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Graffiti Moon

Graffiti Moon - Cath Crowley Art is a human activity consisting in this, that one man consciously, by means of certain external signs, hands on to others feelings he has lived through, and that other people are infected by these feelings and also experience them.—The other Leo, Leo TolstoyYou know, if my high school teacher had just handed me Graffiti Moon to explain aesthetics, Tolstoy and Kant would've made so much more sense. And been so much more enjoyable.What can I say about Cath Crowley and this book that Tolstoy hasn't? How about I show you how people have been infected by her feelings and experienced them. Noelle did a painting inspired by Graffiti Moon after reading it.Click on the picture to see a larger version in her review. I'm still harasking (not a typo) her to make prints.A Sharon Hayes made this video:Video featured in Ari's fantastic reviewGraffiti Moon is art. It takes you along as it follows Lucy and Ed on the last night of high school, but it's also about their relationship with Ed's secret alter ego, Shadow, the guy who paints in the dark. Lucy doesn't know who he is, but she knows enough about him from the pieces of himself he leaves around the city via his paintings. Ed is... lost. Except when he's Shadow. As Ed, he's just lost his job, his boss/mentor/confidant, his girlfriend, and his direction. One thing Lucy and Ed have in common, aside from Shadow, is their art. Lucy is learning to be a glass blower from her own boss/mentor/confidant, and she's as good in her art as Shadow is in his. Through their friends, Lucy and Ed end up thrown together despite their mutual reluctance. The reason for that reluctance is classic Crowley. (See Faltrain, Gracie.)I knew I loved Lucy from the moment she tells off a guy with, "You don't do that on a first date. Atticus Finch would never have done that." My girl! And she has parents who say things like,Mum laughs. “We raised a very conservative daughter. Too much Pride and Prejudice.”“That could change,” Dad says. “There’s still time to get her onto Margaret Atwood.”How is it that I simultaneously want to be the daughter and the parent in this situation?And Ed. Tom Mackee, Jonah Griggs, and Adam Wilde would like to welcome you into the book crush hall of fame. Leo/Poet is right there too. Lucy's description of Leo in the Australian edition nearly, very nearly, made me forget about Ed for a second.I once saw him from a distance and thought a tree was strolling towards me. An oak tree with a shaved head, soft eyes, and a tattoo.Perhaps that's why they chose to leave that little snippet out of the US edition, which brings me to my next topic.Cultural Differences Between Australians and Americans as Evidenced in YA Literature Class to be taught by Professor Crowley at the University of In Our Dreams at a date TBDCatie does a brilliant job of breaking down the Aussie vs US editions in her post at The Readventurer. To piggyback on her discussion, the main thing I noticed based on what was cut vs what was added in the US version is that Australians are rock 'n roll and Americans are emo. Rolling Stones "I can't get no..." references cut! Alanis Morissette reference added. My notes had a giant "MEH!" here. Also, the noble single mother goes down very well with an American audience. Whereas Ed's mum was a figure in the Aussie edition, she is now a PRESENCE in the US edition. Ed's absentee father also gets a bigger role in the US edition with his absence. Ed wonders about what kind of legacy his father has left for him by leaving. These things don't detract from the story at all. In fact, I think most audiences would embrace Ed's struggles. However, having read the Aussie edition first and loving that story as it was presented, it felt unnecessary to me.Still, I can't hate on the US edition when one of the added lines is one I absolutely love:“I know that,” I say, trying to act like I’m not embarrassed for thinking love and sex are the same thing. I know they’re not, but I want them to be close enough to at least brush each other as they pass.The US edition also has two new poems by Leo, which is a nice bonus.Regardless of which edition you have, you're good. If George Lucas can come out with 125 editions of Star Wars, Cath Crowley can have 2 editions of her books. Like the Star Wars geeks I can never make fun of again, I found myself ordering the Australian version, the US version, and today, the audiobook version. I may not be able to express my love for this book by painting, but I can do it by shopping!