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Wicked Appetite by Janet Evanovich [review] (2011, paranormal mystery)

Wicked Appetite by Janet Evanovich [review] (2011, paranormal mystery)Author: Janet Evanovich
Title: Wicked Appetite
Series: Lizzy & Diesel #1
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Pages: 352
Release Date: August 16th 2011
Genres: Mystery & Thriller

Lizzy Tucker has inherited a historic house in Marblehead, Massachusetts, taken a new job as pastry chef for Dazzle's Bakery in Salem, and set her sights on a comfortable future. The comfortable future and any hope for normalcy evaporates when dark haired, dark hearted Gerewulf Grimoire and his nemesis, a blond beach bum named Diesel, enter Dazzle's and change Lizzy's life forever.Grimoire has set his sights on the Stones of SALIGIA, rumored to have found their way to Salem. These seven stones, each representing one of the seven deadly sins, can bestow frightening powers upon its owner. Powers that would be dangerous in Grimoire's hands...Diesel is a man with a mission: To stop Grimoire at all costs. In order to do so he'll need to convince the baker she alone has the ability to keep Grimoire from the stones. Once Lizzy and Diesel become a team, Diesel will have to guard Lizzy's and night.The Seven Deadly Sins pretty much cover everything that's wicked. Diesel thinks they also pretty much cover everything that's fun. And Lizzy thinks Diesel and The Sins cover everything her mother warned her
Format: Hardcover
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Wicked Appetite is the first book in the Lizzy & Diesel series by Janet Evanovich.

  • Point of view: first person
  • Tense: past
  • Setting: Marblehead, Massachusetts
  • Sexual Content: kissing
  • Pet Peeves: none


Brief Summary of the Plot

Lizzy meets Diesel and Wulf on the same day. Wulf brands her with magic. Diesel shows up soon after and says he will protect her. He also explains why Wulf wants her: she is an Unmentionable who can find enchanted objects. The rest of the book is spent trying to keep certain magical objects out of Wulf’s hands.

My Thoughts about…

  • Characters

I thought the main characters, Diesel and Lizzy, were well-developed. The villain Wulf was developed enough to make him a good foe, but I thought more could have been done to make his motivations and actions believable. Glo, a wanna-be witch, is the most developed sidekick. I never did understand, though, why her spells always went awry.

The monkey and the one-eyed cat added some subplots that kept the book interesting and entertaining.

  • Romance

Lizzy and Diesel definitely have chemistry, but they can’t be together because of rules. I am curious to see what will happen between them in the next books (WICKED BUSINESS and WICKED CHARMS) because not much happened in this one besides flirting and a few kisses.

  • Pacing

The book moves along steadily from start to finish. There weren’t any lags, which was good. Sometimes the author would laundry-list details, but that didn’t slow the pace because they would all be in one paragraph, and then the author would get back to the action.

  • Suspense & Mystery

I expected this book to be a mystery, but it was more of an adventure because the villain was known from the very beginning. There wasn’t much suspense or intrigue. I knew what the villain wanted and why. The only suspense had to do with whether Lizzy would find the objects before Wulf.

  • Worldbuilding & Setting Details

There wasn’t much in the way of worldbuilding. Apparently, there is an organization that oversees the Unmentionables. I didn’t learn much about them or their history.

Setting details were clear and up front at the beginning of each scene. I liked that I could visualize the setting well, but I didn’t like the way it was dumped on me each time. I would have preferred to learn about the setting through Lizzy’s observations or interactions with the environment.

  • Prose

The author’s style is simple, straightforward, and conversational. I did like that Lizzy told me her name right away, instead of me having to figure it out later.

I didn’t like how the author inventoried everything. For example, if a person came into the scene, the author wrote a paragraph that described every aspect of the character’s appearance. The same thing was true for settings. The reason I didn’t like this is because it seems like a point of view problem. Why would Lizzy notice all these details about places and people she has seen before many times? When I see one of my friends, I don’t think: she has blonde hair, she has blue eyes, she’s five foot five, etc. I don’t think that because I already know what she looks like. Unless something has changed, I’m not going to be thinking about it. I understand that an author might want to do this for the reader’s benefit, but there are other ways to work in details without laundry-listing them or creating a point of view problem.

Another thing that bothered me about the writing style was that I noticed some unusual spellings of words.

  • Plotting & Consistency

I noticed a few minor things that didn’t match up. Overall, though, I thought it made sense and was consistent from start to finish.

Hooked or Not?

WICKED APPETITE is an enjoyable read despite some of the issues I mentioned above. It’s entertaining, creative, and has likable characters. I give it 4 out of 5 stars.

I expected the book to be funny because I have read Janet Evanovich before. It was funny in parts, but not laugh-out-loud funny like ONE FOR THE DOUGH. Still, it made me smile. The only bad thing about the silliness is that it makes it hard to buy into the paranormal aspects.

I think this would make a good movie because of the goofiness of Glo’s spells gone awry and the flirting between Diesel and Lizzy.

If you haven’t read the Lizzy and Diesel series, I do recommend you give it a try. It’s a fun, lighthearted, and easy read.

Related Discussion Question

What’s the funniest book you ever read?


Jen Schaper
I am a mom of three kids, a wife, and a wannabe author. For Books That Hook, I review books, create features and discussions, design the website, and do all the administrative stuff.

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