The Robber Of Youth

The CASA Chronicles Volume 3

Fiction - Drama
303 Pages
Reviewed on 09/13/2018
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Keith Julius is the author of drama novels inspired by his real-life experiences as a Court Appointed Special Advocate, or CASA. Founded in 1977, the CASA program enlists volunteers to represent children in cases of child abuse and child neglect. CASA volunteers work closely with families, sometimes for over two years on a single case, to assure the children in these traumatic situations are placed properly and well cared for. Drawing from nearly a decade of personal involvement as a CASA volunteer, Julius creates intense stories that pull readers into an emotional landscape of hopes, fears, and brutal realities.

In 2015, Julius released his first novel, the suspense thriller REMORSE BY DEGREE. This was followed by his latest series, The CASA Chronicles, which currently stands at four volumes and includes CATCH A FALLING STAR, BORN FOR ADVERSITY, THE ROBBER OF YOUTH, and the 2023 release, A DECADE ABORNING. Every book focuses on a different family, each struggling with some of society's most challenging issues, including addiction, suicide, abuse, and childhood mental illness and trauma.

Julius brings a realism and compassion to his stories that can only come from personal experience. These realistic portrayals allow the reader to join with mothers and fathers, and of course the children involved, as they face life's adversities. He invites you to share in their triumphs, and sorrow in their failures, as they confront their struggles with dignity, determination, and the promise of a better future for their children.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Viga Boland for Readers' Favorite

When it comes to issues like abuse and sex trafficking, we can choose to bury our heads in the sand and hope it will all go away, or we can decide to learn what we can about it. Unfortunately, while we might not be able to eradicate it, as parents, teachers and members of caring communities, we can at least educate and enlighten our young people regarding their own susceptibility to sex traffickers. That’s why a book like The Robber of Youth by Keith Julius should be read, not just by adults, but by teens who, apart from very young children, are so vulnerable to these greedy, despicable predators. Rosie, a 15-year-old, loses her only real friend, her brother, in a tragic accident. In her own grief, Rosie’s mother kicks the teen out of their poor, dirty home. Rosie is placed in foster care but still feels homeless, alienated. When, over a period of weeks, a good-looking guy shows her kindness and suggests she can have a better life on her own, she trusts him. What happens after that is what no teen should endure.

The Robber of Youth is written in a way to alert, not frighten youth. What they will read is realistic, but not overly graphic. The book also highlights the work of the CASA, Case Appointed Special Advocates who work with teens like Rosie. Their dedicated involvement is heart-warming. Along the way, Julius informs readers of the difficult task facing police and others trying to locate and help victims. The author has chosen to alternate book scenes between Rosie, her mother, the case worker Melanie Cox, “Slick”, the sex trafficker, and the detective who first investigated the accidental death of Rosie’s brother. This writing style keeps the pace moving. Readers don’t have time to become bored. Keith Julius only describes as much as is needed for full comprehension. While this book is classified as literary fiction, think of it as young adult social issues and/or coming of age. An important, worthwhile read.