Fighting Silence (On the Ropes #1) by Aly Martinez
Fighting Silence (On The Ropes Book 1)
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.
I saw that Aly Martinez has a book coming out at the end of the month and the name sounded familiar so I looked to see if I had read anything from her before. Turns out I hadn't, but I looked at Fighting Silence and it sounded like an interesting idea so I gave it a try. Woah, I loved this book. I started reading it on the train home from some errands. It was like a half hour train ride and usually I read and keep track of what stop we are at so I don't miss my stop, but I was so wrapped up in the story I almost did just that. I looked up from my book just in time to see we were at my stop and rushed off the train. I never do that. This book was just so good I couldn't tear myself away.
Fighting Silence is the story of Till and Doodle/Eliza. These two kids meet when they are thirteen, both are in love with the other, but it is not as easy as just being together. When they first met Till was climbing through the window of the abandoned apartment that was Eliza's refuge. Her parents don't seem to care about her at all, don't even notice if she is around. She loves art, but her mom is very against her being an artist. The mom will destroy any art she finds so Eliza keeps all of her things at the abandoned apartment.
When Till climbed through that window he didn't know he would find his happily ever after. He didn't know he would find this girl who would be there for him forever. He wasn't expecting anyone. He doesn't have a great home life either, his mom is not really around much and he has to take care of his younger brothers. Quickly spending time with Eliza every night in the apartment is his escape. He needs it. He can't do anything to jeopardise losing her. Even though he wants to be with her he can't. What if something happened and it didn't work out? Then he wouldn't even have her as a friend and she is just too important for that.
Both of these kids were heartbreaking to read. Till and Eliza both come from very poor families. Till is working two jobs to try and keep a roof over his brothers heads. They don't have much, but together they are okay. Till also faces the prospect of losing his hearing as he has a genetic disease that is slowly taking it away. He is kind of terrified of that happening and it is yet another reason why he should stay away from Eliza as anything more than friends.
Eliza is just the sweetest person ever. She is always there for Till, and his brothers once she becomes part of their lives. She will do anything for him. She loves him forever, but he has a habit of getting in his head and thinking horrible worst case scenarios. It is a rough road to get together, my heart hurt for both of them at times, but Till has to get out of his fantasy and into reality with her. They are so great together and I just loved them. Till eventually finds his place in a fighting gym and he is amazing at that. He wants to go pro, make money to help support Eliza and his brothers. He wants to give his bothers everything he never had. He wants the world for them. He has such a big heart. He is always taking care of everyone else, always thinking about what they need and not thinking about himself at all. He was a sweetheart and oh this story.
As I said my heart hurt for these two at times, but it was beautiful as well. Something happens about halfway through and I thought oh no, please don't just add stupid drama now for dramas sake and luckily the author didn't! It really is just the story of Till and Eliza and how they get their everything. The end is a bit bittersweet, but I know we get Till's brothers stories in the next two books so I will just have to wait to see how they get to happily ever after. Such a great read. I am so glad I gave it a try.
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★1/2