Ten Big Ones by Janet Evanovich

Ten Big Ones by Janet Evanovich

Reviewed by L.D.Y.

Hardcover (available in mass market), 312 pages, 2004

Rating: 8/10

Reason for Reading: I’m addicted to Stephanie Plum, and maybe I don’t want to be cured.

Synopsis: The lovably disastrous bounty hunter Stephanie Plum is up the her usual good-intentions-bad-results mayhem, this time caused by her sidekick Lula accidentally interrupting a robbery. The thief turns out to be a very displeased gang member, and before long Stephanie finds that there’s a bounty on her head, but they have no interest in bringing her in alive…

Why you should read this book: If you’re looking for more of Stephanie Plum’s typical off-kilter goofiness, Ten Big Ones ensures a few good laughs. The gang-angle adds some new zip to the storyline, as does the added spice of Stephanie ending up secretly crashing in Ranger’s place while he’s out of town, leading to a few discoveries about the man of mystery. Stephanie’s family and co-workers are as wacky as usual. Something quick and fun to read as the busier autumn days set in.

Why you should avoid this book: If Evanovich wants to keep up an interest in her series, it’s definitely time to have Stephanie stop flip-flopping and make more permanant decisions in order to shake things up. Even characters in 30-minute sitcoms eventually have to change their paths (moving, marriage, kids, etc.) before the stories just become too stale to hold an audience. Adding to the feeling that Evanovich is pumping out quantity over quality is the amount of time spent rehashing previous books. At least this book didn’t open with the story of Stephanie and Joe playing choo-choo when they were kids.

Opening paragraph:

The way I see it, life is a jelly doughnut. You don’t really know what it’s about until you bite into it. And then, just when you decide it’s good, you drop a big glob of jelly on your best T-shirt.

Fabulous quotes:

‘There was another devil holdup last night. This time the firebomb worked and the store burned down.’
‘Anyone hurt?’
‘No. It was late at night, and the store was empty. The night manager got out the back door. The word on the street is that the Comstock Street Slayers are bragging about the cop shooting.’
‘I didn’t realize we had Slayers in Trenton.’
‘We’ve got everything in Trenton.’

Cindy leaned closer. ‘Boy, you smell great,’ she said to me. ‘You smell like…I don’t know. Not exactly perfume.’
‘It’s shower gel,’ I said. ‘I borrowed it from a guy I know.’
Carol came over and sniffed at me. ‘Is he married?’
‘Would he like to be?’
The question stuck with me until I was well out of Cantell’s neighborhood. I hadn’t a clue to the answer. I worked with Ranger, I drove his truck and I was living in his apartment, and yet I knew almost nothing about him.

Also recommended: Rachel’s Holiday by Marian Keyes; Skinny Dip by Carl Hiaasen.

Also by this author: Motor Mouth; Metro Girl; Hot Stuff; Plum Lovin’; Lean Mean Thirteen; Twelve Sharp; Eleven on Top; To the Nines; Visions of Sugar Plums; Hard Eight; Seven Up; Hot Six; High Five; Four to Score; Three to Get Deadly; Two for the Dough; One for the Money; Full Scoop; Full House; Full Tilt; Full Blast; Full Speed; Full Bloom; How I Write; Back to the Bedroom; The Rocky Road to Romance; Love Overboard.

Author’s website: evanovich.com

Fun tidbit: Evanovich spent four years taking art at college, but eventually decided painting brought her too small of an audience to be satisfying.

© Lisa Yanaky 2003-2007

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