The Book Reviews – Website

December 19, 2010

Romiette and Julio

Filed under: R — thebookreviews @ 9:08 pm
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Romiette and Julio by Sharon M. Draper: Book Cover

Romiette and Julio

Author: Sharon Draper

Page Length: 320

Reading Level: 5

Genre: Fiction

PLOT SUMMARY: Julio has just moved to Cincinnati from his home town of Corpus Christi to get away from gangs and so that his father could find work. The Devildogs run things at Julio’s new school and let him know right away that they don’t want him in their school. Then Julio meets Romiette and his luck changes. He’s finally met a girl that he loves talking to. However, the Devildogs don’t want Romiette talking to Julio and their threats are increasing. Can Julio and Romiette make a relationship work amid so much chaos? Why does Romiette keep having a nightmare about drowning and what could it mean?

REVIEW: To all the Draper fans, I apologize but I did not enjoy reading this book. I feel that her use of dialogue is excessive and totally weighs the book down. The idea of modernizing Romeo and Juliette is a good one, however the delivery was poor. Reading becomes labored because it’s too much “blah, blah, blah” between the characters (exactly what most English teachers tell their students to avoid when writing their own stories). I feel that like most Draper books this story really doesn’t deliver a solid storyline – it seems to stay too superficial and never really goes deep enough to drive the point home. On a positive note, Draper does try to address the issue of gang violence and its dire consequences.

I was disappointed and I would not want to read this as a class novel.

AREAS FOR TEACHING: character traits, elements of plot, comparing and contrasting the characters, comparing text to self, point of view, how not to use dialogue

TOUCHY AREAS-PAGES: gang intimidation, kidnapping, gang violence

RELATED BOOKS: The Battle of Jericho, Just Another Hero, November Blues, Fire from the Rock, Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliette”


“Romeo and Juliette” (1968 and 1996)

RELATED WEBSITES:                    

REVIEWED BY:  Dayna Taylor


1 Comment »

  1. I must say that I enjoyed reading this book because it stresses the values and meanings implied in Romeo and Juliet. For someone who also loves Shakespeare, I do not believe the delivery was poor. The dialogue was equally divided between both main characters. Therefore making the story more relatable. I have heard from more than one of my fellow classmates that after reading this book they understood Romeo and Juliet better. For a teenager, the delivery was not poor. It matches what we live, speak, act, and do as teens. Sharon Mills Draper is the best candidate to display that in a novel. As she did her previous books.

    Comment by anjelica — May 10, 2011 @ 4:06 am | Reply

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