A Critically Acclaimed Journey Into the World Of Mental Illness and Addiction

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In this compelling novel, Jay Chirino channels his own struggles with depression and addiction, creating a universal story that is painfully relatable for those with similar issues, and eye-opening for the ones that haven't dealt with the challenges of mental illness.

After leaving behind a trail of drug-addled destruction, Jay finds himself confined to the walls of a psychiatric hospital. He is now compelled to confront his actions, his issues, and the past that led him to such downhill spiral. But what surprisingly affects him most are the people that he becomes surrounded by; people with considerable deficiencies that will shed some light on the things that truly matter in life.

“The Flawed Ones” is a thorough examination of the struggles of mental illness, depression, addiction, and the effects they have on the human condition. Most importantly, it proves that physical and mental shortcomings do not necessarily define who we truly are inside- that the heart is, in fact, untouched by our "flaws", and that love will always prevail above all.


"The Flawed Ones was a fantastic look into the world of mental illness and addiction. Filled with bizarre and lovable characters, many different kinds of illnesses are portrayed, all connected in that some trauma or event in each person’s life affected them in an intense way. The Flawed Ones shows that no matter what illness and/or addiction you are suffering from, you are not alone. You are connected to a large group of people in the world who feel the same way you do. And your flaws are what make you special to this world." – Alexis Robinson

“A lot of people describe depression as a void that swallows you whole and won’t let you feel anything at all. My depression consisted of immeasurable sadness that depleted any positive feeling or outlook for the future. It was a black hole that attracted and swallowed my reasons for being happy, the things that I enjoyed doing, the desire to do anything at all. I didn’t feel like dying, but I didn’t feel like living either. I was alive only because my lungs still breathed oxygen and my heart pumped blood through my veins. Little did I know at the time that a nine-year-old should not be feeling such an overwhelming emptiness, but I was, in ways that were almost impossible to accurately explain."

About The Author

Jay Chirino
Mental Health Advocate and Blogger / Author / Influencer

For over over two decades I struggled with depression and anxiety, and for the last ten years it drove me to a substance abuse problem that destroyed me phyically and emotionally, deeply affecting my relationship with those I loved. After losing everything I cherished and landing in a psychiatric hospital, I knew I had to choose between drastically changing my behavior or dying. The journey I had to make was the toughest thing I’ve ever done, but it opened my eyes to what I had never seen before, and it transformed me into a version of myself that can look at the future with hope.

This novel is deeply personal to me, because it contains a lot of my own experiences, of my challenges, of my flaws. When I began writing it, I knew that I had to be explicitly honest with myself and with my readers, in order to convey the right message, and hopefully reach the hearts of those that may be going through something similar to what I did. So, even though it is a work of fiction, every page, in some way, is a part of me; a gift that I humbly present to you, my dear audience, in the hope that you carry that small piece somewhere in your heart, for the rest of your life.

Yours Truly,



"Whether or not we have gone through similar struggles, this read will give insight into the human condition, that which is common to us all. With Jay’s empathy and candor, not to mention his poetic turns of phrase, I am inspired to mold beauty out of tragedy , watch sunsets, and never give up." - Mari Carlson  (Mari's Book Reviews)


"Enter the world of mental illness and the challenges that one faces when having a debilitating mental illness. Bravo to Chirino for sharing the story. This story takes on the journey of the challenges of mental illness compiled with addiction, which leads to a downward tail spin which never seems to end. It's a well written experience of survival and challenges, within the confines of a hospital, and confrontation of a past that is regrettable and forgettable. I enjoyed the story and felt drawn into. This story should be shared, so read it and share it with others." -Amy's Book Shelf Reviews

"There was an intense silence that brush-stroke the scene of one of the most powerful moments that I have ever been a part of; the moment where all barriers are broken, the limitations of our minds and crippled bodies erased, leaving nothing but pure humanity, naked and transparent, fueled by the most primal instinct that connects us all: love"

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By Jay Chirino

Dear Reader,

Let me begin by saying that it is my absolute privilege to share this story with you. The fact that you will spend some of your precious time reading it means a great deal more to me than you will ever know. This is something very personal to me, something that I deeply connect with, something that in many respects I have lived. Writing this book took me the best part of twelve months, but in actuality, I have been writing it for close to thirty years. I have faced many serious challenges in my life, and several times I have felt defeated enough to want to fly the white flag. I am sure that you have felt like that from time to time, and it is that visceral connection all of us humans have that motivated me to write this story.

You see, our reality is shaped by our thoughts and what we surround ourselves with. When the sadness comes, our thoughts make us feel so alone that we begin to think we are the only ones in the world feeling that way. This is the reason we isolate and stay away from those that don’t seem to comprehend, those people who tell us to “get over it” or “snap out of it.” That is why we get drunk and high and we hurt ourselves, as a punishment for being so broken--more broken than anyone else. My purpose with this book was not only to show you that we are all connected in some way, but also to prove to you how special every single one of us is, no matter how “broken” we think we are...

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"My eyes welled up and a few tears painted lines on my face, this time not because I was feeling the sting of depression, or loneliness or fear, not because I was drowning in a sea of self-pity, thinking I was less than nothing. This time I cried because I saw the futility of lives that did not get a choice, of souls that were chained to their destiny with unbreakable links, of people who would never see the colors they deserved to see, who would never feel the love they deserved to feel, or live the lives they deserved to live. I saw them, and in them I saw me."