I'm not even sure I can organize my feelings into a review right now. Let me start off by saying that I completely fell in love with this book!
Julia and Crank come from completely different worlds and each have their own hardships to bear. Julia is a hardworking Harvard student, her father is a US Ambassador, her family moved from country to country, and her mother considers her an embarrassment to the family. She's as straight-laced as they come, unwilling to allow herself to lose control. Meanwhile, Crank is a high-school drop-out who leads a punk band, his mother left him 5 years earlier, his brother has Asperger's syndrome, and his father is a cop. He's well-known as a player, picking up girls at his gigs and letting them take the walk of shame the next morning. So it seems at first glance that this isn't going to be a very good fit for either of them.
But. The chemistry that these two had was incredible. I found it to be very well-written and believable, so much so that I was actually experiencing this emotional roller-coaster with them. I completely loved Crank (and his family) from the beginning - there was nothing fake about his character, he came across as honest even about his faults. I came to love Julia's character with time, as she was more reserved and her story wasn't fully revealed until quite a ways into the book - and I came to like her sisters near the end, as well. Julia came alive towards the end of the book, and that's when she won me over.
Maybe for me it was the time period it was set in - I was that age in 2002, in the midst of the rumors of the US going to war in Iraq, but for whatever reason I really connected with the characters and the setting. It pulled at my heart-strings in several places, and even if some bits are a little bit unrealistic, I wanted to believe them so much that I accepted them for what they were: fiction.
It looks like this is going to be a series about the sisters, but I want MORE of Crank and Julia! I want to see where they go from here! If you enjoyed Point of Retreat by Colleen Hoover, or Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire, then pick this one up and read it next!