Book Review: One for the Money by Janet Evanovich

Have you ever read a book that made you realize that there is a job out there you 100% don’t want to have?

One for the Money was the third book I finished in 2023. The series was recommended to me last summer by a lady I struck up a conversation with at a yard sale. I dove in without knowing much other than it was a mystery series.

From the Cover:

Meet Stephanie Plum, a bounty hunter with attitude. In Stephanie’s opinion, toxic waste, rabid drivers, armed schizophrenics, and August heat, humidity, and hydrocarbons are all part of the great adventure of living in Jersey.

She’s a product of the “burg,” a blue-collar pocket of Trenton where houses are attached and narrow, cars are American, windows are clean, and (God forbid you should be late) dinner is served at six.

Out of work and out of money, Stephanie blackmails her bail-bondsman cousin Vinnie into giving her a try as an apprehension agent. Stephanie knows zilch about the job requirements, but she figures her new pal, el-primo bounty hunter Ranger, can teach her what it takes to catch a crook. Her first assignment: nail Joe Morelli, a former vice cop on the run from a charge of murder one. Morelli’s the inamorato who charmed Stephanie out of her virginity at age sixteen. There’s still powerful chemistry between them, so the chase should be interesting…and could also be extremely dangerous.

Well, as someone who reads a lot of cozy mysteries, this one left me feeling pretty tense! I have to admire the main character, Stephanie Plum, because I don’t think I could ever be destitute enough to become a bounty hunter. Some of the wild things that she does or that happen to her would absolutely terrify me. I also have the absolute wrong personality for such a job, and I doubt I’d catch a single person!

Evanovich does an excellent job of creating the hot stickiness of a New Jersey summer. She pulls Stephanie’s desperation right out of the page and into your mind, slamming you right down into her shoes. It’s a roller coaster ride of a book, but it’s one of those roller coasters that doesn’t really have any slow or easy parts in the middle. And also much like a roller coaster, once I got started, I couldn’t get off until the end.

I highly recommend One for the Money for anyone who likes a raw, gritty mystery that feels incredibly real and will leave you ready for the next in the series.

What are you reading? Let me know in the comments!

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Ashley O’Melia is an independent author and freelancer from Southern Illinois.  She holds her Bachelor’s Degree in Creative Writing and English from Southern New Hampshire University.  Her books include The Wanderer’s Guide to Dragon Keepingand The Graveside DetectiveHer short stories have been published in The Penmen Review, Siren’s Call, and Subcutaneous.  Ashley’s freelance work has spanned numerous genres for clients around the world.  You can find her on Facebook and Amazon.

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Filed under Book Reviews

9 responses to “Book Review: One for the Money by Janet Evanovich

  1. Glad you enjoyed this one. I’ve read all of the series so far and they are all good. 🙂

  2. Great review!

    I read this years ago, around the time the movie was getting ready to come out. My mom and I had planned to see the film together, and I always like to read the source material first. This is not my usual read or typical genre preference at all, but I thought it was a pretty fun story and I enjoyed Stephanie as a main character. I sadly never continued the series, but I wouldn’t be opposed to it. I’m just way more a fantasy fan.

  3. Pingback: Books I Read in 2023! | Ashley O'Melia, Author

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