Sunday, October 16, 2011

Smokin' Seventeen

Stephanie Plum is back in the seventeenth book of her hilarious, mayhem-filled adventures.  In this installment, bodies are turning up at the empty lot that is the construction site of her bail bonds office, which burned down in the previous book.  Soon it becomes clear that the serial killer is stalking Stephanie.  Add to the story a dancing bear, a curse placed on Stephanie by Morelli's grandmother, and a fugitive senior citizen who thinks he's a vampire, and you have the typical screwball fun of a Stephanie Plum mystery.

I am always surprised by the mixed reviews of this series that I find when I browse through reviews online.  I find that my expectations just aren't that elevated when I pick up a Stephanie Plum novel.  Some books are funnier than others, true, and some have plots that offer more surprises, but I can't say I've ever been dreadfully disappointed by one of these books.  I open one knowing that I'm going to be at least smiling, and probably laughing, not to mention spending some time with characters I've been hanging out with periodically since the early nineties.  I figured out the mystery in this one way before Stephanie did, but that's okay - she clearly has a lot on her mind in this book!  I thought it was a fun, entertaining romp.   

Explosive Eighteen will be released next month, and I'm already on the waiting list for it at my library.  I am always delighted to take a break from the stress and frenzy of real life to hang out for a while with Stephanie, Lula, Ranger and Morelli.  What's not to like?

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
16. Sizzling Sixteen

17. Smokin' Seventeen
18. Explosive Eighteen  (November 2011)

Smokin' Seventeen (#17 in the Stephanie Plum series) by Janet Evanovich (Bantam Books, 2011)

Also reviewed at:
Book Series Reviews"It was a good story, so much better than the last half dozen or so offerings in this series."
Book'd Out"Smokin’ Seventeen is a fun, light read that is true to the series formula and sure to provide a laugh or two. If you are looking for more than that then you will likely be disappointed but take it for what it is and it’s a delightful way to spend an hour or two."
Lesa's Book Critiques:  "I picked up Smokin' Seventeen thinking I might get through a few chapters and quit. Instead, there were a few new twists to the story that made me laugh again at Stephanie's antics."


  1. I, of course, will be waiting for the mass market edition of this one, but I am excited for it (not just because it's purple! haha) Unless of course my mother ended up buying it with her friend. I should ask her. (That's how I read the 16th book before the pb came out). I have been disappointed occasionally, but mostly because I sometimes expect slightly more character development. I feel that by now Stephanie should have SOME sort of street cred and be able to do things by herself. That one book where she helped Ranger figure out the security alarm problem was awesome. I like that she CAN be smart. I wish it showed up more often though.

    Either way, I always know I will laugh out loud reading one of these books. With the way my mood has been lately, I could use a good Stephanie Plum laugh. Maybe I should check with my mother about this book. She might have it. Didn't 17 only come out this summer? How is 18 so close behind?

  2. Cat - I think you will like this one - Stephanie is definitely moving forward a little here. Yes, you should get your mom's asap! Especially if you need a good laugh. I'm not sure about the reasoning about the next book coming out soon, but it might be because the publisher is changing the annual scheduling for the series. I see that a new Barnaby mystery is coming out after that, so maybe they're switching? I have no idea, really, just a guess. At any rate, I'll be looking forward to hearing your opinion of this one.

  3. I've only read the first book in this series but already love Stephanie Plum. Wonder how long it'll take me to read all the others! :-)

  4. Joanna - I envy you, having the whole series to go through! I've reread some of them already. The second one I think is my favorite. I read it (unfortunately for my fellow passengers) on an airplane, and I just could not stop laughing! I think Stephanie gained a few fans that day, as I was asked by quite a few people what the heck I was reading. :-)

  5. I'm wondering if they aren't pushing the books because of the movie (which I am suspicious of since I saw the trailer)? But yes, if they are changing the pub dates, I can see why they're rushing them. I guess this means I'll pick up 16 & 17 by Christmas (already read 16, but I didn't buy it this summer in pb). Also, it's nice to have a book that matches my hair. hahahah

  6. Oh, that makes sense. I am worried about the movie, too. It is rough when a movie comes out so late after a series has been going on, and I have such firm ideas about the characters that the screen writer and casting director never seem to share. Sigh. Of course I'll probably have to see it anyway.


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