Lizzie Tucker makes amazing cupcakes—truly amazing cupcakes. One of Dazzle Bakery’s customers thinks they are so amazing that she buys two dozen every single day. Of course, if Diesel is correct, that may have something to do with the fact that Shirley is carrying around one of the SALIGIA stones, specifically the one for gluttony. What are the SALIGIA stones? Well, according to Diesel, there’s a stone for each of the seven deadly sins and while each stone is powerful on its own, together they have a potential that’s downright terrifying. Who’s Diesel? Just your average BUM (agent for the Board of Unmentionable Marshals) on a mission to find the stone before his evil cousin Wulf does. Why did Diesel materialize in Dazzle’s Bakery looking for Lizzie? Well, because she’s an Unmentionable as well—it’s one of the reasons that she makes such delicious cupcakes. She also happens to have the rare Unmentionable talent of locating objects of power.
And so the chaos begins. Along the way, a few spells will backfire (Glo is teaching herself how to be a witch), a few hearts will pound (Diesel and Wulf are HOT), and a few characters will demonstrate that there’s more to gluttony than two dozen cupcakes a day. We’ll also meet Cat 7143, a henchman with a Renaissance fixation and a certain finger-flipping monkey. (Love Cat 7143!)
If you’ve read a Stephanie Plum book, Wicked Appetite will seem familiar—and if you’ve read a Between-the-Numbers book, it will seem very familiar. I personally think this is a good thing. Evanovich may follow a formula of sorts but she has a knack for creating quirky, entertaining characters and putting them in hilarious situations. I don’t mind that we’ve traded Stephanie, Lula & Connie for Lizzie, Glo & Clara—or that we’ve traded Morelli & Ranger for Diesel & Wulf—or that we’ve traded the Burg for Salem, Massachusetts. The relationships may be similar but the characters have their own eccentricities, and, as Wicked Appetite has a supernatural twist, the shenanigans are outrageous.
That said, I do hope Evanovich develops Wulf’s character a bit more—some of his actions don’t seem to match his big bad guy reputation. I’m also puzzled by Evanovich’s decision to introduce a certain complication for relationships between Unmentionables—or maybe I’m puzzled that she didn’t use it to create more tension. And what happened to Lizzie’s cupcake skills???