Book info

To The Nines (2004)

To the Nines (2004)
Rating
4.15 of 5 Votes: 1
ISBN
0747267634 (ISBN13: 9780747267638)
languge
English
genre
publisher
st. martin's press
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To The Nines (2004)
To The Nines (2004)

About book: Before reading: So the thing was, I was looking for a woman who writes about a woman detective. I had had plenty of men about men. Janet Evanovich popped up as meeting the criteria. Having a lead, it was my responsibility to undertake the due diligence. I think I might have blown it. It seems this series is classified by GR readers as Mystery first and foremost but Chick Lit running a distant but statistically significant second. So I have a couple of Evanovich books touted as #1 sellers in many categories that I got as BookSwap went out of business. (I wonder who are the #2 sellers?) The clever titling of the series – one…, two…, three…, four… etc. – gives me pause but it must have some benefit for marketing and that is the name of the best seller game, right? Now I will see if I found my woman.I plan to review this book one chapter at a time. You can’t be sure if it will be dull or exciting. If I was skimming this book in a library aisle, based on the first few pages I would put it back on the shelf and look for something else. But since I own this book and am sitting at home on my couch, I must read on regretting that I rarely fail to finish a book that I start.Chapter one: The highlight is the capture of a naked bail jumper by our heroine. What makes it a highlight is that he is not just naked but has also covered himself with Vaseline. You know, like catching a greased pig at the county fair.Chapter two: The day glow dust jacket should have been a tip off. They don’t want this best seller to be missed on the grocery store shelf. I forgot to mention that in Chapter one there were “johnson” and “wanger” jokes. I was not amused. Maybe I am a little oversensitive about reading chick lit. Lots of sexual innuendo and not so innuendo.Chapter THREE: Nice typeface for the chapter headings – the number of the chapter spelled out in upper case. Classy. Definitely the best part of the book so far. Oh, no, a fart joke. (“That wasn’t me.”) Is this going to be like a PG movie? And the first evidence of a dead person as the chapter ends. Wowza!Chapter four: Show and tell. Must be character development. ”I hate this,” Morelli said. “Why can’t I have a girlfriend who has normal problems . . . like breaking a fingernail or missing a period or falling in love with a lesbian?”…Morelli was better at this cohabitation than I was. Morelli was invigorated by sex. An orgasm for Morelli was like taking a vitamin pill. The more orgasms he had, the sharper he got. I’m the opposite. For me, an orgasm is like a shot of Valium. A night with Morelli and the next morning I’m a big contented cow.Chapter five: A person being questioned by our heroine is shot. First dead body. Oh, and there was “a lot of bitch slapping and name calling and hair pulling” by a couple of women. Is this part of what makes it chick lit? I think I am starting to be drawn into the reality show aspects. Got to get on to the next chapter.Chapter six: What do you suppose McDonald’s pays to be in these books? And, since I’m asking, what are the chances that all these things could happen to our heroine in such a short time? I’m smiling about it in disbelief, but that might mean that I am enjoying it! Not supposed to take this seriously.Chapter seven: I don’t watch soap opera type shows but I have the feeling that if I did, it would be like this book – a three ring circus. Chili’s. Cheesecake Factory. They’re lining up for a mention in this book. Chapter eight: Book came out in 2003 so they’re still using pagers. Where are the iPhones?Chapter nine: Las Vegas. I understand that writers often visit locales where books are set to add some local color. A laugh out loud line: “Maybe I should throw my bra, too.” Second one in the book and only halfway through. Way to go, Janet. Chapter ten: I just checked. This book has over 29,000 GR ratings and an average rating of 4.1. I am not sure what to make of that. I would like to think that if reading reviews had been a bigger part of my due diligence investigation, I might not be in this awkward situation. But 4.1? Will I fall under the spell? Dead people left and right. Will I be able to take a brief respite from the events of the day?Chapter eleven: I keep waiting to find out the origin of the title of this book. Ah, but of course, ask Google about “to the nines” and you will find out. Now, let’s see where that comes up.Chapter twelve: Fisher Cat, Lisa and Bob.Chapter thirteen: Odd pair: gun and condoms in the cookie jar.Chapter fourteen: I have to finish this book but you don’t have to finish this review. It’s up to you but I am not going to tell you they lived happily ever after. I like a book that gives occasional summaries: “I didn’t know where to begin. There’d been death, birth, sex, and hair loss.” Is “cute” a chick lit word? Just asking.Chapter fifteen: What’s with the anatomical language differential? A man has a “johnson” or a “wanger” but a woman has a “vagina.” I’d call that chick lit discrimination. You’ve been very patient. I have been too. This is the last chapter. I went straight from the book to the News Hour on Public Television. To the Nines was a distraction from the world and national news for 24 hours. The next time I need an escape from today’s war, I can read my last Janet Evanovich. It’s Ten Big Ones. I wonder what Google has to say about that? I don’t want anyone to say I didn’t give Janet a chance.One last thought before I go on to the rating: This book needs a laugh track. There are some one liners that demand a laugh track.It’s between three and two stars. I take GR ratings literally. Two stars means “It was OK.” And three stars is “liked it.” We clear on that? So, just to be clear, I am between liked and OK, that rock and a hard place people always talk about. So I’ll let you help decide. Pick a number, any number, between one and three. OK, it was OK. Two stars. That was easy.

Oh my god, guys, I'm doing it again. This Stephanie Plum book is even more of a five-star book from the last Stephanie Plum book I gave five stars to (Three to Get Deadly). This is pretty much the Perfect Plum. The plot is actually interesting. A man who works for a slot-machine-part manufacturer goes missing. He is in the U.S. on a visa bond, which Vinnie wrote, so Stephanie has to get him back. She gets to learn how slot-machine parts are made AND go to Vegas, which involves Lula going through TSA screen (they confiscate the meat in her purse) and riding on a plane. In Vegas, Lula starts a turf war between Tom Jones impersonators and Elvis impersonators, she throws her "King Kong thong" in a performers face, and Connie almost marries someone. The whole thing turns out be a red herring, and Stephanie gets involved with a creepy game-playing serial killer who leaves her flowers and threatening notes. Even though the killer is completely obvious to the reader, it's still really tense and interesting. Plus, Stephanie actually does stuff in this book. She fights back at an assailant, and she actually kills the bad guy all by her herself. At one point, she reminisces about being a tomboy, fantasizing about G.I. Joe and Thundercats (while Mary Lou would be Smurfette), and she actually lives up to her childhood fantasies in this one.Along the way, they really get to know this counter guy at McDonald's who lists off a bunch of ridiculous customer complaints. "Wanting an Egg McMuffin at eleven when it is a rule you cannot have an Egg McMuffin past ten-thirty." Of course, he gets shot dead and Lula freaks out over her milkshake. "I don't get hysterical. This here's transference. I read about it in a magazine. It's when you get upset about one thing only you're really upset about something else." Lula really rocks it out in this one. After her FatBusters diet fails to bust her fat, she starts an all-meat diet to get to supermodel wait in no time. It makes her aggressive. She wrestles a woman to the ground, tackles one of Stephanie's body guards, and gets chased by dogs a lot. She always gets pursued when she's trying to impress Tank. Bob eats her purse. She throws bacon at a pack of mutts. After eating meat so much, she thinks she's growing fangs, which makes no sense, but the ridiculousness didn't keep me from laughing out loud when she asked Stephanie, "Are you looking at my fangs?"Speaking of healthy eating, Stephanie makes a healthy breakfast choice too, she chooses a Strawberry Pop-Tart over a S'mores one. "Best to have fruit for breakfast, right?"Stephanie mentions Mary Lou, her alleged best friend whom she never ever does anything with, twice, and Mary Lou cancels on her!There's a lot of Stephanie and Morelli, which I love. Their sex scenes are actually hot and not Charlaine Harris-style icky. Ranger is kept to a minimum, which is great because he's extra Charlaine Harris-style icky when he does appear. (Stephanie: "I thought we came here for pie." Ranger: "I don't eat the kind of pie they serve here." Steph: I felt a flash of heat go through my stomach. I knew firsthand the kind of pie Ranger liked.) Ranger mostly sends bodyguards to protect her, and they get incapacitated in a variety of ways: tackled by Lula, crushed by an FTA, Valerie's water breaks on one of them, etc.Favorite quotes/scenes:Stephanie is sent flowers by a serial killer: Lula: "It's nice to come back to fresh flowers in the room."Stephanie: "They were sent by a serial killer! THEY'RE DEATH FLOWERS."Lula: "Well, yeah, but they're still nice."Lula: "It's a sin to throw food away."Stephanie: "Neither of us needs this food, so God's just going to have to understand."Lula: "I think you might be blaspheming God."Stephanie: "I'm not blaspheming god."Lula: "Give me that food bag. I'm going to save your immortal soul."Stephanie: "No! Remember the supermodel. Have some carrots.Lula: "I hate those fucking carrots. Give me that bag!"Stephanie: "Stop it! You're getting scary."Lula: "I need that burger. I'm out of control."Stephanie: No shit. Then Stephanie RUNS for a trash can and throws the food in. Lula tackles her, dives into the dumpster, gets the food, then they split everything inside.Lula: "Cops and dead people give me diarrhea."Valerie worries about marrying Albert:Stephanie: "I think he'd run into a burning building to save you." Whether he'd get her out of the building is another issue. Probably they'd both die a horrible death."Lula is a plus-size black woman in a size-seven white world and Lula's had a lot of practice pulling attitude."
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Reviews
Kate Black
I am loving this series! Ms. Evanovich is a master of action and character. LOVE these books! Strong female character w/ flaws who is vulnerable at times without being wishy-washy and obnoxious.Male characters who actually _love_ women, even those who eat lots of doughnuts.And the villains are so evil, so nasty, so psycho-- ones you love to hate.I've got a pile of her books in my living room, waiting for me. Book clearance sales are the best for a book addict like me and I got really, really lucky!
Stephanie Burkhart
Stephanie Plum is up to her usual tricks when she gets assigned to find Samuel Singh, an illegal immigrant who has jumped his immigration bond. Ranger, her co-worker, is put on the case, too, but the leads are slim.Stephanie and Ranger soon learn that Singh's disappearance is tied to random events and people. Stephanie investigates Singh's place of employment, TriBro. The Cone brothers, Andrew, Bart, and Clyde run the establishment. Soon, Stephanie begins receiving death threats along with red and white carnations. Still, Stephanie doesn't give up and even takes a trip to Las Vegas in the hopes of finding Singh. Stephanie knows she's a target, but finding who's behind the flowers and the death threats will be her biggest challenge to date. Evanovich's writing is easy to read and completely engages the reader. She uses a solid first person voice that makes the reader feel like a part of Stephanie's world. Her supporting characters are honest and endearing. Lula is a true friend, Ranger an anti-hero, and Grandma Mazur tries to keep the family peace as Stephanie's sister, Valerie, prepares for birth. The story is a cozy mystery with plenty of well placed clues and several red herrings. "To The Nines" has adventure, nail-biting suspense, laughs, and plenty of heartwarming moments. It is good for 13 years old readers and older. The novel is a fine addition to the series. I highly recommend this book.
Jessica
In the ninth book of the series, Stephanie Plum is after Samuel Singh, a Indian man living and working in Jersey on a visa bond. He seems to have gone missing, only a week before he is scheduled to return home. Not that this is unusual, as his boss explains; many of the foreign temporary workers that he hires get a taste of the American life, and want to stick around. But then there are the flowers that get delivered to Stephanie, with the not-so-sweet notes. And the photographs of dead people! She knows they are related to Samuel's disappearance. Stephanie will have to leave the comfort of the Burg, and travel across the country to follow and possibly catch her man. And how can she be expected to go to Vegas without her spandex-wearing and colorful sidekick Lula?!? Others aiding on the case (or just trying to keep Steph alive) include her very hot and mysterious mentor Ranger, her on-again-off-again boyfriend Joe, the very large Tank, and pin-upy office manager Connie, among others. Her family is also present, and just as eccentric as expected, growing by the minute, with the very pregnant Valerie and the clown that is the father of the child. Another very entertaining book. Stephanie is always endearing in her own Murphy's Law kind of way. Definitely a must read for Plum fans.
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