A Song for Julia
by: Charles Sheehan-Miles
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Published December 5th 2012
by Cincinnatus Press
Everyone should have something to rebel against.
Crank Wilson left his South Boston home at sixteen to start a punk band and burn out his rage at the world. Six years later, he’s still at odds with his father, a Boston cop, and doesn’t ever speak to his mother. The only relationship that really matters is with his younger brother, but watching out for Sean can be a full-time job. The one thing Crank wants in life is to be left the hell alone to write his music and drive his band to success.
Julia Thompson left a secret behind in Beijing that exploded into scandal in Washington, DC, threatening her father's career and dominating her family's life. Now, in her senior year at Harvard, she's haunted by a voice from her past and refuses to ever lose control of her emotions again, especially when it comes to a guy.
When Julia and Crank meet at an anti-war protest in Washington in the fall of 2002, the connection between them is so powerful it threatens to tear everything apart.
In the beginning I was having a bit of trouble getting into the story. I think because the opening scene was a protest against war, even if it were a concert, maybe that was what did it for me. But as the book progressed and the two main characters got acquainted, the story became interesting. Their friendship or lack of, was intriguing. Both of them have their own personal hell in their private lives, which makes them both hesitant to let anyone from the outside in. They fight themselves because of their attraction towards one another. Even when they clearly like each other.
Each character in this story was written perfectly and each one has a purpose. But one main character had me in tears and emotional every time he had a scene. That character is Sean. Sean is Crank's younger brother. Sean has Asperger/Autism. Autism is a very touchy subject for me. It's very personal and I usually try to avoid books because of how hard it hits me. Sean is loved by everyone in this book especially his brother Crank. When Crank speaks about his feelings for his brother, I understand him. He goes above and beyond to protect his brother. And Sean has such an innocent mind, that it broke my heart with some things he said.
The quotes below is a scene from the book that made me cry so hard. It tore my heart to pieces. I don't ever want to make my child feel this way.
"Do you think I should apologize to my mom?" (Sean)
"I think you should consider it. One of those things we have to learn to do in life is forgive people. And that's hard. But when you forgive someone, it helps you as much as it does them. Probably more." (Julia)
"Do you think she'll forgive me?" (Sean)
"For what you said to her?" (Julia)
"No, for having Asperger's." (Sean)
This book touches so many sore subjects, family issues to self esteem issues to politics. I don't know how the author wrote this book without being an autobiography. Bless his mind. Every single little thing in this novel intertwines with the other. Each personal experience affects another. Julia is a girl who needed to feel her mother's love/ embrace. But instead, all her mother cared about was society and their thoughts about them and the family. Julia's past experiences could have had a better outcome with the love of her mother. Had her mother been there for her through it all, things may have turned out differently.
Crank's own personal hell is a result of love. I know that sounds crazy. But because of loving someone and letting them go for their own benefits is sadly the reason for all his anger and resentment. I wish I could elaborate some more but I'll be spoiling it if I do. His story made me cry. He was really a good boy with issues and his way of getting attention was by lashing out. Thankfully, he's matured now and with Julia in his life, he wants to become a better person. And that's what a partner in your life should do. They should make you become a better person.
Every single character in this novel grew from the beginning of the novel to the end. That's what I love about books. I don't like instant love and I don't enjoy characters that are weak. But this book gives you so much more than that. It's amazing book. This book got a 5 huge stars from me even before I finished. I just knew the ending was good. This is one of those books that I'm so glad I had the chance to read it. I'm flabbergasted by it all. I am in complete awe at how Mr. Miles wrote this book. This book deserves to be a lifetime movie. I know I've said that before and I meant it then. But this book deserves to be on screen. A song for Julia is a definite must buy a it's a DEFINITE Good Choice for Reading!! Mr. Miles, you have amazed me.