2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
An important subject to be discussed, Inexcusable looks at rape from the rapists point of view.
Told primarily through flashbacks after the rape the story focuses on Keir, who is initially portrayed as a boy with strong family values and work ethic. He is extremely close to his father, misses his deceased mother, and longs for his live away sisters to be home more often. Relatively popular at school he plays for the football team and is accepted among the in-crowd. But this, the reader learns, is all a facade.
In reality Keir is emotionally unstable, in fact at certain points he is deluded, and lacking any degree of genuine self-realization. I personally felt like he had an undiagnosed personality disorder. He clearly believes himself to be a much different person than he is. It is this delusion that makes the story so disturbing, Keir honestly doesn't believe he's done anything wrong. He thinks that if he can just make Gigi see things his way he'll some how be able to convince her that she's consented to sex. I wanted to believe that he `s just so deep in denial that he can't bring himself to admit to what he's done and what he needs to face but really I think he simply believed it was true. That is what makes the portions of the book where he and Gigi are interacting after the fact the most chilling.
Interestingly enough, his family (primarily his sisters) and his future victim recognize his true nature. Through their eyes the reader is given a clearer picture about the root of Keir's personality. That he really isn't all he believes himself cracked up to be. Of equal interest is the role his father plays in all of this. Feeding the boy's delusion he is so desperate to maintain a connection to his child that he continually fosters the "good boy" image. Though Keir's father wasn't focused on too much I felt like he was in a bit of denial himself.
I must admit that I didn't connect with this book, for me it felt disjointed, but the message it makes is important and one worthy of attention. As an "issue" book it would work well in the classroom as a tool by which students can learn about personality disorder and the effects it has on both the afflicted as well as the people around them.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
The novel opens with the haunting first line "The way it looks is not the way it is" - whoa! Keir is a graduating high school senior with a best-friend/dad, and two sisters. He drinks way too much, is liked by everyone, and is a self proclaimed good guy. Between Keir narrating his final year of school and giving a brief bio on his life for our sake, he fills the reader in with his current situation - which is shady at best. Without revealing too much of the plot, he is alone, with the girl he loves, defending his good guy status. Again, WHOA!
This book is spooky, creepy, and intriguing all over the place. The best part about it is the reader hardly realizes how creepy and what a thriller the novel actually is until the ending. The author's choice of telling the story from Keir's first person perspective is amazing, and really shapes the book. All of the character development, insight, emotions, and appeal are completely based on the reader's interpretation of the events and the story. I wouldn't say it's a nail biter, it's much too subtle for that...but it is a page turner all the way.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on October 23, 2008
Keir, a senior in high school who seems to be the ideal "cool kid". He parties, drinks, does drugs, plays on the football team, and has all the friends. His whole life is turned upside down for a bit when he accidentally cripples an opposing team player at a football game. He was so well liked people really made nothing of it. But something he does can never really be something just let go of. He is accused of raping the girl he loves, gigi. She is the one to accuse him saying it was his fault and she could never love him after doing that. Follow Keir as he tries to prove his innocence and show everyone that he is not a bad guy. It was a great book i think that it really turns the table on stories of iffy topics like rape. also it follows the accused rapist which is great because its really just his side of the story and what people are thinking of him after the whole incedent. It's a really good book if you like weird stories that really change the way things are seen and from a first person view. -Chris Powell
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Keir Sarafian saw himself as a good person. Gigi Boudakian also saw him as a good person, but the night of their high school graduation her feelings changed.
Having Keir tell things from his point of view was interesting. I noticed how he called himself a good guy as if that made it okay when he made bad choices. He also saw quite a few things that happened in his life as inexcusable, but what he did - his own inexcusable act - he denied as if he truly believed it never happened.
I didn't like the way characters took the Lord's name in vain at times, but, other than that, this was a good read. It took a while before I really got into the story, but then the more I read the more I couldn't wait to get to the page that helped me to understand why Keir really believed he didn't do what Gigi insisted he did.
Parents: The rape is tastefully written. There's also a bit of profanity and alcohol & drug use.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on September 28, 2009
Use caution when deciding to read 'Inexcusable'. On the whole, this book provides compelling truth about how we justify our terrible actions. But if this book is read by someone who is not ready to read about drugs, sex/rape, and partying then this book is not for them. However, this is a reality that youth today have come face to face with. At first I was appalled by all the swearing and other content in the story, but I realized that this story addresses an important issue that many people want to ignore. If you want to get this book for a young adult, I would make sure they see what an idiot the main character, Keir, is. If they don't, then you have a problem and the book didn't do any good. What I loved the most about the book is that it showed how easy it is to justify terrible actions, or trick yourself into thinking you never did them. This book teaches something that adults and teens really need to understand.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
A strong story that I couldn't put down. Brilliantly planned and executed, the author starts out at the end of the story, then brings us back to it through first person narrative in journal-style. Through this, the truth slowly unfolds, even though it's colored by the main character's denials.
The main character, Keir, has a strong voice that keeps the story interesting and the pages turning. I was intrigued at how Keir had done everything he considered inexcusable, denied it to himself and his loved ones, yet still made me care about what was going to happen to him. Excellent story.
on November 16, 2013
Keir Sarafian is a good guy. He’s a talented football player with a lot of friends and a scholarship to a good school and would never do anything to hurt the girl he loves. Everybody he knows thinks he’s a pretty nice guy. At least that what he tells himself. Keir things that Gigi Boudakian is the love of his life. He finds her smart and beautiful, if not slightly unattainable and is thrilled to find himself in her good graces after a graduation party. What Keir finds to be an act of love, Gigi finds to be an act of violence and Keif just doesn’t understand. After another unfortunate event that leaves Keir’s nice guy image hanging in the balance he is shocked to be back in a situation that might put him in an unfavorable light. Not because he really cares what others might think, but because he knows in his heart everything was done out of a feeling of love. How can two people view a single event so differently?
I didn’t love this book. It’s not that it wasn’t well written, because I did enjoy the format with the flashbacks and found the writing to be pretty solid. What really turned me off was Keif as the lead character. I found him to be really dense and not all that bright. He thinks he’s this great guy who treats everybody with respect, but the events in his past don’t really add up to him being Mr. Perfect. He’s not even the big, talented football player he makes himself out to be. He only received scholarship offers after he makes a big hit playing a position he won’t be playing in college anyway. Keif is pretty dense in the ways of the world as well. He talks about having this supportive, loving family, but even they aren’t there for him throughout the book. It comes as no big surprise to the reader that his sisters have blown him off for graduation, but Keif is dumfounded and can’t believe it has happened. The worst part about Keif is his obsession with Gigi. From the start of the book he’s head over heels for her, but she doesn’t give him the time of day. He tries and tries to get close to her, but her reactions until the very end are lukewarm at best. Gigi gives Keif absolutely no reason to think that spending one good evening together after graduation might lead her to want to sleep with him. I mean, she’s had a boyfriend that she talks about all of the time for the entire book! The idea that he could think the sex between them was mutually warranted is ridiculous. I ended up having no compassion for Keif and am bummed out at how stupid he acted. Nothing in the book led me to believe he was all that nice of a guy to begin with, and his aggressive behavior with Gigi was unforgivable. Keif is incapable of owning up to his own actions for the entire book, and the last scene is no different. After he assaults Gigi he simply lays down on the bed and waits for someone to come get him. I do have to say that the title of the book sums of Keif’s actions pretty well. He has a short list of things in his life that he finds inexcusable, like the people you love letting you down, but what is really inexcusable is the way Keif rolls through life clueless and expecting things to work out simply because he sees himself as good.
on November 20, 2010
I've seen this book recommended as a companion novel to Laurie Halse Anderson's "Speak" and really, the main character of "Inexcusable," Keir, could have easily been IT.
The novel starts with Keir's friend, Gigi, screaming at him, accusing him of rape.
I am so sorry.
"What are you sorry for, Keir?" Gigi screams again, grabbing me by where my lapels would be if I had a jacket on, or a shirt, or anything. She can't get a purchase because I have no clothes, and very little fat, because I have been good about my health lately. She grabs, can't grab, scratches instead at my chest, then slaps me hard across the face, first right side then left, smack, smack.
"Say what you did, Keir."
"Why is Carl coming? Why do you have to call Carl, Gigi?"
"Say what you did, Keir. Admit what you did to me."
"I didn't do anything, Gigi."
"Yes you did! I said no!"
I say this very firmly. "You did not."
You see, according to Keir, the way it looks is not the way it is. How can he, an upstanding guy, a great son and brother, rape anybody? It's just impossible, because he is a good guy. Gigi must have gotten it all wrong, misunderstood him and he will do his best to convince her she made a mistake.
What follows is your (a)typical "unreliable narrator" story. When Keir starts describing some events of his senior year leading up to the fateful evening, we see that maybe he has a bit of a skewed image of himself, maybe even a lot skewed? Maybe his dad is not such a great role model? Maybe his sisters are not that supportive?
"Inexcusable," it seems, gets some heat in the reviews for focusing on an unlikable main character who doesn't realize what is wrong with him. I never have a problem with this sort of thing. Such stories ("The Spectacular Now" and "You") I enjoy, it's always interesting to get into a twisted person's head IMO. What I wish though is that the novel were a little longer. I think there is much more to explore in Keir's life and his relationships with his family and friends. Otherwise, it "Inexcusable" is a strong, thought-provoking, but not necessarily feel-good novel for young adults.
on October 28, 2009
While following Keir Sarafian through the days of playing RISK around with his dad, Keir slowly found impatience with the love of his life Gigi Boudakian, who was already in love with his best friend. All this is occurring while he is living with the demons of paralyzing a fellow football player and trying different drugs. After earning the nickname "killer" he finds himself even more depressed. It was getting apparent at this point with the repetition that Keir was losing control of himself and his surroundings. With his graduation coming up and a full scholarship to his sisters college there was a lot of things that could go wrong for this guy, but even with his sisters absence he made it through graduation and still maintained a sense of celebration with the upcoming party. After arriving in his uncles limo by himself, Gigi comes and greets him. After some cocaine and pills, he decides to go visit his sisters a state line away. Gigi accompanies him on this trip and they find themselves having a wonderful time, until Gigi passes out on his lap on the way there. Arriving at the college Keir finds out that his sisters are not busy, but would rather do something else. After walking around the college campus aimlessly, Keir remembers the extra sleeping quarters available for football players and their families. He found the key hidden in a hollowed out stump, he and Gigi make their way back to the rooms. While laying in opposite beds, he starts to notice her beauty. He slowly made his way over to her bed then one thing led to another, without Gigi's consent.
Beside constant repetition, and an unclear sense of what actually happened, the story leaves the reader with an over opinionated view of the main character. The so said good guy is now in question, but that question remains baking.
on November 29, 2007
Keir is a good guy. He's about to graduate from high school and follow his older sisters to college. The reader will admire the closeness of his family: the father, a widower who has raised his three children alone; the son who adores his older sisters. Yes, Keir is a good guy.
When an opposing football player is gravely injured as a result of Keir's perfect tackle, we believe Keir. It's not his fault. He's a good guy. Right?
The reader will wonder, along with Keir, if it was really possible that he's been a part of the vandalism of a local monument. And surely Keir, a spring soccer player himself, would never have contributed to the football teams' severe hazing of his teammates after the soccer banquet.
When his sister's aren't able to attend his graduation, the reader empathizes with his feelings of betrayal. We understand his need to let loose on the night of his graduation and feel concern as he faces troubling choices. We feel hopeful when Gigi, the girl of his dreams, leans on him when her boyfriend stands her up. Just like Keir's sisters.
The evening becomes a kaleidoscope of emotions, which result in risky behavior, a three-hour limo ride across the state line, a visit to his college, and a night with Gigi. Keir's a good boy. He would never commit the inexcusable...would he?
I read this book all the way through in one sitting. It was riveting. INEXCUSABLE by Chris Lynch is a glimpse into a boy walking a blurred line into manhood. This is a must read for any young man who has ever been, or ever expects to be, in love.
Reviewed by: Cana Rensberger