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Book Review: “Metro Girl” by Janet Evanovich

Genie Walker, Janet Evanovich, Stephanie Plum

New York: Harper Torch, 2004. Paperback: 374 pages. $7.99.

I saw “Metro Girl” sitting on a shelf in Kroger’s the other day, the cover was brightly colored with oranges and yellows so it caught the attention of my crow (as in bird not Native Americans) nature. Then I saw the author was “Janet Evanovich,” and I know that her writing style is hilarious and her characters are a little offbeat. My kind of people.

Ms. Evanovich writes the Stephanie Plum books that I enjoy so much, but I knew this wasn’t one of those books because the word “plum” wasn’t used in the title. Then I read “An Alexandra Barnaby Adventure” on the front cover and thought, “She has a whole series based on another character I don’t know anything about? Yippee!”

Just to make sure it was good enough to pay for the book instead of running down to the library, I read the first sentence. Oh my God! I nearly choked on my laughter. Okay, this is going in the basket and we are cutting this shopping trip short because I have got to get home and start reading. I bet you are curious about those words aren’t you? Okay, I’ll give you a peek. Janet Evanovich starts the novel out with “Just because I know how to change a guy’s oil doesn’t mean I want to spend the rest of my life on my back, staring up his undercarriage.” Confess, you would have bought the book too wouldn’t you?

Alexandra Barnaby aka Barney looks like a bimbette with her bleached blond hair, pretty blue eyes and her down to there and up to here style of dressing. Barney projects the image of an brainless twit who couldn’t do something complicated like open a zip lock bag without help, even if it had makeup in it. Total camouflage!

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She is the daughter of a mechanic who had her working for him when she was a kid, so she can rebuild a car from the ground up. While she was still a teenager she was a driver in the local stock car races. From this you know she has nerves of steel, stamina, a tendency to be reckless and the ability to fix anything. She is also a loyal big sister. When she realizes her younger brother Bill, aka Wild Bill, is in trouble she drops everything to fly down to Miami to fix the situation.

Upon arrival she finds her brother gone and his apartment trashed. Then she runs into Sam Hooker, a NASCAR driver whose boat her brother has “borrowed” without permission. Barney knows that Wild Bill doesn’t steal it because he always brings what he “borrows” back. Sam doesn’t agree and decides to stick with Barney until she leads him to Bill.

I love the snappy dialogue between Sam and Barney. Both characters are quirky and go out of their way to give folks the wrong impression of their true selves. They tangle with one another as they work through the confusing mess Will Bill leaves in his wake. To find out what Bill got himself into and what adventures Sam and Barney muddle through as they learn to work as a team and not as adversaries you will need to read the book for yourself.

Bottom line: I totally enjoyed “Metro Girl. It is a fun read; delightful junk food for the mind. Note of warning: If you are real stick-in-the-mud about plot lines and logical situations then you will not like this book.

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Just for fun:
Visit the MeMe Express, a blog by AC producer, Linda Ann Nickerson. Today it is all about books: http://memeexpress.blogspot.com/2008/07/best-books.html

Other Book Reviews by Genie Walker:
Nonfiction:

“How to Retire Happy” by Stan Hinden
“Living Gluten Free for Dummies” by Danna Korn
More Than Enough: The 10 Keys to Changing Your Financial Destiny” by Dave Ramsey
“The Real Meaning of Life” edited by David Seaman
Three Weeks With My Brother” by Nicholas Sparks and Micah Sparks

Fiction:
“At First Sight” by Nicholas Sparks
“Blow Out” by Catherine Coulter
“Darkfever” by Karen Marie Moning
The Husband” by Dean Koontz
“The Mulberry Tree” by Jude Deveraux
“Odd Thomas” by Dean Koontz
“One” by Richard Bach
“The Remains of the Dead” by Wendy Roberts
Sam’s Letters to Jennifer” by James Patterson