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Playing in Traffic

3.58 of 5 stars 3.58  ·  rating details  ·  567 ratings  ·  79 reviews



Skye Colby? She's the multi-pierced, multi-tattooed girl hanging around the cybercafés, always out at odd hours in marginal places. The jocks call her "slut puppy," the bland blondes in the plaid miniskirts wrinkle their noses at her, the teachers think she's brilliant,

Paperback, 176 pages
Published March 1st 2006 by Simon Pulse (first published August 1st 2003)
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Vampire Kisses by Ellen SchreiberThe Ghost and the Goth by Stacey KadeQueen of the Dead by Stacey KadeGhostgirl by Tonya HurleyKissing Coffins by Ellen Schreiber
Books With Goth Characters
24th out of 59 books — 36 voters
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YA Novels of 2003
91st out of 111 books — 17 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 985)
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What I liked about this book:
+ Katy. What an awesome character she was. The conflict between her and Matt at the end was heartbreaking.
+ Some of the writing. The beginning and the end notably.
+ When Matt's world begins to crumble around him, it is well-described and potent.
+ Matt is believable and unusual as a YA hero.
+ The last few lines. Gail Giles is known for her mindf--k endings, and this was undoubtedly my favourite. Except maybe Shattering Glass.

What I didn't like about this book:
- I just
Skye Colby is flirting with Matt Lathrop. She is a very wierd goth girl who is apparently hot to Matt, a kid who is an almost invisible nobody. He thinks that she is fun to hang out with outside of school, but ignores her in school because of her social status.After he and Skye hang out one night, the next morning a school, she goes over to his locker. He tries to ignore her. Trying to be discreet after the conversation, he turns around hoping no one saw them, and there is Taylor Bankslooking t ...more
Michelle Tiznado
I originally picked this book because of the title. It seemed very intriguing to me and it immediately caught my attention. I read the summary at the back of the book and decided it would be a good book for me to read. When I first started reading it seemed okay pretty average beginning explaining each character and they all seemed quite interesting. Specially the character Skye. She was the total opposite from Matt. She had tattoos and she didn’t have the best reputation at school which made h ...more
Jake Austro
This book was my second from Gail Giles but this was nothing short of "Right Behind You"
i Rated this book a 4 out of 5 because i loved the way Matt and Skye's characters fed off of each other also i loved the way Katie's character was used almost as a voice of reason which really added a whole new dimension to the book. This book had one of the largest jaw dropping endings i have ever read in a novel which left me sitting in awe as i closed the cover for my final time.
One dislike i had with th
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kiera Beddes
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
420 Requirement: Gail Giles
Mental Illness, Abuseive Realationships, Family Relations

Matt is a low key guy whose parents aren’t around much. He and his sister look out for each other, but Matt is keeping the family secret from her. Katy’s father is not Matt’s father. Meanwhile, Matt has gotten involved with a girl named Skye, the school’s goth girl, slut. She is needy and he dreams of being her knight in shining armor, and tapping her. This confusion between wanting to be a good guy and wanting t
Joel Richardson
Playing in Traffic by Gail Giles Bleak, suspense, brother/sister and
teenage relationships

As narrated by Matt, Playing in Traffic is a bleak novel telling the story of a quiet, doormat senior class man in high school with a few friends and no history of cool or relationships with girls. And then the school goth-girl singles him out and wants to be his lover. Matt finds out, though, that he becomes her used lover as she utilizes him to do her dirty work and equivocally console her. Matt soon fin
Kelly Thielen
This book will keep the reader on the edge of his or her seat! It's another psychological thriller by Gail Giles with an ending that will leave you breathless. There is mature content and language throughout the story so it's not appropriate for younger adolescents.

Matt is just an ordinary guy until he meets Skye, the goth girl everyone ignores and makes fun of. He knows she is not really his type, but he's heard she might be "easy," so he ignores the fact that he doesn't even really like her an
Cathleen Ash
Matt’s invisible. Not in the “I’m right here but you can’t see me” kind of invisible, but close. He’s one of those senior high school guys who makes it through all four years of school and people only vaguely remember his face. Nothing that he did. Nothing that he said. Matt likes invisibility, but he finds it hard to keep his once Skye starts playing up to him.

Skye is bad…bad in all the ways Matt would never dream of being. But when she teased the tip of her tongue out from between her “come-ki
Raylee Gifford
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This book was absolutely terrible. The characters were not developed, the story was incredibly weak, and the ending was over the top. The entire book read like an attempt at touching on teenage self-harm and destructive behavior, but it tried so hard that it just seemed incredibly unbelievable and contrived. It was not at all believable and the characters simply failed to connect with the reader in any way.
This book was very good it had romantic/drama/action/horror/thrill it was one of the great's books ive read. In the Book Playing in Traffic u wouldent even no what would happen next so u would keep on reading. the book had a lot of Adult stuff in it and a little bit of cussing but that's y I read it because it had every thing u want in a book.
Love Gail Giles---Playing in Traffic is aptly titled, about a teen, Matt, who is pretty pathetic when it comes to girls, he has about 2 friends and mostly absentee parents. He is really close to his kid sister, Katy, because of his hands off parents and something he overheard when he was 10 years old. After that, Matt was Kayt's parents, best friend and confidant. Now Matt is being set up and seduced by bad girl, Skye. He knows "she plays in traffic"----and he doesn't, but it feels so exciting t ...more
Jen Bojkov
As usual this Gale Giles novel keeps you on the edge of your seat watching as the relationship between Skye- goth girl- and Matt- regular guy- spirals out of control along with Skye's mental deterioration. It's like watching a train wreck you know is coming, but can't stop. The ending is abrupt and shocking.
Gail Giles must be a professional in writing. I'm not a big reading fan, so when I come across a book that I love, it has to be a great book. I couldn't stop turning the pages as soon as I set my eyes on the first few paragraphs. The situation sounds so realistic, which made me read on since I love to hear other people's drama. It keeps my blood circulating as I wonder about the situation and think about questions that make me think so hard my head hurts. I would recommend this book to anybody w ...more
me,myself and hubbz dats all
This book is really interesting as soon as you read the first page your drawn into it. it talks about a boy named Matt and how he basically is the father of his little sister because he was the one who always looked after her when his parents are at works witch is kinda always and also how she might not be his whole sister but just his half it talks about how Matt is like his own little world/box he doesn't hang with a lot of people but one day the school goth girl also known as Skye picks him o ...more
I really usually like her books because they're very drama filled and I like the characters. But this one was just too much. I felt like she tried to put too much in it and didn't explain it all. I also realized half way through this book that I had already read it before and had completely forgotten about it, which makes the point that it's an unremarkable read and it won't really stay with you for very long after you've turned the last page.
Overall the story could have been good and the main
If you grew up in a city or town, likely you heard from a parent: "Don't play in traffic!" Gail Giles seeks to reinforce the dangers of life in her new book Playing in Traffic. And if there's one word that describes Skye, it's dangerous. Dangerous and deceptive. Ok, two words. And Matt Lathrop has fallen for her scheming ways about as hard as a teenage guy can fall. Matt wants to believe that Skye is just playful and adventurous, if maybe a little disturbed, what with all the IMs telling him to ...more
Harold Smithson (Suicide punishable by Death)
Boasts poor pacing, cliched characters, and unconvincing human interaction. It's not insulting enough to warrant a single star, but it's close.
Kailie Smith
It was ok but kind of inappropriate so I don't recommend it to anyone, unless you like reading that kind of stuff.
Robin -
The characters in Playing in Traffic are so various that you can't believe they can get along with each other at all. There are several family issues that make the story vivid and varied. The chapters are rather short what makes the reading more attractive. Every chapter deals with a specific character of the book. A recurring chapter for example is "Skye" in which the authors writes mainly about the goth styled girl, antagonist of Matt - the main character. I can hardly find anything negative a ...more
I've loved Gail Giles ever since I read Shattering Glass, which I knew would probably disturb most people, but was to me true to life. Playing in Traffic keeps with the realism, telling the story of a high school boy caught up in the web of a seemingly sweet, innocent and abused, but very troubled classmate. In time it turns out most of her tales are untrue, but there are so many variations it becomes hard to keep up. The suspense is high, and the ending will either fit right in or leave you gap ...more

Mental Illness/family/suicide/sex

Matt is a doormat, invisible to everyone, even his friends. That's until Skye notices him, inviting him to experience her world of sex, raves, lies, and excitement. It ends when he realizes that she really is crazy, and will really never love him, and really is using him terribly. I hated it, personally. It was interesting to read, though. I hated it not that I think it's of no value, but because it made me uncomfortable, and even a little depressed. It ma
Playing in Traffic by Gail Giles
Genre: fiction
Um. Sorry I did not like anything about this book. Ok so Matt is an ordinary high school boy and randomly this hot goth chick starts paying attention to him and lures him into her trap with her sexuality, but she really is just trying to use him to murder her parents?
Creepy and disturbing on several levels and I didn't like the characters or the weird format of the chapters. A lot of sex tension and bad language and other serious, adult, and bleak th
Ashley Meihls
Jul 09, 2011 Ashley Meihls rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: People who want a mystery story that is grounded in reality.
I really loved this book. I founf it at the library and I have been reading every book by Gail Giles I can find. I thought the wold plot was great, it kept me going and guessing until the very last page. Now, I hate giving spoliers in my book reviews, so generally I don't. But, I did think the ending was amazing! It blew me away, because it was not what I was expecting. The only thing I did not like much about the book is the fact that sex does make it into the story quite a bit, which is just n ...more
What the hell? That was my first thought of the character Skye in the book. This girl is crazier than an out house rat on meth. She lies, steals, has sex, gets violent, does drugs, and last but not least wants someone to off her parents. Skye's chosen one is a teenaged boy who prefers to blend in and fly under the radar at all times. When Matt falls for Skye he is taken in by her crazy charm and outlandish lies. He wants to help her..She wants him to do the unthinkable. Sometimes no one gets wha ...more
Apr 12, 2010 Katrina rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: 15+ Year Old Boys
Shelves: boy-read, fiction, teen
The language in this book is weird; "ride the mellow," "I had done big bad." This got annoying and distracting. The basic plot is ok but the execution was off, especially the ending. The book had me going for a while, and it’s such a quick read that I was too the end before the story got too bogged down but the ending was terrible. Bad endings cast a bad light on the whole book. Though I wasn't a big fan, the book is still worth reading.

2Q 4P S
This book wasn't so bad, but I almost had this "I was expecting more" vibe. The story was kinda bumpy and you ask, "What's this about anyway?" a lot. Towards the middle, I got kinda tired of it, but I finished it anyway because I didn't want it to bug me like, "What happened?!" There is a sudden ending, too, that just HAPPENS and then the book is over without even warning you. But it was alright, so go ahead and read it!
I don't recommend this book to anyone. The writing is done well but the story is crap. It's about a brooding, doormat senior which is propositioned to be a goth girl's lover and they have sex. She later started to manipulate him by giving him a story of abuse in the family that turns out to be a total sham and asks him to kill her parents. When he refuses, she threatens his parents because someone must die.
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Gail Giles is the author of six young adult novels. Her debut novel, Shattering Glass, was an ALA Best of the Best Book, a Book Sense 76 selection, and a Booklist Top 10 Mystery for Youth selection. The novel is about an high school boy named Simon Glass that is helped to become one of the most popular dogs in school by other students. Her second novel, Dead Girls Don’t Write Letters, was an ALA T ...more
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What Happened to Cass McBride? Right Behind You Shattering Glass Dead Girls Don't Write Letters Dark Song

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“With the sound of waves outside, the bed seemed like our own Guld and we were swimmers. Front to front, out bodies slicked with sweat, each swimming and stroking, one against the other. We rode the waves to the crests, then plummeted down, only to ride the wave to the next breaker. We swam against the current that threatened to pull us under.” 2 likes
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