I just finished reading Fighting Silence by Aly Martinez. It’s a tear jerker for sure. It starts with Eliza and Till when they’re children. They’re both desperately poor, without parents who care about them. They find refuge in an abandoned apartment. Although they go to the same school, they’re not friends, but they both need a refuge, so they sort of agree to share this place. It has nothing to offer, it’s just an empty room, but it’s a refuge, a place to escape to when life gets too hard or too miserable.
Over the course of their teenage years, they grow close. They learn to trust one another and depend on one another. Although they’re both attracted to each other, they keep it all above board, because their friendship is not just important, but necessary. How can they survive the harsh realities of their world without each other?
I loved Till’s nickname for Eliza. Cute, sweet and yet entirely real. It was used to perfect advantage through the book.
I loved that life didn’t magically fix itself and all their problems were solved. Slate and the gym were the perfect vessel to showcase a number of Till’s personality quirks – his passion, his work ethic, his devotion to his brothers, his temper, his integrity.
The brothers were excellent secondary characters. I loved Quarry, he was great fun.
There was enough pace and action to keep me reading, and more than a few moments that were genuine tear jerkers. Shut up, I didn’t cry. Much. I don’t want to ruin the story for anyone with spoilers, but the blurb tells you that Till is going deaf so I can share that much at least. There were a couple of really powerfully emotional moments that stuck out for me, both of them relating to Till’s hearing in one way or another. It’s incredible how some people deal with adversity. It not only makes you realise how lucky you are, but also makes you stop and think how you would cope if life threw you those challenges.
Five stars from me. I’ve already bought the next book in the series. The prologue shocked the hell out of me and made me want to rant about authors who put spoilers in their prologues (can it even be a prologue if it happens before the start of the book?) but the girl has captured my attention for sure, and I’m so curious to see how this new version of Flint turns out, I’m definitely reading it. Just you try and stop me.