Graffiti Girl

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Graffiti Girl by Kelly Parra

About the Book

Raised by her single mom (who's always dating the wrong kind of man) in a struggling California neighborhood, Angel Rodriguez is a headstrong, independent young woman who channels her hopes and dreams for the future into her painting. But when her entry for a community mural doesn't rate, she's heartbroken. Even with winning artist Nathan Ramos -- a senior track star and Angel's secret crush -- taking a sudden interest in Angel and her art, she's angry and hurt. She's determined to find her own place in the art world, her own way.

That's when Miguel Badalin -- from the notorious graffiti crew Reyes Del Norte -- opens her eyes to an underground world of graf tags and turf wars. She's blown away by this bad boy's fantastic work and finds herself drawn to his dangerous charm. Soon she's running with Miguel's crew, pushing her skills to the limit and beginning to emerge as the artist she always dreamed she could be. But Nathan and Miguel are bitter enemies with a shared past, and choosing between them and their wildly different approaches to life and art means that Angel must decide what matters most before the artist inside of her can truly break free.(From the publisher)

Graffiti Girl stands out from other contemporary Young Adult fiction due to its unusual setting and subject matter. While certain aspects of teenage life cross all boundaries, it's refreshing to see a novel set outside the white urban teenager world. Graffiti artists are often demonized in our culture, yet Parra's exploration of this world reveals the human aspect of this world.

Graffiti Girl was a 2008 RITA® finalist in the RITA®: Best First Book and RITA®: Best Young Adult Romance categories. The novel was also optioned as a motion picture.