One For The Money – The Book and the Movie Review


A long time ago…  (long before this blog or before I even knew what a blog was) I had read Janet Evanovich’s book One For The Money.  It was light, it was funny.  It was about this big haired girl named Stephanie Plum from New Jersey who was down on her luck after losing her job.  The bills were piling up and she found herself looking for a job from her cousin Vinnie who owned the local Bond Agency.

Then it gets hilarious.  Stephanie has no idea what she has got herself into but tries to bring in the biggest bail, Morrelli, who she had a brief encounter with many years ago and thinks this could be some pay back.  Morelli is not only a good-looking guy, he is also a cop – on bail for a crime he did not commit but all evidence to say so seems to has disappeared. 

When Stephanie requires a little assistance in her new job, she is introduced to Ranger (yay!!!!  Three cheers from my section *doing the wave* !!!!)  Ranger is dark and mysterious and has a way of showing up just when Stephanie needs him.  He also teaches her how to shoot a gun, and how to break into a suspects home… but you know… that’s just part of the fun.

The book… is fun.   Really it is.  SO much fun in fact I went on to read Two For The Dough, Three To Get Deadly, Four To Score, High Five, Hot Six, Seven Up, Hard Eight, To The Nines, Ten Big Ones, Eleven On Top and Twelve Sharp.  (In Twelve Sharp the book irritated me/ got a little gross and I stopped reading the series there).  Currently I think the books are on eighteen.

The series is just funny bail bond situations that Stephanie gets involved in and Morrelli and Ranger dig her out of messes.  She usually winds up accidentally uncovering something that leads to big arrests….




On Saturday I went to the movie with four other Bookies (my book club).  Although we never read this book as a book club, we had read a couple of the later ones in the series.  A few in my book club are HUGE fans of the series and have read every book. 

I felt the movie was well done.  Although there has been grumblings of the casting of Katherine Heigl as Stephanie (too tall, and too sophisticated), I thought she did a great job.  Morrelli and Ranger were wonderful and over all I personally thought this movie version was even better than the book.  Yup.  I did just say that.

If you are looking for a fun laugh out loud movie, I would recommend giving this one a try. 

40 thoughts on “One For The Money – The Book and the Movie Review

  1. I’m glad you liked it! I… did not. 🙂 It was definitely toned down a lot (I assume to appeal to a wider audience), but the whole over the top feel of the books is what I love most about them. I thought it was a good movie, but it wasn’t special, and it definitely wasn’t Stephanie Plum. But my expectations were soooooooooooo high. But maybe I will give it another chance (when it comes out on DVD). I may enjoy it a lot more once I know what I am going in to.

    1. I am distanced from the books Stephanie so that may have helped for me. I am so glad they did a movie, really I think this book came out in the 1990’s so I am impressed they picked it up. I actually hope they make enough money to want to do more.

      Did you at least like Ranger? 😛

  2. I started this series at Eleven on Top, went on to Finger Lickin’ Fifteen…and then stalled. Just had too many other books to read.

    But when I heard about the movie, I immediately downloaded One for the Money (loved it!); and when I saw the movie yesterday with my granddaughter, I adored it, especially Debbie Reynolds as Grandma Mazur. And, of course, Ranger and Morelli.

    Having only read the three books, I didn’t have a distinctive image of what Stephanie should look like, but I thought Katherine Heigl nailed the flaky persona.

    Thanks for sharing…

    1. That would be a great example Laurel of my current reading life! 😀 Now I would think the series is too big to get into… but then – pre blogging, a book or two a year from this author was easy to keep up on. 😀

  3. I was thrilled when I heard that they were making the Stephanie Plum books by Janet Evanovich into a movie. My husband used to hear me giggling and I would read parts to him (he is not a booklover 😦 ) and he said they should make that into a movie! They are soooo funny – I hope the movie does them justice!

  4. I love the series. I won an audio book of Smoking ? and laughed all the way while on the treadmill.


  5. I loved the early books, then they seemed to stall and I quit reading them. Stephanie just didn’t grow as a character and I got annoyed with her for not getting better at either her job or her love life.

    Have to admit that I’m not happy with the choices for Ranger and Morelli, as they were so smokin’ hot in the books! I pictured them in my head and they are nothing like these two actors. I live in Jersey and there are gorgeous Italians and Cubans all over the place, so how hard could it have been to find a couple who could also act? *L*

      1. No, she still hasn’t picked and I can’t see either man putting up with that. Yes, I’ve personalized fictional characters! The Rock as Ranger? Interesting choice! 🙂

  6. I have not read any of these books yet but I think this sounds like just the type of read I need right now. I have a very beat up copy that I think I will dig out tonight. I need a good laugh. I love the movie trailer and will have to see it. Glad to hear you enjoyed the book and the movie!

  7. I loved the book and the series. I am current with the series to date. I agree with some of your thoughts of the books between 11 and 15, but thoroughly loved 18. I’m glad she’s back on top.

    I am not one who usually sees movies of books I’ve read. I just find myself disappointed, so usually I just don’t see the movie. However, I think I may defintely see this one.

  8. I can’t get past Debbie Reynolds(too good looking) as Grandma Mazur – definitely not who I pictured in my head but my choices are dead- so it’s a moot point. Besides, Hollywood nev-ah consulted moi!
    Glad you enjoyed it.

  9. Glad to see this post! 8 of us trekked to this movie after school on Friday – yep a bunch of elementary school teachers DO know how to par-tay!! We laughed and giggled like the school girls we really are. After only a few minutes we were all pretty much believing that Kathryn Heigl really could BE Stephanie Plum. It took a little longer for Morelli but Ranger was instantaneous —for me! The chemistry with Morelli really made him convincing for all of my friends. So, blue eyes, brown eyes, whatever, we enjoyed a night out with the girls and seeing a book come to life. (PS – glad I hadn’t read the book recently, it was so much fun to get lost in the story and rediscover it.)

  10. I don’t know if I’m going to go see this movie or not. I am definitely a Stephanie Plum fan – my husband and I have read all the books and laugh out loud at each one.

    But I think they got the casting ALL WRONG on the movie. Every time I see the preview, I end up yelling at the screen, “No! No!” I can’t tell if I would like the movie or be irritated by it.

    I’m one of those who think Katherine Heigl is the wrong choice for Stephanie. Steph is a Jersey Girl, an every-woman, and Heigl looks like a tall gorgeous model. And I also yelled at the screen when I saw who they cast as Morelli. I actually like that actor – a lot – but he does not look the way Morelli is described in the books. Morelli is dark and classic New Jersey Italian. 75% of my high school population was Italian – as much as I like him, this actor does not look right for the role.

    So, there you go – my two cents! I should have started this comment with “Don’t get me started!” and a warning. LOL Still not sure if I will see the movie or not. I’m shocked to see you thought it was actually better than the book, so that’s one vote in its favor!


    1. Wow Sue! LOL You are passionate about this! 😀 I havent read the book in a long time and I became so frustrated with the series that the movie pleasantly surprised me.

      secretly… I hope you do see the movie. 😛

  11. OK, I just read all the rest of the comments here (out loud to my husband, too!). We agree Debbie Reynolds is too pretty for this role – just never pictured Grandma Mazur as pretty! And she is one of my favorite characters.

    Also agree on Ranger – the actor looking more cuddly than dangerous.

    We think that overall, they went for big Hollywood names to draw in the crowds instead of choosing lesser-known actors/actresses who better fit the characters in the books. Hey, their goal is just to try to make as much $$ as possible, right? I don’t think Hollywood is too concerned with matching the book.

    Now, I am really going to bed now…


      1. ha ha – you’re right, I guess. We are both passionate about this topic! Pretty silly to get all worked up over a movie adaptation, isn’t it? LOL

        We also agreed that the previews for The Hunger Games look like they took the exact opposite approach for that movie adaptation – hire relatively unknown actors but stick very closely to the book. Now that is a movie we can’t wait to see!!


  12. Not quite how I pictured Morelli! I could see this almost being better as a movie than a book. I read about 7 of them before quitting because it starts to feel like the same book over and over.

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