Monday, 17 April 2017

Making Faces by Amy Harmon // Book review

Making Faces by Amy Harmon

Publication: February 21st 2017 by Spencer Hill Press (first publication on October 12th 2013)

Genres: contemporary, romance, amazingness (haha)
Number of pages: 300

Summary: Ambrose Young was beautiful. 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.


When I first heard about Making Faces, I thought I wasn't interested in it, because the cover with a shirtless guy was so misleading. I was pretty sure it was another new adult novel and I don't really enjoy those. I actually read this because of French reviewers, who kept recommending it to everyone. When I saw the new cover, I finally bought it, without really reading the synopsis.

Let me tell you: Making Faces is so much more than a romance. In the first pages, you think it's going to be the typical romance where the main character, who feels that she's ugly, will end up with that so hot guy. But oh, that's not the case at all and that's what I understood when the characters saw the events related to 9/11 unfold. It was the first time I read a book that dealt with the attacks in 2001 and the Iraq war. These events had heavy consequences on the main characters and I loved how it felt way more realistic because of that. Making Faces isn't just about our characters: it's about life in itself. Amy Harmon plays with cliches and turns them around every time.

The main characters were absolutely fantastic. I related so much to Fern, who was a bookworm, loved to write and wasn't confident. She doesn't feel beautiful and yet... She's a strong young woman, because she learned from an early age to take care of people. Ambrose seemed like her opposite at first, because he was this beautiful young guy who had it all... Until he hadn't. He was strong physically, but fragile emotionally, and also completely kind. But the one who stole the show was Bailey. He was hilarious and optimistic, despite his disease and knowing his life wouldn't be long. These three main characters were so complex and complementary from each other, it was absolutely wonderful to read about them.

Moreover, I loved their dynamics. Obviously, I loved the romance between Fern and Ambrose. Amy Harmon built it slowly and I loved how healthy, sweet, playful and profound it was. These characters were perfect to balance each other and it never felt like there was drama. In most novels, I roll my eyes so hard because of relationships drama, but here? It wasn't the case at all. I loved how Fern showed Ambrose that there were so much more to life than what he first thought. They loved each other for their personality and who they were and you could definitely feel that.

 The other relationship that shines through the whole novel is Bailey and Fern's. They've known each other their whole life and aren't scared to be who they are, even if they look ridiculous in front of the other. It's probably one of the purest friendship I've ever read about. 

 On top of these wonderful characters and relationships, Making Faces also talked of many important topics. I already mentioned it was set right during and after the attacks on the World Trade Center. This novel explores the consequences of these events on people, because their mentalities changed, but also for people who chose to go to war to defend their country. It was also the focus of abusive relationships, religion, tragedy and getting back on your feet when life hits you down. It was an emotional roller coaster (I cried so much) and from an early stage, I knew I was going to rate it five stars and that it would become one of my favourite books. I don't think I can give this book justice in a review, because it was how good it was

 Making Faces was such a wonderful and heartbreaking story, I know it will stay with me for the rest of my life. I'm so happy I finally discovered Amy Harmon's writing through this one and I cannot wait to read her other books. I have so much love for this novel that it's hard to put it through words, but I can only recommend you to drop everything to get yourself a copy.

Have you read this book? What did you think of it? If you've read any other book by this author, tell me which one I should read next! :)

1 comment:

  1. I haven't heard of this book before, but seeing that you gave it 5 stars I'm putting it on my TBR immediately. It sounds so powerful and emotional. Thanks for sharing and, as always, fabulous review! <3