by Mary Carter Book : Fiction
This Novel is the “Steal” of the Century!   (2008-10-21)
Melanie is a young, aspiring actress that deals with her stress by shoplifting. She knows that it’s wrong, but she just can’t resist the “warm-all-over-feeling” that she gets when she takes just “a little something” home after a bad day. Although this is a serious problem, I enjoyed the way that Mary Carter tackles this sensitive topic by mixing humor with the crimes. She doesn’t make it okay to be a thief and we get to see how Melanie is negatively affected by her chosen hobby.
Despite the grand larceny angle, this was a “gumdrop” of chick-lit – sweet and delicious! She reminded me a little of Becky in Confessions of a Shopaholic, one of the reviews on the back of this book even compares her to Becky, but it’s a totally different story and although it was funny, there was a deeper message behind the story of her kleptomania and Mary Carter was gifted in the way she gave out clues that all was not always right in Melanie’s world.
There’s even a little Emma Corrigan of Can You Keep a Secret? In this plot line, as Melanie, like Emma, finds a burgeoning attraction to her boss, but this story stands alone as a very special kind of chick lit story – I have to applaud Carter’s creativity in choosing this controversial storyline and giving readers a peek into the many reasons why someone would steal. It’s not just greed or lack of money – this shoplifter gains something greater than the object itself and while Melanie admits that it’s wrong, she just can’t seem to stop helping herself – to other people’s stuff!
Mary Carter is a gifted story-teller and keeps things exciting as we get to watch Melanie as she almost gets caught many times and we’re like, “yeah, right” each time she swears she’ll never steal again. So, in the end, does Melanie get caught and get sent to “the big house” to pay for her crimes? Does her boss find out that she’s “criminal-minded”? It’s fun being “on the run” with Melanie to see if she thinks it’s worth it in the end and to find the answer to the age-old question…”does crime pay?”
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