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Graffiti Moon

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Overview

Senior year is over, and Lucy has the perfect way to celebrate: tonight, she's going to find Shadow, the mysterious graffiti artist whose work appears all over the city. He's out there somewhere—spraying color, spraying birds and blue sky on the night—and Lucy knows a guy who paints like Shadow is someone she could fall for. Really fall for. Instead, Lucy's stuck at a party with Ed, the guy she's managed to avoid since the most awkward date of her life. But when Ed tells her he knows where to find Shadow, they're...

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Graffiti Moon

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Overview

Senior year is over, and Lucy has the perfect way to celebrate: tonight, she's going to find Shadow, the mysterious graffiti artist whose work appears all over the city. He's out there somewhere—spraying color, spraying birds and blue sky on the night—and Lucy knows a guy who paints like Shadow is someone she could fall for. Really fall for. Instead, Lucy's stuck at a party with Ed, the guy she's managed to avoid since the most awkward date of her life. But when Ed tells her he knows where to find Shadow, they're suddenly on an all-night search around the city. And what Lucy can't see is the one thing that's right before her eyes.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Crowley (A Little Wanting Song) returns with a moving contemporary spin on disguised-identity romances (think You’ve Got Mail), first published in Australia. The novel is told in the voices of two creative older teenagers—Ed, aka secretive graffiti artist Shadow, and Lucy, a fledgling glass blower—interspersed with the poems of Leo/Poet, Ed’s best friend and graffiti partner. Set over the course of one long night, Crowley’s story slowly develops the relationship between Ed and Lucy, enemies since a disastrous date two years earlier. Lucy is obsessed with Shadow and his art; she tells Ed, “I just want to meet one guy, one guy, who thinks art is cool.” The teens’ artistic sensibilities are richly and affectingly expressed; readers will agonize over their obvious compatibility and long for them to recognize each other as soul mates. The beauty and danger of the nocturnal urban landscape is an effective counterpoint to the growing attraction of the sensitive yet bristly pair. Secondary characters—close friends, artistic mentors, and well-meaning parents—are strongly rendered, layering the steadily engrossing story with credible complexity. Ages 14–up. Agent: Catherine Drayton, InkWell Management. (Feb.)
Children's Literature - Jodell Sadler
Voice drives this novel that every teen should read. It is nice to read a YA book about doing the right thing, freeing your inner artist, and finding your own path among friends, as much as guiding your friends when they need a little nudge in a better direction. Although the reader might prefer to read this from just Lucy's point of view, Ed and Poet play an important role. The way this writer brings in the artistic perspectives of all three characters is exceptional. The way art is described through Lucy, and the way it reveals and defines these characters is magical: graffiti, poetry, and blown glass. Deception is part of the plot and as Lucy and Ed reconnect, it is really ideal to enjoy a story where teens attempt to help one another and really keep everyone on the right track. Lucy only wants to find Shadow, a local graffiti artist she loves who paints birds, color, and sky in a way she connects to, and lose Ed, her ultimate date gone bad. Once she learns that Ed knows Shadow, she follows him all night admiring his many murals, analyzing them, and eventually keeping Ed from helping his friend steal from their school to pay off a debt. Then Lucy learns Shadow's true identity and the ending rings true. Reviewer: Jodell Sadler
ALAN Review - Barbara A. Ward
Senior year has ended, and Lucy and her friends spend the night in pursuit of Shadow, the elusive street artist she desperately wants to meet. After all, they have much in common since she, too, is a glassblowing artist. Inevitably, the girls pair off with some locals. Lucy ends up with Ed, who is nothing like Shadow. Or is he? Things are awkward at times, but the three couples also experience moments of closeness as well. The author alternates the story through the voices of Lucy and Ed as well as interspersing poetry from Ed's friend Leo. While teens often bond through music, these teens connect through images, colors, and poetry. The book's sometimes edgy tone hinting of underlying violence is leavened by its humor. Older teen readers will cherish these quirky characters for their independence and for the secrets they're hiding. One important night foreshadows possibilities for each character. Reviewer: Barbara A. Ward
VOYA - Mark Flowers
In alternating chapters, Ed and Lucy, who once went on a disastrous date together, describe their night-long search for the elusive graffiti artist, Shadow. Based solely on his art, Lucy is convinced that she is in love with Shadow, never suspecting that Shadow is Ed. Meanwhile, Ed has to decide whether to join his best friend, Leo, in a robbery later in the night to pay back Leo's debt to a gangster. The high level of contrivance to the setup requires a heavy dose of suspension of disbelief, but while a lesser writer might have used it for cheap humor or forced emotion, the artifice of the plot reads as very nearly Shakespearean (say, an inverted version of As You Like It), and Crowley mines for deep truths about identity, art, and love. Both Ed and Lucy are strong characters, and Ed's conflict over whether to tell Lucy the truth about his identity—he fears that he can never live up to Lucy's vision of Shadow—is genuinely moving. Less felicitous is the character of Leo, whose banal poems are interspersed throughout the text and whose various romantic entanglements are neither as believable nor as funny as they are meant to be. Though Lucy remains powerfully portrayed, her narration sometimes feels forced. Nevertheless, powered by a deep set of ideas; strong, relatable characters; and the teen-centric topic of graffiti art, this novel should have wide critical and popular appeal. Reviewer: Mark Flowers
School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up—This adventure, set in Australia, is one for the art crowd. Lucy, Jazz, and Daisy plan to celebrate graduation by staying out all night. And while they're at it, Lucy is determined to meet Shadow, a mysterious graffiti artist who has tagged the city with his soulful works. Jazz is set on finding Poet, Shadow's partner and the wordsmith of his wall art. Daisy just wants boyfriend Dylan to remember that it's her birthday. Dealing with his dyslexia by quitting school, Ed has lost his job in a paint store and is talked into robbing the art wing of the high school this particular night with Leo and Dylan. They decide to hang out with the girls until it's time for the heist. Ed takes Lucy on a search for Shadow and along the way they visit a number of his paintings around the city. Chapters that alternate between Lucy and Ed (who, unbeknownst to Lucy, is Shadow) rely heavily on art-themed metaphor to describe the encroaching darkness, city scenes, traffic lights, and impending dawn. Part gallery tour, part crime caper, and part romance, Graffiti Moon is an artsy spin on the common young adult theme of self-discovery. The references to artists and specific works may intimidate readers who have little related knowledge, but it might also nudge them to learn about Vermeer and others. The aesthetic tone of the story is punctuated with comic relief and some coarse language. While Lucy's and Ed's inner dialogues sometimes seem unrealistically metaphorical, readers will appreciate the original and sympathetic characters. A paint-covered thumbs up!—Karen Elliott, Grafton High School, WI
Kirkus Reviews
Alternating narrators and snatches of poetry tell the tale of love among graffiti artists. Lucy has been searching for the mysterious graffiti artist Shadow, whose work seems to address her fear of romance. Unfortunately, the only guy who knows how to track him down is Ed, whose nose Lucy broke at the end of a disastrous date. Ed knows how to track down Shadow because he is Shadow--a secret he hopes to keep from Lucy while he leads her around town revisiting old haunts. When Lucy discovers that Ed has been lying to her, she must deal with her conflicted feelings over the artist and the annoying man. Readers will quickly realize that Ed and Shadow are one and the same, a fact that Crowley reveals fairly early on. With that mystery stripped away, Ed is difficult to like, lacking both a strong personality and emotional resonance. His difficulty at school due to dyslexia smacks of pandering and isn't well integrated into the overall story. Lucy's personality is slightly more developed; glassblowing is a talent not often seen in teen fiction. However, Crowley's divided narrative doesn't suit the characters, and the decision to intersperse poems into the mix further fractures their interactions. There's splashes of color, but teens will find their interest washes out rapidly. (Fiction. 13 & up)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780375871955
  • Publisher: Random House Children's Books
  • Publication date: 12/26/2012
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 189,054
  • Age range: 14 - 17 Years
  • Lexile: HL630L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.15 (w) x 8.21 (h) x 0.61 (d)

Meet the Author

CATH CROWLEY grew up in a small town in rural Victoria, Australia. She studied professional writing and editing at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology and works as both a freelance writer and a part-time teacher in Melbourne. She is also the author of A Little Wanting Song on the Knopf list.

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Read an Excerpt

Lucy

I pedal fast. Down Rose Drive, where houses swim in pools of orange streetlight. Where people sit on verandas, hoping to catch a breeze. Let me make it in time. Please let me make it in time.

Just arrived at the studio. Your graffiti guys Shadow and Poet are here, Al texted, and I took off across the night. Took off under a sky bleeding out and turning black. Left Dad sitting outside his shed yelling, “I thought you weren’t meeting Jazz till later. Where’s the fire, Lucy Dervish?”

In me. Under my skin.

Let me make it in time. Let me meet Shadow. Poet too but mainly Shadow. The guy who paints in the dark. Paints birds trapped on brick walls and people lost in ghost forests. Paints guys with grass growing from their hearts and girls with buzzing lawn mowers. An artist who paints things like that is someone I could fall for. Really fall for.

I’m so close to meeting him, and I want it so bad. Mum says when wanting collides with getting, that’s the moment of truth. I want to collide. I want to run right into Shadow and let the force spill our thoughts so we can pick each other up and pass each other back like piles of shiny stones.

At the top of Singer Street I see the city, neon blue and rising. There’s lightning deep in the sky, working its way through the heat to the surface. There’s laughter somewhere far away. There’s one of Shadow’s pieces, a painting on a crumbling wall of a heart cracked by earthquake with the words Beyond the Richter scale written underneath. It’s not a heart like you see on a Valentine’s Day card. It’s the heart how it really is: fine veins and atriums and arteries. A fist-­size forest in our chest.

I take my hands off the brakes and let go. The trees and the fences mess together and the concrete could be the sky and the sky could be the concrete and the factories spread out before me like a light-­scattered dream.

I turn a corner and fly down Al’s street. Toward his studio, toward him sitting on the steps, little moths above him, playing in the light. Toward a shadow in the distance. A shadow of Shadow. There’s collision up ahead.

I spin the last stretch and slide to a stop. “I’m here. I made it. Do I look okay? How do I look?”

Al drains his coffee and puts the cup on the step beside him. “Like a girl who missed them by about five minutes.”

Ed

It’s a sweating hot night for October. More people are out than usual, so I spray the sky fast. Eyes ahead and behind. Looking for cops. Looking for anyone I don’t want to be here. Paint sails and the things that kick in my head scream from can to brick. See this, see this, see this. See me emptied onto a wall.

First thing I ever painted was a girl. Second thing I ever painted was a doorway on a brick wall. Went on to paint huge doorways. Moved on to skies. Open skies painted above painted doorways and painted birds skimming across bricks trying to fly away. Little bird, what are you thinking? You come from a can.

Tonight I’m doing this bird that’s been in my head all day. He’s a little yellow guy lying on sweet green grass. Belly to clouds, legs facing the same direction. He could be sleeping. He could be dead. The yellow’s right. The green too. The sky’s all wrong. I need the sort of blue that rips your inside out. You don’t see blue like that round here.

Bert was always trying to find it for me. Every week or so at the paint store he’d show me a blue he’d special-­ordered. “Close, boss,” I’d say. “But not close enough.”

He still hadn’t found it when he died two months ago. He got all the other colors I wanted. The green this bird’s lying on is a shade he found over two years back, after I quit school and went to work for him. I made it to the end of June in year ten, and then I couldn’t make it any longer.

“You had a good first day,” Bert told me when he handed the green over. “Real good.”

“This is very fucking nice,” I said, spraying some on a card and taking it as a sign that leaving school was the right thing to do. That Mum was wrong about wanting me to stay on.

“It is very fucking nice.” Bert looked over his shoulder. “But don’t say ‘fuck’ when my wife Valerie’s around.” Bert always swore like a kid scared of getting caught. I laughed about it till Val heard me swearing. Bert had the last chuckle that day.

“What’s so funny?” a voice behind me asks.

“Shit, Leo.” A line of blue goes into the grass on the wall. “Don’t sneak up.”

“I’ve been calling your name since the top of the hill. And the council made this place legal, remember?” He finishes the last bit of his sausage roll. “I like the rush of working where we might get caught.”

“I like the rush of painting,” I tell him.

He watches me for a bit. “So I called your mobile earlier. It’s disconnected.”

“Uh-­huh. Didn’t pay the bill.” I hand him the can. “I’m hungry. Write the words.”

Leo looks at my picture of a wide sky hanging over that yellow bird. He points at the kid on the wall. “Nice touch.”

While he thinks a bit longer, I look around. The old guy who works at the glass studio across the road is on the steps, texting and staring at us. At least I know he’s not calling the cops.

Leo always makes his writing suit the piece. Sometimes he uses fonts he finds online. Sometimes he makes up his own and names them. Tonight he smokes the word Peace across the clouds, letters drifting and curling. It’s funny how two guys can look at the same thing and see it differently. I don’t see peace when I look at that bird. I see my future. I hope it’s only sleeping.

His hand moves across the wall, signing our names. He always writes them the same way. His then mine in a font he calls Phantasm.

Poet.

Shadow.

We leave the old guy on the steps with his coffee and head up Vine Street. It’s a fifteen-­minute walk to my place if you take the main roads, but Leo and me never do. We take the side streets and alleys.

I live on the other side of the train yard, so we jump the fence and cut through, looking out for people working as we walk. I like seeing their thoughts hit the carriages. Makes the city as much ours as someone else’s.

“So I saw Beth today,” Leo says. “She asked me how you were doing.” He throws stones at the dead trains. “It sounded like she wants you back.”

I stop and take out a can and spray a greeting-­card heart with a gun pointed at it. “We’ve been over almost three months.” Since August first, not that I’m counting.

“You mind if I ask her out, then?”

“You mind if I spray a piece on the side of your gran’s house?”

He chuckles. “Yeah, right. You’re over.”

“I like her, just not anything more than that. She used to do this thing where she’d lean over and kiss me and then take a break to whisper hilarious stuff in my ear and then kiss me again. I’d be screaming, What’s wrong with you? Fall in love with her, you dick.”

“She didn’t think that was weird?”

“Inside. I was screaming on the inside. Anyway, I never fell in love with her so I guess the part of the brain that controls love doesn’t respond to being called a dick.”

“For your sake, I’m hoping no part of your brain responds to being called a dick.”

“Fair point.” I wish I hadn’t thought about Beth doing that thing because now I can feel her at my ear, warm breath and sweet tickling and her voice sounding like that blue I’ve been searching for.

“Were you in love with Emma?” I ask.

“I was hard-­core obsessed,” he says without thinking about it. “Not in love.”

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 26 )
Rating Distribution

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(16)

4 Star

(6)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 26 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 11, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Graffiti Moon is a book that I thoroughly enjoyed. I love the id

    Graffiti Moon is a book that I thoroughly enjoyed. I love the idea of two people connecting and having an adventure and learning about themselves and life all over the course of one night.

    This book alternates points of view between Lucy and Ed. There are also poems by Poet randomly placed throughout the book which also add a nice touch and mean a lot more once you find out who Poet really is.

    Lucy was a character that I really liked. She's feisty and always says what's on her mind and I really liked that about her. Lucy is in love with Shadow's graffiti artwork and in a way in love with Shadow too even though she's never seen him. When she gets the opportunity to find Shadow she obviously takes it. I think the adventures Lucy had throughout the night changed her perspective on a lot of things and she learned a lot about herself. I'd have to say Lucy is probably the one that learned the most about herself by the end of the book.

    My favorite character in this book though would have to be Ed. I found Ed's character really interesting and I also felt very sympathetic for him. He is so talented and good but he can't see the good qualities in himself and doesn't think he's worth anything. While Ed didn't always make the best decisions I was happy with the way everything ended for him. It's great to see a character you root for get what they deserve after going through a lot.

    The relationship between Lucy and Ed was very realistic and endearing. Lucy and Ed have one of those second chance romances, they went on a date a few years before the story takes place and it didn't end well. Naturally Lucy and Ed were awkward around each other at first but when they really started to relax and open up to each other is when I started rooting for them. Lucy and Ed had quite a few ups and downs throughout the book but again I'm happy with the way things ended for them.

    The plot of this book was fantastic and held my attention the entire time. As I said earlier I love adventures of self-discovery that take place over one night. I find the idea that one night can change your entire life really fascinating. I think what really made this book great though was the characters and the writing. The characters were very realistic and relatable and the writing was so beautiful and descriptive.

    Final Verdict: Graffiti Moon is a wonderful contemporary book that I recommend everyone read.

    *This review is also posted on my blog and my other social media profiles.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 18, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Any books on Graffiti is automatically in my hands!! I have alwa

    Any books on Graffiti is automatically in my hands!! I have always tried to get the designs going in my
    small town but everybody is scared that other kids would write swear words and such like that. I would
    love to just get one wall and paint something so great that would have everyone come and look. 

    In this book a young girl is in love with a man. He's tall. He has dark hair. And he paints just amazing murals.
    He goes by the name Shadow. And she's in love.

    Except Shadow doesn't know that....yet.

    Plus she has never met Shadow.

    Well, that she knows of.

    If you are a lover of art, romance, and meaning this is a book for you!!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 17, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Pretty good

    So yeah this took me a while to read than I thought. Night on the town, finding a mysterious artist called Shadow and two people re connecting? Sounds like a good read? Yes it actually was. The beginning was good, setting characters, setting and all, up. In the middle got a little bored and put it aside. Then later picked it up again. Liked the two POVs as you get in their head, etc and what they learn in the end. Near the end it, it picked up and was pretty good. While reading this, kept thinking how and when will she find out who Shadow really is and what her reaction would be? The premise kind of reminded me of another read, Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist. Except that was music and this one's graffiti, glass blowing, painting. Again, pretty good read.

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  • Posted October 16, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Graffiti Moon was such a surprise! It is an Australian, young ad

    Graffiti Moon was such a surprise! It is an Australian, young adult, contemporary story about a group of teens and art. Oh, the art! Who would have thought you could read about visual pieces of work and envision them in such detail that there is no need to actually see them with your eyes. I never gave graffiti art a second glance before reading this book, but afterwards I found myself on google searching images and was amazed by some of the creativity and talent out there. The reader follows the two main characters Lucy and Ed while they search for Shadow, an anonymous youth who leaves his graffiti art all over town wherever he can find a wall and no cops. I really liked that the plot was set over the course of one night. It was fast-paced, funny, sensitive, and held plenty of surprises. Lucy is determined to find Shadow and meet him. "The guy who paints in the dark. Paints birds trapped on brick walls and people lost in ghost forests. Paints guys with grass growing from their hearts and girls with buzzing lawn mowers. A guy who paints things like that is a guy I could fall for. Really fall for." The author's writing style is poetic and lyrical and the book features sections of free verse poetry from one of the side characters, Poet. I listened to the audiobook and adored the deep Australian accents. Three narrators were used for the audio and it worked beautifully. I just adored Graffiti Moon and would recommend it to any age group.

    My favorite quote:
    "I like that about art, that what you see is sometimes more about who you are than what's on the wall."

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  • Posted August 31, 2012

    This book had me intrigued before I even opened the pages. From

    This book had me intrigued before I even opened the pages. From the great cover to the synopsis, Graffiti Moon seemed like it could be a very sweet book with a great love story. Unfortunately, it didn't live up to my expectations.

    Lucy has been admiring Shadow's graffiti for a long time, but more than that, she admires him. She knows that whoever is behind this beautiful artwork has to be the guy for her, and to celebrate her senior year being over, she is determined to find him. Her friends, however, have other plans for her - plans that include going to a party with Ed, a guy with whom she had an awful date a while back. Lucy agrees to go along with her friends as long as they still look for Shadow. As luck would have it, Ed is friends with Shadow and offers to help Lucy find him. Together they explore the city, finding some of Shadow's best work and talking as though their bad date had never happened. But what Lucy doesn't know is how many secrets are between them...and all good things must come to an end...

    Let me begin by saying that I think I am in the minority when it comes to reactions to this book. Even though it had it's good points, I had more issues with it than I was expecting. It took me a while to get into this book. What I considered to be a major plot point was revealed fairly early (read: in the first ten pages), and that threw me off a bit. Beyond that, though, not much happened in the first third of the book. However, during the setup, a lot of the dialogue was hard to follow, forcing me to reread passages several times to determine who was saying what. And although I did like Ed and could sympathize with him, I found it difficult to connect with the other characters.

    What kept me reading this book (because I did consider putting it down) was Crowley's writing style. She used some beautiful imagery, and I enjoyed seeing how Shadow's graffiti translated into Poet's words and then into Lucy's interpretation. I also liked the extra poems that were interspersed with the chapters of Ed and Lucy's point of view. Yet even though I did finish the book and liked the ending, I never felt the connection to the story that I was hoping for.

    As I said before, I am in the minority with my feelings about this book. Though Graffiti Moon didn't meet my expectations, I wouldn't discount reading something by Cath Crowley in the future for her writing style alone. For other opinions of this book, I suggest checking out these reviews from Ginger at GReads! and Tara at Fiction Folio.

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  • Posted August 25, 2012

    I really liked this novel. It was a really nice contemporary wit

    I really liked this novel. It was a really nice contemporary with an art
    theme and a cute romance. It is a little predictable since it is told
    from two points of view, but it was great. I liked the pace of the
    story. It really felt to be told in real time. Although I really liked
    Graffiti Moon I really like something with a little more edge so I
    didn't completely fall head over heels for it. I do also wish Cath would
    have included illustrations of shadows work through out the novel. I
    recommend this to those who love contemporaries or want a nice cute
    story to read their troubles away.

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  • Posted August 16, 2012

    Graffiti Moon is one of those books that really needs to be abor

    Graffiti Moon is one of those books that really needs to be aborbed
    properly; you hear the words, and let them sink in for their full affect
    until you're completely wrapped up in this dreamlike contemporary story.
    There were a number of things I really loved about Graffiti Moon, yet a
    few areas I found lacking. It's deeply moving at times, humourous at
    others, yet it still felt to me like it lacked a certain charm.
    Reasons to Read: 1. Words that ebb and flow: I'm so glad I listened to
    this one on audio, because the prose-like writing in some passages is
    totally meant to be read aloud. And the writing style really lends to
    the story's setting, because it gives the whole book this sort of
    dreamlike quality to it which is perfect for a book that takes place in
    the middle of the night. And I loved that there was this huge emphasis
    on art, and different kinds of art, and how it doesn't always have to be
    traditional. 2.Humour, anticipation, and romance: First of all, this
    is definitly my kind of sense of humour. I loved the jokes, and the
    quirky little bits - like how Lucy punched Ed and broke his nose on
    their first date after he tried to make a move on her. I loved how they
    could laugh things off and (eventually) move on. And there's just so
    much build-up to all the various, mixed-up subplots that the
    anticipation just keeps building and BUILDING until you're waiting for
    it to explode. And for them to just make out already. 3.Very much a
    coming of age tale: There's a strong theme of growing up and change
    which is prevelant in Graffiti Moon; and I just loved seeing how these
    various characters gradually evolved throughout the night and really got
    to know each other, and themselves, a bit better. And of course, this
    ultimately leads up to some drastic changes for a couple of characters.
    And while I had hoped I would fall in love with this story much like
    most other readers had, I still felt like something was lacking. It took
    me a little while to get into the story and connect with the characters,
    because there felt like a few too many subplots were moving forward for
    me. I prefer to focus on one or two central, and keep the rest to a
    minimum. Otherwise it just feels like background noise. But mostly I
    felt like there was all of this build up (which I loved)... but with
    very little by the end. I'd be anxiously listening, waiting to hear what
    happesn next, holding my breath... only to be caught off guard by rather
    small conclusions and responses taking place. It was like blowing up a
    balloon only to watch it slowly fizzle out. So while I really did like
    it, especially the poetic writing style and phrases (which are gorgeous
    and I could read passages from this book without needing any context at
    all, just little snippets of prose) and I loved the emphasis on art and
    growing up- I didn't LOVE it. It failed to move me the way I had hoped
    it would. Thoughts on the audio: I'm a big fan of audio books that
    feature multiple narrators, so having three voices: one for Lucy, one
    for Ed, and one for Poet worked really well for me. Plus, they all fit
    the personality of each character SO well & I love listening to
    accents. No complaints here!

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  • Posted July 1, 2012

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    Very Good Book

    I picked this book up just on a whim. I liked the cover and needed a book to occupy my time. I don't regret it. It is wonderful for a book I just picked up based on the cover.

    This book follows Lucy and Ed, who have a bad past together, on a night through their town looking for a graffiti artist named Shadow. Lucy has been wanting to meet Shadow but barely misses him each time. Then Ed offers to search the town with her for the elusive Shadow, claiming he knows where he would most likely be. At first, the two are tense around each other. As the night thins out and they discover more art the two become more friendly. They each have something that holds their thoughts. You learn more about each character through their art than their conversations.

    I liked this book because of the meaning behind the art. The way their thoughts couldn't be put into words exactly but the art held it all. Each piece held an emotion, a thought that couldn't exactly be defined the way its felt. I liked the poetry weaved through and the different views a piece could have. As it said in the book, what you see is more about you and less about whats on the wall.

    I would recommend this book if anyone needed something interesting, but not an emotionally taxing book. I only gave it four stars because it was a bit frustrating at times.

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  • Posted June 3, 2012

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    Sweet Contemporary Novel About Finding Yourself

    This book follows Lucy and Ed on the night she graduates from her senior year of high school and they get stuck together. Lucy, an apprentice glass blower, is searching for Shadow and Poet, a graffiti artist and a poet that she admires the work of. Ed and his friends say they know him and can help Lucy and her friends find them – so they set off in search while going. Lucy and Ed have had a first, and only, date that didn’t go as Lucy expected and she isn’t thrilled to be stuck with Ed for the night. After going to a party that she isn’t quite enjoying – she realizes Ed is cooler than she thought and they head off to find Shadow on their own. On the journey Ed and Lucy get to know each other and discover there is more to one another than they ever thought before.

    This was a sweet contemporary novel about finding yourself and what you truly crave. It was written from the point of view of Lucy and Ed and interspersed with poems from Poet. Hearing the history between Ed and Lucy, and of their moments when they are pushed together in the rest of the book – it’s just wonderful. The entire book speaks of art and what the characters see and feel when the look and create art. Even something as simple as a color evokes such responses from them. While only the short poems in the book are truly considered poetry, the entire novel is written in such beautiful language, you can’t help but to feel that it is poetry of it’s own kind. The only drawback for me was that the story was predictable and the relationships were easy to figure out. When you consider the beauty of the writing and don’t need much excitement or mystery, it’s a great book.

    Reviewed by Jessica for Book Sake.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 3, 2012

    I adore this book. I couldn’t put it down once I start


    I adore this book. I couldn’t put it down once I started. Very addictive. The story takes place in the span of one night and it flowed wonderfully always something going on keeping the reader entertained and intrigued. The book takes place in Australia, and aside from a couple of phrases and things I didn’t know or understand right away but easily could understand through the rest of the story, it was great.
    The characters are all flushed out and really solid. I could see them in my mind, see this adventure unfolding before my eyes. I as a reader felt like I knew these characters and I became invested in them. The description is beyond my words, they wouldn’t be able to do it justice. As you can tell by the title there is art involved and the way the art and scenes are described visually is so beautiful and vivid.
    I highly recommend this book. It was a treasure that I look forward to re-reading again in the future. It was a really kick arse book.

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  • Posted May 22, 2012

    I swear, Australia must be dubbed the LAND OF LOST TALENTED AUTH

    I swear, Australia must be dubbed the LAND OF LOST TALENTED AUTHORS
    HOW did I not discover Aussie authors before last year?!
    Ever since reading Melina Marchetta's books, I have developed a new perspective about Aussie authors--that they are amazing!--and Cath Crowley has only further proved this!

    I'll be honest, I did NOT have high expectations for this book when I first started. was actually quite hesitant to start this novel because I thought I was going to be subjecting my brain to literary mediocrity. After reading the blurb, I thought I knew what was going to happen. And because of that, I thought the book was going to be meh at best.

    I am now eating those words.

    This book was written in alternating the alternating POVs of Lucy and Ed--which I normally detest, but in this case, it made me like connect with each character so much more. It was made crystal clear from the very first chapter (I think) just who Shadow was. My initial thought was that this would make the book dreadfully dull because the big secret was already out in the open for readers, but DO NOT THINK THIS.

    This book was had surprising depth and emotion--mainly on Ed's part--and the story captivated me. The characters too. The story follows Ed and Lucy (obviously) but also as their respective friends Leo (who is "Poet"--another graffiti artist) and Jazz, as well as Dylan and Daisy. These characters were so.... fantabulously amazing in every. Single. Way.
    Ed and Lucy were absolutely perfect for each other, despite how different they are, and I loved the fact that their love story happened despite the misunderstanding at their very first date (before the events of That Night take place) that resulted in a broken nose. I also LOVE the fact that they're both super funny. And no, I'm not talking about that dry sarcasm that most YA characters use to be Oh So Cool. Their humor was so real, not trying to be all obvious--it was kind of understated, but I thought some of the dialogue was absolutely hilarious.

    Even the minor characters were amazing. They all had amazing depth and complexity and realness. Words cannot describe how much I adored them. Even though the story mainly focuses on Ed and Lucy, it actually ended up giving me three different stories about each couple--without taking away from the main protagonists of course.

    Oh lordy, I could just gush about this book endlessly because it was literally all that and a chicken salad... but I'm afraid that if I continued, my words would just turn into incoherent babble punctuated by girlish squeals.
    Yeah. It's THAT good.

    If you haven't discovered Aussie authors yet or just haven't read this book.... what they FRAK are you still doing here?! Go and get this book!

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  • Posted March 26, 2012

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    Immediately inspiring and refreshingly hopeful

    Lucy has been chasing Shadow for years. An elusive graffiti artist, he's left his mark all across the city and all across Lucy's life. She knows Shadow is someone she could fall for. Hard. She knows, finally, she is close to finding him.

    At the end of Senior Year Lucy's friends Jazz and Daisy want an adventure. Lucy doesn't. She wants to find Shadow and tell him how she feels. She doesn't want to spend the night with Ed--not after she has finally escaped the gossip and rumors surrounding their first and last disastrous date two years ago.

    But when the adventure Jazz wants turns into what Lucy wants, she knows she has to go along. Even if Ed is the person who might finally bring her to Shadow.

    Ed thought his life was finally coming together after he left school. Instead it's all falling apart. No job. No girl. And definitely no prospects. Haunted by all of the places he isn't going, Ed leaves his mark across the city walls as Shadow saying with pictures what no one seems to hear in his words. Doesn't matter anyway. His best friend Leo is the perfect Poet to his Shadow.

    Too bad Leo with words than with life choices. Instead of a night spent working on another wall, Ed is drawn into Leo's horrible plan to hang out with girls from school before making yet another terrible decision that could get them both in big trouble.

    The prospect of spending a night with the girl who broke his nose is bad enough. When Leo offers to help that girl find Shadow and Poet, he knows it's going to be trouble. But he goes along anyway.

    As Ed walks Lucy through Shadow's art, the night that promised to be a disaster turns into something else. In a city filled with missed connections and opportunity, Ed and Lucy are right where they're supposed to be in Graffiti Moon (2012) by Cath Crowley.

    Set over the course of one night, Crowley takes readers on a journey through Shadow's art and also through each character's background. At 257 pages, Graffiti Moon is a deceptively short book. Its length belies the broad range of things Crowley packs into this one marvelous novel.

    Crowley uses a dual narrative structure to great effect here (as she did previously in A Little Wanting Song). Chapters alternate between Lucy and Ed's narrations. Poets from Leo are also scattered throughout. With voices all their own, Lucy and Ed's narratives sometimes overlap to show both of their interpretations of events and each other.

    Filled with art, poetry, and humor Graffiti Moon is an evocative story filled with beautiful writing and characters that are achingly real. Immediately inspiring and refreshingly hopeful, Graffiti Moon is completely engrossing and a brilliant reminder that everyone has time to become exactly who they're meant to be.

    Possible Pairings: Dash and Lily's Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan, When It Happens by Susane Colasanti, Paper Towns by John Green, Before I Die by Jenny Downham, The Piper's Son by Melina Marchetta, After the Kiss by Terra Elan McVoy, Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins, A Map of the Known World by Lisa Ann Sandell, The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith, The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 9, 2012

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    Beautiful. Real. Heart-wrenching. I absolutely loved, loved, LO

    Beautiful. Real. Heart-wrenching.

    I absolutely loved, loved, LOVED this book! Graffiti Moon spans just one night and is a beautiful story about friendship, trust, and love… and a second chance.

    Graffiti Moon follows six teenagers through the night after their graduation from high school (or year 12 as it’s called in Australia). Lucy and her best friends decide to go out for a night of fun to celebrate. However, Lucy is on a mission to find Shadow, the famous graffiti artist that she feels connected to through his art. Even though she has no idea who he is, she feels like he is the only one who can understand her, and she is determined to find him. Instead, thanks to her friends Jazz and Daisy, they end up hanging out with Ed, Dylan, and Leo. Which is awkward since years before she had a disastrous date with Ed that ended with her breaking his nose.

    Lucy is disappointed, and trying to figure out how she’s going to get away to search for Shadow… until Ed says he knows him and can help her find him. The night becomes a course of misadventures, as they all search for the graffiti artist team Shadow and Poet.

    Graffiti Moon is beautifully written – lyrical with witty dialogue, an excellent plot, and fantastic characters! The story is told by alternating perspectives between Lucy, Ed, and Poet, which I felt was done perfectly. Here’s one of my favorite quotes:

    “I liked that he had hair that was growing without a plan. A grin that came out of nowhere and left the same way.” — Cath Crowley
    Reading Graffiti Moon, for me, was like reading a piece of art. Lucy’s passion is glass blowing, while Shadow paints, and Poet writes poetry, so art has a huge role in this novel. Yet, the story remains grounded by their very real life problems that all teenagers can relate to in some way.

    Graffiti Moon is easily one of my favorite reads of 2011, and I’m so grateful that it was released in the US! I want to read more from Cath Crowley so I hope Knopf Books continues to publish her work here! -- orginally posted on bookandlatte (dot) com

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  • Posted March 6, 2012

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    GRAFFITI MOON ¿ An outstanding adventure to the heights of art that adds so much more colour to the YA genre

    YA Aussie authors, that’s the new magic word! I’ve read a lot of Aussie books lately and I must say that they’ve indeed got something special down under. Cath Crowley is one ot the authors that have a strong signature. Her words seem to flow easily and I devoured them in a rapid pace. She’s got so many artistical elements incorporated into her newest book out in the US, GRAFFITI MOON. Great!

    Main topic or motif in GRAFFITI MOON? Definitely arts. Lucy, Ed & co. Have a strong connection to arts in general, various artists and to their preferred working material which could be glass, words or walls and colours.
    We are involved in the discussion and thoughts about the meaning of art in life, for your personality and relationships. I am a huge fan of art, I like to paint so I could easily identify with this very dominant aspect.

    There’s glass, memories, dares, paintings on walls. The description of every single graffiti sounded so stunning, I wished they were all painted in my town so I could gaze at them on my way home.

    The chapters are told from Ed’s, Lucy’s and Poet’s point of view. Ed and Lucy are great together. He is such a thoughtful boy. His own thoughts and actions stand in huge contrast to the way other people might see him. Lucy is this very casual art chick. I would definitely want to chat with her about all the awesome paintings and pieces of art out there.
    Chapters of Ed and Lucy often overlap in course of action so that the reader gets the chance to read both perspectives on significant moments. These are only short parts that you listen to twice and it didn’t bother me at all. Cath Crowley applied an efficient technique to offer the reader a double portion of experiencing her characters’ story.

    I was so engaged in Lucy and Ed’s night they’re spending together with their friends who we get to know a bit about, too. The difference between Lucy’s and Ed’s growing relationship, their past and their mutual task of finding someone who’s with them all the time is the most interesting plot string in GRAFFITI MOON. The brooding romance between Lucy and Ed held me captivated throughout the entire read. I loved and enjoyed GRAFFITI MOON pretty much.

    THE VERDICT

    GRAFFITI MOON is an artsy and melancholic, but mostly a very thoughtful read. Read Cath Crowley’s newest US release and follow the pretty lively and colourfully painted story around Ed and Lucy, their friends, lives and the beautiful and mysterious moments of an exceptional night.

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  • Posted March 6, 2012

    This is by far one of the best books I've read all year. Simply

    This is by far one of the best books I've read all year. Simply beautiful. If I could give this more than 5 stars I would!

    There is no way this review will do justice to how amazing this story is. It's gorgeous prose. Line after line poetry. As I was reading I highlighted lines I loved. I began to realize that the pages were more yellow than white.

    There were so many things I loved about this book. I absolutely loved the main characters. I loved the friends and the adults as well. There were no characters here left underdeveloped or weak. The main characters Lucy and Ed were written perfectly. Crowley writes in a way that just wraps you up tighter into the story, makes you completely emotionally invested.

    I loved the different points of view and even when the story line overlapped a bit I was grateful for the other side of the same event. I wanted to know everything Lucy and Ed were thinking and feeling. I could not get enough of Poet's words either. Between the art descriptions (Amazing imagery that is so perfectly described you can feel every thing Ed conveyed in those pieces), the depth of feeling and meaning in Poet's words (even though they were simple), and Lucy's glass experiences, you felt you were truly looking into this world.

    You know you are drawn into a story when you begin to panic about it ending when you're on page 25.

    Cath Crowley is one of my new favorite authors and Graffiti Moon has fast become one of my all time favorite books. I want everyone to read this and feel the way she made me feel. She truly stirred my soul here.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 1, 2012

    Sweet

    It's so amazing and sweet!

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  • Posted February 17, 2012

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    A fantastic contemporary!

    Graffiti Moon is set in a 24 hour period, but the story really kicks off at night, the day Lucy graduated high school. Lucy and her friends decide to stay all night and celebrate! however all Lucy is thinking about is finding Shadow, the graffiti painter she has been fantasizing about for months and believes is her soul mate. She's an artist, and so is he; through his art he seems different from all the guys she's met, including Ed, the guy who grabbed her butt on their first date two years ago. Her friends obviously think this is absurd, but when her friend's boyfriend declares he knows Shadow. The night journey to find Shadow begins.

    I am a huge fan of books that are set in a 24 hour period. I feel as if I am with them, reading every one of their thoughts, seeing everything through their eyes, even the little stuff. It's as if I was put in the shoes of the protagonist for a whole day and experience everything he/she experiences.

    However one thing that I couldn't connect to the book is the whole artistic aspect of it. I'm an engineer, it's math and science all the way, while I do love photography, I didn't get half of the revelations that occurred through their art. I was like.. ok you blow glass, how does that hold your memory? This is definitely a case of "It's not you, it's me" situation. Graffiti Moon is all about the art of Lucy and Shadow and the stories behind them. I loved finding out the story behind each, even though I didn't get the connection, i still felt their emotional turmoil, pain, and memories through these stories. As the hours go by, you get to know a bit about Lucy and Ed, yes the butt grabbing guy. It is told from both of their points of view and sometimes a scene would be repeated twice from each of their POVs. This was great for me since in a specific scene I always want to know how BOTH ends of the spectrum think.

    Overall Graffiti Moon was an exhilarating and exciting ride, where Lucy must outrun the night in order to find Shadow. The contemporary overall was thrilling, without a dull moment when the journey begins.

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  • Posted February 15, 2012

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    Highly Recommended Coming of Age Contemporary

    Once upon a time there was a girl who loved a mysterious guy she'd never met before. A guy that painted walls in the night with visions she could only imagine until she saw them and she thought she knew him from his paintings from his graffiti art and his name Shadow. Once upon a time there was a boy, who's father ran out on his pregnant sixteen year old mother and who quit school in the 10th year because he got caught cheating. So he quit and got a job and became a shadow, The Shadow, expressing himself through art saying what he couldn't say in words. And one girl could read what he said. This is their story. Everyone has their own issues they are dealing with, Jazz's parents have had her on lock down studying since midterms and they are away in Germany so she's out to have a good time. Daisy wants a new boyfriend after Dylan, her boyfriend of 3 yrs egged her Jazz and Lucy in the head after school today. And Lucy, she wants to find Shadow because she knows from his paintings they will have everything in common and she has stopped going out since that ill fated date with Ed in tenth year, shortly before he dropped out of school. It's obvious from the way Ed describes his problems in school that he has a learning disability but Leo has helped him get by until tenth year. He got a job at a paint store and worked for a man that was a pseudo father and bolstered his self esteem. But he died and Ed hasn't had a job since then and can't help his mom pay the rent. Even though the events happen over the course of a night, it seems like it is much longer. Not because the story lags or the pace is slow, but because Ed and Lucy get to know each other so well. The chapters are told alternating between Ed and Lucy and it works really well. Lucy's idea of love is romance and that's what she thinks Shadow represents, because he understands art and is sensitive according to what she sees. And for Ed, he sees himself through the eyes of others as a dropout with no future, going nowhere, painting on walls and he sees nothing. But he and Lucy share their thoughts on Shadow's paintings and art and life throughout the night ans some other adventures. There's just no other way to say that it's a completely addictive novel. It was a day and a half read for me but only because I started late in the day. I loved the writing style, the narration and the characters. I didn't say much about them. Leo is a man of words, a guy after my own heart, though after this novel, I'm not so sure. He writes poetry and he's really good. Again, his poems are spare, but to the point. And he's the best friend a guy like Ed could ever ask for. And vice versa. Dylan is a bit stupid. I think he's smart, he just acts before he thinks, like egging his girlfriend. But he's a bit more of a secondary character than the others are. Jazz is a good friend to Lucy. After all, she's the one that gets her into this night and helps her see it through. And its a night she'll always remember. And Daisy, well she's a bit like Dylan in the role she plays, just a bit character. There are parents! It runs the gamut from crap to very well meaning and meddlesome. And there are other adults involved in the lives of the characters lives. There is a very lit bit of swearing an some talk of doing it but that is it. Use you best judgement.

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  • Posted February 14, 2012

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    Graffiti Moon is Fantastic!!!

    I love this book! Graffiti Moon is the first book I’ve read about Australian teenagers, but they’re no different from American teens, except their slang, which I loved. I thank you, Cath Crowley, for this amazing story of these six teenagers on their last night of their twelfth year, and for the word "wanker". Yes I know what it means, but I still love the way it sounds. Crowley has written a beautiful and funny story, with very serious time-to-grow-up moments for three of these six teens. Graffiti Moon is told from Lucy and Ed's (Shadow) POV, which makes this story prefect to see what's going on in their heads. This is a fantastic story with these teens' last night of high school. The only thing that would make this story more fantastic would be if Cath Crowley writes a second book continuing the story of Lucy and Ed going on with their plans of art school, and the love that started with these two. I would love more Cath Crowley’s awesome writing.

    Lucy is determined to meet Shadow, the graffiti artist who paints on the city walls. In her mind, this is the perfect guy and the love of her life. The last boy Lucy dated was in her year ten of school, who she thought was her Mr. Right until he grabs her arse and she in returns breaks his nose on their first date. So Lucy is on a mission to find Shadow on this last night before she’s off to start college. She meets up with her two best friends, Jezz and Daisy, at the coffee shop. Jezz has plans for this last night, too, and it’s to hook-up with the next guy who walks into the coffee shop. And next guy who walks in is Leo, but he’s not alone. Ed and Dylan are with him. This is where the fun begins with these six teens on their celebration night of year twelve.

    Graffiti Moon is hilarious, but it’s also very serious with teens making the right choices and with sweet, loving romance. The kind of romance that all us girls dream about having with a guy and not ending up with a wanker (just had to use that word again lol) I highly recommend Graffiti Moon as an awesome read.
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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 10, 2011

    I can't wait for this book!

    This book it's gonna be really good! The story is very original !

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