Wednesday, May 9, 2012
Review: Graffiti Moon by Cath Crowley
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. ~ Goodreads
I had trouble reading Graffiti Moon at first. I had read about 50 pages and while it was a good book with a cute premise I can't say I was all that invested in the characters.
Graffiti Moon is told in the alternating POV's of Ed/Shadow - a graffiti artist, Poet/Leo - who adds the words to Ed/Shadow's art & Lucy - a girl who is chasing the fantasy of Shadow but has to deal with the reality of Ed.
I love alternating POV's so that wasn't the problem exactly. It was that in addition to the multiple POV's there were also flashbacks explaining past events and the kids were almost too precious in that way that YA teens sometimes are. Almost too hip, too wise. Too unbelievable. I didn't readily take to Crowley's writing style.
I set the book aside and read something else. Unfortunately Graffiti Moon was a "review" book so I knew I needed to get back to it soon.
I'm so glad that I continued with this book because once the characters fates are intertwined and their secrets unfold I was completely hooked. I had that feeling you get when you're reading something special. You rush to read faster then pull back to make it last just a little longer.
The story takes place over a 24 hour time period. Lucy and her BFF's (Jazz & Daisy) are looking for a night of fun to celebrate the end of year 12 when they meet up with a group of boys (Ed, Leo and Dylan). Lucy is sure that the boys can lead her to Shadow, the graffiti artist who's art speaks to her soul.
Ed grudgingly takes her on a tour of "Shadow's" work hoping that Lucy will connect the dots and see that he is Shadow and that some of the paintings are actually of Lucy. He's baring his soul to her and exposing secrets about himself that he's rarely done with anyone else hoping that she'll want him anyway.
Lucy can't stand Ed because of the way their first date ended years ago (him grabbing her arse and her breaking his nose) but she finds herself spilling all her hopes and dreams to Ed and finding herself falling for him and caring less about her fantasy of Shadow.
Ed & Lucy are both artists and they see the night in bright colors and vibrant scenes. Lucy is a glassblower and makes bottles that hold scenes of her memories inside so she sees the night as moments to shape and store into her bottles. Ed sees and hears Lucy as colors bursting onto a wall in one of his paintings. The perfect blue - birds taking flight. I don't think I could ever visualize a book as easily as I could Graffiti Moon. I have ZERO artistic abilities but I wanted to paint murals of birds all over my walls when I finished reading.
I think this book should be made into a graphic novel. It would be incredible.
The supporting characters were just as interesting. Leo/Poet is in big trouble and needs to earn money quick. He makes poor choices but his reasons are touching. Ed's loyalty to Leo and their friendship was so nice to read about. He and Jazz's blossoming relationship is adorable.
Jazz, Daisy, Dylan, Ed's ex-girlfriend - Beth , his boss & mentor - Bert, Lucy's parents….they all shape where Ed and Lucy came from and who they become. Poet's chapters are brief but pack a powerful punch just at the right moments.
Rating: Despite the slow start I really have to give it 4 out of 4 anyway because of how happy it made me overall. I wanted to hug this book when I finished.
~ "Are you quiet because you're nervous?" he asked."
"I'm quiet because I'm excited." I told him about how I felt, watching him make glass. It was like he was hatching a world from a ball of honey."
~ "I like the way he talks. It's the right amount of strange."
She orbits slowly
Like She's unraveling air
"I know things," she says.
I smell peppermint
It's too sweet in here
I move clockwise
What she's unwinding
~ “Her fingers smudge the lines, and I'm back at school, watching her draw tangles, I think maybe these bottles started from there and i want to ask her if they did, but I don't.
After a while she stands back and we look at the shapes circling me in the thin night. My piece looks better with them on there and I try not to show what I'm thinking. That her work is strange and cool and beautiful, like her."
~ "You're not an entirely safe girl."
"You're not an entirely safe guy."
And this final quote describes the book and Cath Crowley’s writing best to me. It's how I felt while I was reading it. I could SEE Graffiti Moon.
"Her words are pictures, and I'm painting them on the wall in my head as she talks"
Author: website | twitter
Source: Alfred A. Knopf for my honest review
Buy the book! Graffiti Moon
Question to those who have read the book. Do you think that Ed & Lucy are living in a loft with glass flowers or birds hanging from the ceilings and their lives splashed in colors all across their walls? It's all I can think about for some reason. I hope so. lol
Have you guys ever read a book that you almost gave up on and then it ends up becoming one of your favorites? This is the first time that’s ever happened to me.