Naughty Neighbor

Naughty Neighbor

by Janet Evanovich

Paperback(Mass Market Paperback - Reissue)

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Overview

Dear Reader:

In a previous life, before the time of Plum, I wrote twelve short romance novels. Red-hot screwball comedies, each and every one of them. Nine of these stories were originally published by the Loveswept line between the years 1988 and 1992. All immediately went out of print and could be found only at used bookstores and yard sales.

I'm excited to tell you that those nine stories are now being re-released by HarperCollins. Naughty Neighbor is the eighth in the lineup, and it's presented here in almost original form. Usually when I edit these books I do some modernizing. For instance, I change VHS to DVD, and roller skates to Rollerblades, and sticks of gum are now pieces of gum. I do this because the books were meant to be contemporary (as opposed to historical), and I don't want the reader to have a time disconnect. In the beginning of the original Naughty Neighbor, my heroine throws a handheld phone into the toilet, and the next morning she goes into the bathroom and sees the "slim silver antenna caught between the toilet lid and seat." Okay, so most phones don't have extended antennas anymore, but I just loved the image . . . so I left it in. And I don't know how many women wear front-closure bras anymore, but that got left in, too.

Naughty Neighbor is probably the most romancey of all the Loveswepts I wrote, but there's still a small mystery to unravel. Louisa Brannigan is a no-nonsense, hardworking press secretary, fighting her way to the top of Capitol Hill, with no help from her annoying neighbor, Pete Streeter. He receives phone calls all night long, he steals her morning paper, he thinks jeans are formal wear, and worst of all he's involved Louisa in the disappearance of a pig. So this is the story of a pig in Witness Protection and love being found by a workaholic woman and a fun-loving man who makes terrible pots of coffee.

Enjoy!

Janet Evanovich

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780060598921
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 02/26/2008
Edition description: Reissue
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 334,201
Product dimensions: 4.19(w) x 6.75(h) x 0.64(d)

About the Author

Bestselling author Janet Evanovich is the winner of the New Jersey Romance Writers Golden Leaf Award and multiple Romantic Times awards, including Lifetime Achievement. She is also a long-standing member of RWA.

Hometown:

Hanover, New Hampshire

Date of Birth:

April 22, 1943

Place of Birth:

South River, New Jersey

Education:

B.A., Douglass College, 1965

Read an Excerpt

Naughty Neighbor

Chapter One

Pete Streeter came awake on the third ring—just in time to hear the answering machine pick up the call. Streeter knew what the message would be; he'd been receiving the same one for three days. The message came at all hours of the day and night. It was untraceable, originating from public phones throughout the city. It was cryptic. A single word. "Stop." The voice was electronic. Streeter understood the warning. He also resented it. He swore softly, more out of habit than feeling, then rolled over and went back to sleep.

Louisa Brannigan looked up at her ceiling and tried to control the anger that was bubbling inside her. It was four-thirty in the morning and the idiot upstairs had just gotten another call. He got them all night long. Not that she cared, but her bedside cordless phone picked up his signal. The phone rang a second time, sending her flying from the bed in a rage.

"That's it!" she shouted. "I can't take it anymore. I need my sleep. I need quiet. I need . . ."

She stood with hands and teeth clenched, eyes narrowed, nose wrinkled, but she couldn't think what else she needed, so she snatched the phone from her night table, marched into the bathroom, threw the phone into the toilet, and closed the lid. Almost at once, peace descended on her. "Much better," she said.

Three hours later Louisa opened a tired eye and stared at the digital clock beside her bed. She stared at it for a full minute before her brain kicked in and responded with a shot of adrenaline. She'd slept through the alarm. "Damn."

She hurled herself to her feet and ran to thebathroom with her red flannel nightshirt flapping around her calves. She stopped dead in her tracks when she saw the slim silver antenna caught between the toilet lid and seat. She'd drowned her phone. Raising the lid, she gingerly transferred the phone to the wastebasket. It was impossible not to reflect on the symbolism. Her life, like her phone, was in the hopper.

With no time to waste, she took a quick shower and dashed back to the bedroom, shaking her curly dark brown hair like a dog in a rainstorm. She peered into the mirror over her cherrywood bureau while she picked at her bangs and took stock: Dark circles under her bloodshot blue eyes, definite water retention, and she felt shorter than her usual five feet six. It was not going to be a power day, she decided, turning to her closet with a resigned sigh.

Three weeks earlier she'd celebrated her thirtieth birthday with lunch at the sedate Willard and a late supper at the Hard Rock Cafe. Be eclectic, she'd told herself. Go for it. This morning she wasn't feeling nearly so expansive as she zipped herself into a black wool gabardine skirt. Her blouse was silk and matched the magenta suit jacket. Her earrings were big and chunky and gold. Her mood was dark and cranky.

She trudged to the kitchen, taking note of the grim fact that it was only Tuesday, wondering how she was going to make it through the week when the loser upstairs kept her awake all night long. She'd left polite notes on his front door. She'd called the rental office. To date, she'd avoided confronting him face-to-face. She knew it was a fault. She had problems with confrontation. She was aggressive, but she wasn't assertive. She was a wimp. The admission dragged a groan from her.

The truth was, her problems ran deeper than lack of sleep. She had a monster job that was growing more unwieldly with each passing day. In the beginning being press secretary to Senator Nolan Bishop had meant clipping news articles and keeping his calendar in order. Recently, he'd changed his profile to high, and the office staff was scrambling, trying to adjust to the pressure-cooker atmosphere. Her hours and her responsibilities had doubled. Her new role was exciting, but she was much more tense. Her personal life was non-existent.

She dumped a handful of beans into the coffee grinder, punched the grind button, and took pleasure in the simple act of smashing something into minuscule pieces. She was developing violent tendencies, she thought. "Today coffee beans, tomorrow mass mayhem," she muttered.

She had to get a grip. She dropped a filter into the top of the coffee maker, added the ground coffee, water, and impatiently watched the coffee drip into the glass pot. She was grossly late, but she wasn't leaving the house without her coffee. There were certain rituals that shouldn't be sacrificed. In Louisa Brannigan's opinion, a civilized cup of coffee in the morning was what separated man from beast.

She poured herself a cup and felt a stab of satisfaction when she heard the thunk of her morning paper against the heavy wood front door of the two-story brick row house. Lately, Louisa had taken to telling herself it was the little things in life that really mattered. Lunch at the Willard was nice on her birthday, but fresh sheets, perfectly cooked pasta, glasses without water spots, and five minutes to leaf through the paper before leaving for work were pleasures she could count on day in and day out. She especially loved the five minutes she allotted for the paper. Five minutes of peace and sanity. Five minutes to enjoy her coffee and read the funnies. It wasn't too much to ask, was it?

Pete Streeter also heard the paper hit. When it suited him, Streeter occupied the apartment above Louisa Brannigan's. He had his own entrance, his own on-street parking, and his own hot water heater, but he didn't have his own paper delivery. Ordinarily, Streeter didn't give a fig about the morning paper, but there was a movie review he wanted to read this particular day, so he padded down a flight of stairs and snatched Louisa Brannigan's paper.

Naughty Neighbor. Copyright © by Janet Evanovich. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

Customer Reviews

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Naughty Neighbor 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 63 reviews.
Bigburd More than 1 year ago
This book delivered everything I have come to expect in a non Plum book by Janet Evanovich. If you are looking for something that is light , gets you interested in the characters, is not boring, is entertaining and something that is a quick read (long airplane ride) this is you ticket.
Beadgal64 More than 1 year ago
A friend of mine lent this book to me to read. AT the very first page, i was hooked with this book and I absolutely love the characters in this book. I laughed through the whole book. This a best book i have ever read! If you are unsure of this book, go to the library and just read the first few pages of it, i guarantee you that you will be hooked. Happy reading!
RachelL More than 1 year ago
Janet Evanovich's early books (recently re-released) have wit and charm plus fun, off-beat characters that will be appreciated by "Stephanie Plum" lovers. The early books, including Naughty Neighbor, have fewer sub-plots and are a bit less intricate but they are still great, original stories. A quick read.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed it. I laughed so hard and fell in love with Pete.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you¿re looking for a unique set of characters, a mild mystery and spicy sexual tension, you¿ve come to the right place. Louisa Brannigan has the most obnoxious and rude neighbor. He steals her morning paper, parks in her spot and his phone rings at all hours of the night. Despite all of his flaws, Pete Streeter is a fine male specimen, and that is what creates such an internal battle for Louisa. When her car is demolished by a bunch of thugs and she loses her job as a Congressional aid to Senator Nolan Bishop, she teams up with Streeter to get to the bottom of the conspiracy that led to it all. A missing pig! Filled with flirtation, a simple plot and zany mystery, Janet Evanovich gives her fans a very enjoyable read. A precursor to the successful Plum series, Naughty Neighbor contains all the aspects that make Evanovich such a successful writer and a pleasure to read: a sassy female lead, a chauvinistic yet sexy male, a simple mystery and sexual tension spread throughout the pages. Naughty Neighbor is a quick read, perfect for the beach or a night alone. Valerie Jones
Guest More than 1 year ago
I guess this is what I would call an easy-beach read. Though wacky-wierd, I found Naughty Neighbor to be quite entertaining and fun to get into. An enjoyable easy read.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Despite the fact that it conforms to an unoriginal formula, it's still an enjoyable on-the-beach read. It's entertaining, but lacks any surprise for those who might have read other's from her. It's idiotic and cheerful but an easy read.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I enjoy reading Janet's books. This was an entertaining read while I wait for another Stephanie Plum book.
cloggiedownunder More than 1 year ago
Naughty Neighbor is a pre-Plum romance by popular American author, Janet Evanovich. Louisa Brannigan has a great job looking as Press Secretary for Nolan Bishop, and she doesn’t need an upstairs neighbour who disturbs her sleep, steals her paper and takes her car space. Pete Streeter is a movie screenwriter who seems to be the target of some nasty people, and Louisa’s car, parked in his space, bears the brunt of it. This one is mainly romance with a touch of (very vague) intrigue. There is some fun dialogue, but the story is just a bit too drawn out. Not one of Evanovich’s best.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was my least favorite of her books & I've read a majority of them, My favorites are still the Stephanie Plum books
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This+was+good+short+story.+I+loved+it.
jjmachshev on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Although this is a reprint of one of her earlier, lighter romance novels; she still hits a homer. Light on spice, but engaging and humorous with her sparkling characters and witty dialogues
ConnieJo on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
On one hand, I kind of liked this book because it had a better premise than some of the other Janet Evanovich romances I've read. I liked the mystery element, where the couple had to work together to crack a potentially dangerous situation, and I liked that the drama involved outside forces rather than the couple themselves.Somehow, I did not enjoy the couple all that much though, and I dislike the speed at which these romances develop, which is a personal preference more than a problem with the book itself. But seeing as how that's the point of a romance like this, I kinda missed out on a lot it had to offer.
Cauterize on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
contemporary, romanceThis was short, more of a harlequin title length. It borders on the fantasically ridiculous. The man is an extremely hot james dean-like bad boy who happens to be a investigative reporter/screenwriter who's out to bring bad politicians down. The attraction between the characters is instantaneous, but not believable. She's either cranky or a doormat, and he's always being the stereotypical bad-boy jerk to her. There were no secondary characters of note, nor much of a plot. I thought Ms. Evanovich was supposed to be a noted romance author, but this read like a rote Harlequin from the 80s. I would give the author another chance, as I read somewhere that this might have been a reprint of a novel she wrote at the beginning of her career.
bitemeeric on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book is my favorite early romance novel by Evanovich. Louisa can not stand her nieghbor, Pete, who happens to be her landlord. She hates his attitude, his outlook of life, and his inconsiderate behavior. She is a hard working secreatary and he is a laid-back screenwriter who is interested in a missing pig. Both embark on solving the mystery together for differnt reasons. She is fighting the feelings she feels for him and he is trying to get her to admit to those feelings. It is a great love story.
onyx95 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
After once again being woken up in the middle of the night by her upstairs neighbor¿s ringing phone, Lousia Brannigan opened her front door to discover her morning paper had been stolen by the same neighbor. Then her car was vandalized (his fault) and she lost her job (again, his fault), but now they were working together to find out what had happened to a diplomatic pig. Pete Streeter was intrigued by a missing pig (of all things?). As a screen writer, he spun stories all of the time, he just couldn¿t follow this one. He had dug into dangerous areas, but no one had ever tried this hard to get him to back off. Phone calls in the middle of the night, vandalizing his car (well his neighbors, she was parked in his spot), and now firing his neighbor because of her association with him. Now they both wanted answers and were determined to get them. Not the same caliber of most of the re-releases are. I found this one to be more about the mystery and intrigue of the pig and not as much of the romance, or even the comedy the Janet Evanovich is most famous for although, there was a colorful secondary character that brought out a few laughs, Kurt Newfarmer. It was a quick read that won¿t stick in my head for too long, so all in all, I would just give this one an adequate rating, but it is good read on a boring day.
Milda-TX on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Wanted something light to listen to in the car, and found this at the library. It's fluff, so it worked.... I didn't really have to pay attention to keep up with the overall story. Ummm.... in fact, don't ask me what the big deal was about the pig because I'm not sure I could tell you.
island_reader on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
My first Evanovich book, and I enjoyed it immensely. It's a nice, light, silly and quick read that brought a smile to my face. Great for in-between heavier plots and/or dud books. Would have given it 5 stars but it ended too abruptly for me. Would definitely recommend it to others though.
lrobe190 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Louisa Brannigan is a no-nonsense, hardworking press secretary, fighting her way to the top of Capitol Hill, with no help from her annoying neighbor, Pete Streeter. He receives phone calls all night long, he steals her morning paper, he thinks jeans are formal wear, and worst of all he's involved Louisa in the disappearance of a pig. So this is the story of a pig in Witness Protection and love being found by a workaholic woman and a fun-loving man who makes terrible pots of coffee. (AUTHOR DESCRIPTION). Evanovich wrote a group of light romance novels in the 1980's that have been reprinted. Many of the popular characters featured in her "Stephanie Plum" novels are premiered in these novels. Her sense of humor shines through in each of them and they are great fun to read.
Wuzzlicious on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book reads its age. The female lead was an annoying woman and the male, a macho asshole. I was not impressed. Fortunately, Evanovich has improved in her writing and her Plum series is one of the best.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Naughty Neighbors was a very funny read. I could not put the book down
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Walks in.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this author she is an amazing wrighter!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Perfect book for a rainy day or cold afternoon...light and fun with interesting characters. Looking for a quick read then this one is for you!