The Stephanie Plum series follows, (you guessed it), Stephanie Plum (big surprise I know!). This series by Janet Evanovich has 23 books with 4 between the books novellas. Therefore, If you’re looking for a loyal series that will last you a while, look no further!
Plum starts the series off as unemployed and on the verge of being desperate for money lest she have to start selling things off. She is not the type to wallow in self-pity for long, however, and soon finds herself employed as a bounty hunter (compliments of a cousin and some well timed blackmail). She should start small and maybe she would have if one of the high paying people needing to be caught wasn’t her ex boyfriend Morelli. Joe Morelli is an ex cop but she’ll be damned if she lets that stop her from getting her revenge on him and putting him behind bars. With two men who are definitely easy-on -the-eyes and a lot of sass, Stephanie Plum jumps headfirst into bounty hunting.
The first book is definitely my favorite of the whole series and I must say that it is hands down better than the movie. I have reread the first book more than once. It is a light read with its share of funny moments and I really like it and would recommend it. However, the series as a whole is disappointing. Each novel itself as a standalone is good but if you read the whole series one after the other you quickly realize the formula used to write them. One book is much the same as the next. She has a main person she has to catch, someone that will make her a good paycheck. She almost gets them but they get away. She then gets someone worth just a little bit that’s easy to catch. Someone ends up helping her out in some way or another. She tries again and voila! She brings main con to jail, gets her money and goes home to her hamster. Mixed in to varying degrees are her two interchanging love interests. Therefore, while I recommend the first book, maybe even the first five, I do not recommend the rest of them unless you are in the mood for something “no-brainer” with some funny moments. If you do plan on reading this series, space it out to keep it interesting.
Something else that really irritates me in these novels is that even by the fifteenth book Plum is still making the same mistakes. She doesn’t learn from her mistakes! This drove me crazy and is what ultimately put me off of them.
Therefore, while I would give the first book 5 stars I must give the series as a whole a 3.5 stars. They are good stand alone books but together they quickly become predictable, repetitive and very two dimensional with an offending lack of character development.(I mean, not even the main character changes! I think the most she learns in the whole series is that she should lock her car doors.) This series had a lot of potential and I was surprised to find myself so disappointed by it, I had genuinely hoped for more and didn’t want to let Stephanie Plum go with quite so much frustration but here you have it! It is the type of book/series you can read while waiting for the kids. One that is good but that you can put down without being irritated with at those who made you stop.
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