Friday, February 11, 2011

Four to Score, High Five and Hot Six - Mini Book Reviews

While I've been traveling over the last few weeks I've kinda gone off on a Stephanie Plum tangent...I'm actually all the way up to # 14 so I thought the best way to handle all these reviews was to cover the 11 books I've managed to devour so quickly in mini reviews. 

In Four to Score Stephanie's looking for Maxine Nowicki; as are most FTA's, Maxine is not too keen on being found...especially since she's involved in some secret dealings of her own designed to give her mean ex Eddie Kuntz a taste of his own medicine.  Even though Eddie's offered Stephanie 1,000K to find Maxine, Stephanie picks up pretty quickly that Eddie isn't telling her everything.  Maxine leaves Eddie coded notes, and Stephanie enlists a transvestite named Sally to help her decode the notes and follow the clues to find Maxine before Eddie does.
Chased by Sally's jealous and demented roomate, Sugar, and a mysterious counterfeiting villain who chops off fingers as his calling card, Stephanie's life is out of control.  At one point she even finds herself  homeless and moves in with Morrelli until her apartment can be repaired.

And, yes, I did just type that Stephanie briefly moves in with Morrelli.


Of course Stephanie and Morelli don't go off into the sunset and live happily ever after.  There are 12 more books, remember?  Neither is ready for commitment...both like the idea of marriage at times and for various reasons, but neither seems ready to make that final leap.  Whenever one is ready to talk about forever, the other seems to say just the wrong thing to set off sparks and tempers fly. 

Sure does make things interesting though!

Uncle Fred is missing and Benito Ramirez, the scary psychopath boxer is back in High Five - to make matters worse, Uncle Fred has photographs of chopped up bodies and his wife seems happier now that Fred is gone rather than spending her time looking for him.  Stephanie's first FTA, Briggs, a small person, also ends up living in her apartment while his is repaired after Stephanie and Lula tear it up trying and finally succeeding in aprehending him.  I'm tired just typing about Stephanie Plum's multi-layered complicated life!

Stephanie's still trying to pay the rent and ends up doing extra work for Ranger...she helps him design a security system for a family home and babysits an Arab shiek's son.  Somehow she also manages to blow up and lose (actually stolen) two of Ranger's nicest company vehicles, a Porsche and a BMW. 

As Stephanie and Morelli are still trying to feel their way through the relationship, the heat between Stephanie and Ranger explodes.  Up until now, Ranger has been a trustworthy friend...even though there's never been any doubt that he's attracted to Stephanie.  In High Five Ranger seems to really turn on the sexual overtures and playful suggestions...of course confusing Stephanie even more about her relationship with Morelli. 

Once the crimes are solved and Benito Ramirez is no longer a threat ,Stephanie realizes she must choose between the two men in her life and quit wasting time.  In the last scene one of those fellas mysteriously crosses the threshold of Stephanie's apartment at her invitation.

Who will Stephanie choose?

Ranger is suspected of murder and becomes Stephanie's most challenging FTA when he doesn't show up for his court appearance.  Since Ranger is a high stakes bond with a lot of money on the line for Stephanie's cousin, bailbondsman and boss Vinnie, Stephanie is assigned to bring Ranger in.

Ranger quietly shows up in the middle of the night to give Stephanie instructions on keeping an eye on a mobster's son. Ranger has to find the real killer before the killer, the police or the other two goons tailing Stephanie find him if he wants to stay alive.

Even more complicated than Ranger showing up in her bedroom in the middle of the night is Grandma Mazur  who has had it with Stephanie's father and moves in with Stephanie until she can find a place of her own.  Morelli and Stephanie are none too happy about this arrangement since it stunts their love life which was way complicated enough already.

Even crazier still is the arrival of Bob the dog.  Bob is a Lab/Retriever mix that is not completely potty trained and eats anything and everything that's not nailed down...and maybe even some things that are nailed down.  Bob is supposed to be a temporary guest but ends up making himself at home. 

Stephanie is shot in the culminating scene of this installment, and both of her guys begin to realize just how much she means to them.  Steph even manages to get a marriage proposal out of her first on the job injury.

As usual though, nothing in Stephanie's Plum's life is ever simple.

"About that proposal, Cupcake..."


  1. I really enjoy the series - I'm sort of mad at myself that I left off at one of them and I can't remember which one it was. I'm going to have to figure it out and dive back into them - they're so fun!

  2. I used to love this series, but have kind of grown tired of it and skipped the latest book altogether.

  3. I love these books, as you know, and look forward to the new one every year. I love that they are such an easy read.