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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 31 March 2017
Arrived just as sold. Thanks.
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on 5 April 2017
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on 11 June 2004
I first 'discovered' the Stephanie Plum books a few years ago, the first one I read was 'Hot Six'. I've recently bought and read the entire series, just in time for the release of 'To the Nines'. All the books in the series are amazing, combining the suspense of the crime genre with more laughs than your favourite comedy show.
Anyway, about this book...usually as a series goes on the author starts to run out of ideas and the books become dull and repetitive, this book is a definite exception!! Whilst I was reading this book, I found myself getting weird looks from the people around me as I couldn't help but laugh out loud...it's genius! For those of you who have read the Stephanie Plum series, she has graduated from blowing up cars to hospitalising Ranger's "Merry Men" in various interesting and amusing ways.
'To the Nines' is filled with Stephanie's insane friends and family, her tendency to attract trouble and the two gorgeous men in her life Morelli and Ranger...all making this book the fast-paced, action packed and funny read it is.
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As one of the sweaty masses in constant need of "bread and circuses" to forestall social discontent, the Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich has been a mainstay of cheap entertainment. However, by the end of book eight (HARD EIGHT), even that was beginning stale around the edges. But elements of TO THE NINES have reinvigorated my interest.
If you don't know from your assigned reading by now, Stephanie is a bond enforcement agent - a bounty hunter - employed by her bail bondsman cousin, Vinnie, in Trenton, NJ. While Plum eventually manages to catch her man (or woman), she invariably leaves a trail of chaos in her wake, and her modus operandi is endearingly klutzy. Plus, all the characters in her personal and professional life lie on a continuum from being mildly eccentric to outright wack jobs. Only her pet hamster, Rex, is normal.
In TO THE NINES, Stephanie's quarry is Samuel Singh, an Indian in the States on a temporary work visa on which Vinnie has underwritten a new type of bond - a "visa bond". But Singh has disappeared, and the resulting bad publicity will destroy Vinnie's business unless his disaster-prone cousin can find him. Assigned to help in the search is Vinnie's premier contract agent, Ranger, a mysterious ex-Special Forces type that operates just outside the law and who, since book one (ONE FOR THE MONEY), has inpired a warm feeling in our heroine's nether regions despite her off-and-on emotional and sexual commitment to another cousin, Trenton police detective Joe Morelli, who relieved Stephanie of her virginity behind a bakery's pastry counter back when they were teenagers. Ranger is a Hunk Dressed in Black.
As I hinted earlier, the Stephanie Plum comedic thrillers, while always very funny, follow an invariable pattern. Author Evanovich apparently has a storyline template to which she religiously adheres. (And who would argue? It produces Best Sellers.) However, for those of us - well, at least me - loyally following Plum's keystone-cop antics, some significant deviation from the pattern would be welcomed. In TO THE NINES, the author breaks the mold just a little. For once, Stephanie gets out of Trenton on her quarry's trail - all the way to Las Vegas, NV - unreasonably harassed by airline security at every stop. And instead of demolishing the various cars and trucks loaned to her by Ranger, now it's the latter's employees who're imperiled by Stephanie's bad karma.
Finally, Stephanie's sister Valerie gives birth. This flips the switch on the former's own maternal instincts. Somewhere vaguely in her thirties, Stephanie isn't getting any younger and the Biological Clock is ticking. Do you suppose that Morelli is the man for the job? Of course, they'd have to get married first - an event that's proved maddeningly elusive in previous installments, much to the distress of Stephanie's Mom. Indeed, the plotting for future Plum novels involves potentially infinite permutations sure to keep fans buying books.
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on 24 July 2003
Janet Evanovich is back on form after the slightly weak Visions
of Sugar Plums.
The characters are tightly brought together and you feel like your visiting old friends.
The writing is always lively and very funny and i'm convinced Janet has met several members of my family!!
Stephanie Plum is the real thing.So if you want a well written book,fantastic characters,humour and a great lead man (Ranger..need I say more!)READ THIS BOOK
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on 2 January 2004
'To the nines' is the latest in the Plum colection and in competion with 'seven up'(number 7) for the best in the series and the rest are great. It combines the best bits of every book I've ever read. Stephanie Plum living a life I've secretly always wanted to lead - fast cars, hot men (2 of them) and she only gets shot at every now and then! It has every emotion going, I sat reading it tryng to decide wheather to laugh, cry or feel sick. It's so fast paced, in parts, it had my heart racing and I started reading faster to find out what happened. I've sugested these books to all my family and friends. The best thing is all of them stand alone so it doesn't matter what order you read them in (for the best effect they should be read in order though). It's great after a really bad day curling up with this book and however bad your day was, it guarantied not to be as bad as her's. Brilliant book that's definatly worth reading.
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Anyone who has enjoyed any of the eight previous Stephanie Plum novels would be very foolish to skip this one. If you haven't read any of those, you can safely start with this one . . . but don't expect the earlier ones to be nearly this good.
Stephanie Plum, the down home city girl from the Burg in Trenton, continues in her bounty hunter job, and she takes on some pretty unusual ones in To the Nines. As Stephanie describes it, her retrievals have more to do with Lucy Ricardo from I Love Lucy than with Wonder Woman. Her cousin Vinnie faces an enormous embarrassment if he cannot find and bring in one Samuel Singh, a temporary worker from India, for whom Vinnie wrote a visa bond. Vinnie sends Stephanie and her mentor (and sometimes squeeze) Ranger out to find Singh. A major plot line of the book revolves around this search.
A secondary and engrossing plot involves the mystery of who is threatening Stephanie and killing people around her after she has lunch at McDonald's.
A third and happier plot involves Stephanie and Morelli's relationship.
A fourth plot focuses on Stephanie's unmarried sister, Valerie, who is nine months pregnant.
On top of these interesting plots and subplots, the mystery is quite engrossing. I had no idea what was really going on until about 60 pages from the end.
On top of this, the book is filled with hilarious little scenes featuring the manic members of the Burg, including her man-crazy Grandma Mazur, Morelli's Grandmother Bella who has visions of dead women all the time, the generously endowed Connie Rossolli from Vinnie's office, and even Stephanie's mother who's having trouble coping.
The pace of this book is amazing. There's something significant happening on almost every page. The scenes intersect with each other in truly inspired ways.
I was thoroughly delighted with this book . . . except for one little problem. It was totally clear who the evil doer was in the last 60 pages. As it is, I think To the Nines is my favorite Plum among the first nine books. Only Ten Big Ones is better.
After you finish racing break-neck through these pages, think about where your heart's desires may be leading you in contradictory directions. Then, go do something about it!
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on 4 August 2003
I love all the Janet Evanovich books and this most recent one lives up to the incredible standard set by the other 8 (9 if you include Visions of sugar plums which wasn't as good)
This book is non-stop action with an insane cast of characters who all seem to remind me rather spookily of someone i know!!!
The love interest is supremely sexy (Morelli I would marry you any day!) and Stephanies actions left in fits of laughter.
I would give this book a huge thumbs up and am looking forward to the next one
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on 9 July 2003
This was a very eagerly-awaited book for me - I have vastly enjoyed the Stephanie Plum series and was interested to see where Janet Evanovich could further take her characters.
It is a good book but perhaps not quite at the same level as the earlier ones. The crime aspect of the book is still good - cleverly plotted, it's not obvious who the 'baddie' is, but the relationship side between Stephanie, Morelli and Ranger was less satisfying this time. It's never quite made clear why Morelli and Ranger are so keen on Stephanie when she's such a walking disaster area!
The synopsis provided on Amazon (and elsewhere) is actually incorrect - Sally Sweet doesn't appear in this book. There are less of the usual crowd of new odd characters in this instalment - Evanovich makes more use of the existing characters like Lula, Connie Rosolli, Tank etc.
All in all I would say it's a great read and very amusing as always, but Evanovich may have written Stephanie into rather a corner with Morelli and Ranger. If she's with Morelli she can't be with Ranger and still be respected by us, so we have to make do with smouldering looks (from Ranger) and the thoughts of what could be... were Stephanie not with Morelli.
Read and enjoy!
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VINE VOICEon 27 June 2005
I've just finished reading "To The Nines" in one day. This one takes off in new directions, and even new places, as Stephanie and her sidekicks wing out of New Jersey to tackle the casinos of Las Vegas, where even Ranger cannot tread.
Stephanie and Ranger have been assigned to one of the most important cases in Vinnie's career, to hunt for a man who's skipped out on both his high profile visa bond and his living terror of a landlady. Problem is, he's also made off with the landlady's daughter's dog, and that's where Stephanie draws the line.
With pure Plumb luck on her side, she's soon hot on his tracks, and finds herself in the middle of a deadly game, with her own klutzy neck as the prize. Deliveries of flowers fail to bring cheer, and when Ranger's associates start dropping like flies, the situation gets desperate, especially when Grandma Bella gets one of her visions.
The one flaw is that the identity of the game's Web Master is terribly obvious to even the most casual reader of mysteries, but that doesn't detract much from the fun.
Highly recommended to all Janet Evanovich fans.
Amanda Richards
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