Hundred Oaks #2
Publication date: 1st October 2012
Reviewed by Lesley
Stealing Parker by Miranda Kenneally sees another sporty heroine trying to hold her own in a jock dominated high school environment. Like it's predecessor Catching Jordon, Stealing Parker is a completly addictive Young Adult book that had me laughing one minute and crying the next.
Parker's life is turned up side down when her mum leaves her dad for another woman. Their church (who annoyed me no idea they were so freaking judgemental) freeze them out and kids at school are whispering behind Parker's back. When arch enemy Laura starts a rumour that Parker likes girls just like her mum Parker takes drastic action, she drops 20 pounds and gives up her first love softball and starts kissing a lot of boys. When young new coach Brian takes over the baseball team Parker finds herself falling for him, he's smart, funny, super cute and interested but at five years older and a teacher any kind of relationship is forbidden.
It took me a while to warm up to Stealing Parker and it's characters, I wasn't too sure where the story was going at times but by the end of it I was in tears and just wanted to give Parker a major hug. I got mad at Parker's dad a lot and at her church who were so narrow minded and judgemental I wanted to scream with frustration on Parker's behalf. I went from thinking coach Brian was kind of sweet and supportive of Parker to being quite mad at him for not acting like the adult he was supposed to be. I think it's a testament to Miranda Kenneally's writing that I felt so strongly about the characters and world she created around Parker. I'm not usually too much of a fan of religious stuff in fiction but it was handled so well in Stealing Parker and really added to the story.
A special mention is absolutely required for Will (Corndog). As I started to go off coach Brian, Will's thoughtfulness and constant support made me realise just like Parker did, that the perfect guy has been under her nose all this time.
Although my heart did ache for Parker there were times where I thought she just seemed to put up with a little bit too much. I think the average teenager would have ranted and raved at least once at the behaviour of those around her. It took Parker to get to her absolute lowest point before she was able to reach out for her mum and I have to say that by that point I was in floods of tears too!
I enjoyed Stealing Parker and will definitely check out the next book in the series Things I can't Forget in March 2013.
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