Meet Till & Eliza in Aly Martinez’s newest fighter series!
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/1Lhhn62
Title: Fighting Silence
Author: Aly Martinez
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Sports
Length: 297 pages
Rating: 4.5 stars
Sound is an abstract concept for most people. We spend our lives blocking out the static in order to focus on what we believe is important. But what if, when the clarity fades into silence, it’s the obscure background noise that you would give anything to hold on to?
I’ve always been a fighter. With parents who barely managed to stay out of jail and two little brothers who narrowly avoided foster care, I became skilled at dodging the punches life threw at me. Growing up, I didn’t have anything I could call my own, but from the moment I met Eliza Reynolds, she was always mine. I became utterly addicted to her and the escape from reality we provided each other. Throughout the years, she had boyfriends and I had girlfriends, but there wasn’t a single night that I didn’t hear her voice.
You see, meeting the love of my life at age thirteen was never part of my plan. However, neither was gradually going deaf at the age of twenty-one.
They both happened anyway.
Now, I’m on the ropes during the toughest battles of my life.
Fighting for my career.
Fighting the impending silence.
Fighting for her.
Every night, just before falling asleep, she sighs as a final conscious breath leaves her.
I think that’s the sound I’ll miss the most.
Girl meets boy.
A connection is made.
A friendship builds.
Attraction is denied. . .
. . . until it is impossible to ignore.
Till first meets Eliza at the age of thirteen through the window of an abandoned apartment. That window begins to serves as a wall between Till’s fantasy world with Eliza, where everything is good, and the reality of his poor upbringing. As years pass, Eliza, who he calls Doodle due to her love to draw, tries to break down that wall and move from his fantasy to his reality. And it’s as she breaks down that wall, their love blooms.
“There is nothing in this world that was ever more mine than you.”
I don’t know what it is about these silent boys/men. Maybe it’s their vulnerability their physical impairment has on their otherwise tough exterior. This is the third book I’ve read with a male character having an impairment (either with their voice or hearing), and just like the previous two, Till Page will win your heart. Till is truly all that a bag of chips! While I had moments of frustration with him and his ridiculous fantasy vs. reality rules, his dedication to Eliza/Doodle, and his family are hard to ignore. The love he shows for them, and the priorities he establishes to care for them are shocking due to his young age and lack of a proper upbringing.
This story was interesting, and emotionally gripping, because we get to experience decline of Till’s hearing. You can feel his anxiety and fear. The scene when he wakes up and thinks something happened to his voice, broke my heart. Added to the emotion of it all was how his brothers were impacted.
Till and Eliza grew up in deplorable conditions with uncaring parents, yet with each other, someone to support them and give them strength, they fight their way to a better life.
“Because I’m ready for a new reality . . . with you.”
There are so many books about fighters out there, but this one really seemed to stand out in the sea of bad boys looking to turn their lives around. I felt more of a connection to Till than all of the previous books in that genre I’ve read. His fight is for something completely out of his control, yet he makes personal sacrifices to get it under his control.
While this is Till and Eliza’s story, the secondary characters play such a key role in their lives and help them survive all that life throws at them. I absolutely loved Till’s brothers Flint and Quarry. Under their tough exterior, they have a sweet innocence that draws you in. They owe their lives to Till, yet they end up saving him as much as he saves them. The dramatic ending in this story greatly impacts their lives, and I can only hope the next book in this series is about one of them (likely Flint since he is older).
Also, Slade, the gym owner of On the Ropes is a great father figure for Till, who’s father is a whole bunch of things, that require too many expletives for me to cover in this review. I had no idea that his story was part of Aly’s other series, Among the Echoes. I’m going to have to read that, because I absolutely loved him and his wife in this story.
This was a great read, that will stay with me for awhile. A story of kids who grow up together, and the connection that developed as kids, serves as the foundation that binds them forever. Where nothing can tear them apart. A love that is meant to be.
*An ARC was received for an honest review.
“That wasn’t yours to take away,” he exploded into the otherwise silent night. His words echoed off the surrounding buildings, each wave slicing me to the quick all over again. “That was our place. Not yours.” His voice cracked right alongside my heart.
“Yeah, well, there was a lot of stuff that wasn’t yours to take either.” I held his gaze, desperately trying to be strong, but as his eyes grew wide, I whimpered.
His long legs strode forward, stopping only inches away from me. He was crowding me, but he still leaned in closer to my face. “There is nothing in this world that was ever more mine than you,” he stated. Though it was the absolute truth, I wished with all my heart that it were a lie.
“Till,” I cried, swiping the tears from my eyes.
“Why!” he shouted, causing his muscles to tense under the force. “Goddamn it! I needed that place.”
Porch lights flashed on from the surrounding apartments, illuminating not only the dark but also my rage.
I shoved my hands into his chest. “What about what I needed? You left! I waited in that fucking apartment for weeks.”
He didn’t budge, but my bare feet slipped, sending me toward the ground. Impossibly fast, Till’s hand snaked out and caught my arm. I didn’t let his chivalrous gesture douse my fire. I had six months’ worth of words to say to the man I was irrevocably in love with.
“You took what you wanted. Then you left me.”
“Doodle,” he whispered.
I had been perilously close to the edge of insanity, and with one single word, he’d pushed me over.
I lost it completely.
Pounding my fists against his chest, I screamed at the top of my lungs, “It’s Eliza! My name is fucking Eliza! Not Doodle!” I spun to march away, but Till’s arms folded around me, lifting me off my feet to restrain me.
I was miniscule compared to him. There was no use in fighting, but I still kicked my legs, irrationally desperate to get away from him—but only because I knew I couldn’t keep him for forever.
“Stop it!” he growled into my ear. “I know your Goddamn name—probably better than I know my own.”
Born and raised in Savannah, Georgia, Aly Martinez is a stay-at-home mom to four crazy kids under the age of five, including a set of twins. Currently living in South Carolina, she passes what little free time she has reading anything and everything she can get her hands on, preferably with a glass of wine at her side.
After some encouragement from her friends, Aly decided to add “Author” to her ever-growing list of job titles. Five books later, she shows no signs of slowing. So grab a glass of Chardonnay, or a bottle if you’re hanging out with Aly, and join her aboard the crazy train she calls life.
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