Cherie Reads

A Song for Julia

A Song for Julia - Charles Sheehan-Miles I read an excerpt of this book as a part of a promotional blog tour that I was participating in. I was immediately hooked and had to get myself a copy. I started reading it at bedtime, finally had to put it down to sleep, and then immediately picked it up once I sent my son off to school. I loved it. The story is told in in alternating sections from both Julia and Crank's POV. I'm always a little skeptical when I see that type of writing because I often find that the characters don't have unique voices. That was definitely not the case here. Crank and Julia each have their own distinct voices, including slang, speech patterns, personality, etc. I loved Crank's Boston Southie accent and Julia's more proper one. Both characters are shaped by their past experiences, but especially by their families. Family and how they help to shape us is a big theme of the book. What makes a true family? How do our relationships with our parents and siblings shape the people we become? Can giving and getting forgiveness free you to be the person you really want to become?The relationship between Crank and Julia is a fustrating one. He is singer and guitarist for an up-and-coming band. He's with a different girl every night, parties hard and makes no apologies for it. She has lived a privileged but somewhat troubled life as the daughter to a U.S. Ambassador. At first glance they have nothing in common except a mutual sexual attraction. It soon becomes apparent, though, that despite radically different upbringings, they have both isolated themselves from friends and family but they end up in the same place. The circumstances that brought them there are different but they end up in the same place. I won't go any further than that because I don't want to give anything away, but the relationship is really a lot of push and pull. One pulls closer while the other pushes away and then the tables are turned.I don't really know what I can say about this one. It is beautifully written with characters that grow and are multi-dimensional. It's a love story between two people. It's a love story about a family. It's about accepting your past and deciding to move beyond it into your future. It's about having the courage to make your own choices and accept the consequences. It's about learning what it truly means to love someone. It made me laugh more than once. It made me tear up more than once. It was beautiful and emotional and raw. I recommend it.