One for the Money, by Janet Evanovich

The other day at the library, I asked a woman if I could help her find anything. She was standing in front of the “new mysteries” section, and she said that she’d read all of these already and asked if I could help her find a good action or adventure mystery. I was like… um…

Because I haven’t read an adventure-y mystery in a really long time! Most of my fare is either classics or literary-style mysteries, neither of which would probably have appeased this woman. And in fact, I realized that of all the mystery authors who get multiple shelves with multiple copies of each book? I’ve read exactly zero. I decided I ought to rectify this, so I grabbed a copy of One for the Money and went to town.

Well. I suddenly remember why I like the classics and the literaries. Stephanie Plum is not a detective; she’s an unemployed lingerie-buyer who conveniently has a bail bondsman cousin who, with a little blackmailing, is willing to let her “shag” (you would not believe how happy I was to discover the 1994 definition of that word!) a bail jumper for a cool ten grand. And this jumper is none other than some guy who diddled her in kindergarten and then again in high school. And he’s a cop. Who killed someone. And Plum is totes going to get him. Somehow.

I will grant that it was interesting watching Plum be a complete idiot (V.I. Warshawski she is NOT) about… everything related to nabbing a bail jumper, and also to watch the strange cat and mouse game that she and the guy were playing. But the whole story just required this drastic suspension of disbelief that I just could not manage. Many things were incredibly convenient, many people were conveniently very stupid and/or bad at their jobs, and Plum seemed pretty much devoid of common sense and yet still managed to get her man.

It makes the brain hurt.

Please, suggest to me another popular mystery author, and perhaps a title of his/hers that won’t make me want to cry over the inanity?

Rating: 5/10
(A to Z Challenge, Support Your Local Library Challenge)

See also:
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Pass me yours, if you’ve got ’em.

3 thoughts on “One for the Money, by Janet Evanovich

  1. Deborah says:

    Hmm…I'm not a big mystery reader either but here are my thoughts:

    Alexander McCall Smith – Number 1 Ladies Detective Agency.
    I wasn't a huge fan when I read it, but it's really popular.

    Faye Kellermen – The Ritual Bath. It probably appeals more to people who are Jewish as the first book is set in an Orthodox Community and the main female is Orthodox. Not sure that this is one that you would enjoy, but considering there are a lot of books in the series, I think it's pretty popular.

    Laurie R. King – she writes new Sherlock Holmes stories. I've never read them, but my dad enjoys them, and he reads a lot of mysteries.

    I think there are also those cat mysteries. I don't remember the name or the author, but those are really popular as well.

    Hope that helps.
    Good luck!

  2. Alison says:

    Yeah, I wasn't thrilled with No. 1 etc. when I read it, either. And for the cat mysteries, do you mean Lillian Jackson Braun? I'm rather wary of cat mysteries, but clearly someone likes them. ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Amy says:

    I went through a Lilian Jackson Braun phase. If you go there, read the older ones.

    I like Nevada Barr's Anna Pigeon books – you will probably have to suspend disbelief that she's still alive after all the crap she gets put through by the later books, but each book takes place in a different National Park and they're fun and quick.

    More literary contemporary mysteries are Jane Hadaamm's Gregor Demarkian books. The early ones take place around a holiday, and they are some of the few mysteries that I can't rip right through.

    Nothing is better than an Amelia Peabody mystery by Elizabeth Peters. Feminist archeologist in 19th century Egypt? Yes please!

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