Title: Two for the Dough
Author: Janet Evanovich
Publication Date: June 1996
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Genre/themes: Mystery, Crime, Humor
Source: From my own bookshelf
Series?: Yes, book 2 in the Stephanie Plum series
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This one’s double the fun!
Bounty hunter Stephanie Plum is still learning the ropes at her cousin Vinnie’s bail bond office, so when she sets out on the trail of Kenny Mancuso – a suspiciously wealthy, working class Trenton boy who has just shot his best friend – the stakes are higher than ever. That Mancuso is distantly related to vice cop Joe Morelli – who is trying to beat Stephanie to the punch – only makes the hunt more thrilling…
Taking pointers from her bounty hunter pal, Ranger, and using her pistol packing Grandma Mazur as a decoy, Stephanie is soon closing in on her mark. But Morelli and his libido are worthy foes. And a more sinister kind of enemy has made his first move… and his next move might be Stephanie’s last.
I am really a fan of Stephanie Plum. She has amazing attitude at the right moment but is caring and reasonable at other times. She is funny and dedicated, all the while getting better and better at the bounty hunting thing. One of the things I really like about One for the Money was that is was obvious that Stephanie was still in a learning process. Well, in this one she is still learning although already a lot better than book 1. I like that Janet Evanovich kept that realistic. It is not normal to become a bounty hunter out of the blue and that be super good at everything. Stephanie Plum isn’t and that makes her so endearing. She wants to try things herself and isn’t afraid to pursue the dangerous leads but she knows where here limits are and calls in help if she needs it.
In Two for the Dough Stephanie is asked to bring back Kenny Mancuso. He started out normal enough, but that guy has a twisted character. Kenny Mancuso is totally different from the bad guy in the first book so that is also good. I feel that it is very easy to become repetitive with mysteries, and I hope that Janet Evanovich keeps on proving me wrong. This one was a little bit more predicable than One for the Dough, but it made up for it in excitement and humor.
I was very happy with the return of Grandma Mazur. She is definitely the most fun side-character in this series. We only see a little of her in One for the Dough, but she plays a much bigger role in this one. She even packs her own gun! Talk about a feisty grandmother! She does the crazy things and although it seems that sometimes she is working against Stephanie, she discovered some pretty big things without which Stephanie would probably not have solved the case. I really hope that Grandma Mazur will remain a much seen character because she really makes the book so much more fun!
Lastly there is Morelli. Morelli’s past with Stephanie is pretty dark and I think Stephanie is right to keep him at a distance. Again, it more realistic that they just work together, he is a cop after all, rather than them being a couple. Maybe that will happen in later books, I don’t know. But for now I like that there is a little romance but that it is not the focus of the books.