Book Review: 6 Fantastic Things about FLAWED by Cecelia Ahern (OwlCrate Book April 2016)

“Flawed”

Flawed #1

by Cecelia Ahern

Nikki’s Rating: 6 out of 10

Summary: Known as a model student, daughter, sister, and girlfriend, Celestine has always been fine with the status quo and never questioned her society. But when she helps an old man, the Guild arrests her. Celestine is facing imprisonment or worst of all, being found flawed and branded. Her whole life could be changed irrevocably from one mistake.

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6 Fantastic Things about FLAWED by Cecelia Ahern (OwlCrate Book April 2016)

(May Contain Spoilers)

1. Perfection

The society in Flawed is one that is based on perfection. Perfection not just in looks but also in behavior. Every decision made could be scrutinized and lead to being branded flawed. Once branded, you carry the brand for the rest of your life and live with more rules and restrictions than normal citizens. While this is a fictional society, it bears a lot of resemblance to our society especially with the preoccupation with being perfect in looks.

2. Marginalized People

Ahern really captures how we treat marginalized people. Treating them as less than human, purposefully avoiding them whenever possible. And then of course, turning a blind eye to any suffering or injustices that they endure.

“And why have I never thought of these things before? Because I never cared, that’s why… I have never spoken to one before. It’s not that we are not allowed to, it’s just that I wouldn’t know what to say. I step around them when they’re near me, I avoid their eye contact. I suppose I act like they don’t exist.”

p. 38-39

3. The Right Thing

The reason for Celestine’s arrest and the whole fiasco was because Celestine helped a man who was flawed. But ultimately it was the right thing to do and I love her character for doing this and then continuing to be brave and not lying about what happened in order to save herself. And while there were others who could have backed up Celestine, no one did. Not even her sister or boyfriend. And Ahern reminds us that for many, it comes down to self-preservation, which is understandable.

“I’ve learned that people aren’t cruel. Most people aren’t anyway… but people are strong on self-preservation. And if something doesn’t directly affect them, they don’t get involved.”

p. 234

4. Carrick and Celestine

Carrick and Celestine develop a bond that only happens between people who endure hardship together. Like soldiers on the battlefield, this bond to each other is one that cannot be wholly described or replicated because it is forged in an experience that cannot be duplicated. All I know is that I hope Carrick and Celestine find their way back to each other.

5. Flawed

Overall, “Flawed” has the message that we are not perfect and to expect any different would be to expect us to not be human. We will make mistakes, we shouldn’t have to pay for them our whole lives, and we shouldn’t condemn others for their mistakes. As Ahern so eloquently wrote in her “Acknowledgments”:

“If there’s one message that I hope this book portrays, it’s this: None of us are perfect. Let us not pretend that we are. Let us not be afraid that we’re not. Let us not label others and pretend we are not the same. Let us all know that to be human is to be flawed, and let us learn from every mistake made so we don’t make them again.”

p. 324

6. Perfect

As Celestine is on the run from the Guild and desperately trying to find Carrick, her story continues in “Perfect”.


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Book Review: 8 Worthwhile Things about WUTHERING HEIGHTS by Emily Brontë

Wuthering Heights

By Emily Brontë

Nikki’s Rating: 8 out of 10

Summary: Growing up together, Heathcliff and Catherine fall deeply in love, believing that one could not survive without the other. But Heathcliff has no title, no land, no occupation and Catherine must be provided for. After losing Catherine forever, Heathcliff torments the next generation as he is haunted by Catherine and what could have been.

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8 Worthwhile Things about WUTHERING HEIGHTS by Emily Brontë

(May Contain Spoilers)

1. Romanticism

Wuthering Heights like Jane Eyre is a prime example of Romanticism. With its Gothic themes of ghosts and elements of the Byronic hero seen in Heathcliff, Wuthering Heights is truly inspired by the Romantic era.

2. Perspective

The perspective of Wuthering Heights is not told through one of the main characters of the story but rather an outsider who is not an intimate of the family and who seems to be unreliable as well. This leaves the reader in an interesting predicament of being further removed from the actual main characters and knowing that we are not seeing the whole story.

3. Speech

Emily Brontë kept her characters authentic by writing phonetically for those of the lower class who had a very different pattern of speech.

4. Love Story

While Heathcliff’s obsession is a bit stalkerish/creepy and Catherine is truly a spoiled brat, their love is still romantic on many levels. One cannot help but wish that they had ended up together and feel how tragic it is that they didn’t.

5. Heathcliff

Healthcliff is a dynamic character. While he appears to be quite a brute with questionable morals, there is an element of softness about him. A tortured soul who only wants to be with his true love. A Bryonic hero indeed!

6. Parallels

There are many parallels in Wuthering Heights between the first and second generations. One such parallel is that between Heathcliff and Hareton. Being the son of his bitter enemy, Heathcliff treats Hareton accordingly. Heathcliff actually raises Hareton similar to how he was raised, treating Hareton like a servant and denying him an education. And yet we see this goodness in Heathcliff through him saving Hareton’s life as a baby and treating him better than Hareton’s real father ever does.

7. Hareton and Catherine

The love that eventually develops between Catherine and Hareton is quite beautiful and provides an ending to Wuthering Heights that is positive and hopeful especially after the heartbreak of Heathcliff and Catherine.

8. Beautifully Written

Written eloquently with beautiful descriptives, interesting characters, and a tragic, heartbreaking love-story, Wuthering Heights is an enchanting novel that will remain a timeless classic for years to come.


As always, thank you for reading. I would love to hear from you so feel free to contact me or comment below. If you would like to support this blog and/or my paintings please become my patron.

Be Authentic. Be Unique. Be You.

Book Review: 6 Wondrous things about WICKED NIGHTS by Gena Showalter

Wicked Nights

Angels of the Dark #1; Lords of the Underworld #9.25

by Gena Showalter

Nikki’s Rating: 6 out of 10

Summary:  Zacharel, an angel at risk of losing his wings, is tasked with leading an army of rebellious and ruthless angels. Battling demons he comes across the first woman to ever tempt him, Annabelle. Imprisoned in a psychiatric ward for the criminally insane, Annabelle has spent years being hunted and tormented by demons. Annabelle has been unknowingly chosen as a consort for a demon king to pay for Zacharel’s sins. Now Zacharel must win the war and make amends or risk losing her and his wings forever.

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6 Wondrous Things about WICKED NIGHTS by Gena Showalter

(May Contain Spoilers)

1. The Camaraderie

Gena Showalter always has playful banter between her characters and she really captures the camaraderie that happens between fellow soldiers who serve together.

2. Angels with a Darker Side

Hot sexy warrior angels who experience lust, love, jealousy, anger, rage, guilt, joy, etc. A nice twist to the stereotypical immaculate, goody-two-shoes portrayal of angels who usually lack human emotions.

3. Sizzling

As always, Gena Showalter provides steamy, melt your panties sex scenes in “Wicked Nights”.

4. Zacharel

Gena Showalter always delivers with hot, sexy men and Zacharel is no exception. Built, tall, muscled, with a fantastic wing-span, Zacharel is one sexy angel. He is also fiercely loyal, protective of those he loves, and a good leader.

5. The Story

While romance novels are very, very formulaic, I still always enjoy them especially from authors like Gena Showalter who are able to add in unique storylines. “Wicked Nights” not only provides a twist on the concept of “angels” but Gena wrote an original tale of an angel being tormented by his twin brother who became a demon.

6. Beauty Awakened

Angels of the Dark series continues with Koldo’s story in “Beauty Awakened”


As always, thank you for reading. I would love to hear from you so feel free to contact me or comment below. If you would like to support this blog and/or my paintings please become my patron.

Book Reviews of October 2018

Book Reviews of October 2018

Attached:  The New Science of Adult Attachment and How it Can Help You Find -And Keep- Love by Amir Levine and Rachel S.F. Heller41jqaseWDkL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_

51nyS4ictWL._SX326_BO1,204,203,200_Ignite Me: Shatter Me Book 3 by Tahereh Mafi

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Running on Empty: Overcome Your Childhood Emotional Neglect by Jonice Webb, PhD with Christine Musello, PsyD

 

Restore Me: Shatter Me Book 4 by Tahereh Mafi41qA7M5LzGL._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_

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First They Killed My Father: a daughter of Cambodia remembers by Loung Ung

 

51jbDr01MyL._SX314_BO1,204,203,200_The Darkest Torment: Lords of the Underworld Book 12 by Gena Showalter