‘Two for the Dough’ by Janet Evanovich

I read “One for the Money” about two years ago after a friend recommended it. I loved it and wanted to continue to read the Plum series and finally got around to the sequel, “Two for the Dough.” Though I will say that I wasn’t as engaged with the sequel as I was with the first one. Maybe it is just the story line, but it wasn’t until I was halfway through the book that I began to enjoy it.

This time bounty hunter Stephanie Plum has been tasked with picking up Kenny Mancusco, who has jumped bail. Stephanie thinks it is going to be an easy pickup, except for the fact that noone has seen Kenny, including his cousin, Joe Morelli, who also happens to be a cop that is constantly getting in Stephanie’s way. Then Kenny’s best friend ends up shot and a cache of guns and caskets go missing, but as Stephanie continues to search for the elusive Kenny, dead body parts begin showing up on her doorstep and Stephanie finds herself once again in danger. She knows she must find Kenny to end it.

I think why I dragged at the start of this book was that there was no brief recap. Traditionally in sequels or series, the author will throw in a paragraph or two to explain key elements to refresh the reader on who some of the characters were. Having read the first book so awhile back, I was trying to remember exactly what happened and who was who. I totally forgot that Joe Morelli was the one that Stephanie was trying to nab in the first book, though it was a misunderstanding. While Evanovich does say that they do have a history, it wasn’t clear what that history was. If someone were reading this book first, they would just assume that Stephanie and Morelli have been dating on and off. Considering that this book started right in the middle of a stakeout, I was feeling adrift and it took some time to get my bearings.

The saving grace in this book is Stephanie’s Grandma Mazur. I swear she is the best character. That woman is an absolute hoot. Throughout the book, she tags along with Stephanie to funeral parlors where the most ridiculous things happen, from caskets accidentally opening to things breaking and so on. Whenever Grandma Mazur is around, something is bound to happen. And the words that come out of her mouth are classic.

I swear, if Stephanie’s mother is not my own mother, I will eat my hat. I couldn’t help but cringe with Stephanie when she had to move briefly back home to keep a watch on Grandma. I swear as soon as her mother started in, I thought my mother had entered the book. The dialogue was straight from my own family, who happen to live in New Jersey. I could definitely relate, which is why I keep coming back for more. This book is all about the characters and Evanovich does them so well.

Overall, while the book had its faults, it still a fun read for when you want something light. Evanovich’s writing is simple and again, the characters will definitely keep you turning the pages.

Have you read “Two for the Dough?” What did you think? Let’s discuss!


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