Read How To Steal A Car by Pete Hautman Online


From National Book Award winner Pete Hautman, the story of a girl who acts out by stealing cars.Some girls act out by drinking or doing drugs. Some girls act out by sleeping with guys. Some girls act out by starving themselves or cutting themselves. Some girls act out by being a bitch to other girls. Not Kelleigh. Kelleigh steals cars.In How to Steal a Car, National Book AFrom National Book Award winner Pete Hautman, the story of a girl who acts out by stealing cars.Some girls act out by drinking or doing drugs. Some girls act out by sleeping with guys. Some girls act out by starving themselves or cutting themselves. Some girls act out by being a bitch to other girls. Not Kelleigh. Kelleigh steals cars.In How to Steal a Car, National Book Award winner Pete Hautman takes teen readers on a thrilling, scary ride through one suburban girl's turbulent life - one car theft at a time....

Title : How To Steal A Car
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780545112871
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 176 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

How To Steal A Car Reviews

  • Jasmine
    2019-04-06 20:24

    this book isn't getting the same "4 stars" that ultraviolet got. ultraviolet got an "I really like this RIGHT NOW to a very high 3 stars and i'm just being stingy really" 4 stars. this book is getting an "I would have thought this was awesome when I was 14 and it's not painful to read now, and i'm feeling generous because it was a quick read" 4 stars. basically they are different kinds of good. this is the first book I've read in the "Jasmine project" that is what I stereotypically think of as teen novels. i'm pretty sure you can buy this for 3 dollars from those bookfair papers you get at school and be given it a month later after you'd forgotten you even ordered it. it's thin and looks trashy, I bought it at the scholastic store for that exact reason, those were the books I owned as a kid and I liked them. most new teen books seem longer and full of weird pretensions of what teen fiction is. I remember believing firmly that the martian chronicles was too long (and I was a kid who read a ton so it wasn't a lazy thing) so books must have been shorter then since bradbury's stuff is small. this is like that 170, but the perfect 170, a complete story, layered but directed. it isn't complex like the adult novels I read but it's solidly on the level of palahniuk and's a funny plot about the kinds of things we do as a teen and it doesn't glorify or villainize illegal acts they are just sort of there which is nice for someone who grew up in a place where all teens were breaking the law. I can see a complaint about her having the keys to the cars, but my car was stolen 6 years ago by someone who knew where to find the keys, and honestly it's not that farfetched for me. I get it, I get joyriding. I'd buy it for the right teen, it could be improved by addressing the attempted self destruction but that isn't necessary.

  • J.T. Dutton
    2019-04-16 19:08

    OK, here's what I would do if I won a National Book Award for a novel as fantastic as Godless. I'd kick it up a notch. I'd create a more complex and edgier main character and I'd get her involved with some deep pscycho-emotional behavior that seems harmless at the beginning, but spirals into the uncontrollable as the pages turn. What I might do differently than Pete Hautman, is I might follow the tried and true yet predictable path of having Kelliegh, my main character, come to some moment of truth that makes her back away from the darkness of the inevitable. The critics might like me if I pulled my punch. They might give me a book award too. But what Hautman has done is much riskier and really astonishingly brilliant. Kelliegh's resolution rests somewhere outside the bounds of her story in the zone of human mystery. Her father says he loves her. Her mother smokes a cigarette in front of her instead of hiding her bad habits. How do these two things add up to Kelliegh's evolution as a human being? I'm not sure. I'm not sure they even will save Kelliegh but I admire Hautman's trust that by letting us know these things, Kelliegh's tale is fully told.I also admire that he is brave enough to face the criticism that will inevitably follow for breaking the mold of wishful thinking endings in Young Adult novels. Not every human story ends well, and though readers often like to be uplifted when they read good fiction, sometimes, like Kelliegh they are just wanting to be told the truth.

  • Sara
    2019-03-30 15:56

    Hmmm... HTSAC starts off like lightning. Within the first couple of pages, the 15-year-old main character has actually stolen her first car. Her observations are pithy and funny and cool. Her interactions with her friends (her best friend and their boyfriend... yes, there's only one boyfriend for two girls... the explanation is hilarious) are realistic and relatable. Because the characters are so solid and interesting and the style is so complete, it's easy to miss the fact that the plot isn't satisfying at all. Kelleigh, the main character, devolves from an average teen to a criminal, and it's a fascinating ride, but the end of the book leaves so many of her problems unsolved - will her parents divorce? is her friend gay? will she keep stealing cars? - that it's frustrating instead of refreshingly open-ended.Did I like the book? Well, the truth is that I'm not certain. You know how you take a really BIG bite of the food you love best, and it's wonderful at first, but as time goes on, the food seems to grow in your mouth, then eventually you think you're going to throw up? HTSAC is kind of like that. At first, it's great, but as it goes along, it gets less and less satisfying.

  • Nick Marras
    2019-04-20 16:10

    “Don’t look, but there’s a police car behind us.” These words were said to Jen, one of the main characters, as soon as she got in the car and started driving away. What would you do in this kind of situation? To find out what Jen does, you will just have to read this action packed booked to find what happens. The title kind of speaks for itself. This book does not exactly teach you how to steal a car, but it goes through these two middle-aged teens that have experiences in stealing cars. The two young girls are Kelleigh and Jen. These young girls are of course, best friends. These girls aren’t your ordinary teens. You would think that teens in high school would resort to things like alcohol and drugs. Well, these girls aren’t those girls that would do that. The first story of how they started stealing cars was when Kelleigh was sitting down by the mall and a man that happened to drop his keys on the ground. Kelleigh then picked up the keys, got in the car, went around the block a couple times, and returned the car to where it was before. There are many more stories like this one, but everything keeps on getting more suspenseful.Thats why I loved this book. It always had my attention all throughout the book. I never knew what was going to happen all the time. I would highly recommend this book someone who loves a lot of action in their books. You will be stuck reading it all night just like I was.

  • Raina
    2019-04-09 13:15

    I really love Hautman's writing. He does such a great job of building characters, and the world around them is so rich. In this book, he did a masterful job of layering in details about Kelleigh's homelife, so that you gradually realize that she's not always an impartial narrator. I really enjoyed reading this, I really like the cover, the title's a great hook, and I BELIEVE him.But here's my problem. It's because I'm a librarian who's always looking for a good booktalk book for middle schoolers, and when something doesn't fulfill my wildest hopes and dreams, I'm sad. This has a great cover, like I said, and a great title, is by a great author who I've booktalked before, and is nice and slim (170 pgs) - not intimidating at all. Ok. But. The whole thing could easily be read as a novel showing how easy it is to steal cars. I mean, there are undercurrents of "it's really not a good idea," but overall, we don't get the sense of where Hautman stands on the issue. And for goodness sakes, I'm not one who wants books to have a moral, but in a book with this title, I want to be able to give it to a kid and not worry about whether the kid is going to steal a car as a result. Am I the only one who had this problem? I love you, Pete, but ummm... you make me nervous here.

  • Anna
    2019-04-14 12:24

    Now I don't know if this is just me, but I didn't get this book at all. It didn't even feel real. It felt like this was an outline for a book, and the whole time I just wished Pete Hautman had finished it. Everything about it was so underdeveloped. There was so much going on and none of it connected. Her father defending a rapist, her and her best friend liking their other friend and him not liking them, her mom's drinking, her dad's affair, her friend getting molested, that one guy and the basement, and most importantly Moby Dick. You'd think that when an author mentions a book in their book that it would somehow relate to that book. Someone please tell me how a book about a whale relates to a teenage girl stealing cars. How? Please, someone tell me, because I am dying to know. I give this book one star just for being written. I considered giving it two for the concept, but I just couldn't bring myself to do it. Mostly because of the ending that wasn't really an ending. When the main character, who's name I can't even remember, says that she felt like she was finally going somewhere. I just lost it. When in that whole book did she mention anything about feeling trapped or stuck or like she was being held back in any way. This whole book was such a disappointment.

  • Samantha
    2019-04-17 17:09

    ***3.75***I had a lot of fun reading this book over the three day weekend. This book won’t be a lifelong favorite or anything, but I’ll look back on it fondly. I read it in a matter of hours, because it was short and fast paced. I liked the characters even if I didn’t agree with them morally. I look forward to buying this book, because I picked it up from the library on a whim. I would definitely recommend this if you’re looking for a fun fast read, but if you’re looking for something super impactful I’d pick up something else.

  • Anthony Bartoli
    2019-04-13 14:24

    This book was ok, there was a lot of parts that I found boring and that didn't make any sense.

  • Lupe Hernandez
    2019-04-18 12:20

    Personal Response I think that this book was very interesting. It talked about a girl named Kelleigh, and she enjoyed stealing cars for cash. I rate this book four out of five stars because it was a good book, but it was not a book I enjoyed that much. Plot Summary The book is about a named girl Kelleigh. She isn't a person that likes to talk to a bunch of people, but she has 2 really close friends named Will and Jen. They are all 15. The car stealing all started when Kelleigh and her friend Jen went to the mall and they saw a man drop his car keys. Kelleigh and Jen were going to tell the guy that he dropped his keys but instead Kelleigh decided to keep the keys and maybe use them for fun sometime if they ever saw the same guy and his car again. A week went by and Kelleigh saw the same guy at the mall. She decided to take his car for a little spin. Kelleigh got in the man´s car and drove off to pick her friend up Jen. They went to Taco Bell then returned the car back to where the guy parked it before he found out. The two girls have done these things a couple times now. Kelleigh decided to take this to the next level and steal her neighbor´s car while they were out on vacation. When she stole it the police found out and had a high speed chase until Kelleigh finally got away from the police and parked the car somewhere else. She should've known from there that stealing cars was not going to be a good idea. Kelleigh needed money for herself but didn't have a job at the moment so, what she did was talk to a guy that was known to steal cars a lot back in his days. The guy (Deke) told her that he had a job for her and that this could get her a lot of money. The job was to steal a Jaguar (car brand). Kelleigh was up for the challenge. When she arrived for the car she didn't know how to start it at first, but when she got the hang of it she drove to her destination and claimed her money. Kelleigh was close to being caught but she was actually never caught once.CharacterizationThis book was based in a first person view. It had younger characters in the book so this was something new that I hadn't read before. The character experienced many new things she had not done before. It was an experience she would never forget. She found out who she could also trust from her friends and also what kind of trouble she could get if she steals cars again.Recommendation I would recommend this book to anyone that is in high school. I would do this because if you want a good book that has a good story and also some action for it, then this is the book you would like to read.

  • Tyler Wetzel
    2019-04-08 17:10

    Personal response:I really enjoyed this book, it kept me wanting to just keep reading because of how good it was. I could not really connect to much with it because all the stuff that happens is really illegal and I do not do many illegal things, but otherwise it was very good. Plot summary: The beginning is two girls at a mall, a car pulls up and a guy gets out, when he is walking into the mall he drops his keys, the girls pick them up and keep them. A couple weeks later the girls are going for a walk and they see the car in a drive way. They take it. The two girls take it around the block a couple times and bring it back. They do not think of it as much, thy just did it to "live on the wild side" for a little bit. They tell their friend and he says he want help to steal a car from a guy who has been making fun of him. They do. They steal it and drive it into a lake, then they go home. A few days go by and all of a sudden The girls gets a call from the other that she needs to come pick her up, she is stranded in another town. So she steals her neighbors car and almost gets pulled over on the way back but gets away. Then the next day she goes to a gas station and a guy says he knows that shes been stealing cars, he asks if she wants to make money, which she does and so he gets her car to steal for $250. She steals it and feels awful because she realizes shes a bad person and doesn't steal anymore, she passes her drivers test and gets a car and says it feels better to drive one she owns.characterization:Kelleigh: Brunette who likes to steal cars until she realizes it's bad. She's tall and doesn't like to dress with lots of color, black is good. Jen: Blonde who likes color and showing off her body. She's kelleighs best friend and often makes bad choices.Deke: Hold rat. He's the one that finds cars for her to steal, he use to steal them himself but he got caught and is on probation.Recommendations: I recommend this book to anyone who likes adventure book. This is a very thrilling book that Im sure would make lots people like it.

  • Grant Bosch
    2019-04-04 17:56

    Innocent car thief? If you had a dull life, trouble at home, and weren’t even licensed yet, would you steal a car?Some girls might start drinking or using drugs. Some might starve or harm themselves or be driven to other things. Or some will just steal a car now and then. In Pete Hautman’s “How to steal a car,” we see the inner mind of a teenage car thief. It just might surprise you…Kelleigh Monahan has some normal challenges that plenty of people go through. These include school, a best friend that gets bullied, and parents that can’t get along. At first, Kelleigh just notices when a man’s keys fall out of his pocket. She picks them up and takes his car for a spin. Then she gets the keys to the truck that belongs to a classmate who bullied her best friend. She drives that truck into a pond. She meets a guy who tells her she can make money for stealing cars and bringing them to a certain place. But the consequences could be very serious. Kelleigh does have her reasons for doing this, and at first they don’t seem that dumb. “Look’, I said, ‘just because I stole one car--and I didn’t really steal it; it’s more like I borrowed it--that doesn’t mean I’m your designated car thief. I got the key for you. Steal it yourself” (page 29). If you like a book where all the intensity is all around one character, you will like this book. However, this book still has interesting supporting characters. Kelleigh’s parents and friends have their own distinct roles in the story. However, if you want to learn how to steal a car, you will not learn much. I would rate this book four out of five stars because the intensity works well and it has interesting characters.

  • Kim Saotonglang
    2019-04-14 19:10

    The book "How To Steal A Car" by Pete Hautman is involved around Kelleigh Monahan, the girl who (possibly) has some kind of mental disorder. This main girl had started to steal a car, and then she stole the other ones because of her personal satisfaction, too.I really like the main character, Kelleigh, and every other characters of HTSAC because they are realistic and relatable. But the thing is – I can’t find any solid plot in the book. In fact, I just don’t get the plot. At first, I kind of expected the plot to be more like all about main character stealing the car, got thrown into jail, learn some lessons, and quickly realize that stealing a car is not a good thing, but I was totally wrong. This book is unpredictable. Well, I like the book that has an unpredictable plot, but not this kind of unpredictable. And as I went on and keep reading it, HTSAC continued to get less and less interesting.“I think that a lot of car thieves just like to steal cars and drive. Also, they think they will never get caught even though most of them eventually do and they know it but they just don’t care.”(p. 170, aka the last page of the book) That’s what Kelleigh said at the end of the book. Really? I mean, I’m totally fine with the cliff hanger and everything, but that ending didn’t really satisfying me. It’s extremely irritating how Hautman just end the book and left some of the conflicts unsolved. I just don’t like it like that.

  • Brianna (The Book Vixen)
    2019-04-20 19:04

    Kelleigh is your typical teenage girl. Well, except for the fact that she’s a grand theft auto artist.The first time Kelleigh steals a car, it happens by chance. She’s at the mall with a friend when she sees a guy drop his keys in the parking lot. Instead of telling him, she picks up the keys and puts them in her purse. The idea of stealing his car is swimming around in her brain but she doesn’t act on it - yet. She later sees the guy’s BMW in her neighborhood and remembers that she has the keys. In the middle of the night she takes it for a joy ride with her friend. She returns the car and goes home. You’d think that would be the end of her car boosting career but it’s actually just the opposite.The ease of stealing a car appeals to Kelleigh. The opportunities keep presenting themselves to her and she just can’t resist. The thrill and rush she feels from stealing cars fills a void. It’s like an escape for her.The title and cover of this book caught my attention. After reading the book blurb and finding out that it was about a girl who steals car, made me want to read it that much more. At just under 200 pages, How to Steal a Car is a fun, fast and intense thrill ride. The storyline carries ahead at a steady pace and had me turning page after page. I wanted to know what Kelleigh would do next and how the next opportunity would present itself. I wanted to know if she’d get caught, how and what would happen to her.

  • Aadila
    2019-03-31 18:16

    I haven't written a review in a few months. How do I begin, again? *shrug* I'm just going to dive right in. This book started off relatively well (you know, despite the thinly veiled myisogyny and homophobia). The concept is interesting, and the characters and their problems are realistic. The biggest problem is the lack of plot. As the story progresses, you would be expecting it to be going somewhere... Evidently this thought did not occur to Pete Hautman when he wrote the book. In the end, Kalleigh didn't even find a healthy way to deal with all the crap that made her steal cars all summer. I'm really disappointed at the lack of closure. Kalleigh isn't even all that likeable of a character. Well, she's bearable and I didn't mind her narrative. She just impulsively does ridiculous things, like stealing a car (?!?!), when life doesn't go the way she wants it to. She's a bit of a brat, too. Good things? It was a quick easy read. I enjoyed Mr. Hautmans writing style; specifically some of his analogies. The book IS funny and adventurous. I wanted a short, non-serious read and that's what I got. Mostly this story has just made me want to find out if I can get away with stealing a car.

  • Alex
    2019-04-01 16:59

    I had high hopes for this book-a YA Novel about a teenage car thief? Count me in.However, the book was at best problematic and at worst, plain dumb.I had a hard time sympathizing with any of the characters, including the protagonist...honestly, I feel as if the author should have cut to the chase and called the book "Poor Little Rich Girl".Contains continuity problems, such as Kelleigh going on at length about her 'color blindness' only to watch a youtube video and as far as I can tell, know the red wire in a car from the blue wire, etc.Jumps around a lot, details thrown in seemingly on a whim as if the story line had gotten stuck and needed a quick fix.Also contains such passages as;"-I thought how nice it would be to be bulimic at that moment so I could go to the bathroom and puke.""Most of the time Jen was perfectly normal. I didn't think about her as a girl who had been molested. It was so long ago. But I know that things that happen when you're a little kid can mess you up pretty good inside.""I don't mean gay, gay," I said. "I mean gay like chickenshit."

  • chris law
    2019-04-15 18:21

    I really liked this book. This book taught a lot of things to me and how life is to them. I would recommend this book to other people who like to read about other people thoughts. I like this book mostly in the beginning. In the beginning, this book mostly talks about how Kelleigh steals cars. This book made it seem like stealing cars were so easy. The book talked mainly about stealing cars. I really liked this book because it was funny in a way. This book made it enjoyable and memorable.

  • Angie
    2019-04-23 17:11

    BOOK TALK: Kelleigh isn't a bad kid. She's just bored. The first car is just for fun, to see what will happen. The second car is for revenge. The third car is to rescue her best friend, left stranded at a party she wasn’t even invited to. And all the cars after that? Well.... it’s starting to look like Kelleigh might have a problem.

  • Elaina Gilbertson
    2019-04-05 20:23

    Good, although it does spoil a movie...

  • Hector
    2019-04-09 16:58

    "I didn't mention that my dad wasn't alone in the car, a woman sitting besides him looked younger than him". This girl named Kelleigh has a lot of problems going on with her friend and parents, her way out it's to drive. Kelleigh starts to work in stealing cars for profit. Kelleigh and her best friend have a weird relationship with will. Will is Kelleigh and Jens boyfriend at the same time, they both think that he's gay. Kelleigh and Jen knew each other since they were little. Pete did a great job with showing all the points of views of the teens, one of the quotes he mentions in the book was "Most parents don't realize that little kids are super sensitive even they might not understand anything about what's going on... dogs are the same way". The end of the story will not surprise you at all.

  • Dominique
    2019-04-26 18:57

    I read this book a few days ago and I already forgot all the characters and most of the plot. I just know this was a 'meh' book. Good to pass the time and not much else. I remember the father's affair and the mother started day drinking or something. Oh and she stole a few cars 🚗 and she shared a boyfriend with her best friend who was just a guy friend so I don't know why they called him their boyfriend... but ok whatever. Main character might be a sociopath and the 'bad boy' character felt so thrown in the plot. I don't mind MCs not having a romantic interest, sometimes I actually prefer it but this time is just felt odd. Like she never grew as a character and her relationships never changed. The parents were pretty much the driving force behind the plot. So all in all, it was pretty forgettable. Great story idea but if only the author executed it better.

  • Maria Rodriguez
    2019-04-18 17:57

    It Was A Good Book, I Liked How You Could Vizualise What Was Happening In The Story In Your Head. It's If The Book Was Happening In Your Head, It Has Very Great Descriptive Words In It. I Would Recommend This Book Because It Will Keep You Hooked And Keep You Reading I Took A Long Time To Finish This Book, Because I Procrastinated Finishing The Book, But The Good Thing Is That I Finished The Book.

  • adeana
    2019-04-11 18:14

    I found this book at a library nearby me and thought it to be quit intriguing. I finished it only a few hours later and was really satisfied with it. It was a quick, fun read that was really amazing, I'm so glad i found it!

  • Kiersten
    2019-04-03 17:11

    If you read this book don't put it down! At first, it is a little boring but after like two chapters it is so Good.

  • Rachel Swords
    2019-03-28 17:03

    I read this book as assignment for my graduate level Teaching of Writing class. I'm not sure of the teacher's motives for assigning said book (we're discussing it tonight), but if I were a teacher, I would NOT come near "How to Steal a Car." Here's why:1)the heroine, Kelleigh, is not very likable. Yes, she's fifteen, and therefore immature to a degree, but she was so ridiculous that I wanted to smack her. She seems to have no real concept of right and wrong; this is best seen in the fact that she keeps stealing/borrowing cars, even though she knows such is highly illegal. The justification the book gives is that Kelleigh wants a high to escape her troubled home life, but at the same time, it's not a good message to present to students, whether in a humorous or serious fashion. Not once does Kelleigh ever feel remorse for her car thievery; at one point, when she comes in contact with the owner of the car she is stealing, her line of thought is "What I felt then was not the horror of having caused injury to another human being but anger and frustration that he had gotten in my way, that he had tried to interfere." What kind of message is that?! Also, Kelleigh also takes pride in the fact that she is, to quote the book, "a total bitch." Definitely not a good message for your students. Additionally (and I'm a little biased here since I'm an English major), Kelleigh is supposed to be reading "Moby Dick" for as a school assignment and constantly makes fun of the classic throughout the book. While I understand this to an extent, since most teenagers don't like reading school-assigned books, again this is not good to present to your students, the idea that 'classic literature is funny/boring.' It's difficult enough to get them to read classical books, so why would you want one that helps trash such? 2)the supporting characters pop in and out to the point where it's hard to like or relate to them. If a writing assignment was planned where the students would have to pick a character from the book to write about, it would be difficult because everyone else in Kelleigh's world is barely fleshed out. The closest example we get is her best friend, Jen, and even then we don't know really all that much about her beyond Kalleigh's silly opinions and descriptions. 3)the actions and lack of thought. Besides the constant car stealing/borrowing, at one point Jen and Kelleigh drink a bottle of wine that Jen steals from her parents' cellar. Granted, they don't see anything wrong with this since they grow up in alcoholic households (Kelleigh's mom is a real boozer), but again, would a teacher really be okay with promoting an underage character who drinks, even just once? Overall, "How to a Steal a Car" is an inappropriate book to use for teaching purposes. None of the characters are ever held accountable for their actions; at the very end, just when Kelleigh is given a chance to redeem herself and has decided to stop getting her 'high,' she goes right back to stealing cars. The only way I could see this book being used in a classroom is if students had to do a "what-if" assignment about doing the right thing.

  • Carlos Castrejon
    2019-04-22 13:03

    How To Steal A Car is a fictional book about a girl named Kelleigh and her best friend Jen who are sitting on a bench out of Abercrombie shopping in the mall. When all out of the sudden a man in suit with a suitcase drops his car keys on the floor, and Kelleigh decides to pick them up and keep them for herself. Next Kelleigh takes the owners car for a ride with Jen, but Jen disagrees with Kelleigh about stealing the car and asks Kelleigh if she's crazy. Later when they are done she takes the car back to the parking lot where she had found it, but still keeps the car keys.Later in the story Jen and Kelleigh decide to go to the pool because it's a hot sunny day in the summer. Jen and Kelleigh then spot two college looking guys standing across of them Kelleigh approaches them and ask them what their names where while Jen stands still opening her mouth as she didn't expect Kelleigh to talk to them. It turns out that the college boys wanted them to go to a party they were having and that they would meet them at a restaurant. They waited and waited and both were curious to see if the would pick them up, but they never showed up. Later in the story Kelleigh decides to steal a hummer from a rich kid that lives nearby, because Will her "boyfriend" which both Jen and Kelleigh share wanted to get even with the rich kid for telling everyone he was gay. They take the hummer drive it toward a bridge, and somehow Kelleigh loses control and she tilts the hummer over towards the water. Will gets out of the car, but Kelleigh stays inside almost drowning the will helps her out of the car. Both start walking back to their houses not mentioning what had happened. Then Kelleigh meets Deke a "professional car thief" who found out that she wrecked the rich kid's car. He was behind some bushes smoking marijuana and thought he was hallucinating them messing up the car, but he realized he wasn't. He offers Kelleigh a job of helping him steal cars and selling them for easy bucks. Both of them end up stealing about 3 cars 1 which was unsuccessful and get no money for it. Kelleigh steals a cadillac to save Jen from Jim and his friends that are older. Kelleigh then realizes she is being chased by a police officer and ends up avoiding him. In the end she goes back to the first car she stold gets in it and rides away listening to the radio. Overall this book was satisfying due to the fact that their were many unexpected things that occurred in the book. It was also very different compared to other books I have read because it had side notes of how to steal a car in each chapter. I would recommend this book to other people who like action books.

  • Rachael
    2019-04-01 16:57

    Kelleigh Monahan is not a car thief. So maybe she took some guy’s car for a joyride after picking up the keys he dropped. So what if she took her dad’s Lexus for a drive in the middle of the night without his permission. Just a couple of instances don’t add up to “car thief;” she did return those cars after all. But eventually, Kelleigh finds herself being enticed into stealing more cars, by the excitement, by all the other drama going on in her life, even once by necessity. And these times, Kelleigh doesn’t return the cars. Is this just an example of teens acting out? Maybe. But more importantly, is this who Kelleigh really is, or wants to be?I’m not sure why I picked up this book; it’s probably the title that got me. I mean, I really don’t read that many—or any—books on car theft, so I thought How to Steal a Car would be interesting. My final verdict: though mildly amusing and exciting at times, the story seemed just pointless. I really don’t buy into one of postmodernism’s many tenets that the process is more important than the product; the process really does me no good is it ends up with an item I don’t particularly care about or completely understand. That’s how I mostly felt about Kelleigh’s story. I get why she starts stealing cars; she seeks an adrenaline thrill she can’t get from her own boring life in which her best friend tells her she dresses like a nun and her mom fixates on perfecting niceness. I even understand why she stops stealing cars without returning them; it’s just not who she is. But really, what does that all add up to? All it really states is “I’m bored and I don’t like the way my life is right now, so I think I’ll steal a car—oh wait, stealing is wrong.” There were times I could sympathize with Kelleigh, for example, with her dad’s utter lack of morals and her best friend’s obsession with superficial things, but as hard as I tried, and I really did, I just couldn’t find any deeper meaning to this story. Perhaps other readers will.Although How to Steal a Car was meaningless to me, I don’t think the novel was either good or bad, and other readers may be able to pick up something from the story I wasn’t able to find. I really have no idea who would enjoy this book most, and since I’m not issuing a recommendation, you’ll just have to figure out for yourself if How to Steal a Car is worth reading.reposted from

  • Kelsey
    2019-04-24 17:21

    How to Steal a Car was an exciting read that left me breathless. It was exciting to read from Kelleigh’s point of view and the rush she got from stealing cars was contagious. When I first started reading I was wondering what was going to happen, and if I was even going to enjoy a novel about stealing cars, well I really did enjoy it. It was one of those books that I had to keep reading it find out what was going to happen. I liked that Kelleigh was just a normal girl, not a gang member or whatever that you would assume would steal cars. Surprisingly, I learned a lot about stealing cars- it’s easier than it looks (if you have the keys). While the setup of the book was great, I really liked the “how to guide” part of the story, sometimes it seemed like there was no end since there weren’t chapters, it just kept going from page one to page 170 (in my ARC). Although I didn’t care for some of the characters, I really liked Kelleigh and I even liked Deke, the guy that roped Kelleigh into stealing cars for money. Some of the characters weren't my favorite, and I think a lot of the characters weren't needed in the book, but all in all it was an exciting book, that will keep you reading until the end.I think the main character being a girl added a whole new dimension onto the book. I could almost connect with Kelleigh, not with what she was doing, but at points I felt like I knew her. Some parts of the novel were a little confusing, as it kept switching to different scenes and flashing back randomly. It was fairly easy to catch on quickly, but some people might not like it. Hautman’s writing style was great, and Kelleigh’s story was really believable. Her stealing cars was even believable, since it wasn’t taken to extremes. I also really like the cover- it’s cute and exciting at the same time. The toy cars stand out against the blue background and I just overall really like it.In the end, I would say both boys and girls would enjoy How to Steal a Car, it’s exciting, refreshing, and a great book for teens. It’s a great look at how good contemporary fiction can be. It’s a fast read, too- under 200 pages, so I would definitely recommend you pick up a copy.Overall: 4 out of 5 stars

  • Terri
    2019-04-24 19:04

    Pete Hautman is a young adult author from Minnesota. I like to give an extra plug to local Minnesota authors when I do booktalks. I am ashamed to say that I had never read one of his books until now - too many books, too little time. What prompted me was that a local high school did a community read of sorts where they asked interested students and community members to read any of Hautman's books and then attend a free to the public discussion of this work. Since "How to Steal a Car" is his latest book and has gotten good reviews, I decided to start with this one!The main character, Kelleigh Monahan, seems "perfect" at first. She is an only child whose parents seem "perfect." She also seems to have "perfect" friends. However, the imperfections of all of the characters and their lives is slowly revealed to us. While at the mall, Kelliegh sees a man drop his car keys as he is getting out of his car. On a whim, she picks them up, and she and her best friend take it for a spin. This adrenalin rush leads to another car theft, and another, and another. The thrill of stealing a car becomes addictive, a way to fill the voids in her life, as well as a way to get back at her parents.I loved all of the local color found in "How to Steal a Car." I loved the unique subject matter - auto theft, by a girl no less! I loved the compelling, interesting characters. I loved the fact that "How to Steal a Car" is a highly readable, slim, and fast. I loved the thematic content - though I don't think that the lessons here sit on the surface of the story. Kids will really have to think about what "drives" the main character, Kelliegh, to steal cars. They also may not get the whole "Moby Dick" thing, which Kelleigh is reading throughout the story. Finally, they will really have to think about how Kelliegh's father's defense of an accused rapist is parallel to her own actions. The fact that the plot goes forward and backward in time may also be difficult for some.All in all, Hautman's "How to Steal a Car" will sell well with teens. Recommended.

  • Brittany
    2019-03-31 16:20

    Some people steal a car for the money. Some people steal a car for revenge. Some people steal a car just because. Kelleigh is a person in the last category. It all starts when a man drops his keys in the parking lot and Kelleigh picks them up and decides that instead of returning them, she will keep them. Then she accidentally finds out where he lives, and therefore where he keeps his car, and ends up taking it for a little joy ride. All this before she even has her license. After this incident her friends and some other folks think of her as a car thief and things get a little out of hand. All in all though, Kelleigh has fun with what she's doing, in spite of the consequences that will soon await her.This was a super fast read, but it was nicely entertaining. I love that Kelleigh and her best friend Jen share a boyfriend, a guy named will, and he doesn't actually seem that interested in either of them. Any other guy would take full advantage of this sort of situation, but Will seems oblivious. If you ever thought about stealing a car this book is for you, though maybe that's bad advice and you should not read this book and fuel your desire. It's been awhile since I read Moby Dick, but I don't feel it shares many themes with this story at all. I mean it was a nice touch that she was struggling to get through it, and that showed her in a normal teenage light. It helped offset the fact that she was a criminal. Kelleigh doing her summer reading assignment makes you think that the whole car stealing must be a misunderstanding. This was a fun fast read and I definitely think you should pick it up. Though I love Pete Hautman, so I may just be biased ;)First Line:"The way this whole thing got started was completely coincidental and not like I planned it or anything."Favorite Lines:"I stole the Cadillac out of necessity. It was Jen's fault."

  • Nikki (Wicked Awesome Books)
    2019-04-11 15:06

    More like 3.5Pete Hautman has a way with words that is so blunt, so matter of fact, that you can’t help but be interested. How To Steal A Car isn’t all that action-packed, despite the subject matter, because of Hautman’s writing style; yet I was wholly intrigued by it.Kelleigh Monahan is a 15 year old smart girl with a nice best friend who she sort of shares a maybe gay boyfriend with. Her life doesn't appear to be too complicated. She has a nice mom and lawyer dad who works constantly, but then, out of nowhere, she starts stealing cars.Hautman’s foray into Kelleigh’s thoughts about her life and her new hobby are funny, and somehow make perfect sense. In a way, Kelleigh’s newfound desire to boost cars is understandable. She gets an odd rush from it even though it has no purpose for her. And it lets her escape the things in her life she would like to avoid.How To Steal A Car is a short read that kept me interested, but it was lacking in direction. I was hoping there would be some kind of conclusion to Kelleigh’s story and her car thievery, but it just ends. No conclusion, no solid ending. I want to know what happens next. What happens to Kelleigh? What happens to her family (who really aren’t as great as they first seem)? And does she ever get caught? Does she even care?This was still a good read, though maybe directed at a younger YA audience. Kelleigh is 15 and there is talk of alcohol, drugs, and sex, but nothing of the sort is ever explicitly discussed.Opening line: The way this whole thing got started was completely coincidental and not like I planned it or anything. ~ pg. 1Favorite lines: “You going to law school too, Kelleigh?”“Actually, I’m thinking of becoming a criminal. To give the lawyers something to do.” ~ pg. 88