Thursday, October 18, 2012

Stealing Parker - Miranda Kenneally

Synopsis: Red-hot author Miranda Kenneally hits one out of the park in this return to Catching Jordan's Hundred Oaks High.
After her family's scandal rocks their conservative small town, 17-year-old Parker Shelton goes overboard trying to prove that she won't turn out like her mother: a lesbian. The all-star third-baseman quits the softball team, drops 20 pounds and starts making out with guys--a lot. But hitting on the hot new assistant baseball coach might be taking it a step too far...especially when he starts flirting back. (From Goodreads)

Miranda Kenneally completely won me over with Catching Jordan. So I already knew how much I was going to love Stealing Parker. I had absolutely no doubts that it would be anything less than spectacular. So I'll just declare it now - Dear Miranda Kenneally, I am a super fan of yours for life. I will read anything you write. Love, Hannah.

Parker is a character who rings as one of the truest YA characters I've read in a long time. She's making up things as she goes, she's trying to fit in, and she's following her heart (or her hormones, either one...) even when it leads down some pretty sketchy paths. She also has some issues with being dragged to church and having some questions about religion and God. I cannot even express how well this was handled. Religion can be touchy in books, but it is so naturally a part of Parker's life that it's not preaching, it's not a focus, it's just part of who she is.

Back to those paths that Parker is on though - I absolutely adore that Parker is able to go down these paths and then she recognizes her mistakes and she FIXES them. She doesn't keep going because she has no choice. She stops, evaluates, and executes. She gets off the path, or she turns around and tries it some other way. And she does it HERSELF. There's no boy here saving her - she makes decisions and then keeps going. But of course, she's a teenager, so all of these moments where she's making a choice are intensely charged with emotions or hormones. She's such a teenager - and although there are very few similarities between my life and Parker's - she really reminds me of how I was at that age. Which is the same magic that Miranda brought to Jordan's character.

And ok. The whole falling for the coach thing - a little skeevie. I mean, he's dreamy, for about five minutes. It's the premise for the novel, but what makes this book worth reading is watching Parker heal and connect with the people around her. I love the secondary characters in this book. It is a book about baseball/softball so there are a few jocks popping in and out of the pages. I love the way they're portrayed. They have a bit of an edge, but they're all pretty soft inside. The scenes with Parker and the baseball team were just hilarious.

There are some really great things going on with Parker's family as well. And by great, I mean great for the story. The dynamics there are complex and they are shifting through the entire book. There's also an underlying commentary on religion and sexuality going on (which again is anything but preachy or in your face). There are some things in here that just need to be said and need to be read.

If it's not obvious, I love this book. And I'm beyond excited for Things I Can't Forget. I have an interview with Miranda that will be up in a couple days and she may or may not dish on her next book. So watch out for that!

3 comments:

  1. I love Miranda Kenneally. Catching Jordan was amazing. I bought stealing Parker the day it cam out. I am really excited to read it. :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. I adored both Catching Jordan and Stealing Parker as well. I totally agree about the religion part. It never felt preachy to me and I loved that. I also really just loved Parker. Great review!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I agree that the religion managed to avoid feeling preachy and was quite deftly handled. Brian was so skeevy! Like majorly. I was okay with him until he asked her to dinner, which was about five seconds after he showed up. GROSS!

    BUT I loved Corndog, even though I can't take that nickname seriously. :-p

    ReplyDelete

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Stealing Parker - Miranda Kenneally

Synopsis: Red-hot author Miranda Kenneally hits one out of the park in this return to Catching Jordan's Hundred Oaks High.
After her family's scandal rocks their conservative small town, 17-year-old Parker Shelton goes overboard trying to prove that she won't turn out like her mother: a lesbian. The all-star third-baseman quits the softball team, drops 20 pounds and starts making out with guys--a lot. But hitting on the hot new assistant baseball coach might be taking it a step too far...especially when he starts flirting back. (From Goodreads)

Miranda Kenneally completely won me over with Catching Jordan. So I already knew how much I was going to love Stealing Parker. I had absolutely no doubts that it would be anything less than spectacular. So I'll just declare it now - Dear Miranda Kenneally, I am a super fan of yours for life. I will read anything you write. Love, Hannah.

Parker is a character who rings as one of the truest YA characters I've read in a long time. She's making up things as she goes, she's trying to fit in, and she's following her heart (or her hormones, either one...) even when it leads down some pretty sketchy paths. She also has some issues with being dragged to church and having some questions about religion and God. I cannot even express how well this was handled. Religion can be touchy in books, but it is so naturally a part of Parker's life that it's not preaching, it's not a focus, it's just part of who she is.

Back to those paths that Parker is on though - I absolutely adore that Parker is able to go down these paths and then she recognizes her mistakes and she FIXES them. She doesn't keep going because she has no choice. She stops, evaluates, and executes. She gets off the path, or she turns around and tries it some other way. And she does it HERSELF. There's no boy here saving her - she makes decisions and then keeps going. But of course, she's a teenager, so all of these moments where she's making a choice are intensely charged with emotions or hormones. She's such a teenager - and although there are very few similarities between my life and Parker's - she really reminds me of how I was at that age. Which is the same magic that Miranda brought to Jordan's character.

And ok. The whole falling for the coach thing - a little skeevie. I mean, he's dreamy, for about five minutes. It's the premise for the novel, but what makes this book worth reading is watching Parker heal and connect with the people around her. I love the secondary characters in this book. It is a book about baseball/softball so there are a few jocks popping in and out of the pages. I love the way they're portrayed. They have a bit of an edge, but they're all pretty soft inside. The scenes with Parker and the baseball team were just hilarious.

There are some really great things going on with Parker's family as well. And by great, I mean great for the story. The dynamics there are complex and they are shifting through the entire book. There's also an underlying commentary on religion and sexuality going on (which again is anything but preachy or in your face). There are some things in here that just need to be said and need to be read.

If it's not obvious, I love this book. And I'm beyond excited for Things I Can't Forget. I have an interview with Miranda that will be up in a couple days and she may or may not dish on her next book. So watch out for that!

3 comments:

  1. I love Miranda Kenneally. Catching Jordan was amazing. I bought stealing Parker the day it cam out. I am really excited to read it. :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. I adored both Catching Jordan and Stealing Parker as well. I totally agree about the religion part. It never felt preachy to me and I loved that. I also really just loved Parker. Great review!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I agree that the religion managed to avoid feeling preachy and was quite deftly handled. Brian was so skeevy! Like majorly. I was okay with him until he asked her to dinner, which was about five seconds after he showed up. GROSS!

    BUT I loved Corndog, even though I can't take that nickname seriously. :-p

    ReplyDelete