Review: Wicked Appetite

Review: Wicked AppetiteWicked Appetite by Janet Evanovich
Series: Lizzy & Diesel #1
Published by St. Martin's Press on September 14, 2010
Genres: Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy
Pages: 313
Format: Hardcover
Source: Library

Seven Stones of Power
No one knows when they were created or by whom, each said to represent one of the Seven Deadly Sins.

For centuries, treasure hunters have been eager to possess the Stones, undeterred by their corrupting nature. The list is long - Genghis Khan, Alexander the Great, Napoleon, to name a few. Now the Stones have found their way to Salem, Massachusetts, and so has Gerwulf Grimoire, adding himself to this rogues' gallery of power seekers. He's an uncommonly dangerous man with a hunger for the forbidden and a set of abilities that are way beyond ordinary. Abilities that he feels entitle him to possess anything he might desire.

That would include Elizabeth Tucker, the woman he needs to find the Stones. She's freshly transplanted from New York City to Boston's North Shore. With a new job as pastry chef at Dazzle's Bakery and an old house inherited from her Aunt Ophelia, her life is pretty much on track...until it's suddenly derailed by a guy named Diesel, a rude monkey, and a ninja cat.

Lizzy can handle the monkey and the cat. She's not sure about Diesel. He's offering up his own set of unusual talents and promising to protect her from Grimoire, the kind of protection that Lizzy suspects might involve guarding her body day and night

The Seven Deadly Sins are pride, greed, lust, envy, wrath, sloth, and gluttony. That pretty much covers everything that is wicked. Diesel thinks it also pretty much covers everything that's fun. And Lizzy thinks Diesel and the Seven Deadly Sins cover everything her mother warned her about.

I freely admit that Diesel was not my favorite part of the Stephanie Plum series. Quite the opposite. I am a Morelli fan and Stephanie really doesn’t need any more confusion than Ranger already provides. His powers, which are Unmentionable apparently, confused me then and do still. I am somehow very bothered by the cross between realistic, if silly, fiction and fantasy. I want the story to stay within the framework set within the original series. I love fantasy and I love Stephanie Plum, but I do not like the weird mixture.

However, if I pretend to myself that this series is not a spin-off, but its own fantasy series, this is a pretty fair opening. The characteristic Evanovich humor, animals and love of food are all present and accounted for (my goodness will you want a cupcake while you read parts of this book, although others will make you want never to eat again).

Differences between the Diesel series and Stephanie Plum:
1) Way less action for the main characters, as a result of some magical taboos
2) Lizzy has some conception of what she is good at (cooking) and what she is not (fighting)
3) Lizzy has only one love interest and it is obvious, by the nature of the series, that she will end up with Diesel (no, I do not consider this a spoiler). This is actually pretty neat, since Evanovich keeps stringing her fans along with Stephanie’s indecisiveness.

All in all, this promises to be another great series. I do not expect to like it as much as Plum in its heyday, but I will be reading every other installment in Diesel’s books. Evanovich is just too darn fun to pass up!

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