Stealing Parker (Hundred Oaks #2) by Miranda Kenneally

Title: Stealing Parker
Author: Miranda Kenneally
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Release Date: October 1st 2012

Summary from Goodreads:
Red-hot author Miranda Kenneally hits one out of the park in this return to Catching Jordan's Hundred Oaks High.

After a 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.


After Catching Jordan, I was super excited to jump right into Stealing Parker.  Stealing Parker focuses on another group of characters but with cameos from Catching Jordan characters. (Not going to lie, I need to remember names better, ha. It took me a second to remember who was who.) Similar to book one, Kenneally blends sports, relationships, and heavier topics into a fast paced compelling read.  This book focuses on Parker's relationship with baseball and softball.  Parker walked away from softball after her mother left her father.  The event rocked her world in a rough way.  Parker is faced with gossip, a lack of support from friends, and an overall sense of less.

Stealing Parker felt heavier to me than Catching Jordan.  The reaction Parker's church and friends had to Parker's mother's sexuality was not an easy read.  Parker need support and instead she had most everyone turn their backs on her or give her the cold shoulder.  The struggle Parker faces when questioning her church and her personal relationship with God was brutally honest and emotional.  Kenneally did her justice in her portrayal of the difficult situation Parker was facing.

Aside from the religious aspects , Parker also fell into a complicated romance.  While Parker stumbles and makes some mistakes, she stays strong; she learns and grows throughout the course of the book.  My primary reasoning behind the three star rating has to do with the romance.  Parks of the romance I just did not really like.

Stealing Parker was a heavier yet still enjoyable addition to the Hundred Oaks series.  I will caveat this book though: If religion and religious struggles are not for you, then this might not be the book for you.  Now to start Things I Can't Forget ;)
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