I picked up this novel, by Irish author Cecilia Ahern, by chance.
I liked the premise, and I was struggling through a novel that infuriated me more than it interested me, so I decided to take a break from it with another, much different novel.
It’s good I didn’t notice that the novel was the author’s young adult debut, since I never would have picked it up. Unless forced to read something by one of my sons who want to discuss something they read, I tend not to favor the young adult genre.
If I were a little more on the ball, I should have probably realized it from the cover. : )
Nevertheless, I didn’t, and it turned out to be a good thing because I really enjoyed this book.
Celestine North lives in a country that is perfect. After politicians and leaders failed the nation in the past, new laws are passed to single out those who are flawed, thereby ensuring political instability can never occur again. Those determine to be offenders are branded with an ‘F’ and live alongside, but at the same time, separate from society.
Celestine believe in this system. She is content with her perfect life, her perfect family, perfect boyfriend and her ability to blend in with the rest of society until the day, inexplicably, that she risks everything and becomes Flawed.
Celestine grows as a character as she goes through the system of the Flawed, learning about her strength, maturing and developing as a character. For the first time, she questions the system she has always accepted at face value. In doing so, she also causes her family to look more critically at the system they have tacitly supported. It works as a young adult coming-of-age story, but one that can maintain enough interest for (ahem …) older readers. I read this quickly and have also recommended it to my teenage son. I enjoyed Ahern’s first foray into young adult novels.