Book Review: Janet Evanovich’s Takedown Twenty

Posted February 26, 2014 by Kathy Davie in

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review: Janet Evanovich’s Takedown Twenty

Takedown Twenty

on November 19, 2013 and has 307 pages.

Explore it on Goodreads or Amazon.

Twentieth in the Stephanie Plum romantic suspense series and revolving around a bumbling bounty hunter.

My Take

Evanovich needs to end this series. She’s obviously lost the heart of Stephanie Plum, and I know I’d appreciate her not writing any more half-hearted stories like Takedown Twenty. I have so loved this series and to see it deteriorate as it has since book 14, Fearless Fourteen, well, it’s just been one disappointment after another. I know, I know, so stop reading them. I don’t think I can. I keep hoping that Evanovich will get re-energized somehow and the original zest for fun and mayhem will return. Sue me, I’m a masochist…sigh…

Ranger wants Stephanie in his bed but without the marriage ring. In the earlier books, it was an erotic treat as Ranger pursued Stephanie. Not this time out. Unfortunately, both men are dull without much of the romantic suspense one would expect.

At one point Evanovich mentions that Stephanie’s mother is going back to school to be a nurse. Whatever happened to that idea? I had visions of Mom getting more involved in some of Stephanie’s chases. I did like the comment Stephanie did make in this: “My mother is the middle child caught between my grandmother and me.”

Stephanie and Joe have been dating forever, and she doesn’t know about game day??

Evanovich is setting Stephanie up, per usual, but the set-ups aren’t going anywhere but through the motions. It’s dull, it’s boring. I used to line-up at the bookstore to get my Stephanie Plum book. Now, I don’t mind if it takes months on the waiting list at the library. How sad is that?

The Story

Seems Uncle Sunny was caught in the act of running Stanley Dugan over. Twice. Now Uncle Sunny has skipped out on his bond, and it’s Stephanie’s job to bring this much-loved crook back into the jailhouse fold.

The Characters

Stephanie Plum is a hapless bounty hunter who usually gets her man, no matter how inept she may be. Rex is her hamster. Joe Morelli is a Trenton cop she’s been seeing, and we see very little of him in this. Bob, the furniture-eating dog, is Joe’s. Mildred Frick‘s comment brought out the funny in Grandma, thank god. Grandma Bella is Joe’s scary granny who hates Stephanie and is always putting the eye on her.

Ranger is the badass third of their unfulfilled menage and former Special Forces. He’s magic. He no longer pursues bounties, but he’s willing to help Steph out. Tank is Ranger’s second-in-command, who won’t give up his cats for anyone.

Lula is a plus-size woman in a petite-sized outfit, the better to display her bountiful self. She’s Stephanie’s sidekick in their crazy adventures.

Salvatore Sunucchi, a.k.a., Uncle Sunny, is wanted for murder. And he’s Joe’s godfather. Moe and Shorty are his henchmen. Rita Raguzzi is Sunny’s main squeeze, and she’s hoping for more. Ziggy is one of Stephanie’s bounties. Gordon Krutch is one of Grandma’s sweeties. Mary Treetrunk has a very organic outlook on life. Randy Berger, the former butcher and now deli owner, is one of Mom’s hookups for Stephanie. Mr. Newcomb is Stephanie’s old algebra teacher.

Vincent Plum is Stephanie’s cousin as well as the boss of Vincent Plum Bail Bonds—Stephanie’s boss. He’s a pervert readers used to laugh at as Evanovich kicked in with the craziness of Vinnie. No more…sigh… Harry the Hammer is Vinnie’s father-in-law and owns the bonds office. Connie is his office manager, and the girls regularly plot against Vinnie.

Ruppert Gillian has asked Ranger to investigate his mother’s, Melvina‘s, murder. Lois Fratelli, Rose Walchek, and Bitsy Muddle are other victims. Butch Shiller is the cop in charge of the investigation. Kenny and Leo are a couple of Joe’s cop buddies. Little Anthony shows up at Joe’s with his son Bobby; Angelina is his wife.

The Cover and Title

The cover is fat rays of yellow radiating out from the center as a backdrop to “Janet Evanovich” in white and the title in purple.

The title is a make-do. Evanovich needed a “twenty” in it, and since Stephanie is always doing a “takedown”, I guess Takedown Twenty seemed adequate.


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