Saved by the Music

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Saved By The Music

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—Castrovilla's first young adult novel tackles a number of serious issues including depression, sexual assault, eating disorders, mental illness, cutting, and abandonment. Willow, 15, is sent by her unstable mother to spend the summer on her Aunt Agatha's barge in Rockaway, NY. As Willow and Agatha work on what appears to be a hopeless project, converting the barge into a floating concert hall, Willow finds herself both attracted to and repulsed by the hired hand, Craig. At the same time, she is intrigued by her emerging relationship with mysterious and reclusive Axel, who lives on a sailboat docked close to the barge. Frustrated by Axel's lack of romantic interest, Willow finally accepts Craig's advances but finds herself a victim of sexual assault. Axel intervenes before Willow can be seriously hurt and then assists her through the process of the investigation. Unable to face her aunt, Willow goes back to live with Axel and learns that he cuts himself to deal with the pain caused by his own abandonment and abuse. The sexual scenes with Craig and Willow are descriptive and raw, and the mood is always bleak, at times bordering on melodrama. The plot is predictable and somewhat implausible. However, many readers will quickly forgive all of these flaws as they race to the tidy, yet satisfying fairy-tale ending.—Lynn Rashid, Marriotts Ridge High School, Marriottsville, MD
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781934813140
  • Publisher: Westside Books
  • Publication date: 3/1/2010
  • Pages: 280
  • Sales rank: 1,026,620
  • Age range: 14 - 18 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 4 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 4, 2009

    Get the tissues ready!

    The lovable main character, 15 year old Willow, has been sent to work on her aunt's barge for the summer, a renovation project that she's not too thrilled about. Little does she know this is a summer that will change her life. Willow has some deep seated self-esteem problems and once she meets the handsome 18 year old Axel, she soon comes to the realization that money does not erase personal problems, in fact, it often makes them worse. Despite their different backgrounds Willow and Axel have much in common, have similar values and experiences, and develop a true, deep friendship.

    SAVED BY THE MUSIC is a great read for the 13+ audience. This is a story of love and learning, pain and confusion. A book that will make you chuckle and shed a tear, with characters so real they feel like family. A fabulous plot for a movie.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 31, 2014



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  • Posted May 18, 2011

    more from this reviewer


    -We held hands in the night sky, watching the twinkling lights just beyond our reach, just past the looming silver barrier along the ledge. We watched all the cars carrying people trying to find their way and skyscrapers filled with people trying to get by.-

    I won this book on a facebook contest and I regret every minute that went by without me reading it.
    This book got so close to home that it was painfull to read at some parts, got me on tears for a really good part of it too.
    Identifying myself with the main character wasn't a happy thought.
    Going through so many issues and problems teenagers suffer and struggle through a daily basis you really cannot loose the chance to get this book! Plus is a really fast read.

    Willow's always been feeling left out and not cared for and well mostly alone.
    Alex isn't that good either.
    Both are completely NOT good around people and at first you really doubt they'll get along.
    You get to see how 2 disturbed, hurt, and lonely teens get together and start and try to fix each other up.
    Both have dark past and incredibly sad presents! Fighting both their nightmares and dreams.

    When nothing else seems worth living for,
    when even love doesn't seem enough to keep on going,
    when you're willing to talk but there's no one there to listen,
    when you're ready to let go but there's nothing next to hold on to,
    when you're so cold that not even been set on fire could bring you warmth,
    when you're there on a sailboat in plain daylight but all you see ahead of you is darkness,
    when you believe that the only way out of the pain is more pain so you'll just go numb,
    when you feel ALL is your fault even when no one is blaming you...
    There's music in hope...

    They were drawn together by music...

    Every turned page brought a new emotion out of me, wether I was laughing, getting angry, going mad, screaming, crying(I did that a lot), and laughing again evert character made up a really EXCELLENT book!
    Every and each character was enjoyable; from aunt Agathat to driver Hank and even some lobsters in between.

    This book will prove to you that even when you're at your lowest there's always hope, that you're worth everything in the world, and that giving up is never the choice! That dreams do come true and that only you can save you from yourself!
    There's music in every part of your life maybe you're not listening hard enough to notice!
    Make your life soundtrack a masterful piece!

    This book instantly made the list of my favorite books and will stay close to my heart forever! PLUS! is was my very first signed book EVER!


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  • Posted November 29, 2009


    This book was amazing!! I highly recommend it! I haven't read a good book like this in a long time. I finished this book in two days and have not stopped thinking about it ever since! (:

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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