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 little beauty and a little beast in all of us. @goodreads
Let Me Just . . .
The end of this book broke my heart and made me rage. Okay, the very end was a good ending. But before that I just, there was, WAIT . . .
So in this book I loved many characters but my favorites were Fern, Bailey and Ambrose. Fern and Bailey are cousins who live next door to each other. Bailey has muscular dystropy and Fern helps him in anything he needs. They are wonderful characters and funny and smart and dorks and I loved them. I wanted to be their best friend. Yes, I say that a lot in books! I get really involved in my books and the characters. Don't judge me!
Anyway, so Fern falls in love with Ambrose for the first time when she meets him as a child. He came over and crushed a spider outside that Fern and Bailey were watching. He thought they were afraid of it and didn't understand why Bailey went inside crying.
"Bailey has a disease. It makes his muscles weak. It might kill him. He doesn't like it when things die. It's hard for him," Fern said simply, honestly. She actually sounded kinda smart. Suddenly, the events at the wrestling camp earlier that summer made sense to Ambrose. Bailey wasn't supposed to wrestle because he had a disease. Ambrose felt bad all over again.
As you have guessed, Ambrose is on the wrestling team at school. He ends up being a star and wins a scholarship to go to college. But he has other plans. He talks 4 of his teammates so sign up for the military and that is what they do. They were in school when 9/11 happened and Ambrose wants to do something other than try to be a star for everyone.
Fern has been reading romance books since she was young and she has been writing her own books in private for just as long. Only Bailey knows that she's trying to get a book deal, well until Ambrose finds out later on.
Fern has another best friend named Rita and at one point in their school days Rita wants to get together with Ambrose. She doesn't know that Fern is crushing on him so she asks her to write some notes to Ambrose - because Fern can write good stuff. Well, we all know that backfires when Ambrose starts to care for Rita, writing back beautiful things and then finds out Rita and Fern were tricking him. He didn't talk to them much after that!
So off to war they go and the book goes back and forth from the present to some things that happened in the past but it's not confusing at all. When Ambrose returns home a year or two later from a horrific tragedy, he's not the same. He goes back to work in his father's bakery which is in the grocery where Fern works until midnight. She tries to become friends with him again.
In black letters she wrote KITES OR BALLOONS across the whiteboard, and she taped a red balloon, his favorite color, to the side. He would know it was Fern. Once upon a time, they had asked each other a million questions just like this. In fact, Ambrose had been the first to ask this particular question. Kites or balloons? Fern has said kites because if she were a kite she could fly, but someone would always be holding onto her. Ambrose had said balloons: "I like the idea of flying away and letting the wind take me. I don't think I want anyone holding onto me." Fern wondered if his response would be the same now as it had been then.
Gradually, Fern and Bailey bring Ambrose out of hiding. He didn't want the world to see him. He felt like a beast and he felt it was his fault for a lot of things that happened. But the three started having a wonderful time together. How could you not with Fern and Bailey!
But there are more tragedies and the book just broke my little heart. I don't want to do any spoilers for this book because this is one that you should read for yourself. The feels and just . . . the everything. Even though there were things that brought me to my knees in this book, I did love it. Just know that if you read it, bring the tissues and if you have no reaction to some of the stuff then I wonder if your human?
Oh and there was one thing at the end that had me happy crying too ♥
AMAZON LINK TO THE BOOK: