Exploring LGBT Themes in YA Lit & Everyday Library Life

Release Date: 1 October 2012
Publisher: Sourcbooks Fire
Reading/Interest Level: Grades 9 and up

Parker Shelton did a lot to deflect the pain of her mother leaving their family for a woman–quit playing softball, dropped 20 pounds, and starting making out with lots of boys. When the new baseball coach seems interested, she sees it as her first chance at a real relationship, but can she really have that with someone 6 years older than her? And while she’s trying to figure it out, will she miss out on other opportunities and friendships? Miranda Kenneally’s sophomore novel explores the bounds of friendship and what friendship really means. Parker’s story rings true of the emotions and experiences that high school seniors deal with regularly. Parker, Drew, and “Corndog” each have their own unique story to tell, and it’s done with a flawless storytelling ability that weaves their lives together. Teens will relate to the uncertainties, decisions, and emotions that she faces on a daily basis.

Miranda Kenneally writes stories that address the very real difficulties that high schoolers face while keeping her stories laced with romance and humor. Stealing Parker has a cast of characters that encompass a whole range of personalities and experiences.  Parker’s difficulties started when her mom decided that she couldn’t be happy in her marriage anymore because she’s a lesbian.  Parker resents her mom for leaving them for Theresa and their relationship for the first three-quarters of the novels is basically non-existent.  In the end, however, Parker comes around the starting to welcome her mother back into her life–a presence she desperately needed. In the course of the novel, Parker’s best friend, Drew, also finally comes out as liking boys (although he admits that he likes girls too).  Some conflict surrounds his admission but not necessarily what the reader might expect.

*Copy of this ARC reviewed courtesy of Around the World ARC Tours*

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