Thursday, September 8, 2011

So Pick Already Stephanie!

At seventeen I knew I wanted to be an actress.  I had the hots for a gorgeous boy with long brown hair and blue eyes.  I didn't think about much else.  .  In "Smokin' Seventeen" by Janet Evonovich Stephanie Plum seems very similar to my seventeen year old.  She knows she wants to be more and she has the hots for a gorgeous guy.  Okay, make that the hots for two gorgeous guys.  The difference between these two teen personalities is my biggest worry was whether or not my softball team was going to State while Stephanie has dead bodies showing up with notes attached addressed to her.  Other than that Stephanie is no more mature than a seventeen year old.
If you didn't figure it out by the title this is the 17th novel in the Stephanie Plums Series.  I have read everyone one of these books and for the majority of the time laughed my fool head off.  I LOVE Stephanie and the gang but I hate to say it, it is time now for Stephanie and the humor to grow up some. 
In this installment the bail bonds office is situated in an RV while the building is rebuilt after being burned down.  Trouble shows up when dead bodies start being dumped in the lot in shallow graves. Trouble increases when the bodies start seeming to be gifts to Stephanie.  Trouble switches to her love life as she navigates two lovers, Joe and Ranger.  She says she loves them both but she sees a future only with one even though her body can't help but say yes to the other.  It feels rather uncomfortable when she starts bed hopping between the two.  This isn't NYC, LA or London.  These aren't jet setting swingers.  We are talking about the Burg in New Jersey where the hair is big and so are most of the families.  Bladder infections from sex are not funny and even less so with multiple partners.  STD's have never been funny.  Okay, the granny panties were.
I get it Janet.  The formula has been working.  You are still laugh out loud funny in parts and I want to keep laughing for a long time to come but and this is a big but. (Not Lula big butt).  It is getting old.  Stephanie is getting old.  I want to see Stephanie to grow and change like I have grown and changed.  Maybe I haven't matured but I am different than I was 16 years ago.  Stephanie isn't.  Joe isn't.  Ranger isn't. Lula isn't.  It is time.  I don't think the series needs to end but I do think it needs to change.  Stephanie needs to move, get married, hell go transgender but she needs to change.
Just as a note I recently read there is a movie of the series coming out sometime this year.  Check out the picture of the cast!  That explains a lot of things.  John Grisham's writing lost it's grip and read like a screenplay after his book "The Firm" was turned into a movie.  I could almost tell you who he was looking to cast as I read the books.  I quit reading after a while.  The same thing has happened to Charlaine Harris now that "True Blood" has taken over Sookie Stackhouse.   This might be what is happening here.

Please Janet, don't make me quit reading you.  If you get any deeper into one dimensional and sad writing there won't be enough of us to bail you out!

No comments: