their way for a midday snack at Cluck-In-A-Bucket, Stephanie Plum
and her sidekick, Lula, spot a little old lady tugging a duffel bag
from a street corner, kicking and slapping a tiny man in green
pants. When he tackles her and wrestles her to the ground,
Stephanie realizes it is Grandma Mazur who has just landed a
roundhouse swing on the little man’s ears. She wades into the
action, pulls him off Grandma and he flees in his car without the
bag. Grandma claims that the bag is hers because she found it
unattended on the sidewalk, and the nasty little green man tried to
grab it. That’s her story and she’s sticking to it.
Stephanie and Lula give Grandma and her mysterious bag a ride home
and get on with their day.
The next morning, Diesel, the disheveled hunk who walks through
walls and clutters Stephanie’s already overburdened romantic
life, has just popped unexpectedly into her apartment looking for a
place to stay while he tracks down an escaped felon.
Stephanie’s mom calls in a panic when Grandma is a no-show
for breakfast. The promise of sausages and a cheese omelet lures
Diesel and Stephanie to her mother’s, where they find a
brochure for Daffy’s Atlantic City casino on Grandma’s
dresser. Since Grandma just cashed her Social Security check,
it’s no stretch to assume that she has hopped a bus and is
off for a day at the slots. However, a quick look around her room
reveals that the duffel bag is also missing.
Stephanie drops by the bond agency and picks up Lula and the agency
office manager, Connie, in order to make a run to Atlantic City,
find Grandma and keep her out of trouble. Diesel is having little
luck locating his felon, and when they put pieces of information
together, it begins to sound like Grandma’s purloined duffel
bag, the little green man and Diesel’s fugitive may be
So begins another “Between-the-Numbers” Stephanie Plum
holiday comic novel. Grandma, convinced it was leprechaun money and
therefore legal loot, buys herself a Winnebago camper and heads for
Atlantic City, where she rents a luxury suite at the Daffy Casino.
She proceeds to blow what is left of the duffel bag booty, which
turns out to contain a million dollars of stolen drug money, into
the poker slots. The man in green pants, who has a soft spot for
the horses, had liberated the money and a racehorse owned by a
Trenton mobster. His plan is to pay for surgery for the champion
who has outlived his studliness and faces the glue factory unless
somebody will pay to fix a bad leg.
PLUM LUCKY evolves into a caper involving stashing a stolen,
injured but housebroken racehorse in a hotel suite, a Winnebago
trailer, several elevators and Stephanie’s apartment; dodging
the baddest mob guy in Trenton; keeping track of the little guy in
green pants who thinks he’s invisible; Diesel, who
can be invisible when he wants to be; Lula; Connie;
Stephanie; and Grandma Mazur and her Winnebago. And of course, the
You may recall the Christmas stocking stuffer treat, VISIONS OF
SUGAR PLUMS, and the Valentine’s Day confection with the
infamous Trenton Bakery Elf cookie battle in PLUM LOVIN’,
when Stephanie turned into a matchmaker. PLUM LUCKY celebrates St.
Patrick’s Day as Grandma’s leprechaun gold turns to
horse biscuits. Fans can’t help but wonder what Janet
Evanovich will do with April Fool’s Day. I can imagine
puzzle-meister Sally Sweet in his big hair and five-inch heels
cooking up a prank to dazzle us all.
Reviewed by Roz Shea on January 18, 2011