flaw being aiding a flawed person. That’s right, she is on trial for helping an old sick man who happened to be a flawed. She hasn’t done a crime. So she won’t be going to prison. She is just ethically flawed and hence official police and judiciary have nothing to do with her. Here begins the trial of Celestine North and her own conscience. I will narrate the story till this only. Now you should read the book to know what is the punishment for helping a flawed person.
What happens with Celestine changes the life of not just her or her family. But the whole of the flawed community. The peace and order the society had till then is starts break down. Celestine was a person who always followed logic and what happend in her life was illogical to her. (To us, also ). The plot takes place in an unmentioned dystopian society where being flawless is the ultimate goal. The girl who lived her whole life according to definitions is suddenly put in the opposite side of the society.
The thing about this novel is that the language is simple and plain with no embellishments. Such a page turner it is that you can finish it within two days. Also the story is with lots of cliffhanger and exciting events that you’ll find it hard to put down. It begins like any other Cecelia’s novels. But when we meet the Guild, it becomes difficult to not acknowledge the author’s brilliance in coming up with such ideas.
Though it is Young adult for teens, I can promise you that adults also will love it. I really feel like telling you what happens next but that’ll be unfair to you. The struggle Celestine faces is the rest of the story. Not just struggles but also threats. It’s kind of obvious what will happen to the guild system. Too many cooks spoil the broth, right?
There is an incident that made me feel anger pulsating through my veins. The woman incharge of Celestine goes through the her diary without her permission. Because apparently a flawed is not allowed to have privacy. Again they are less than humans. God I wanted to punch that sneaky bi***.
(Nope.. Nope.. No violence.. Breath in Breath out…) The one thing I hate to the core is reading someone else’s personal diary. It’s one of the most heinous non-crime crime.
Celestine’s life doesn’t end there. Yes her life is changed. She is thrown far away from being perfect. (Read it) There is a limit for her family in helping her. Art (boyfriend) or Juniper (sister) can’t do much. But there are people who can help her. The Flawed.
The novel ends in middle of a crucial situation. The novel became a huge hit within a few days because the plot is such gripping. It’s one of the books which I want to see as a movie. It would be amazing. Let me draw a picture for you. The trailer begins with Celestine celebrating earth day with her family and Judge Crevan. Art and her holding hands and sneaking a kiss. Suddenly sirens and whistleblowers in the background. They drag a woman out of her house infront of everyone. Celestine and family become worried and scared. Art tries to hold her hand to comfort, but she rids the hand and hugs herself nervously. Next scene should be the old man on the bus coughing and collapsing, Celestine carries and supports him. A serious looking Judge Bosco Crevan is zoomed in. People booing and protesting against Celestine, close up of the branding tool. A scared Celestine is looking around. A reporter animatedly talking infront of a crowd. Close up of her family crying, She is running frantically through the jungle, the back shot of a boy talking to Celestine. Again so much running and finally a puzzled Celestine is in the middle of the road at night, with a car stopped right infront of her, the lights blinding her vision and an outline of a woman can be seen.
Alright. may be my version of trailer is so cliche. But then again I am 100% sure this novel would make a superb movie. I could feel what she was going through. I could empathize with her. The book has a sequel titled Perfect which was again such an eventful one. To know the story completely you need to read both. I liked Cecelia even before I read Flawed. But after reading it and Perfect, I am head over heels for her. Read it guys. It’s a simple and plain YA thriller.
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