Romiette and Julio

Romiette and Julio

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Star Crossed Lovers
When Romiette Cappelle meets Julio Montague, she feels as though she has met the soul mate who can rescue her from her recurring nightmare about fire and water. But like the Shakespearean characters whose names echo theirs, Romiette and Julio discover that not everyone approves of their budding romance. In their case, it is because Romiette is African-American and Julio is Hispanic, and the Devildogs, a dangerous local gang, violently oppose their interracial relationship.
When the Devildogs threaten to teach them a lesson, Romiette and Julio come up with a risky plan to escape from the gang's fearsome shadow. But things go terribly awry, and the two find themselves caught up in a deadly reality more frightening that Romiette's nightmare — and in a desperate struggle to avoid the tragic fate of Shakespeare's famous young lovers.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780689842092
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication date: 05/01/2001
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 63,780
Product dimensions: 4.10(w) x 6.90(h) x 1.00(d)
Lexile: 610L (what's this?)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

Sharon M. Draper is a New York Times bestselling author and recipient of the Margaret A. Edwards Award honoring her significant and lasting contribution to writing for teens. She has received the Coretta Scott King Award for both Copper Sun and Forged by Fire, and was most recently awarded the Charlotte Huck Award for Stella by Starlight. Her novel Out of My Mind has won multiple awards and was a New York Times bestseller for over three years. She lives in Cincinnati, Ohio, where she taught high school English for twenty-five years and was named National Teacher of the Year. Visit her at

Read an Excerpt

Romiette and Julio

By Sharon M. Draper

Simon Pulse

Copyright © 1999 Sharon M. Draper
All right reserved.

ISBN: 1-4169-1151-0

Chapter One

The Eleven O'clock Evening News


- In this modern-day, mystery version of Romeo and Juliet, two young people have vanished. We ask for the help of the public. If anyone has any knowledge of these two young people, last seen walking past London Woods between six and seven this evening, please call District Four police. Romiette Cappelle is the daughter of our own Cornell Cappelle. Cornell, I know this is difficult, but a few words, please. - "If you have my daughter, or know where she is, or know anything about where she and Julio Montague might be, please call the station. She's sixteen years old, and the light of my life. Please. Please." - Pictures of the two young people will he posted throughout the city. There is a five-thousand-dollar reward for any information leading to the recovery of Romiette and Julio. Romiette is sixteen years old, five feet five inches, with brown skin and hazel eyes. Julio is also sixteen, is about six feet tall, and has curly black hair. - TV Six has been investigating the increase of gang activity in our schools and our city. After further investigation, we find that reports of gang fights in the high schools and gang recruitment atthe junior high level has been discovered. Much of the increased gun violence has been attributed to gang activity. The mayor has appointed a task force to study the matter. News Six will continue to investigate. - In the weather tonight, our TV Six meteorologists warn of heavy rain, and maybe even thunderstorms, unusual for this time of the year, heading this way. Not good for two kids who may he in the woods lost or hurt. Details when we return from station break.


Excerpted from Romiette and Julio by Sharon M. Draper Copyright © 1999 by Sharon M. Draper. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Romiette and Julio 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 305 reviews.
bor.12 More than 1 year ago
Romiette and Julio

Have you ever been told who to date and not to date? Were you ever told what race you could and could not talk to? Romiette also known as ¿Romi¿ was a young African-American woman who grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio. Romi is trying to over come her horrible dreams of drown and her fear of water. Julio was a young Mexican boy who had just moved to Cincinnati. He didn¿t like the cold weather at all. He wished that he could of moved back home to his grandfather¿s ranch. He knew that there was no chance of him going back because his parents moved away from Texas because of the gang affiliation that Julio can be involved in. Julio will attend school in Cincinnati and he is not very pleased because he knows that he will have no friends.

Julio attends the first day of school with aggression because from the start he knew he wasn¿t going to like it. By the end of the day he got away with hitting a boy who dyed his hair different colors. Later that night Julio gets on the chat room to see what Cincinnati is all about. Indeed is where Romi meets Julio. They were having a private conversation in another chat came to find out that they go to the same school. They managed to meet up with one another during lunch. Julio was token back by how beautiful Romi was. Romi also thought that Julio was so handsome. They began getting to know one another real well. They continued to have lunch with each other. This group of boys they call themselves the ¿devil dogs¿ who all wore purple it was sort of an inside gang. They had a problem with Romi talking to Julio. They said something to her about was race she was and what race he was and how they don¿t mash. Romi and Julio were a little startled by it. They talked about what they were going to do the next time they bother them. They handled it very well to where the devil dogs were astonished that someone stood up to them. After they stood up to the devil dogs they threaten to get even. They began stalking Romi and Julio is there every move. So Romi and Julio and their two best friends Ben and Destiny began to make an escape plan. It winded up putting Romi and Julio in a death situation.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I picked up this book hoping to read a realistic romance novel with the interesting twist of a modernized Romeo and Juilet story. The fact that it involved gangs and a poor area of the city also made me interested because I thought I would be able to relate to the character coming from that background Both characters were incredibly unrealistic, speaking in ways the no teenager has spoke in since the early 19th century! The slang the author attempted to use was also awful, and it makes me believe that she had no connection with her character and didn't know ANYTHING about teenagers in general The plot and idea was orginal and very good, although the charaters were underdeveloped and unrealistic
Guest More than 1 year ago
When I first saw this book I thought WOW this seems like a intresting book! Julio is mexican-american and is from texas and so am i. The reviews made the book sound incredible,a must-read. But i'm sorry to say that after reading it myself i was very disappointed. I expected more. The first 100pgs were dredfully long and dull.Draper, i believe, could do better. For example, the chat room conversations that take place were painful to read. Has Draper even been in a chat room? Overall, I was truely disappointed. I'm sorry if my opinion insulted anyone. It wasnt meant to be insulting. I rated it a 3 because it wasnt up to my standards but it wasnt poor.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I started reading this book with a lot of expectations. The plot seemed original and exciting, and I always love to read a good romance. But just a couple chapters into the book, I was amazed at how unrealistic the dialogue was between the characters. What sixteen year old boy tells his mom that a girl is a 'jewel in a pile of rocks'? And that she's 'like chocolate cake for dinner - and I love chocolate!' I found myself literally putting the book down and rolling my eyes. The characters were all so unrealistic and annoying. If a boy talked to me like Julio talked to Romiette, I'd be creeped out majorly. If someone ever calls me 'hot sauce' and means it in an adoring way, I'd think something was wrong. But that's just me. Other than that, the writing style of the book was pretty good in some parts, but in other parts, it reminded me of my writing when I was in seventh grade and even back then, I was like, 'Wow, this sounds stupid.' This book is childish, unrealistic, predictable, cheesy, and I'd only recommend it to someone if they wanted a good laugh (and not in the good way).
GabbyV11 More than 1 year ago
One of the best books i ever read it kept me entertained for hours!!!! you need to buy this book !!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was the best book i have ever read! My sister told me about it and i tgought hey what the heck. But it turne dout to be so good i literally could not put it sown. The way the author plays out the suspense at the end expecially but throughout tue book is so clever. If you havent read this havent lived.
Dreamer4ever More than 1 year ago
When Julio Montague and his family move to Cinncinnati, Ohio from Texas, he is an outcast. He had moved to escape gangs at his school and is surprised to find that the 'great school' his parents sent him to is much the same way. Immediately, on his first day, Julio gets into a fight and is confronted by the Devil-dogs--the local purple sweatshirt clad gang. He gets onto an online chatroom and meets this girl who not only lives in Cinncinnati, she also goes to school with Julio. After chatting they decide to meet in school. Julio thinks that Romi (as her friends call her) is the most beautiful girl he's ever seen. Romi thinks that Julio is extremely handsome and really nice. They enjoy each other's company so much that they don't even notice--until the Devil-dogs confront them, in their own silent way--that Julio is Hispanic and Romi is Black. While this may make some of the people in school mad, the two teens are undeterred and continue to meet at lunch. But the gang isn't very happy about this and decide that the relationship has to stop. Julio tells Romi that he would die for her, but is that really enough. Will he actually have to?

This story was a good rendition of Romeo and Juliet, however there were a number of things in the book that started to get on my nerves. First of all, teens don't talk like that. Julio, when he's describing Romi to Ben, starts talking like he's been taken back into 19th century England with some more modern, but outdated slang. It sounds silly. I mean, seriously, I don't know any guys that talk like that and if I did I would probably be a little freaked out. It just isn't normal. People don't usually talk in verses.

And the slang is so annoying. I may not know all of today's slang, but I do know that that is not it. Not to mention that it is in every sentence! It is so overwhelming that I actually start skipping what they are saying. It can also be hard to read just because the characters aren't talking with good grammar.

Besides, I was expecting a little more romance than Julio saying "She's fine, man. Real fine." I mean, I can see them falling in love. But, I guess I would have liked more time to have been spent on the romance and them getting to know each other.

I was really looking forward to this book, and was disappointed when I finally read it. It wasn't what I was expecting and now I understand what other people were saying about it. I wouldn't suggest this book as a really good book to read. I would suggest you read it just because it can add a little insight into racial problems and gang problems that our public schools have. But that's really it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
when i first heard about this book d i thought it sounded great. so a few days later i went and bought it. i started reading it but i did not think it was good at all. it took a long time for me to really get into the story. then as soon as i got into the story i fell out of it.
i couldnt even finish it because i just couldnt get it.
it also confused me at times.

i wouldnt really recommend it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The characters and dialogue were unrealistic and corny. The story line was ok, but the suspense was minimal. Even the romance seemed fake.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I really did not like this book. The gangs, the 'love', or the plot in general. I guessed the ending and everything was NOT very realistic. Overall, it was VERY poor.
Guest More than 1 year ago
When I read the back of the book it seemed interesting but as soon as I started reading, I quickly got bored. The repetitive use of slang is what initially drew me away from this book, but the lack of story line is what lost my attention for good. Do yourself a favour: stick with the original. It's so much better.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was a pretty good version of Sheakspeare's Romeo and Juliet. It kinda strained credibility like the annotation above said,on how teenagers speak. I think Ms. Draper has great ideas for novels and the storylines are awesome but I just don't think she is very good at writing the way teenagers really talk. She tried too hard to be all poetic and lyrical when she had Romiette and Julio talking to each other about thier feelings. She is not anywhere near the eloquence of Sheakspeare. Although i don't think that Romiette and Julio is a very well written literary novel, if you don't really think about about and just read for pure fun, then its a great book. It is interesting and sweet and you will fall in love with Julio. I imagined him as being so hot! Overall, it is a fun, light book and despite my harsh critisim, I really like Ms. Draper as an author and I really enjoyed Romiette and Julio.
keilani89 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The novel, Romiette and Julio, by Sharon M. Draper encompasses that love can persevere over any obstacle. In the beginning, transfer student, Julio Montague and Romiette Cappelle meet through an online chat room, and instantly become close friends at school gaining a strong affection for each other. Throughout the middle the love birds begin receiving threats and harassing statements from a gang called the Devildogs, who do not accept Romiette dating Julio, since Julio is new and Hispanic. Near the end, the Devildogs kidnap Julio and Romiette during their walk near London woods and tie the two love birds to a boat in the middle of a storm which brings concern and worries to their families and friends, Ben and Destiny. In the end, I predict Julio and Romiette will overcome the dangerous situation they are in, and will hopefully return home safely to their families. (283 pages read/ 320 pages).
zodiacbookworm on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
As you know by the title, Romiette & Julio is a spin on the modern day classic Romeo & Juliet. However because of this it is not original. To a hardcore reader like myself the writing was just too shallow. Don't get me wrong the writer had the theme down right , it's just that she relied too much on the fact that "oh it's the interracial spin on a modern day spin on the classic Romeo & Juliet!"Romiette & Julio is not a bad book but it's not a great one either. When people first see the front cover and read the back flap, they think "oh my god drama from start to finish," but not really the begining chapters start out kind of slow. Though I do like this book, it shows teens and adults that that a Black/African women can find true love & happiness outside her race, and same goes for Latino men.Throughout the whole book people have criticized Romiette & Julio's relationship, from the African American gangs at school, to friends,and even parents! One of Romiette's friends even said "You've always been heavy into African clothes & to see you giggling like a third grader with someone who's so Spanish." Even Julio's father called Romiette "some black kid." For me I liked these parts the most because they were the most realistic. The parts I didn't like were how Julio said that he'd protect Romiette. To me Julio's love for Romiette is too sudden. For the real Romeo & Juliet that was understandable because it was love at first sight, and back then you could get married as young as age 13. But either way it's a good book for average readers and a way to teach non-white kids (especially Black/African women) that they don't have to always stick with their own when it comes to love.
BronzeWord on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Romiette and JulioBy Sharon M. DraperSimon & Schuster/Children¿s Publishing Division, Inc.ISBN1-4025-7391-XRecorded version: AudiobookI thoroughly enjoyed this book. I read Romeo and Juliet long ago so I¿m sure I missed many of the links in the story. I believe the last names of the characters were one link I missed. As a story, I thought their meeting in a chat room was a clever way to use technology in telling a story to today¿s youth. As with YA books sliding in a message, the conversation of the different teens speaking about locker searches, and dog-sniffing encounters in school was enlightening more to parents than to teens. The characters were vivid in their thinking and their desires. The sidekicks were as much a part of the story as were the main characters. I relished Romi¿s best friend¿s vitality and excitement about life and herself. Her exaggerated sense of self was so teen. Also Bob had a strong sense of self in his differentness. Neither character seem to suffer any teen angst at being so different from everyone else.The distrust and displeasure of those around the two main characters is a stark duplication of society¿s views of opposites attract. Whether painting all Blacks with the broad brush of one¿s solitary experience with a Black person, or the inclusive thinking of all others being foreigners, the idea of difference is broadcasted loud and clear to demonstrate the falsehood of there being a true difference between each of us.That is one reason I was surprised by the difference in the two sidekick characters, Romi¿s best friend and Bob. In spite of being so different, they didn¿t suffer any feelings-of-outsider consequences.Most of my difficulty with this book was with the language used by the two main characters. I am aware of Ms. Draper expertise in writing YA books, yet it appeared to me that Romi and Julio were expressing thoughts and feelings way above their levels and many adult levels. Maybe I haven¿t been hanging with enough teens lately, and I felt some of the declaration of love from Julio unlikely.Also there is a big push to teach young girls to stand on their own and to look toward a future they can call their own. Yet Julio keeps announcing that he will never let anything bad happen to Romi. He said that he would take care of her no matter what. Yet every time he said that proclamation, they became enmeshed in worse trouble. As in the boat, tied up, Julio states again how he will take care of Romi. Seconds later, oops no spoilers, but she¿s in trouble. All I can say is with the fact that every time Julio said he would protect Romi, and they were in worse shape than before, I would have said, ¿Enough. Take care of your own self because I¿m not counting on your full-of-air-empty statements.¿The other big spot in the story that bothered me is when Romi¿s best friend asks Romi for $45. Romi hands over the money like no big thing. Granted, maybe the author wanted to present her characters in a different social class and income level. Romi¿s parents were successful in lucrative careers. However for a teen to have $45 handy in her pocket to hand out to a friend seems to me hard to believe. Otherwise, the story was a good-feel piece that leaves everyone smiling on its last page. A good read for a lazy afternoon.
Jess_11 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Romiette and Julio, a teen romance novel written by Sharon M. Draper, is a book that I would recommend to any girl in the sixth grade up any year in college. It¿s a book that any of those girls can relate to and can enjoy reading.Romiette Cappelle is an African-American teenage girl that lives in Cincinnati Ohio. Her character is one of a dreamer and one that believes in true love. Along with her best friend, Destiny, the two girls can cook up some wild stories about true love and different was to find them. Romiette and Destiny are characters that a girl can relate to because most girls want to try and find their true love in life. Every good character has a flaw, and Romiette¿s flaw is that she is afraid of water and can¿t swim. I think that this was a good flaw to have because there are a lot of young adults that don¿t like the water or can¿t swim ad don¿t want to admit it to people. That fear, or any other kind of fear really, will eventually keep someone from doing something, and I think that that was a good plot twist for this story along with the plot twist of the new student.Along comes Julio Montague the new kid in Cincinnati, Ohio. Being Mexican, a lot of people instinctively shun him as they don¿t want their predominantly black school to become mixed. On his first day, Julio literally runs into and befriends a African-American named Ben, who is eccentric and has different hair colors to match his mood (such as red, blue, orange, green, etc.) Julio is an only child and lives with his mother and father and tries to get along through school without bringing attention to himself and trying not to provoke the DevilDogs, an African-American gang that is trying to run him out of the school. As angry as he is for having to move, he doesn¿t need the DevilDogs on his tail doing what some men do, provoke fights just for the fun of it.The point of view of this book was in third person and I thought that it had some good points and bad points. The good points were that you could still see into Romiette¿s and Julio¿s respective thoughts, even though it¿s supposed to be like you were watching the whole thing unfold yourself. But the bad part of it is because it¿s the third person point of view, only with Romiette and Julio, I know that the story is supposed to focus on them, but I think that it would have made the book better if it had some points about Destiny and Ben with it. With the point of view, I would have also liked it better if they went into more detail about the setting.I didn¿t really like the setting only because I couldn¿t actually picture where things were. Draper lives in Cincinnati and that¿s where a lot of her books are based. I couldn¿t picture the setting only because I have never been to Cincinnati, it¿s not her fault that she wrote the setting to be there and I have never been, but I believe that the story would have been better put in the south as this story has to do with racial segregation along with the idea of forbidden love.Just like the theme of the classic Shakespearean play Romeo and Juliette, that this book is somewhat of a parody of, the theme is forbidden love. I am a sucker for books like that. The idea that love can overcome many challenges I think sets a good example for today¿s teenagers and for society. It doesn¿t matter what skin color you have, or what race you are, as long as you love each other.Romiette and Julio is a book about forbidden love, overcoming your fear, making friendships, and overcoming racial differences. Since racism isn¿t gone and there are still a few instances of it, some of which that I myself have endured, it should be read by a lot of people so they can have the view that anyone can fall in love when they want to. I believe that Draper wrote Romiette and Julio beautifully and it couldn¿t have been any better.
DF1A_BethanyH on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
After Julio leaves his hometown which he misses dearly he meets Romiette. Their parents and the gangs at their school have issues with them getting closer because of their skin color. One night after Romiette and Julio disappear due to the gangs trying to kill them, their parents work together to find them. Unlike Romeo and Juliet, this story ends with them being found and the feuding stops.
KrissZane on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book is the opposite of Romeo and Juliet, but the story is kind of the same. Julio and Romiette meet online and then they find out that they go to the same school. They meet and fall in love, but there is a gang at their school that wants to keep them apart. The gang trys to hurt them but in the end they come out okay.
joannachilders on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This modern rendition of Romeo and Juliet begins when Romiette, daughter of successful African American parents, and Julio, a young Latino transplant to Cincinnati meet in an Internet chat room. The parallels to the play involve more than just their names, but also the deep disapproval to the romance by the local gang, the Devildogs. Thankfully (from someone who hates the ending of the play), the ending of this story is much more upbeat. Parts of the story and the dialogue are a little awkward (the news bulletin sections don't fit very well), but for the most part this story is a great urban teen romance.
AuntKrissy on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Also available as an audio download and audio book. Sharon Draper has earned two Coretta Scott King Awards. Draper has also written Copper Sun, Forged by Fire, and Tears of a Tiger. Draper, a high school English teacher for 25 years. This book is for the remedial reader: lots of telling rather than showing. Contemporary twist on Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet.
brittney_reed on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Although I can see many teens--especially girls--being interested in the romance between Romiette, an African American girl, and Julio, the new student at Romiette's school who has just moved from Corpus Christi, the quality of the writing is poor. I felt that the characters and their dialogue were stereotypical, and the plot is uninspired. Frequent, heavy-handed references back to Romeo and Juliet further mar the novel.It was frustrating to read this knowing that gang violence is an issue that many urban teens face. I wanted the book to be better because it might help these potential readers by providing a voice of clarity, understanding, and hope. The plot and the way the characters are executed just seem too unrealistic--the good characters too perfect, the bad characters not quite serious enough--to serve this function, though.
Katya0133 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
As the title would suggest, this is a retelling of "Romeo and Juliet." It's set in an urban high school and focuses on the relationship between Romiette, an African-American girl and Julio, a Mexican-American boy, with racial tensions playing the role of Capulets vs. Montagues in this story. (The actual parents of Romiette and Julio aren't really opposed to the couple, with the exception of Julio's dad.)I enjoyed the setup of this book and some of the more subtle nods to Shakespeare's original story. (E.g., Julio has a friend named "Ben.") I also thought the viewpoint switching between Julio and Romiette was handled well, with each character having an authentic voice. However, I felt that the ending was too tidy, and undermined the seriousness of the themes in the book.
cmurph1 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I thought this was a mediocre story. I liked the character Romiette and felt she was a more well-rounded character than Julio. His anger, I did not understand. He came from such a loving, balanced family, that it seems the anger was just a cliched plot device. The gang element was not realistic. If the gang threat had been true to life, Romi and Julio wouldn't have even thought about trying to set them up. The gang members had guns; serious members of gangs use them. These guys dressed in purple (a real scary color--LOL), and I think their place in the story was too much of a diversion from the true complications that can arise with a budding high school, interracial romance.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This needs to be a movie
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was a good one time read.