Wednesday, March 1, 2017

BOOK REVIEW - HARD EIGHT by JANET EVANOVICH - STEPHANIE PLUM # 8 - CONTEMPORARY CRIME

By: Janet Evanovich
Published By : Headline
Released: Available Now
Details: OP Shop Paperback , 277 Pages

RATING: 4.25 SHENANIGAN STARS

Blurb: Goodreads

Fugitive Apprehension Agent Stephanie Plum has a big problem on her hands: Seven-year-old Annie Soder and her mother, Evelyn, have disappeared.

Evelyn's estranged husband, Steven, a shady owner of a seedy bar, is not at all happy. During the divorce proceedings, he and Evelyn signed a child custody bond, and Steven is demanding the money guaranteed by the bond to find Annie. The money was secured by a mortgage on Evelyn's grandmother's house, and the True Blue Bonds Bail Agency wants to take possession of the house.

Finding a kidnapped child is not an assignment for a bounty hunter. But Evelyn's grandmother lives next door to Stephanie's parents, and Stephanie's mother and grandmother are not about to see their neighbor lose her house because of abduction.

Even though Stephanie's plate is full with miscreants who missed their court dates, including old nemesis and violent drunk Andy Bender and an elusive little old lady accused of grand theft auto, she can't disappoint Grandma Mazur! So she follows the trail left by Annie and Evelyn-- and finds a lot more than she bargained for. Steven is somehow linked with a very scary Eddie Abruzzi. Trenton cop and on-again, off-again fiance Joe Morelli and Stephanie's mentor and tormentor, Ranger, warn Stephanie about Abruzzi, but it's Abruzzi's eyes and mannerisms that frighten Stephanie the most. Stephanie needs Ranger's savvy and expertise, and she's willing to accept his help to find Annie even though it might mean becoming too involved with Ranger.

Stephanie, Ranger, Lula (who's not going to miss riding with Ranger), and Evelyn's lawyer/laundromat manager set out to find Annie. The search turns out to be a race among Stephanie's posse, the True Blue Bonds' agent, a Rangerette known as Jeanne Ellen Burrows, and the Abruzzi crew. Not to mention the fact that there's a killer rabbit on the loose!

Strap on your helmet and get ready for the ride of your life. Hard Eight. The world of Plum has never been wilder.




BOOK REVIEW :

8 books down and I am very comfy with what to expect in Stephanie’s series of shenanigans, silly moments, Ranger ( let’s take a moment to breathe)…Joe moments, ( what are these two doing?)  and throw in some gruesome moments.



“There was a detail we’re not releasing to the press,” Morelli said.

“A gruesome detail?”

“Yeah.”


Oh it was gruesome.

Pretty much a check list of moments and you have another Steph P installment.

Not complaining as I read them for their poolside ease… except I don’t have a pool.

Steph’s being a bit more detective, than Bounty Hunter in this installment.

But fear not! Cars are going KABOOM!

Ranger is ‘grinning’ that dirty grin.



He tucked my hair behind my ear, his fingertips brushing feather light across my temple, his thumb at the line of my jaw. “I have my own team.”

“Tell me about Jeanne Ellen.”

Ranger smiled. “The information would have a price.”

“And the price would be what?”

The smile widened. “Try not to get too wet today,” he said. And he was gone.



Ranger is being all mysterious and bringing the sexual tension by the bucket load. Why-oh-why do you do this to me Janet? It’s like a scratch that is hard to reach and itch…but you find a way to itch it and ooooh does it feel good when you can get into that place.



“Babe,” Ranger said, “it’s not the end of the world to sleep with me.”



Baaazing!!!



Ranger was a cat. Quiet. Every muscle relaxed on command. Probably did yoga. Might not be human.



Joe is popping in and out. To ship or not to ship? That is the Q.



“This is what I think. I think there’s you and me, and sometimes we’re together. But there’s no us.”

“That feels a little lonely,” I said.

“Don’t make this more difficult than it already is,” Morelli said.




There is a sidekick. Always a sidekick. Often a quirky/annoying little man, funnily enough. 

There is the hint of Ranger buddies...it's like teasing me. A little Hector, a little Tank...

There is somebody Steph went to school with…bahahaa. I actually wait for that moment.



The door opened, and Carol Nadich looked out at me.

“Stephanie!” she said. “How the hell are you?”

I went to school with Carol.



Bingo! I really could start marking squares off.

Steph still hasn’t grown as a character…she’s bumbling…thumbling…being stalked…kissed…needing TastyKakes.

Rinse and repeat.

Lula has her limelight. Love me some Lula. The best lines of dialogue..next to Ranger.

Vinnie dons his BH gear ( Bounty Hunter) and gives it another whirl.

FTA’s elude Stephanie no matter their age. This time round I did find myself rolling my eyes a little and wanting to take a hold of the reigns and get the job done.

Truly!

But then the book would have been shorter. Well, I could have spent some no-strings-attached time with Ranger.

Truly!

Let me throw down some fave quotes.



Ranger and I were oil and water. He was the Man of Mystery, and I was Ms Curiosity. We both knew this. Ranger tolerated it with mild amusement. I tolerated it with teeth clenched.



“I feel cheated,” Ranger said. “Usually when I’m with you a car explodes or a building burns down.”

“Sorry to disappoint.”

“Life is a bitch,” Ranger said. He reached out and grabbed me by my jacket sleeves, hauled me across the console, and kissed me.




“Do you want to try your luck with another car? We could raise the stakes. I could give you a Porsche.”


I smiled at Ranger. I can be mysterious too.


Stephanie Plum and the lads with a side order of sidekicks are strangely addictive.

Is it the best writing? No...but weirdly entertaining even if there is a lot of rinse and repeat, different day, different character going on. It's kinda an odd feeling every time I crack one of these open, there is an eagerness to slide back into the bumbling world Stephanie has made for herself...yet I kinda know what will more or less be going on...again except for the different character...different day.

I am plum suckered in.

Pun intended.


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