I was curious but skeptical about Evanovich’s foray into fantasy themed fiction, and was quite pleasantly surprised. (It turns out, it’s not really her first foray; the “Between the Numbers” novels apparently introduced supernatural elements into the Stephanie Plum books some time ago.) Anyway, Wicked Appetite‘s find-the-ancient-mystic-artifacts plot and plethora of quirky characters reminded me in a good way of James P. Blaylock’s gently humorous fantasies. Evanovich’s prose is lean almost — but not quite — to the point of parody, but she still manages to slip in some solid New England details. Wicked Appetite establishes a one-novel-per-artifact pace, and my interest may well be exhausted before Evanovich runs out of plot, but I’m looking forward to the next volume.
Two minor quibbles: especially since Wicked Appetite is tied to the Stephanie Plum books by shared characters, I’d expect Evanovich to make a point of differentiating narrator Lizzy Tucker from Plum. But Evanovich gives Tucker a similar background (the whole high school humiliation/blossoming ugly duckling thing) and temperament. It makes Wicked Appetite feel a bit more familiar than it really needs to, especially in the early chapters. And the dénouement felt a little rushed. But overall this exceeded my expectations.
needs more demons? not really.