Flawed

Flawed

Book rating: 04 Paperback

By (author) Kate Avelynn

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  • Publisher: Entangled Teen
  • Format: Paperback | 321 pages
  • Dimensions: 137mm x 203mm x 28mm | 318g
  • Publication date: 11 December 2012
  • Publication City/Country: Fort Collins
  • ISBN 10: 1620612321
  • ISBN 13: 9781620612323
  • Sales rank: 154,302

Product description

Sarah O'Brien is alive because of the pact she and her brother made twelve years ago - James will protect her from their violent father if she promises to never leave him. For years, she's watched James destroy his life to save hers. If all he asks for in return is her affection, she'll give it freely. Until, with a tiny kiss and a broken mind, he asks for more than she can give. Sam Donavon has been James' best friend - and the boy Sarah's had a crush on - for as long as she can remember. As their forbidden relationship deepens, Sarah knows she's in trouble. Quiet, serious Sam has decided he's going to save her. Neither of them realize James is far more unstable than her father ever was, or that he's not about to let Sarah forget her half of the pact ...

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Author information

Kate Avelynn holds a BS in creative writing and psychology, which she channels into her love of dark, romantic fiction. Flawed is her debut novel.

Customer reviews

By Brandi Kosiner (Brandi Breathes Books) 10 Jan 2013 5

Wow this story is intense and it broke my heart with every page. I can't imagine being in Sarah's shoes and having too make decisions that hurts herself and one of the people she loves at every turn.
While there are some light scenes and some sexy ones, there are just as many gritty and dark ones.
James her brother is ago broken but has this mission to protect Sarah that at first I could look over all the negative but things quickly escalate into areas that the author is brave to speak up on and explore because I think issues like these probably happens more than anyone would imagine but it isn't talked about.
Sarah evoked so much sympathy from me. I cannot imagine living in an environment like hers, but she has such a fighter's spirit. She thinks that she knows what love is because of how James has always been there to protect her but watching her realize just how dysfunctional their own relationship is so hard to read. She feels like she is betraying him by having other friends and for having interests in guys, and she has to watch every move she makes because even though James protected her from their dad, he has a temper and many problems of his own.
While many of the characters break your heart, Sam and his mom are especially dear to me and I loved reading the scenes with them in it. It balances out in a way Sarah's messed up family because Sam's mom is involved and caring. She even looks out for Sam's friends as well, because her heart is so big. It was awesome seeing the character growth in Sarah through her interactions with Sam and his mom. Though, they are not without heartbreak of their own... Sam's dad was killed in action protecting our country and that has left a hole in their hearts and memories.
The ending absolutely trampled on my heart and while i could expect nothing less from such a realistic and no holds barred book, it is still on my mind and i am having a hard time processing it and figuring out how things could have ended any differently.
Bottom line: Beautifully dark and amazingly crafted story that will move you and is so powerful and emotional.

By Andrea Thompson 20 Dec 2012 5

Flawed is a brutal, unflinchingly painful, yet beautifully told story of broken psyches and broken hearts.

This is a really, really difficult review to write. Maybe that's fitting because Flawed was a difficult story to read. I can only imagine how painful it must have been to bring to life. I want to start by commending author Kate Avelynn for her talent and courage in writing such a unique book.

I think, by reading the synopsis, the basics of the story are clear. Sarah O'Brien is the victim of a horrific home life. Her brother James is her savior, taking her pain at one price, her love. All of her love. When James' friend Sam makes a long-awaited connection with Sarah, a chain of horrific events is set off that will leave lives destroyed. Amid the insanity, there is a beautiful love story. The moments of peace, acceptance and love between Sam and Sarah were my favorites in Flawed.

Almost every other moment, though beautifully written, was painful to read. And you know, that's okay. I absolutely believe that Flawed is a story that is meant to make you uncomfortable...how could it not? I wanted to put the book away in the times of extreme brutality. It was almost too much to take. There were so many wrong decisions made by the characters. But who can judge two children who have lived such a brutal existence? As hard as it is to believe, there are people in the world, far too many, who actually live the life of Sarah, and James. So to say that I can't stand to bear witness to a story like this is a cop out. If someone can endure it, at the very least, I can read it. And I think it says I lot that I've just sat here and written an entire paragraph, treating Flawed as a work of non-fiction and the characters as real beings. This goes to shows what a remarkable job Avelynn did in pulling me so deeply into her story.

At the end, I'm still at a loss with this review. Did I enjoy Flawed? Yes, I enjoyed the writing, and definitely the lovely moments between Sam and Sarah. But no, I didn't enjoy much of the story. I wasn't meant to. I felt deeply, thought hard, and ended with a broken heart. But I promise one thing. I won't forget Flawed.

By Sarah Elizabeth 15 Dec 2012 4

(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Entangled Publishing and Netgalley.)
17-year-old Sarah lives with her parents and her brother, but her life is far from perfect. Her mother is constantly doped up on pills and rarely leaves her bedroom, and her father (an ex-boxer) is an alcoholic, and regularly beats Sarah, her older brother James, and beats and rapes her mother.
Sarah and James live in constant fear of their father, and James often takes beatings to save Sarah.

Sarah and James plan on leaving and getting their own apartment as soon as Sarah graduates, but until then, one of Sarah's greatest fears is that her father will rape her the way he rapes their mother, and take her virginity.

Sarah has had a crush on James' best friend Sam for around 5 years, but James is so protective of her, he doesn't let anyone talk to her, and so Sarah thinks that Sam doesn't even like her, which is actually far from the truth.

When Sam finally makes his feelings known, Sarah knows that it's definitely Sam that she wants to be with, but James makes it clear that she is to stay away from him. He doesn't want her to date, and he definitely doesn't want other boys touching her. The problem is though, that for James the lines between sister and girlfriend seem to be blurring, and he kisses her inappropriately!

Now Sarah is avoiding her father, trying to keep her relationship with Sam a secret, and avoiding getting too close to James for fear of what he will do.
Can Sarah and Sam ever really be together? Can Sarah manage to stay away from her father and avoid being raped? And what future lies ahead for Sarah and James?


Let's just start by saying that this is not your average teen romance. This book deals with issues of incest, rape, domestic violence, and drug use.
Sarah has obviously had a lot to deal with during her life, and her father is one of her main problems. She's desperately counting down the days until she and James can leave, until things change between them. James has always been protective, but when he kisses her, she begins to realise that maybe James' feelings aren't purely platonic. How she copes with this revelation is quite beyond me. If my brother tried to kiss me I would be seriously freaked out.
After worrying that her father would take her virginity, I'd also be worrying that James was following in his father's footsteps, and as Sarah and James shared a bedroom it was even more difficult.

The idea of incest creeps me out (as I'm sure it does for most people), and there were several points in this book where I just thought 'ick' (as did Sarah). This book was one of those where at places you wanted to know what happened, but also didn't want to know what happened just in case it was bad! (but at the same time you couldn't possibly put it down.)
Poor Sarah found herself in a seriously difficult position, pushing her brother away, whilst at the same time needing him to protect her from her father. Wanting to be with Sam, but at the same time fearing that if James found out, he would kill Sam.

Sam was just lovely. He was so loving and understanding, and caring towards Sarah, and he was exactly what she needed. I just hated that Sarah and Sam couldn't be honest with James about their relationship. The situation that they found themselves in was just awful, and it was just so unfair that they couldn't be together openly, when Sarah needed Sam's support so much.

I can honestly say that I didn't love the ending, not because it wasn't appropriate or realistic, but because it was heart-breaking! I don't want to say anything to spoil it, but no! That's not how I wanted it to end!! So upsetting!

Overall; a teen romance dealing with difficult issues!
8 out of 10.

Back cover copy

Sarah O'Brien is alive because of the pact she and her brother made twelve years ago -- James will protect her from their violent father if she promises to never leave him. For years, she's watched James destroy his life to save hers. If all he asks for in return is her affection, she'll give it freely. Until, with a tiny kiss and a broken mind, he asks for more than she can give. Sam Donavon has been James's best friend -- and the boy Sarah's had a crush on -- for as long as she can remember. As their forbidden relationship deepens, Sarah knows she's in trouble. Quiet, serious Sam has decided he's going to save her. Neither of them realize James is far more unstable than her father ever was, or that he's not about to let Sarah forget her half of the pact...