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.
I wish I could remember whose review I read that compared Graffiti Moon to the movie Before Sunrise. The two are similar in the sense that it’s about two people getting to know one another through an adventure that takes place in one night and is really heavy on spontaneous conversation. It differs, of course, but they’re equally magical and endearing, which is high praise from me since Before Sunrise is one of my favorite movies of all time.
Also, Graffiti Moon takes place in Australia. Woo! I don’t know what it is about Australian YA but for me it has been can’t-miss. The characters always seem to be so well written and the books themselves are so engrossing. I don’t know if that’s because only the best of the best of Aussie YA makes it over here to the States or if there are just a lot of really good writers over there. Maybe a combination of the two. Whatever it is, I seek out any Australian YA I can get my hands on.
The characters are likeable. Ed shouldn’t sound like a catch at all – he’s an unemployed high school dropout and potential criminal in the making – but he has a definite appeal to him in spite of his drawbacks. Lucy is really cool as well, she’s artistic and strong and driven. It’s fun and sweet to watch their relationship grow. And although Jazz is a fairly minor character, her favorite movie is The Goonies and SO IS MINE so I had massive insta-love for her.
Parts of the book are written in verse, which is make or break for a lot of people. I’d have said it was definitely a break for me as it’s not generally my cup of tea but it was used really well in this book, sparingly and as poems written by the aptly named Poet, sidekick of notorious graffiti artist Shadow. And here’s where I sound like a crotchety old lady because I was all, GRAFFITI? Who thinks graffiti is cool? Graffiti damages people’s property and costs a fortune! You’ll lower my property value, you little street toughs! But Ed has a code. He doesn’t paint on anything that belongs to someone, only vacant buildings and the like. And the descriptions of his work is pretty awesome, I I suppose I’ll give it a pass. But I’ve got my eye on you, Shadow.
Loved it. Wished it was longer. Wished it wasn’t a stand-alone so I could have more Lucy & Ed.