Stealing Parker by Miranda Kenneally

8:00 AM

Title: Stealing Parker
Author: Miranda Kenneally
Release Date: October 1, 2012 (paperback)
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Pages: 256
Source: ARC received from publisher

Overall: 4 Stars

Parker Shelton pretty much has the perfect life. She’s on her way to becoming valedictorian at Hundred Oaks High, she’s made the all-star softball team, and she has plenty of friends. Then her mother’s scandal rocks their small town and suddenly no one will talk to her.

Now Parker wants a new life.

So she quits softball. Drops twenty pounds. And she figures why kiss one guy when she can kiss three? Or four. Why limit herself to high school boys when the majorly cute new baseball coach seems especially flirty?

But how far is too far before she loses herself completely? 

My Thoughts:
Miranda Kenneally's debut Catching Jordan was one of my favourite contemporary novels of 2011. For months and months ever since then, I've been anticipating the release of Stealing Parker, a companion novel, and once the book was in my hands, I just had to read it right away! Stealing Parker took me by surprise in some ways. I'd been expecting it to be heartwarming and light in humour, much like Catching Jordan had been, but Miranda Kenneally has tackled subject matter that felt deeper and more mature this time around.

I missed the camaraderie between Jordan and Henry, but Parker definitely had a good friend in Drew. He stuck by her side when her friends from church and the softball team shunned her after Parker's mother suddenly announced she was a lesbian and left to live with her new girlfriend. Feeling alienated by her peers and turning her back on the game her mother once inspired her to play, Parker quits the softball team, loses weight, and starts making out with boys to prove she won't be like her mother.

Parker still attends church every Sunday with her family, but they aren't exactly welcomed as they used to be. At home, Parker feels alone and forgotten while her father and older brother deal with her mother's absence in their own way. It's not that Parker's angry at her Mom because of who she is, but rather the way her family has been ripped apart and shaken her faith in God. I wasn't exactly a fan of Parker's church group because of their lack of acceptance and the way they stigmatized her family because of her mother's sexuality, so sometimes it was hard for me to understand why Parker even cared about their opinion.

And just when Parker thought her life couldn't get any more out of control, her love life gets complicated... She can't help flirting with the hot new assistant baseball coach, Brian, even though it's not exactly appropriate. And then there's Will, the baseball team captain who's unexpectedly very sweet and kind.

Miranda Kenneally's Stealing Parker was an addictive companion novel which left me eagerly turning the pages! Parker is far from a perfect heroine, and that was perfectly okay. She makes mistakes and regrets her decisions, but she does what she can under the circumstances and learns from her experiences. I'll be hoping Jordan and Parker both appear in the next companion novel, Things I Can't Forget 

Thanks so much to Raincoast Books for providing this review copy!

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  1. I prefer Chasing Jordan, bit I did enjoy Stealing Parker as well. I wasn't too happy about the loose ends though! Great review. :)

    1. Well, since there's going to be another companion novel, I think it's okay that there are loose ends... I read somewhere that both Parker AND Jordan will be appearing in Things I Can't Forget! :)

  2. I didn't enjoy Chasing Jordan as much, but I hope I like Stealing Parker. It sounds more like something I would like.

    1. I think if you want a book that's more playful and funny, you'll probably prefer Catching Jordan more, but if you want something that's a bit more serious, then Stealing Parker is good.