Victory is in the battle...
I've been a book hangover for a few days now. I'm floored by the authenticity, heart, and strength of this book. Amy Harmon has poured her heart and soul into every page. Not only do you feel for the characters, route for the true hero, and fall in love with a broken but still gorgeous MC, you discover that true beauty, strength, and love comes from the inside.
"I think people are like that. When you really look at them, you stop seeing a perfect nose or straight teeth. You stop seeing the acne scar or the dimple in the chin. Those things start to blur, and suddenly you see them, the colors, the life inside the shell, and beauty takes on a whole new meaning."
Fern was plain in high school. She wasn't drop dead gorgeous like her friend Rita. Instead, she deals with curly hair, braces, and glasses. Smart and the hopeless romantic, Fern can't help but fall in love with gorgeous Ambrose. Ambrose is the town hero with athletic ability, stunning singing voice, and of course a body and face to match.
“Do you think there's any way someone like Ambrose could fall in love with someone like me?” Fern caught Bailey's gaze in the mirror again, knowing he would understand. “Only if he's lucky.”
Then there is Bailey, Fern's cousin and best friend. Bailey suffers from MD. And even though it restrains his ways of life, he keeps a positive attitude and brings much joy to those around him. He's brilliantly smart, hilarious, and not afraid to speak his mind.
After they graduate from High School, Ambrose and four of his friends venture off to war. Only, one comes back. Only Ambrose. With many emotional and physical scars.
I wrote your name across my heart, so we could be together , so I could hold you close to me, and keep you there forever.
The characters are amazing, yet beautiful flawed.
Fern is one of my favorite contemporary heroines. She is strong & beautiful (inside and out), yet she is suffering from 'ugly girl syndrome.'
And seeing Ambrose slowly open back up to his friends, come out of his war shell:
“I've seen those books you read. The ones with the girls on the front with their boobs falling out and the guys with the torn shirts. You read smutty romance novels and quote scripture. I'm not quite sure I have you figured out.” “Scripture comforts me, and romance novels give me hope.” “Oh, yeah? Hope for what?” “Hope that I'll be doing more than quoting scripture with Ambrose Young in the very near future.” Fern blushed furiously and looked at her hands.
Harmon create the perfect blend of emotional and inspirational. The heavy moments are peppered with light ones. From swooning and chuckling along with the characters to feeling your heartbreak and tears in your eyes, this story will take you on an amazing journey.
I already want to curl up in a cozy corner, dive back into the world of this small town, and experience the heartache, joy, swoon, love and heroism all over again. If I had to recommend one book for you to read this Holiday season -- heck, this year -- I would recommend Making Faces.
I'm giving away an e-copy of this book as a part of my birthday celebration. Click the banner on the left side of this page, if you're interested in entering.