Friday, October 04, 2013

Review: Explosive Eighteen by Janet Evanovich (audio)

Title: Explosive Eighteen 
Author: Janet Evanovich
Series: Stephanie Plum, #18
Narrator: Lorelei King
Published: November 2011 Random House Audio
Length: 6 hours 13 minutes
Source: Library

Before Stephanie can even step foot off Flight 127 from Hawaii to Newark, she’s knee deep in trouble. Her dream vacation turned into a nightmare, she’s flying back to New Jersey solo. Worse still, her seatmate never returned to the plane after the L.A. layover. Now he’s dead, in a garbage can, waiting for curbside pickup. And a ragtag collection of thugs and psychos, not to mention the FBI, are all looking for a photograph the dead man was supposed to be carrying.

Only one other person has seen the missing photograph—Stephanie Plum. Now she’s the target, and she doesn’t intend to end up in a garbage can.

Over at the Bail Bonds Agency things are going from bad to worse. And everyone wants to know what happened in Hawaii?!
Morelli, Trenton’s hottest cop, isn’t talking about Hawaii. Ranger, the man of mystery, isn’t talking about Hawaii.  And all Stephanie is willing to say about her Hawaiian vacation is . . . It’s complicated.

My thoughts: I just can't seem to get enough of Stephanie and the gang - I love this series and am sad that I am almost all caught up. What am I going to listen to in the car that keeps me entertained and laughing out loud?

In this latest installment, Stephanie is on her way back from Hawaii when she finds herself in the middle of a strange case and suddenly has real FBI and fake FBI following her. On top of that, her arch-nemesis, Joyce Barnhardt has decided to take up residence in Stephanie's apartment and won't leave until Steph agrees to help her.

Back at the bond's office, they are still using Mooner's bus, until it gets blown up! Now they need to find temporary housing as their new office is still being rebuilt. Lula has decided she wants to be more serious about being a bounty hunter and decides Ranger will be her mentor - she's going to dress in all black and eat like Ranger - although that comes to an end quickly when she realizes how healthy Ranger eats!  Then Lula falls in love with a skip after ingesting a "love potion." I really think she's my favorite character ever!!!

We are once again in a stand-still when it comes to Stephanie's love life and something happened in Hawaii, but she's not only not talking about it, she's sworn off men! It is interesting, though, that both Morelli and Ranger have suspicious injuries - injuries that look as though they were in a fight - were they fighting each other?

I'm not sure how much longer this series will go on - I know book 19 is out and book 20 is coming out later this year. Will that be the end or will Janet Evanovich continue, hooking us with the love triangle?

My only complaint in this book is that Stephanie's go-to snack in this book was Vienna Fingers - one of my favorite cookies as a child. Well, listening to her mention them over and over had me making a run for some myself and I could not find them anywhere! I've been to 3 grocery stores so far and no luck...have they stopped making them???

Audio thoughts: Lorelei King is an amazing narrator - how she manages to create unique voices and keep them consistent book after book is beyond me. Even when characters come back from previous books, she still is able to remember what their voice is supposed to be. On top of that, she is able to infuse just the right emotions as the story line calls for.

  *** Devourer of Books hosts Sound Bytes every Friday - a meme to share the audio books that everyone is listening to. Stop by and you just might find your next audio book!

Books in this series:

     1.  One for the Money                         12.  Twelve Sharp
     2.  Two for the Dough                         12.5  Plum Lovin'
     3.  Three to Get Deadly                      13.  Lean Mean Thirteen
     4.  Four to Score                                   13.5  Plum Lucky
     5.  High Five                                           14.  Fearless Fourteen
     6.  Hot Six                                                14.5  Plum Spooky
     7.  Seven Up                                           15.  Finger Lickin' Fifteen
     8.  Hard Eight                                         16.  Sizzling Sixteen
     8.5  Visions of Sugar Plums              17.  Smokin' Seventeen
     9.  To the Nines                                      18.  Explosive Eighteen
    10.  Ten Big Ones                                    19.  Notorious Nineteen
    11.  Eleven on Top                                 20.  Takedown Twenty - due out Nov 2013


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