Title: Notorious Nineteen
Author: Janet Evanovich
Series: Stephanie Plum #19
Release Date: November 20, 2012
Source: personal copy
New Jersey bounty hunter Stephanie Plum is certain of three truths: People don’t just vanish into thin air. Never anger old people. And don’t do what Tiki tells you to do.
After a slow summer of chasing low-level skips for her cousin Vinnie’s bail bonds agency, Stephanie Plum finally lands an assignment that could put her checkbook back in the black. Geoffrey Cubbin, facing trial for embezzling millions from Trenton’s premier assisted-living facility, has mysteriously vanished from the hospital after an emergency appendectomy. Now it’s on Stephanie to track down the con man. Unfortunately, Cubbin has disappeared without a trace, a witness, or his money-hungry wife. Rumors are stirring that he must have had help with the daring escape . . . or that maybe he never made it out of his room alive. Since the hospital staff’s lips seem to be tighter than the security, and it’s hard for Stephanie to blend in to assisted living, Stephanie’s Grandma Mazur goes in undercover. But when a second felon goes missing from the same hospital, Stephanie is forced into working side by side with Trenton’s hottest cop, Joe Morelli, in order to crack the case.
The real problem is, no Cubbin also means no way to pay the rent. Desperate for money—or maybe just desperate—Stephanie accepts a secondary job guarding her secretive and mouthwatering mentor Ranger from a deadly Special Forces adversary. While Stephanie is notorious for finding trouble, she may have found a little more than she bargained for this time around. Then again—a little food poisoning, some threatening notes, and a bridesmaid’s dress with an excess of taffeta never killed anyone . . . or did they? If Stephanie Plum wants to bring in a paycheck, she’ll have to remember: No guts, no glory. . .
Once you’ve reached the 19th book in a series, there’s not a whole lot to say about new installments. At least, not in this series. This was really just more of the same. Stephanie + Lula + Morelli + Ranger + some weirdo skips = hijinks. While the same old, same old works well for the straight romances Evanovich used to write, it’s not working for a series this long. I did like the mystery in this one more than the last one — at least it made some sense to me. But otherwise, this series just doesn’t excite me any more. It might be time for Stephanie to take everyone’s advice and retire.
- “I think the main thing that’s getting me down with the latest Stephanie Plum books is that the series is just going on for way too long.” — I’d So Rather Be Reading
- “Another reviewer complained that Stephanie doesn’t grow as a character, she’s always broke, she’s bad at her job and she can’t make her mind between Ranger and Morelli. What gives? I read the books for all those reasons.” — Romance & Beyond
- “I’m relieved Evanovich has returned to classic Stephanie Plum. Things were getting a little silly there for a while.” — Peppermint Ph.D.