After she gets laid off as a lingerie buyer for a cheap department store, Stephanie Plum blackmails her slimy cousin Vinnie into giving her a job at his bail bondsman agency. Thus begin the many adventures of Stephanie Plum bail enforcement agent.
A while back I borrowed a copy of Janet Evanovich’s Two for the Dough from the library at Tupou Tertiary Institute. This was before my own books arrived in Tonga, and mum and I were making regular visits to the library for reading material. I finished Two for the Dough on the same day that I borrowed it and was back at the library before the end of the week to see if they had any more books from the Stephanie Plum series. To my excitement they did! However they only had Three to get Deadly and Eleven on Top. I also managed to track down a second hand copy of Four to Score at Value City. Lucky for me the Stephanie Plum books don’t really have to be read in order to still be enjoyable. Even luckier for me, the next month we had some extra data and I could download almost the whole series onto my Kindle. I then proceeded to spend the next two months reading the first 21 books in the Stephanie Plum series plus the Between-the-numbers books.
After reading 25 of Stephanie Plum’s adventures I can say that she is one of my favourite female protagonists. She is deeply flawed, a hundred percent relatable, and so bad at her job she is circling back around and coming at genius from the other direction. Stephanie Plum is the kind of bounty hunter most of us would be if we ever had to give it a go. The books are a hilarious romp of explosions, accidental violence, crazy families, commitment issues, bad eating habits, and slightly illegal investigating. And all of this is rounded out with a cast of eclectic and occasionally ridiculous supporting character, leaving the reader (and everyone who knows Stephanie) wondering how the hell she gets herself into these situations. The books leave you hungry for the next adventure (and a donut), which is one of the best compliments I can give a book.
Regardless of what genre someone write in, but especially in crime fiction, a good writer draws the reader into the story to the point that they don’t want to leave. Janet Evanovich does this with ease drawing you in to Stephanie’s adventures so that you become invested in her success and survival. My only real critique of these books is that by book sixteen Lula’s lack of character development makes her seem two dimensional, as if she only exists to make Stephanie seem more sensible.