Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Sizzling Sixteen

It just doesn't feel like summer until I get the latest Stephanie Plum adventure into my hot little hands. Hooray for the library - even though I work there, I am often late on the uptake when it comes to getting on the waiting list, so I had to be patient for a while for this one, but it was definitely worth the wait.

In this installment, Stephanie's Uncle Vinnie, her boss at the bail bonds agency where she works as a bounty hunter, is kidnapped. The ransom? The gambling debt money he owes. He is such a scummy guy that not even his wife wants to pay to get him back, so Stephanie, Connie and Lula decide to work together to find the money so they can save their jobs. That is, of course, easier said than done - and, of course, with hilarious results (some of which involve hobbits).

I continue to love this series, although it's certainly not for everyone. It is over the top with characters, humor, and the most entertaining and patently ridiculous plots, and I laugh out loud every time I read (and occasionally reread) one of these books. Some are certainly better than others, but they are typically solid, and this one is no exception.

I am always a bit surprised by the many blog reviews I read of books from this series, in which people claim they are disappointed, the books aren't funny enough, or aren't as funny as earlier books. There's too much Morelli, not enough Ranger, gripe, gripe. One patron at my library even complained to me that there was too much Grandma Mazur! Complaining that there is too much Grandma in a Stephanie Plum book is like complaining that there are too many Joads in The Grapes of Wrath. Or too many rabbits in Watership Down. Or too many ghosts in A Christmas Carol. Or... Okay, I'll stop now.

I for one think it's amazing that Janet Evanovich has managed to sustain this series so well, keeping so many readers interested in her characters and their lives, and so very many of us impatiently waiting to find out what happens next.

Books in the Stephanie Plum series:
1. One for the Money
2. Two for the Dough
3. Three to Get Deadly
4. Four to Score
5. High Five
6. Hot Six
7. Seven Up
8. Hard Eight
9. To the Nines
10. Ten Big Ones
11. Eleven on Top
12. Twelve Sharp
13. Lean Mean Thirteen
14. Fearless Fourteen
Finger Lickin' Fifteen

Sizzling Sixteen (#16 in the Stephanie Plum series) by Janet Evanovich (St. Martin's Press, 2010)

Source: My local public library

Also reviewed at:
I'd So Rather Be Reading: "That's why these books are the perfect summer reads: they are light-hearted, funny, sometimes silly, and totally implausible. Implausible, you say? Yes!"
What Cheesy Reads: "Another hilarious adventure with Stephanie. The next book should be very interesting after what happened this time."
YA Booknerd: "There's no other series/book that makes me laugh as hard as Stephanie Plum's adventures."


  1. I haven't gotten around to picking this up yet. I'm one of the complainers (though you'll never catch me saying anything bad about Grandma)! The love triangle balancing act has gotten old to me and I haven't been that fond of the slapstick humor for the past few books (way too many fart jokes for me). My mom still adores this series and I'll read it eventually after she gets a copy.

  2. I wonder if my mom has this one yet...she loves this series, and she's passed all the books along to me. I originally started with the between-the-numbers books and found them amusing and Laugh-out-loud funny. I've only read 2 of the numbers books...but I better get going since I have so many more to catch up on.

  3. I will be honest and say I prefer Grandma Mazur and Lula in small doses. Too much focus in a book can turn me off of them. I'm like that with a lot of the characters in this series though. I find them best in small doses.

    My crappy library will be getting this in August and I might even request a hold on it!

  4. I am going to be that naysayer - I really loved this series but lately it has gotten so repetitive, I am tired of Stephanie bumbling her pick up's and the same stupid mistakes with Lulu and her.

    I have liked the series but we need some progression, something move forward already!

    Its become too three stooge-y for me.

  5. Hey, Darla! Waiting on you!;o) I've read the second and third Mistress of the Art of Death series, the most recent The Last Apprentice novel, the Newbery award-winning novel about medieval voices (that was so good!), and I have requested the last Enola Holmes book (I'm so bummed to say 'the last'.) Can't wait to hear what you think about so many! I have requested One for the Money from our library because amazingly enough I have not read any of these yet. And I also wanted to make a suggestion for you if you haven't read them -- the Young Sherlock Holmes series by Shane Peacock. The series begins with Eye of the Crow. Check them out. They're really good! Hope you find more free time soon.

  6. Ladytink - Well, this one isn't quite as slapstick as some of the more recent ones (I can't remember any fart jokes) - maybe you'll have a better time with it!

    Serena - I envy you that you have so many books left in the series to read! I laugh every time I read these books.

    Cat - If I ever become filthy rich, I will come to Canada and build you the library of your dreams. I'm sorry you have such a shoddy library! :-(

    VA Gal - Well, I can't say that there's too much progression in this book, but Stephanie actually takes her gun with her at one point, which was surprising! Are you going to read this one?

    Cheryl - Wow, you've been busy! I have read The Serpent's Tale and loved it - still need to write the review, though. I'm sooo far behind these days! And I just finished the last Enola Holmes. Sniff. On the bright side I read the first one to my kids, so it was fun revisiting it - not to mention seeing how far Enola has come since the early days. I will miss that series, that's for sure. I've seen the Shane Peacock books and was wondering if they were worth a try - thanks so much for the recommendation! They are on the list. I'll be curious to hear what you think of your first Stephanie Plum experience!

  7. Hi! Did you know that the first book, One for the Money, is about to become a movie. Or, is a movie. It's in the theaters 27 January. I don't know if it will be good - it certainly will not be as good as the book, but maybe it will be fun, at least. Just thought you'd like to know!

  8. Denise - I'd heard about that, and I'm really hoping it will be good. It's always a risk when you've been living with your own personal images of characters for all these years to see someone else's version up on the big screen. I'm hoping it will be fun, too. I'm in the middle of Explosive Eighteen right now - it's been good so far!


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