A girl with the ability to borrow other people’s talents must use her powers to find her own spotlight in The Talent Thief, a wish-fulfilling middle-grade novel from Mike Thayer, the author of The Double Life of Danny Day.
Tiffany Tudwell is cursed. She once tripped over a backpack and fell face-first into a trashcan. She had pink eye on picture day. One time she tried to hold back a sneeze and farted on the cutest boy in class. She longs for the spotlight, but it’s safer to stay hidden in the shadows where the curse can't reach her and no one can make fun of her.
Until the night two meteors collide over her backyard giving Tiffany the ability to steal people’s talents for a day—like stealing mean girl Candace’s beautiful singing voice in the middle of play rehearsal, or drawing an incredible self-portrait after borrowing the teacher’s pencil. Her power even gets the attention of the most popular boy in school, the smooth-talking Brady Northrup.
But her powers can’t solve everything—or can they? When a local philanthropist announces a fundraiser contest, Tiffany, with Brady’s help, decides to use her powers to save her dad’s failing planetarium. And maybe discover her own talent along the way...
Mike Thayer, author of The Double Life of Danny Day, is a proud father of three, lucky husband of one, passionate author, budding podcaster, lifelong gamer, viral blogger, degreed engineer, decent impressionist, inept hunter, erstwhile jock, and nerd. He has cast a ring on the slopes of Mt. Doom, eaten a feast at the Green Dragon Inn, cemented Excalibur in a sandstone block, tasted butter beer at Diagon Alley, built a secret door to his storage room, and written a few fantasy books. What else is left, really?
"Readers will laugh out loud and be moved to tears as Tiffany proves to be the Shining Star Mimi always said she was. A fresh, heartwarming take on self-acceptance and true friends. Huzzah!" -- Kirkus Reviews, starred review
"Vividly wrought characters—especially Tiffany’s gaming counterparts and her nonagenarian pals at Sunny Vistas Assisted Living—and the protagonist’s dryly comic voice contribute to this charming novel’s exploration of gifts and friendships." --Publishers Weekly, starred Review
Praise for The Double Life of Danny Day:
"The Double Life of Danny Day starts with a clever premise that builds into an entertaining story. You may feel tempted to read it twice!” --Brandon Mull, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Fablehaven and Dragonwatch
"It’s a riveting premise and a cool spotlight on the social world of videogames, and readers will consider their double days with Danny to be time well spent." -- The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (BCCB)
"In a clever time-loop tale reminiscent of Groundhog Day, a middle-schooler gets free do-overs by living through each day twice...After engaging in some awesomely reckless exploits (on the discard days), Danny at last takes on, with two new allies, a taunting, bullying gamer who, readers will readily agree, really deserves the schooling he gets." -- Booklist
"Danny’s first-person narrative engages readers with wisecracking humor and sharp observations on the middle school social stratum.... Perfect for gamers who’d rather play than read, Thayer speaks their language and scores a direct hit." -- School Library Journal