Trenton’s most adorable bounty hunter (Plum Lucky, 2008, etc.) goes up against the most fearsome antagonist in a series not notable for the fear factor.
Nobody would think twice about Martin Munch, a geeky quantum physicist who missed his court date after beating up his supervisor, Eugene Scanlon, if he hadn’t grabbed a magnetometer on the way out of Scanlon’s office. But when the supervisor turns up with his neck broken, presumably by whoever left his handprints burned into Scanlon’s neck, Stephanie Plum wonders what her latest search for one of her bail-bondsman cousin Vinnie’s no-shows may lead to. All indications are that Munch has teamed up with Gerwulf Grimoire, the latest fugitive that Stephanie’s not-quite-lover Diesel is pursuing. Wulf, who boasts a Dragon Claw and a repertory of magic tricks, is meant to be one scary dude, but he comes across as a refugee from a lesser James Bond movie, and the plot that yokes the two cases together—Wulf and Munch’s attempt to control the world’s weather in order to extort zillions from crippled nations—is no more convincing than Stephanie’s repeated escapes from a fate worse than death by kicking her assailant in the same sensitive place.
What remains, as usual, is the nonstop sitcom jokes, which often make the first third of this weirdly plotted adventure very funny. But this time even the humor, which depends on such staples as pet monkeys and fart jokes, is a mite synthetic as well. Maybe Stephanie’s quarry should have stuck to talking about the weather instead of trying to do something about it.