"That shooting gave me an appetite, somebody pass me the potatoes."
Working-class Jersey girl and former lingerie buyer STEPHANIE PLUM is a bond bailsma-er-bailsperson, working out of the blue collar "burg" in Trenton, New Jersey, where "houses and minds are proud to be narrow". And family ties tend to strangle. Rather than move in with her parents (and Grandma), she goes to work for her cousin Vinnie, the bail bondsman. And let's get it straight--Stephanie isn't exactly the toughest thing on earth, or even New Jersey. As she puts it, "I don't look at all like George Foreman. I'm more like Wonder Woman with a B-cup."
Poor Stephanie has a bad case of the hots for handsome vice cop Joe Morelli. As Stephanie puts it, "There are some men who enter a woman's life and screw it up forever. Joseph Morelli did this to me--not forever, but periodically." And somehow, Morelli always seems to be involved in Stephanie's cases. He may be all wrong for her, but what's a girl to do? As she puts it, she hasn't had "a good social orgasm since Reagan was in the White House."
Aiding and abetting Stephanie in her quest to track down and bring back those who have jumped the bond so generously put up by her cousin Vinnie are Ranger, the know-it-all, done-it-all hardcore, hardcase Cuban-American bounty hunter, and trigger-happy, thrill-seeking Gramma Mazur, Stephanie's grandmother.
But despite all the humour in the series, Stephanie regularly goes up against some pretty nasty types, and violence is as much a part of her life as any hardboiled anti-hero around. Margaret Cannon praises the series for its "smart and witty dialogue and dead-on characterization" and most readers will be similarly enchanted. A worthy addition to the Hardboiled Hall of Humour.
One of the most purely entertaining P.I.'s of the nineties. Recommended! Damn skippy!
By the way, at one point, rumors (or perhaps just wishful thinking) abounded about a possible movie adaptation of One For the Money, starring Sandra Bullock as our gal Steph, while Estelle Getty (from TV's The Golden Girls) seemed to be the people's choice to play Grandma. It never came to pass.
But there actually was a pilot done for the 2002 TV season, starring Lynn Collins as Stephanie, but it wasn't picked up. According to a reliable source who saw it when the network she worked for tested it, it was "abysmal."
But the books just keep on selling, and in 2011, One for the Money, a big Hollywood feature film based on the first novel, produced by and starring Katherine Heigl as Stephanie, was released. It also stars John Leguizamo, Daniel Sunjata and Debbie Reynolds as Grandma Mazur.
Although it was no huge hit, it did capture much of the charm and cleverness of the novel, as notable for its easy going vibe and for its commendable restraint -- it never descended into the abyss of cheap shots and slack-jawed overkill so many rom com/action flicks sink into.
"BETWEEN THE NUMBERS"NOVELLAS*
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