Review: The Fall Up by Aly Martinez (The Fall Up #1)

She wasn't the princess.
And I wasn't the pauper.
She was just a sad girl who liked to write songs.
And I was nothing more than a simple guy who was lucky enough to have made her fall in love with him. 

This book is Aly Martinez at her finest, finding a new and distinct voice, and gifting her readers--both new and old--with an off-beat love story that brought a smile to my lips, a few laughs here and there, and warmth to my heart. I may have only paid 99 cents for The Fall Up but I would have gladly paid more, which should tell you something since the most I've ever been willing to pay for a book was $2.99, because this book is just that good. It's the first in what I think is a duet but what I secretly hope is a series consisting of more than that because there are a couple of memorable supporting characters in both the currently available books. But before I digress even further, let me return our focus on this stellar read that I've been gushing over and hope that you will seriously consider not just adding to your to-be-read list but actually going out and purchasing to add to either your virtual or actual bookshelves, if you haven't already. It's light but so not fluffy and brings with it enough snarky humor and understated angst and it all revolves around two strangers who meet on a bridge and find themselves wondering what heartbreaking story the other may have to tell and begin to wish that they were the ones to save the other from despair.

Levee Williams is popular music's princess but she's more than some manufactured persona that sings bubblegum pop. She writes her own songs, leaves everything on the stage when she performs, and makes time to for her fans, especially those that are in hospitals all around the country. She should be on top of the world...but she isn't. She's been losing her footing for quite some time now and has been fighting the desire to simply give up and allow the barrage of overwhelming thoughts and feelings to trip her and leave her floundering. She visits a bridge and if she's totally honest with herself, she knows why she's there every night that she's made the trek. As she contemplates whether to remain standing or to let everything topple her over, a chain-smoking stranger approaches her and strikes up a conversation. From that moment on, Levee and graphic designer slash furniture designer and maker Samuel Rivers become parts of each other's lives--uninvited but welcomed, neither realizing then and there that they were exactly what the other one needed. But while the feelings between them swirl and create a vortex of emotions encasing them, Sam and Levee are still strangers with secrets that could either break or fortify their commitments.

From animated and entertaining verbal exchanges, which were not solely limited to Levee and Sam, to the more quiet and meaningful musings that remind us that there are things weighing these two down, this book took ownership of my heart and now refuses to give it back. I adored Levee and Sam, both of whom know all about the devastation of losing a loved one. As strong as their feelings are for each other, they struggle to make choices that are not just best for the other but for themselves as well. Their unconventional love story followed a map of its own and that's just one of the many reasons why this was such a standout read for me. Add to that supporting characters who not only bolstered Levee and Sam's own love story and their individual life stories, but didn't merely capture but flat-out demanded our attention, namely Henry Alexander and Ryan Meeks, Levee and Sam's respective best friends. Speaking of Henry, he does get his own time in the spotlight in the second book in the series, The Spiral Down, but I confess that I've been shipping him and Sam in my head. One can dream, right? Since that's never going to happen--Sam is too in love with Levee--I'm highly encouraging you read the five-plus-starred The Fall Up. ♥

Date Read: 20 May 2016

Learn more about Aly Martinez.

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