Fighting Silence by Aly Martinez
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.
Each book in this series can be read as a standalone.
Again, I was sucked into the imploding world of two amazing characters from the very first sentence. It’s unbelievable how Aly had me addicted to these characters just as fast as in The Fall Up. And it is such an intense story! I feel like I’ve spend living a whole lifetime with these two! I saw this beautiful couple grow from hurt and abandoned children to responsible, immensely strong and kind adults. They rose and they fell. They bloomed and they faltered, but man did I love to be a part of every asset of their story.
What an emotional rollercoaster ride this was, though. Eliza and especially Till got handed not a few but many shitty cards. Every time he fought his way out of one struggle, the next was waiting in line. Their story is beautiful but sad. It’s sweet but rough. It’s engaging and bumpy. It’s about never giving up. It’s about family and fighting. Fighting for yourself. For the ones you love. For your future. Because my god, Till and Eliza fought enough for a whole lifetime already.
‘As the years had passed, it’d become more and more difficult to stop myself from kissing her, touching her, claiming her. But I knew that, if I did, I would eventually lose her. Relationships didn’t work in high school. Something would have happened, we would have broken up, and then I would have lost her completely. I needed Eliza too bad to ever chance that. I’d spent years loving her from afar – well, actually only from afar when we were outside of our private little haven. It wasn’t safe to notice her outside those walls.’ – Aly Martinez
Till is used to fighting. His god-awful parents made sure he had to struggle to survive from a young age. Then he found a way to escape reality. His personal fantasy comes in the form of Eliza Reynolds. The girl who makes him laugh and who gives him a sense of belonging. The girl who takes care of him in the same way as he takes care of her. She’s like magic to him. But reality and fantasy don’t mend together.
‘We were it for each other, and there was nothing but a little boy’s dream world standing in our way.’ – Aly Martinez
Eliza made a life for herself the second she had the chance. With parents who don’t give a shit, she’s quickly bonding with the boy with dark hair, a seductive smile and a good heart. She knows who she wants, but how does she make Till see that too? And what happens when he refuses to let go if his fantasy?
“Talk to me,” I urged again. “No. You talk. I want to hear you while I still can.” – Aly Martinez
Yet that’s only one of their struggles. Till knows his hearing is fading and no one knows exactly how fast or slow his process will take. He constantly fights with everything he has, but he stands absolutely helpless as his own body is slowly failing him. Between struggling to survive, fighting for his career, fighting for the girl he needs to keep, near impossible choices have to be made.
“I don’t want to live in a world where the windows are locked and the Page boys don’t eat me out of house and home. So I am begging you, Till. Wake. Up.” – Aly Martinez
Fighting Silence is a deeply emotional story. I really lived with these two and their struggles for a while. I got Till’s reaction. I got Eliza’s feelings. And it was heartbreaking to watch them fight for endless rounds. There was a light bulb, though. A light that saved them both in ways they couldn’t have foreseen. And I really loved that part. Don’t think that all I did was aching though. I loved the banter and the Page boys are more than awesome. And I tiptoed my way around Goodreads and found out the other Page boys get a chance to tell their own story! Am I excited? HELL YES!!
“Why exactly is the flowerbed under my window purgatory?” Using a finger, he pointed over his head to my window. “Heaven.” Then he motioned to everything in front of us. “Hell.” And finally, he pointed to the dirt where he was sitting. “Purgatory.” – Aly Martinez
I love how this book shows that with a LOT of hard work and a little bit of help, you can go against all odds as long as you want it bad enough and never give up. Or at least have someone around to pull you up again when you’re feeling like giving up. Fighting Silence is a beautiful story with strong-willed and good-hearted characters and definite flaws. But above all, it’s a story of love.