Oh dear. Where do I start? Well, let’s start here: THERE IS NO SEX.
Also, more importantly, Ranger is in this story 0.0001%. Morelli is in this story 0.0005%. You know who’s around? Diesel. And freaking Wuulf. And Diesel, even though he’s like, number three in my book of Who Stephanie Should Have Sexy Times With doesn’t even have that much to do. And Wuulf doesn’t even have any real dialogue. Here’s there for like, two pages.
This was…not good. I’ve lamented Janet’s half-hearted efforts before but have always vowed to keep reading them, but with this latest installment, I think she’s maybe turned me all the way off. (I mean, not really, because I’m eternally hopeful for more Ranger sex, but still. How did we go from sex with Ranger at DisneyWorld to…this?)
For the uninitiated, Stephanie Plum is a bond enforcement agent. Skip out on your court date, and she hunts you down (poorly). Connie is the office manager at her cousin Vinnie’s bond agency, Lula is the former ‘ho turned sidekick who pours herself in to skin tight pleather, sequins, and five inch spike heels, Morelli is the on-again/off again homicide cop boyfriend, and Ranger is Stephanie’s mentor and bodyguard from a distance.
This time around, Stephanie’s on the hunt for someone called Oswald Wednesday, a big time hacker who does Bad Things. Diesel – a shadowy figure who sometimes appears in Janet’s books – is also on the hunt, and he and Stephanie join forces to lure Oswald out of hiding. In the meantime, bodies of other hackers are turning up with their tongues missing.
Normally, bad things happen to Stephanie. She’s a walking catastrophe. This time Janet decided to mix things up a bit and have the bad things happen to Lula. Lula gets bats stuck in her hair, gets shot – twice – by Oswald, and eventually ends up with an explosive vest strapped to her chest. Stephanie blows up a couple of cars, including Diesel’s, but other than that, comes out pretty unscathed, except for the chili dog incident at the airport.
Even Grandma was a bit boring in this episode. The most Grandma did was literally spill tea at the funeral home; she didn’t even try to pry open the dead guy’s mouth to find his tongue. The most interesting things that happened were Mr. Plum talking at dinner, like two whole pages worth, and Mrs. Plum taking up knitting. Poor Mrs. Plum. I wouldn’t be surprised if she goes banana pants crazy one day. Her life can’t be easy.
Anyway. I’m sad to say I can’t recommend this one.
Also, what’s with the change in the title format? She did that on the last book, too, which was also not fantastic. Maybe there’s something to that, Janet.