Review: The Recovery Agent by Janet Evanovich

 

Title: The Recovery Agent {Gabriela Rose #1}

Author: Janet Evanovich

Published: 22nd March 2022, Atria Books

Status: Read March 2022, Atria/Edelweiss

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My Thoughts:

 

As a long time fan of Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series, I couldn’t miss the opportunity to read The Recovery Agent, the first book in a new series featuring Insurance Fraud Investigator Gabriela Rose.

Gabriela Rose, who made her debut in Fortune and Glory (book #27 of the Stephanie Plum series) makes a living by recovering assets and items for individuals or companies, but her latest case is personal. With her hometown of Scoon on the verge of collapse after damage wreaked by Category 4 storm, Gabriela’s grandmother Fanny believes that all their problems can be solved if Gabriela finds the lost Treasure of Lima, or more specifically The Seal of Solomon.

I wanted to love The Recovery Agent, but unfortunately I didn’t. I’m not exactly sure where the failure lies though.

There is plenty of entertaining adventure and action as Gabriela follows a trail into the South American jungle to the territory of the God of Death, guided by a drug dealer, and in the company of her ex-husband. Her search pits her against El Dragon,  a drug dealer and a fanatical disciple of Supay, the God of Death, who also wants the Seal of Solomon, which is purported to allow the bearer to raise and enslave the dead. There are stand-offs and gun battles, explosions and collisions. Gabriela is variously nearly drowned, tasered, shot and drugged but refuses to give up.

I’d describe Gabriela as a less sophisticated version of Lara Croft. She’s definitely tough, smart and resourceful, an expert in martial arts and weapons, I just can’t quite imagine how a girl from a fishing village who married her childhood sweetheart became such a bad-ass though. I wasn’t entirely convinced of the chemistry between Gabriela and her ex-husband, Rafer either. Lust, sure, there are regular references to how ‘hot’ Rafer is, and the pair have a long history, but i didn’t really feel the tension between them.

There is plenty of humour in The Recovery Agent. Gabriela and Rafer banter their entire way through the book, and Evanovich, as always, has a great sense of comic timing.

While all the elements of a story I enjoy seem to be there, I still feel there is something lacking overall, it’s like an itch I can’t quite reach. I’d be willing to give the sequel a shot though, in the hopes of recovery.

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Review: Game On: Tempting Twenty-Eight by Janet Evanovich

Title: Game On: Tempting Twenty-Eight {Stephanie Plum #28}

Author: Janet Evanovich

Published: 23rd November 2021, Simon & Schuster Au 

Status: Read November 2021 courtesy Simon & Schuster Australia 

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My Thoughts:

For light relief, the Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich is hard to beat. I hadn’t realised I’d missed quite so many instalments until I looked it up but luckily, even though I’ve skipped from #18 to #28, it makes little difference.

In Game On, bond enforcement agent, Stephanie, with the assistance of an astrological challenged Lula, is chasing five FTA’s- a homeless man who roasts ducks in a local park, an exhausted mother who shot up a bakery when all she wanted was an eclair, a man who makes his living as an event ‘mooner’, a computer hacker who replaced the evening news with a porno clip, and international cyber criminal and murderous psychopath, Oswald Wednesday, who is way out of Stephanie’s league. Luckily Diesel, who is also after Wednesday on behalf of his mysterious employer, and Ranger, are around to back Stephanie up, which is convenient when she has a source she needs to protect, yet another car meets an untimely demise, and she and Lula are taken hostage.

There’s a formula to the Stephanie Plum series that involves bad luck, disaster and near misses, offset by wisecracks, healthy dose of slapstick, and sexual tension, so there aren’t any surprises in the plot of Game On exactly, but it is fast paced and entertaining. I always enjoy Lula’s antics, giggle at Grandma Mazur’s sass, and lust after Ranger, Morelli, (and now Diesel too), as Stephanie barely manages to keep it together.

Game On is another fun instalment in the Stephanie Plum series, I expect fans will enjoy this, as should first timers.

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