Excerpt from Seven Up by Janet Evanovich, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

Seven Up

A Stephanie Plum Adventure

by Janet Evanovich

Seven Up
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Jun 2001, 320 pages
    Jun 2002, 368 pages

  • Rate this book

Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt

"What do you suppose this third key is for?" I asked Lula.

"It's one of them Yale locks that you put on gym lockers and sheds and stuff."

"Do you remember seeing a shed?"

"I don't know. I guess I wasn't paying attention to that. You think he could be hiding in a shed along with the lawn mower and weed whacker?"

I shut the engine off and we got out of the car and returned to the backyard.

"I don't see a shed," Lula said. "I see a couple garbage cans and a garage. We peered into the dim garage, for the second time.

"Nothing in there but the car," Lula said.

We walked around the garage to the rear and found the shed.

"Yeah, but it's locked," Lula said. "He'd have to be Houdini to get himself in there and then lock it from the outside. And on top of that this shed smells real bad."

I shoved the key in the lock and the lock popped open.

"Hold on," Lula said. "I vote we leave this shed locked. I don't want to know what's smelling up this shed."

I yanked at the handle, the door to the shed swung wide, and Loretta Ricci stared out at us, mouth open, eyes unseeing, five bullet holes in the middle of her chest. She was sitting on the dirt floor, her back propped against the corrugated metal wall, her hair white from a dose of lime that wasn't doing much to stop the destruction that follows death.

"Shit, that ain't no ironing board," Lula said.

I slammed the door shut, snapped the lock in place and put some distance between me and the shed. I told myself I wasn't going to throw up and took a bunch of deep breaths. "You were right," I said. "I shouldn't have opened the shed."

"You never listen to me. Now look what we got. All on account of you had to be nosy. Not only that, but I know what's gonna happen next. You're gonna call the police and we're gonna be tied up all day. If you had any sense you'd pretend you didn't see nothing and we'd go get some fries and a Coke. I could really use some fries and a Coke."

I handed her the keys to my car. "Get yourself some food, but make sure you're back in a half hour. I swear, if you abandon me I'll send the police out after you."

"Boy, that really hurts. When did I ever abandon you?"

"You abandon me all the time!"

"Hunh," Lula said.

I flipped my cell phone open and called the police. Within minutes I could hear the blue-and-white pull up in front of the house. It was Carl Costanza and his partner Big Dog.

"When the call came in, I knew it had to be you," Carl said to me. "It's been almost a month since you found a body. I knew you were due."

"I don't find that many bodies!"

"Hey," Big Dog said, "is that a Kevlar vest you're wearing?"

"Brand new, too," Costanza said. "Not even got any bullet holes in it."

Trenton cops are top of the line, but their budget isn't exactly Beverly Hills. If you're a Trenton cop you hope Santa will bring you a bulletproof vest because vests are funded primarily with miscellaneous grants and donations and don't automatically come with the badge.

I'd removed the house key from DeChooch's key ring and had it safely tucked away in my pocket. I gave the two remaining keys to Costanza. "Loretta Ricci is in the shed. And she's not looking too good."

I knew Loretta Ricci by sight but that was about it. She lived in the Burg and was widowed. I'd put her age around sixty-five. I saw her sometimes at Giovichinni's Meat Market ordering lunch meat.

Vinnie leaned forward in his chair and narrowed his eyes at Lula and me. "What do you mean you lost DeChooch?"

"It wasn't our fault," Lula said. "He was sneaky."

"Well hell," Vinnie said, "I wouldn't expect you to be able to catch someone who was sneaky."

"Hunh," Lula said. "Your ass."

From Seven Up (A Stephanie Plum Adventure), by Janet Evanovich. © June 19, 2001 , St. Martin's Press used by permission.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member
and discover your next great read!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: So Say the Fallen
    So Say the Fallen
    by Stuart Neville
    Noir crime fiction – Raymond Chandler, Dashiell Hammett anyone? – is an American invention...
  • Book Jacket: The Mothers
    The Mothers
    by Brit Bennett
    Every now and then the publishing industry gushes about a young author destined to become the next ...
  • Book Jacket
    by Tom Jackson
    Growing up in Mumbai in the '70s, I still remember herbs kept fresh in small glasses of water, ...
Book Discussions
Book Jacket
The Bone Tree
by Greg Iles

An epic trilogy of blood and race, family and justice.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    Cruel Beautiful World
    by Caroline Leavitt

    A fast moving page-turner about the naiveté of youth and the malignity of power.

    Read Member Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    The Next
    by Stephanie Gangi

    Fast-paced, wickedly observant, and haunting in the best sense of the word.

    Read Member Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    The Comet Seekers
    by Helen Sedgwick

    A magical, intoxicating debut novel, both intimate and epic.

    Read Member Reviews

Win this book!
Win The World of Poldark

Win the book & DVD

Enter to win The World of Poldark and the full first series on DVD.


Word Play

Solve this clue:

One S D N M A S

and be entered to win..

Books that     

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.


Free Weekly Newsletter

Keep up with what's happening in the world of books:
Reviews, previews, interviews and more!

Spam Free: Your email is never shared with anyone; opt out any time.