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    Review of Hard Eight
Written by Janet Evanovich
Review by Tina Morgan



One quick look at the titles in our book review section and the authors listed on our interviews page and it's pretty obvious that the editors at Fiction Factor are science fiction and fantasy fans. However, I have a confession. I've found an author I really enjoy and she writes mysteries. Not your run of the mill mysteries but fast paced, tongue-in-cheek, sexy, hilarious mysteries.

Those readers familiar with Janet Evanovich's, Stephanie Plum are already smiling at the thought because they know how delightful the novels are.

Stephanie Plum is a New Jersey girl with more than just an attitude; she also packs a gun…on occasion. Most of the time it stays in her cookie jar which isn't the best place for a bounty hunter to keep her weapon but hey, isn't that where Rockford kept his? Working for her bail bondsman cousin most of Stephanie's jobs require her to pick up local residents who just "forgot" to keep their court appointments. It's not a tough job, unless her family becomes involved.

In Hard Eight it's her mother's neighbor who throws Stephanie into a world of danger and intrigue. Mabel's granddaughter Evelyn has disappeared with her daughter Annie and Mabel wants Stephanie to look for them. Finding missing children isn't a bounty hunter's normal job but when Mabel starts crying Stephanie promises to do what she can. When Stephanie starts looking for the two she finds out that Evelyn's ex-husband is mixed up with a notoriously unbalanced crime boss named Eddie Abruzzi and pandemonium breaks out.

Between being stalked by killer bunny and her couch having a serious case of "death cooties" Stephanie needs a strong manly shoulder to lean on, but where can she turn? Her on again, off again relationship with Officer Joe Morelli is in a serious off phase and she's not sure she wants to lean on her mentor, Ranger. She's already promised him one night, alone, in exchange for his help on a prior case and for months she's wondered if he was serious or just flirting. In Hard Eight, she finds out. (and if that's not enough to make most Stephanie Plum fans run out and read the book, I don't know what is!)

The characters are all delightful and larger than life, from Stephanie's grandmother (who's favorite entertainment is going to funeral visitations) to the down to earth (but incredibly sexy) Morelli. I highly recommend the series for anyone looking for a very entertaining read.

Hard Eight earns a spot on my * * * * * star reading shelf.


Rating Guide:
* * * * * = Un-put-downable, excellent reading!
* * * * = Good value, interesting reading.
* * * = Had potential, but could have been better.
* * = Slow, difficult to read, could have been improved.
* = Imminently forgettable.


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