“Let me make it in time. Let me meet 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.”
It’s the end of Year 12. Lucy’s looking for Shadow, the graffiti artist everyone talks about.
His work is all over the city, but he is nowhere.
Ed, the last guy she wants to see at the moment, says he knows where to find him. He takes Lucy on an all-night search to places where Shadow’s thoughts about heartbreak and escape echo around the city walls.
But the one thing Lucy can’t see is the one thing that’s right before her eyes.
Every time I think of giving up YA because of the insta-love, love-triangle drama, I read a book like Graffiti Moon, and remember why I do love this genre.
Now that high school has come to an end, Lucy knows she’s ready to move on. To explore her passion for art and dreams and life. But first, she’s determined to find the one guy that she knows she’s meant to explore it all with, the elusive graffiti artist, Shadow. And though he doesn’t know it, he’s been looking for her, too.
I think the thing I connected with most while reading Graffiti Moon was the memory of that feeling you have when you’re just starting out in life and you realize anything is possible. That feeling of being young and unstoppable, of being a bit naive about the evils in life and following your heart because that’s all that matters.
For Lucy, following her heart really is all that matters. And she does it bravely, despite what her friends might think or what others might say. She searches for Shadow, desperate to make a connection with him because she believes he’s the only person who’d understand who she truly is. Then there’s Ed. Who’s is not exactly lurking in the shadows, but not seeking the spotlight either. He’s not your typical, overdone tortured artist. He’s just a guy who’s trying to deal with his shame and guilt. He doesn’t want to disappoint the people he cares about because he doesn’t want to lose them.
My heart truly ached for Ed, but not because I felt sorry for him. It was because I could feel the frustration he had for himself. And I really admired Lucy, for daring to be herself. Both Ed and Lucy are remarkable characters, and I didn’t want my night of art, and magic, and love with them to end. Plus, their slow blooming romance felt a little like getting anonymous love letters. The sweetness it carried made me giddy!
Really, all of Crowley’s characters were relatable. She truly allowed them to be teens, just trying to figure stuff out. She also included a healthy dose of subtle humor and melodrama, but the characters were also introspective and tangible, which made me want to jump into their story and share in their adventures.
Graffiti Moon is a simple, hopeful tale that shook up the girl meets boy familiarity with a few broken noses and a reminder of one of life’s best lessons, some things are just worth the trouble.