Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Book Review, Tour & Giveaway: Making Faces by Amy Harmon

Making Faces
Making Faces by Amy Harmon
October 12, 2013
405 pages
Genre: Contemporary
Mature Young Adult to New Adult
Source: eARC from author for Honest review
(Loved it so much I bought the paperback!)
Book Blurb:
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.
My Review:

Making Faces is my new favorite book in 2013. I'm seriously blown away by this amazing story. This is one of those books that reaches into your heart, touches your soul, and doesn't let go until the end. Then those feelings and emotions continue to linger long after the last word.
Amy Harmon doesn't just convey a story, she brings her characters, their lives, their life. I was so touched, so moved by her prose, that I felt weepy throughout the book, and I'm not much of a crier. My emotions lived on the very surface of my being. Have your tissues handy, but don't let that deter you. It's beautiful, heart-wrenching, and heart-warming, and a book I will treasure and re-read.
From the blurb, you can see that this is a touching storyline. This isn't just some "beauty is only skin deep" or "don't judge a book by its cover" or "ugly duckling" type of story. There are so many layers to this story, which, while it does delve into the physical attributes of beauty that society admires, it reaches far deeper into the depths of what it is to be a hero, a heroine, a friend. We learn about the humility and pride of these characters, their vanity and self-deprecation, their ignorance and their weakness, their strength and their courage, their love and their honesty, and so very much more. And through these characters we experience a beautiful love story. And beyond the love story of a boy and a girl, we experience the love of friendship and loyalty and forgiveness. (I'm getting teary-eyed just typing this...)
At the heart of this tale is the heart of our characters. Fern and Bailey are cousins and theirs is one of the most beautiful relationships I've ever read. Bailey is a brilliant, beautiful, and honest soul. I loved the glimpses into his life and his mind. And I'm so grateful the author made him such a strong character and not just someone on the sidelines. This story is as much his story as it is Fern and Ambrose's. Fern is a true delight, someone who understands how people see her, and though, as discouraging as that is, she is not someone to retaliate or become embittered. She is real in her insecurity but strengthened by her good heart and I absolutely loved her. Ambrose is that beautiful, gentle giant, with all the world handed to him, yet so very lost inside. He wants to do good by the people around him, feels his responsibility, and loves his friends. His journey was devastating, but how he learned and who he ultimately became was beautiful.
Bottomline: I don't have enough words to say how much I loved this story. I give this my highest recommendation. This book crosses genres and generations, and will touch your heart and your soul. Thank you, Ms. Harmon, for this beautiful story!
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About the Author:
Amy Harmon knew at an early age that writing was something she wanted to do, and she divided her time between writing songs and stories as she grew. Having brown up in the middle of wheat fields without a television, with only her books and her siblings to entertain her, she developed a strong sense of what made a good story.

Amy Harmon has been a motivational speaker, a grade school teacher, a junior high teacher, a home school mom, and a member of the Grammy Award winning Saints Unified Voices Choir, directed by Gladys Knight. She released a Christian Blues CD in 2007 called "What I Know" - also available on Amazon and wherever digital music is sold. She has written five novels, Running Barefoot, Slow Dance in Purgatory, Prom Night in Purgatory, the New York Times Bestseller, A Different Blue, and Making Faces.

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