BOOK REVIEW: Sizzling Sixteen by Janet Evanovich

Review by Ryder Islington

The latest Stephanie Plum escapade is filled with the required accidents, explosions, take downs by Stephanie and her robust friend Lula, and moments of indecision involving Joseph Morelli and Ranger. Stephanie has a “lucky” bottle, at least that’s what the will said when she inherited it from Uncle Pip. The question is how to make it work. 

Stephanie’s boss/cousin, Vinnie, is kidnapped for ransom after failing to pay gambling debts.  The ever inept Stephanie, bounty hunter not-so-extraordinaire, feels compelled to save her despicable cousin Vinnie because, after all, she is one of the good guys.

Her on-again-off-again relationship with detective Morelli complicates the plan, which must be kept secret not only because the kidnappers have made it clear that Vinnie will die if cops are involved, but also because Stephanie’s side kick, ex-prostitute Lula and the office manager, Connie, are constantly doing things that are not quite aboveboard. In fact, they are mostly down right criminal. 

As usual, Grandma Mazur causes a ruckus at Stiva’s Funeral Home, the local hang out for the over sixties crowd. She’s the only grandma I know who prefers a wheelchair to crutches, for the sympathy factor, and attends funerals to pick up guys and eat cookies. 

Throw in Mr. Jingles, the not so average protection trained pet, drug dealers, and the mysterious Ranger, a bounty hunter/security expert who manages to push every button Stephanie has, and often leaves her confused and breathing hard, and you have a funny, surprising, fast-paced story, guaranteed to make you laugh out loud in the wee hours of the morning when you should be sleeping. 

Ms. Evanovich has managed to turn out another hit, and boy, does it sizzle. 



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