One for the Money - Janet Evanovich Stephanie Plum is broke. What's worse, she hasn't told her mom she lost her job six months ago. When she finally does, her grandmother pipes up that her cousin Vinny, the bail bondsman, needs someone to do filing. Well, when Stephanie shows up at Vinny's, she gets talked into becoming a bounty hunter for patrons that have jumped bail. Thus a series is born. In this first book of the series we are introduced to a number of characters that will continue to appear in the following books. My favorites so far are Joe Morelli, the convict she is hoping to bring in, Stephanie herself, and the grandmother, who would remind anyone of Estelle Getty's character on Golden Girls.

Evanovich crafts interesting characters in this first installment. In Stephanie Plum, she has a sassy, no nonsense female protagonist. I like the fact that she is a bounty hunter, or as they call it in the bail business, a "recovery agent" instead of the usual mystery writer or PI. I like her sarcastic whit and sassy personality, and the fact that she thinks that she is as good as any other "guy", even though she isn't. I like the love-hate interplay between Stephanie and Joe Morelli, and the protective bent that he has already exhibited. I even enjoyed the "off the charts crazy" Mike Tyson character of Benito Ramirez. I have to say, though, that my favorite character is probably Stephanie's grandmother. There are a couple of scenes that she is in that made me laugh out loud, and resulted in me reading them aloud to my husband.

The story line in the book, though, was thoroughly predictable. By halfway through the book, I could tell where the story was going, even if I could not yet supply the details. This is not necessarily a bad thing. Sometimes you are looking for a nice easy read where you know what to expect. If you are, this is the book (and probably the series) for you. I, myself, am looking forward to the rest of the series and seeing what trouble Stephanie can get herself into.

A friend of mine just reminded me, that in this type of book, you don't expect much from the plot, but what you are looking for is interesting and fun characters. In that regard, this book wins big time. That is the impetus that is making me look forward to the rest of the books in the series. This book gets 3.5 stars from me.

The only other caveat I would post is that there are some pretty graphic sexual scenes in the book, which sets it apart a bit from other books of this type, for example Sue Grafton's.