heavy-hearted reading vs. light-hearted cheer-me-ups

I recently read Barbara Kingsolver's "The Poisonwood Bible".

It's not the sort of thing I usually read, and while I found it interesting and somewhat educational, I also found myself feeling down and heavy-hearted by the end of the story.

So now I'm reading something much lighter and funnier.
Janet Evanovich's "Stephanie Plum, Bounty Hunter" series.

They have titles such as: One For The Money; Two For The Dough; Lean Mean Thirteen, etc
There are eighteen books in the series so far, and I'm currently reading Sizzling Sixteen, with Smokin' Seventeen waiting in line. I haven't yet bought Explosive Eighteen.

The main character is Stephanie who works as a bounty hunter tracking down FTA's for her cousin Vinnie who has a bail bonds business, owned by his father Harry the hammer. She blackmailed Vinnie into giving her the job when she was out of work and flat broke. Stephanie's mother would prefer to see her working at the Button Factory (a nice safe job), married and raising a bunch of babies.
Another character is Lula, a reformed prostitute who does the filing for the business in between helping Stephanie with the tracking down and capturing those petty criminals who have skipped out on their court hearing date. (FTA = Failed To Appear), and shopping for clothes and/or doughnuts.
Other characters include Joe Morelli a plainclothes policeman and Stephanie's boyfriend;  Ranger, who part owns and runs a security firm, Rangeman, and is also a man in Stephanie's life;  Grandma Mazur, Stephanie's grandma, who now lives with her (Steph's) parents, since Grandpa Mazur joined that big gravy train in the sky, and Grandma Bella, who is Joe's grandma and insists on giving people the "evil eye".

These books make me laugh. There is nothing at all heavy hearted about them, they are the sort of thing I turn to when I need to just veg out, or raise my spirits a little.
In the beginning, I loved the Grandma Mazur character, now I love everyone in the stories. Even the bumbling petty criminals get me laughing.


  1. Sounds good....I'll be getting my ereader soon...I've almost saved up enough. Can't wait to load up on all these good books I've been hearing about.

  2. I have ALL of those books. Others of Barbara Kingsolver's books are less full on.
    And the Stephanie books are comfort food. Something to read when you need a little silliness in your world. There is a spin off series Evanovitch has started too, featuring Diesel. The first is called 'Wicked Appetite' and I think I will buy this series as well.

  3. All new to me. I was embroiled in a thesis for several year or more so light reading/any reading went by the wayside. Might well follow these up.

  4. Delores; I'm still tossing up whether or not to get an e-reader. I want one, but can't decide which kind. I don't want to get one and find I'm limited to one particular company to buy books for it.

    EC; I've read a bit about the Wulf/Diesel series and I'm planning on buying them too.

    Christine; I know nothing about how a thesis can take up your time, because I've never done one, all I know is that light comedy reading is essential to my sanity.

  5. I've read the whole series. After a while, for me, it got a bit too repetitive, but so what? I like mixing up the heavy and the light and often read something light while I am going through something like The Poisonwood Bible.

    But I enjoy both. I'm going to see what they do with the first of the series at the movies next Saturday!

  6. JeanetteLS; I've written the movie in my diary as a "watch for" because it isn't released in Australia yet.

  7. I've never read any Janet Evanovich but if the writing's good enough to make you laugh, then it's very, very good writing indeed.

  8. Kath Lockett; What do you read? Janet is funny and her Stephanie Plum series is not all she has written. A lot of her books are very similar, but that's what makes them easy to read. Something to read when your brain has been over-stressed, something you know is going to make you laugh. Why not try the first in the series, it's titled One For The Money and has recently been made into a movie, starring Katherine Heigel.

  9. Mrs Dump - Adelaide (Northern)February 8, 2012 at 11:23 PM

    Stephanie Plum is definitely a great read, but only if you start at #1 and progress through. I read one about no. 6 or 7 first and thought "What the???!!!!".
    Then someone convinced me to try again with #1 and I was hooked. Now the whole family wait with anticipation for each new book.
    Not sure about a movie though - sometimes that ruins my perception of the character.


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