25 July 2014

Making Faces by Amy Harmon

Making Faces
by Amy Harmon.
Audience/Genre: New Adult/YA, Contemporary Romance, Military.
Publication: October 12th 2013 by Smashwords.
Source: Purchased
Ambrose Young was beautiful. He was tall and muscular, with hair that touched his shoulders and eyes that burned right through you. The kind of beautiful that graced the covers of romance novels, and Fern Taylor would know. She'd been reading them since she was thirteen. But maybe because he was so beautiful he was never someone Fern thought she could have...until he wasn't beautiful anymore.
Making Faces is the story of a small town where five young men go off to war, and only one comes back. It is the story of loss. Collective loss, individual loss, loss of beauty, loss of life, loss of identity. It is the tale of one girl's love for a broken boy, and a wounded warrior's love for an unremarkable girl. This is a story of friendship that overcomes heartache, heroism that defies the common definitions, and a modern tale of Beauty and the Beast, where we discover that there is a little beauty and a little beast in all of us

Reviewed by Kelly.

I bought this book and I don’t remember where I saw it but someone wrote a review that made me want to read it. When I started it, I almost put it back down. It was in third person and I am not fond of that. But I am really glad I kept reading it. I was pretty much in tears the whole last quarter of the book.

This book is terribly real, and about as raw as it gets, and is a redeeming story! You need a few Kleenex to get through it. I don’t think there is one paragraph that doesn’t have a message or a meaning. This isn’t your typical hot man meets hot girl book, it goes way beyond looks! There is no sexy guy chasing a sexy girl, no hot scenes, none of that because it is as real as it gets. There is a good looking guy damaged in the war. There is a boy in a wheelchair from M.D.. There is a guy who beats his wife. There are divorced parents. There is a girl who has always had a lack of self esteem. This is real and I love it! To me, these people are the heroes in this world!

We have 3 people that we follow. The first is Fern. She is the glue. She is the sweetest person ever. She is tiny and growing up she had red unruly hair, thick glasses and was tiny and she thought she was ugly. She takes tender loving care to her cousin, Bailey, who has Muscular Dystrophy. The two are inseparable. She is Bailey’s angel on earth. Fern has always had a crush on Ambrose.

Bailey is smart and makes the best of his world. He is the son to Coach Sheen of the wrestling team at the high school. Bailey always wanted to wrestle. Even before he was wheelchair bound, he tried to take on Ambrose, who wrestles. Bailey called Ambrose Hercules. Bailey has always had a crush on Rita. He is my hero.

Then there is Ambrose. He is a little on the quieter side. He is a state champion in wrestling. He silently leads him and his 4 friends. He is tall and built and has to work at cutting his weight to wrestle. He is solid muscle is very handsome and every girl swoons over him. Rita, Fern’s friend, talked her into writing love notes to Ambrose so that he would notice her. After they start going out, Ambrose figures out that she isn’t the one writing the letters and the two break up. When Ambrose and Fern talk about the letters and that she wrote them, he kind of gives her the silent treatment because he was hurt but secretly he cares for her. But Ambrose doesn’t really know who he is. They call him Hercules because of his long hair that he keeps in a pony tail and he wins wrestling. Ambrose decides instead of taking a full ride scholarship to wrestle he is going to join the Army and he talks his friends into going with him.

Then the unthinkable happens just before they their tour was up. Only Ambrose comes home and he is scarred and he is blind and deaf and very scarred on one side of his face. He refuses to see anyone when he does come home. But a chance encounter with Fern at midnight has him rethinking her. She doesn’t treat him differently because of his scarred face. She works night shift in the store where Ambrose is in the bakery at night where he doesn’t have to see anyone.

Eventually they talk more and Ambrose smiles and then eventually laughs. Bailey comes into the store at night too and they sometimes become silly and laugh. Bailey doesn’t let Ambrose have any self pity and he tells Ambrose how it really is to be in his shoes. The three become inseparable. Bailey wants Fern to be happy and he tells Ambrose to be good to her. Slowly, Ambrose falls for Fern. Fern has always loved him from afar and still does.

The chapter headings all have meaning and I thought I got it until the end. When I really saw what they meant, I was balling my eyes out all over again. All three of them are heroes and even though they have challenges they rise to being the best that they can and that is what makes this book so awesome. I can’t even tell you how good this book really was. I can’t do it justice. There is so much laughter and sorrow and conquering the world in this book. Service and sacrifice is here too! The families in this story are awesome and ugh! I can’t describe how good it was. There is something in every chapter that made me laugh and think. I can’t even write this review without tearing up! This is one of the best books ever!

“Because sometimes we fall in love with a face and not what’s behind it. My mother used to pour the grease off the meat when she cooked, and she stored it in a tin the cupboard. For a while, she used a tin that had once held those long, praline-covered cookies with hazelnut crème inside. The expensive ones? More than once I got that tin down thinking I’d found my mom’s secret stash, only to take off the lid and see smelly mounds of grease.” Elliott laughed, getting the point. “The container didn’t matter much at that point, huh?” “That’s right. It made me want cookies, but that container was major false advertising. I think sometimes a beautiful face is false advertising too, and too many of us don’t take the time to look beneath the lid. ….”

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