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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
From the day Stephanie Plum first started tracking down bail jumpers for her cousin Vinnie, neither bounty hunting nor the city of Trenton have ever been the same. Now, in High Five, Janet Evanovich's fifth installment in the Plum series, New Jersey's most entertaining bounty hunter is back on the trail again with the monstrous powder-blue Buick and the usual cast of zany characters at her side. There's stun-gun-packing Grandma Mazur, who has redefined the term "riding shotgun," and Lula, the black, bodacious, and bountiful hooker-turned-file-clerk who is just itching to bag herself a bail jumper. Of course, there's also vice officer Joe Morelli, with his fine-fitting jeans and a way of making Stephanie forget all but his presence. But after getting a little too close for comfort in the last book, Stephanie and Morelli have agreed to step back and take things slower, which allows Ranger — Stephanie's sexy and mysterious mentor — to step in and give Morelli a run for his money.
Stephanie's big case this time is a personal one, the result of high pressure from the family and an extremely low caseload at the office. She is trying to find her missing Uncle Fred, who went to the bank and grocery store three days ago and never returned. The only clue is a picture of an unidentifiable body in a garbage bag. While Stephanie is only too happy to help out the family, there is the little matter of the rent to pay and food to buy, and Uncle Fred's case is a freebie. Hoping to make enough to tide her over for a short while, Stephanie makes two fatal decisions. The first is toaskRanger, who never seems to be at a loss for money or sleek and sexy black cars, if he has any jobs she can do to tide her over. The second is to bring in what appears to be a low-paying but easy-to-find bail jumper, Randy Briggs. This second option looks like even easier money when Stephanie discovers Briggs is all of three feet tall, but Briggs, who gets a tad testy when he's called a midget, isn't as easy as he looks and refuses to be brought in by a "loser" like Stephanie. His success in avoiding capture and his constant taunting push Stephanie over the edge until finally, in a fit of pique, she bashes in his door and practically throws him down a flight of stairs.
Meanwhile, Ranger offers Stephanie a series of jobs that quickly become a series of disasters. But there is pay involved and the side perk of a company car, which frees Stephanie from having to drive the hated but seemingly indestructible Buick. Problem is, Stephanie has always had a penchant for having things blow up or burn down around her, and both her new jobs and her new wheels are short-lived as a result. To make matters worse, her investigation into Uncle Fred's disappearance is going nowhere and there's a nasty bookie following her around, making her life miserable. About the only good thing in Stephanie's life is the way both Morelli and Ranger seem determined to get her into bed. But neither of them is likely to get very far, since Stephanie has virtually no privacy. Not only is the mysterious bookie showing up inside her apartment unannounced; Randy Briggs has moved himself in lock, stock, and attitude, feeling it's only fair that Stephanie put him up while the door she ruined back at his own place is being repaired.
As disturbing details about Uncle Fred's disappearance surface, the body count for both people and cars mounts. Will Stephanie be able to solve the mystery before a vicious killer comes after her? Will she get her man in the end? (And in the case of Morelli and Ranger, which man will it be?) The answer is yes on all counts, but not before plenty of wisecracking comments, madcap adventures, and sidesplitting fun.