REVIEW by Lorna: Notorious Nineteen by Janet Evanovich (@janetevanovich , @Mollykatie112)
After a slow summer of chasing low-level skips for her cousin Vinnie’s bail bonds agency, Stephanie Plum finally lands an assignment that could put her checkbook back in the black. Geoffrey Cubbin, facing trial for embezzling millions from Trenton’s premier assisted-living facility, has mysteriously vanished from the hospital after an emergency appendectomy. Now it’s on Stephanie to track down the con man. Unfortunately, Cubbin has disappeared without a trace, a witness, or his money-hungry wife. Rumors are stirring that he must have had help with the daring escape . . . or that maybe he never made it out of his room alive. Since the hospital staff’s lips seem to be tighter than the security, and it’s hard for Stephanie to blend in to assisted living, Stephanie’s Grandma Mazur goes in undercover. But when a second felon goes missing from the same hospital, Stephanie is forced into working side by side with Trenton’s hottest cop, Joe Morelli, in order to crack the case.
The real problem is, no Cubbin also means no way to pay the rent. Desperate for money—or maybe just desperate—Stephanie accepts a secondary job guarding her secretive and mouthwatering mentor Ranger from a deadly Special Forces adversary. While Stephanie is notorious for finding trouble, she may have found a little more than she bargained for this time around. Then again—a little food poisoning, some threatening notes, and a bridesmaid’s dress with an excess of taffeta never killed anyone . . . or did they? If Stephanie Plum wants to bring in a paycheck, she’ll have to remember: No guts, no glory. . . .
I am a huge fan of Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series. I have read all of them but the last few have felt kind of stale as in same thing in each book just different names of characters. I am really glad to say that I really enjoyed this one.
This time around Stephanie is as always on the job as a bounty hunter for her cousins bail bonds office. She really isn’t very good at it and ends up in some of the craziest situations. Her main target this time is a man who embezzled five million dollars from the nursing home where he worked. He has to have surgery and disappears from the hospital. Stephanie and her colorful sidekick Lula are on the hunt. Along the way they manage to get Stephanie’s car blown up as usual. Of course Ranger, her bondsmen mentor and occasional lover(not boyfriend) spends a good part of his time getting her out of jams and loaning her really expensive cars-which usually get blown up. Morelli, her cop boyfriend gets involved even more then usual in this mystery even helping with some of the breaking and entering that is a Stephanie staple for her investigations. Grandma Mazur goes undercover at the nursing home and hospital and of course gets in trouble as is her usual. She is still one of the funniest characters in a series filled with funny and crazy characters. There is also a subplot involving Ranger, a buddy of his from special ops and the buddy’s impending nuptials. Due to death threats to Ranger and the buddy, Ranger gives Stephanie a job helping with security surrounding the wedding. She ends up being assigned to be a bridesmaid in the wedding, complete with hideous dress. And of course she becomes a target of the crazy man who is making the threats.
There are plenty of laugh-out-loud moments in this book. But there is also a darker side of the book and not everyone survives. There is still the huge chemistry between Stephanie and Ranger and also Stephanie and Morelli. From one book to the next you never know who Stephanie will end up with. And I guess that is part of what makes these books so popular. One of these days I would like for her to finally make a decision.between the two men and I guess that would be my criticism with this book. Pick one already and stick with it. The book is very fast paced with lots and lots of action,some minor sex scenes(not telling with who) and the reader has a fun experience reading it. I will definitely be reading number 20. I give it 4 stars.