Anyway, in 2012 I read three Evanovich books and enjoyed every second of them, like cotton candy or an ice cream cone on a summer day. No, they can't be compared to a healthy meal, all nutritionally complete and vitamin filled. This is a treat. A little stretch of time where I can curl up and laugh out loud at all of the shenanigans of Evanovich's characters.
Explosive Eighteen is, obviously, our eighteenth outing with the perennially thirty year old Stephanie Plum and the crazy characters who populate her life. This time out Stephanie was forced to cut her Hawaii trip short and wound up flying home alone, and unwilling to discuss the disaster it was with anyone. And, things are only going to get worse. Her seatmate on the the flight back did not get back on the plane after the layover in LA. It turns out, he was too busy getting dead and shoved in a dumpster. Stephanie was the last person to see him alive, and to see the photograph he had, which is very important to a lot of people.
Stephanie is being followed by a lot of people, none of them friendly, at least half of them lying about who they are. But, as much as the crazy folks in these books and they trouble they cause is interesting, it's the relationships Stephanie has with her family, her friends and her men that keep me coming back. There was some confusion about who Stephanie was with and who she was supposed to be with on the Hawaii trip. The fallout when she gets back was fun for me. Is that mean of me? I just enjoy going for the ride.
In Notorious Nineteen our friend Stephanie is back and on the trail of a big bounty. It seems Geoffrey Cubbins was out on bail for embezzling millions from the assisted living facility he runs and disappeared into thin air after having his appendix removed. There are plenty of people trying to find Cubbin, and all for different reasons. His bail bond is large and Stephanie could really use the money. She even gets to work with Morelli on this one. (You've got to love a man who calls you cupcake!)
Of course, Ranger is on the scene, too. This time he needs Stephanie's help. He's the best man in an ex-special forces friend's wedding and another member of the group, long suspected to be dead is after the two of them. Stephanie joins Ranger's team as date/bodyguard. This puts her in the line of fire meant for Ranger, and gets her stuck in the role of bridesmaid to a woman she's just met.
I try not to give away anything about these books, because all I have to give you is the promise of an enjoyable ride. The laughs are plentiful and Evanovich never disappoints me. It could be because I don't go in expecting Dickens or Nabokov, just some romance and shenanigans. As long as Evanovich is willing to keep writing these books, I'll be there to follow along with Stephanie's journey.
The Lizzy and Diesel series is about the seven deadly sins. You may remember Diesel from the Plum "between the numbers" books, Plum Lucky, Visions of Sugar Plums, etc. Diesel is sort of an otherworldly being, the reader is left with lots of room to imagine just what he may be, or may not be. Clearly, he has some kind of power and he's on a mission to find the powerful artifacts that represent each of the seven deadly sins.
Poor Lizzy, she's just a nice girl who got caught up in Diesel's mission. It turns out she's got a talent, too. She can sense the objects Diesel needs to find.. Luckily, she's got her house and her job in the bakery with an assortment of friends who support her and understand her quest. Plus, with this series you have lots of sexual tension. Lizzy and Diesel are obviously attracted to one another, but this coupling could drain Diesel of his powers. No one wants to be responsible for making this happen.
Lizzy and Diesel need to find the Luxuria stone, the object of lust. It was last in the possession of a Harvard professor, who is no longer among the living. Lizzy and Diesel need to find it before his evil counterpart, Wulf finds it. Will they get there in time? I sure hope so.
Evanovich writes such fun characters. They are written with warmth and wit and, while they might not be Anna Karenina, they certainly are a whole lot of fun to spend some time with. I look forward to the next books in both of these series.