‘Two for the Dough’ funereal fun

If you enjoy mysteries with a comic edge, be sure to check out Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series.

The second in the series, “Two for the Dough,” finds Stephanie settling into the bounty-hunter job she started in “One for the Money,” after getting laid off from a job as a lingerie buyer for a discount chain. Her focus is on finding Kenny Mancuso, who has skipped bail after shooting his best friend in the knee.

Joe Morelli, one of Stephanie’s love interests, also is pursuing Mancuso, his black-sheep cousin, as a favor to his family.

“Two for the Dough” really fleshes out the character of Stephanie’s grandmother, Grandma Mazur, who, like many of the denizens of the Plums’ Burg section of Trenton, N.J., goes to funeral services as a hobby.

Since Grandma Mazur has decided she’d like nothing better than to be Stephanie’s partner in her hunt for Mancuso, and since the elusive Mancuso seems to be tied somehow to Spiro Stiva, scion of the Burg’s most prominent family of funeral directors (not to mention the owner of two dozen stolen caskets, which Stiva hires Stephanie to find), their paths and those of the weaselly mortician cross repeatedly, until the final, flaming denouement.

Stephanie may not be the world’s best bounty hunter, but she’s definitely its most entertaining one.


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