Stephanie Plum is the main character in a series of novels written by Janet Evanovich. She is a female bounty hunter from New Jersey. After being fired from a job as a lingerie buyer, she tried to win money in other small jobs but failed, and then her car is repossessed.
That’s when she turned to her cousin Vinnie, owner of Vincent Plum Bail Bonds, and forced him to give her a job. Now, in each book, Stephanie goes after one or more people who are declared ‘failure to appear’ because they have not appeared for their court date.
How to read the Stephanie Plum Series in Order?
Each novel in the Stephanie Plum book series offers a standalone story, but the lives of the different characters evolve from one book to the other.
- One For the Money – Stephanie Plum is down on her luck. She’s lost her job, her car’s on the brink of repossession, and her apartment is fast becoming furniture-free. Enter Cousin Vinnie, a low-life who runs a bail-bond company. If Stephanie can bring in vice cop turned outlaw Joe Morelli, she stands to pick up $10,000. But tracking down a cop wanted for murder isn’t easy…
- Two For the Dough – Stephanie Plum is still learning the ropes at her cousin Vinnie’s bail bond office, so when she sets out on the trail of Kenny Mancuso–a suspiciously wealthy, working-class Trenton boy who has just shot his best friend–the stakes are higher than ever. That Mancuso is distantly related to vice cop Joe Morelli only makes the hunt more thrilling…
- Three to Get Deadly – A ‘saintly’ old candy store owner is on the lam and Stephanie Plum is on the case. As the body count rises, Stephanie finds herself dealing with dead drug dealers and slippery fugitives on the chase of her life.
- Four to Score – Stephanie is hot on the trail of revenge-seeking waitress Maxine Nowicki, whose crimes include bail jumping, theft, and extortion. Someone is terrifying Maxine’s friends, and those who have seen her are turning up dead.
- High Five – Out of bail skippers and rent money, Stephanie Plum throws caution to the wind and follows in the entrepreneurial bootsteps of Super Bounty Hunter, Ranger, engaging in morally correct and marginally legal enterprises. So, a scumball blows himself to smithereens on her first day of policing a crack house and the sheik she was chauffeuring stole the limo.
- Hot Six – Stephanie Plum and Trenton vice cop Joe Morelli join forces to find the madman killer who shot and barbecued the youngest son of international black-market arms dealer Alexander Ramos. Ranger is caught on video just minutes before the crime occurs. He’s at the scene, he’s with the victim, and he’s the number-one suspect.
- Seven Up – Semiretired mob guy Eddie DeCooch is caught trafficking contraband cigarettes through Trenton, New Jersey. When DeCooch fails to show for a court appearance, bond enforcement agent Stephanie Plum is assigned the task of finding him and dragging his decrepit ass back to jail. Not such an easy job, it turns out.
- Hard Eight – Stephanie is hired to find a missing child. But things aren’t always as they seem and Stephanie must determine if she’s working for the right side of the law.
- Visions of Sugar Plums A short Christmas special – It’s five days before Christmas and things are not looking merry for Fugitive Apprehension Agent Stephanie Plum. She hasn’t got a tree. She hasn’t bought any presents. The malls are jam-packed with staggering shoppers. There’s not a twinkle light anywhere to be seen in her apartment. And there’s a strange man in her kitchen.
- To the Nines – Vinnie has posted bail on Samuel Singh, an illegal immigrant. When the elusive Mr. Singh goes missing, Stephanie is on the case. But what she uncovers is far more sinister than anyone imagines and leads to a group of killers who give new meaning to the word hunter.
- Ten Big Ones – It begins as an innocent trip to the deli-mart, on a quest for nachos. But Stephanie Plum and her partner, Lula, are clearly in the wrong place at the wrong time. A robbery leads to an explosion, which leads to the destruction of yet another car. It would be just another day in the life of Stephanie Plum, except that she becomes the target of a gang.
- Eleven on Top – Stephanie Plum quits. No changing her mind. She wants something safe and normal. Trouble follows her, and the kind of trouble she had at the bail bonds office can’t compare to the kind of trouble she finds herself facing now. She’s stalked by a maniac returned from the grave for the sole purpose of putting her into a burial plot of her own.
- Twelve Sharp – Ranger needs Stephanie for more reasons than he can say. And now, the two are working together to find a killer, rescue a missing child, and stop a lunatic from raising the body count. When Stephanie Plum and Ranger get too close for comfort, vice cop Joe Morelli steps in. Will the ticking clock stop at the stroke of twelve…or will a stranger in the wind find a way to stop Stephanie Plum…forever?
- Plum Lovin’ – Mysterious men have a way of showing up in Stephanie Plum’s apartment. When the shadowy Diesel appears, he has a task for Stephanie – and he’s not taking no for an answer. Annie Hart is a ‘relationship expert’ who is wanted for armed robbery and assault with a deadly weapon. Stephanie needs to find her, fast. Diesel knows where she is. So they make a deal.
- Lean Mean Thirteen – Ranger needs Stephanie to meet with Dickie and find out if he’s doing something shady. Turns out, he is. Turns out, Dickie’s also back to doing Joyce Barnhardt. And it turns out Ranger’s favors always come with a price…
- Plum Lucky – Diesel is back and hot on the trail of a little man in green pants who’s lost a giant bag of money. Problem is, the money isn’t exactly lost. Stephanie’s Grandma Mazur has found it, and like any good Jersey senior citizen, she’s hightailed it in a Winnebago to Atlantic City and hit the slots.
- Fearless Fourteen – Dom Rizzi robbed a bank, stashed the money, and did the time. His family couldn’t be more proud. He always was the smart one. Less than a week after Dom’s release from prison, Joe Morelli has shadowy figures breaking into his house and dying in his basement. He’s getting threatening messages, Loretta is kidnapped, and Dom is missing.
- Plum Spooky – Wulf Grimoire is a world wanderer and an opportunist who can kill without remorse and disappear like smoke. He’s chosen Martin Munch, boy genius, as his new business partner, and he’s chosen the Barrens as his new playground. Stephanie Plum has Munch on her most-wanted list for failure to appear in court.
- Finger Lickin’ Fifteen – Stephanie’s working overtime tracking felons for the bonds office at night and snooping for security expert Carlos Manoso, aka Ranger, during the day. Can she hunt down two killers, a traitor, and five skips, keep her grandmother out of the sauce, and solve Ranger’s problems and not jump his bones?
- Sizzling Sixteen – It’s dangerous to owe money to a mobster…Stephanie Plum’s no-good cousin and boss, Vinnie, has been kidnapped over gambling debts – and if there’s no Vinnie, that means she’s out of a job.
- Smokin’ Seventeen – Dead bodies are showing up in shallow graves on the empty construction lot of Vincent Plum Bail Bonds. No one is sure who the killer is, or why the victims have been offed, but what is clear is that Stephanie’s name is on the killer’s list.
- Explosive Eighteen – Stephanie’s dream vacation turned into a nightmare, and she’s flying back to New Jersey solo. Worse still, her seatmate never returned to the plane after the L.A. layover. Now he’s dead–and a ragtag collection of thugs and psychos, not to mention the FBI, are all looking for a photograph he was supposed to be carrying.
- Notorious Nineteen – Geoffrey Cubbin, facing trial for embezzling millions from Trenton’s premier assisted-living facility, has mysteriously vanished from the hospital after an emergency appendectomy. Now it’s on Stephanie to track him down. Unfortunately, Cubbin has disappeared without a trace, a witness, or his money-hungry wife.
- Takedown Twenty – New Jersey bounty hunter Stephanie Plum knows better than to mess with family. But when powerful mobster Salvatore ‘Uncle Sunny’ Sunucchi goes on the lam in Trenton, it’s up to Stephanie to find him.
- Top Secret Twenty-one – Trenton, New Jersey’s favorite used-car dealer, Jimmy Poletti, was caught selling a lot more than used cars out of his dealerships. Now he’s out on bail and has missed his date in court, and bounty hunter Stephanie Plum is looking to bring him in. Leads are quickly turning into dead ends, and all too frequently into dead bodies.
- Tricky Twenty-two – Ken Globovic (aka Gobbles), hailed as the Supreme Exalted Zookeeper of the animal house known as Zeta fraternity, has been arrested for beating up the dean of students at Kiltman College. Gobbles has missed his court date and gone into hiding. People have seen him on campus, but no one will talk.
- Turbo Twenty-three – Larry Virgil skipped out on his latest court date after he was arrested for hijacking an eighteen-wheeler full of premium bourbon. Fortunately for bounty hunter Stephanie Plum, Larry is just stupid enough to attempt almost the exact same crime again. Only this time he flees the scene, leaving behind a freezer truck loaded with Bogart ice cream and a dead body.
- Hardcore Twenty-Four – Trouble comes in bunches for Stephanie Plum. First, professional grave robber and semi-professional loon, Simon Diggery, won’t let her take him in until she agrees to care for his boa constrictor, Ethel. Stephanie’s main qualification for babysitting an extremely large snake is that she owns a stun gun-whether that’s for use on the wandering serpent or the petrified neighbors remains to be seen.
- Look Alive Twenty-Five – There’s nothing like a good deli, and the Red River Deli in Trenton is one of the best. World-famous for its pastrami, cole slaw, and for its disappearing managers. Over the last month, three have vanished from the face of the earth, and the only clue in each case is one shoe that’s been left behind. The police are baffled. Lula is convinced that it’s a case of alien abduction. Whatever it is, they’d better figure out what’s going on before they lose their new manager, Ms. Stephanie Plum.
- Twisted Twenty-Six – Grandma Mazur is a widow … again. This time her marriage lasted a whole 45 minutes. The unlucky groom was one Jimmy Rosolli, local gangster and heart attack waiting to happen … well, the waiting is over. When Jimmy’s former “business partners” are convinced that his widow is keeping the keys to their financial success for herself, Stephanie Plum has to find them quickly.
- Fortune and Glory – When Stephanie’s beloved Grandma Mazur’s new husband died on their wedding night, the only thing he left her was a beat-up old easy chair…and the keys to a life-changing fortune. But as Stephanie and Grandma Mazur search for Jimmy Rosolli’s treasure, they discover that they’re not the only ones on the hunt.
- Game On: Tempting Twenty-Eight – When Stephanie Plum is woken up in the middle of the night by the sound of footsteps in her apartment, she wishes she didn’t keep her gun in the cookie jar in her kitchen. And when she finds out the intruder is fellow apprehension agent Diesel, six feet of hard muscle and bad attitude who she hasn’t seen in more than two years, she still thinks the gun might come in handy. Turns out Diesel and Stephanie are on the trail of the same fugitive: Oswald Wednesday, an international computer hacker as brilliant as he is ruthless.
- Going Rogue – Monday mornings aren’t supposed to be fun, but they should be predictable. However, on this particular Monday, Stephanie Plum knows that something is amiss when she turns up for work at Vinnie’s Bail Bonds to find that longtime office manager Connie Rosolli, who is as reliable as the tides in Atlantic City, hasn’t shown up. Stephanie’s worst fears are confirmed when she gets a call from Connie’s abductor. He says he will only release her in exchange for a mysterious coin that a recently murdered man left as collateral for his bail. Unfortunately, this coin, which should be in the office-just like Connie-is nowhere to be found.
- Dirty Thirty – A seemingly straightforward freelancing task is presented to Stephanie Plum. Martin Rabner, a local jeweler, asks her to track down Andy Manley, a former security guard he believes stole a large quantity of jewels from his vault. Stephanie is also seeking for Duncan Dugan, a problematic guy who was wanted by the law after being apprehended for stealing the same jewelry store the same day.
The Stephanie Plum Reading Order is not a hard one to follow, but if you want to be sure to not miss one book, don’t forget to bookmark it! And if you like that series, you may want to check out the Body Movers books.