Reviews for Stealing Heaven

Horn Book Guide Reviews 2008 Fall
Eighteen-year-old Danielle and her mother are con artists and thieves. They roll into the seaside town of Heaven where Dani, despite her best efforts, is befriended by an overly trusting rich girl and a handsome cop with a complicated past. Dani's sharp, clipped narration effectively reflects her precarious situation--both physical and emotional--in this coming-of-age story. Copyright 2008 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

Kirkus Reviews 2008 May #2
Other teens spend their evenings eating home-cooked meals and trudging through homework; Danielle, 18, has always lived on the run with her professional-thief mother, memorizing floor plans of estate homes and quickly calculating the worth of silver place-settings. When they arrive in Heaven, a quaint, affluent New England beach town, the lonely girl thinks it is just one more stop on an endless road to nowhere. While Danielle is meant to be gathering information on the Donaldson mansion, she inadvertently becomes chummy with Allison Donaldson, enters into a secret romance with Greg, a cop, and imagines the freedom of friends, love and a place to call home. Although her mother's persistent cough telegraphs the book's ending and makes it awfully convenient for Danielle finally to take root and realize her own dreams, teens will focus on the story's real crime--a stolen life. The fast-paced, conversational first-person narration makes for good escapist entertainment for chick-lit readers. (Fiction. YA) Copyright Kirkus 2008 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

School Library Journal Reviews 2008 August

Gr 10 Up-- Danielle, 18, has been a thief all her life. Moving from town to town, she and her mom stay around only long enough to canvas the rich and steal their silver. When she was 15, they moved on at Danielle's request, after she had sex for "the first and only time" with her mother's 20-year-old boyfriend. It's a lifestyle the teen is used to, but she's beginning to long for something more. She wants roots, friends, and a place to call home. When they hit the small resort town of Heaven, Danielle knows the routine. Her mom will chat up the men for information and she, now using the name Sydney, is supposed to do the same with her peers. Only something goes wrong, and "Sydney" begins to make friends with the mark, flirt with a local cop, and generally do everything her mom's always told her to avoid. And when it's time for the heist, Danielle is no longer sure she can follow her mom's demands. This story is deceptively touching. Danielle and her mother are both fully developed, as are the secondary characters of Allison (the friend) and Greg (the young cop). The overriding theme of living up to a parent's expectations instead of following your own path is universal, but the twist of a family of thieves gives the story originality.--Heather E. Miller, Homewood Public Library, AL

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