Collecting stolen loot leads to collecting friends.
Shy transfer student Elodie, popular “princess” Tabitha and tough-looking, “burnout” Moe (short for Maureen) cross paths unexpectedly when each is forced to complete a 12-week Shoplifters Anonymous program. Hiding their association by day among their clique-driven social circles, the three high school juniors secretly meet outside of their Portland, Ore., school to brag and compare notes about their pilfered swag. In the process of learning about their shoplifting addiction, Elodie, Tabitha and Moe discover they have even more in common when it comes to family, relationships, sexuality, body image and self-esteem problems. Smith gives each young woman a distinct voice, emphasized through Elodie’s verse form, Tabitha’s prose and Moe’s diary entries. As they become less concerned with appearance and more interested in filling the voids in their lives with healthy choices, the teens make their unconventional friendship public.
Although the storyline is predictable from the start, a few slight twists, realistic encounters, romances all around and a just-right ending will make this a hit with fans of Sarah Dessen, Deb Caletti, Elizabeth Scott and other venerable chick-lit authors. (Chick lit. 14 & up)