Thursday, September 17, 2015

Book Review: The Scam by Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg (Fox and O'Hare #4)

Stars: 4 out of 5
Pros: Fun caper and characters
Cons: Characters still a little shallow
The Bottom Line:
Money laundering
A bad bet against this pair
Pages fly again

Another Fun Book, and That’s No Scam

As much as I love mysteries, it’s nice to take a break every so often.  I view these breaks as pallet cleansers that refresh me enough to go back and enjoy the mysteries I love so much.  One series I have come to love for this is the Fox and O’Hare series.  Yes, it’s still a crime story, but this is more caper than traditional mystery.  The Scam is the latest in the series, and it’s another great ride.

The series focuses on the unlikely partnership between FBI agent Kate O’Hare and FBI most wanted conman Nick Fox.  Publically, Kate is still trying to track him down.  However, the truth is that, instead of going to prison after Kate caught him, Nick and Kate have teamed up with FBI blessing to pull elaborate cons that result in other criminals being arrested.  Meanwhile, Kate is also resisting the attraction she and Nick both feel.

This book finds the pair working to bring down the owner of a casino.  Oh, Evan Trace’s crime is not that he makes money off gamblers.  While he has a casino in Las Vegas, it’s his casino in Macau that is the problem.  It’s being used launder money that is then being used to finance terrorists.  The hope is to turn him into an FBI asset so they can foil terrorist plots, but at a minimum they want to shut him down.

Nick comes up with a plan that involves fake gamblers (members of Nick and Kate’s regular crew) getting bilked and coming after Trace.  However, as the con progresses, things get more and more complicated.  Will they be able to turn Trace into an asset or have they bitten off more than they can chew this time?

This book threw in a few elements that seemed to have no bearing on the story when first introduced, but they were important by the end.  Well, a couple still weren’t used, but I have a feeling they were set up for future books.  As usual, the book starts with a steady pace that picks up as you near the climax.  There are some surprises along the way, too, that fans of the series will enjoy.

The characters in this series are fun.  They are weaker than the characters in books I normally read, but they work for these books.  There’s a normal crew of people that Nick and Kate turn to for help with their cons, and I love seeing them since they are always good for a laugh or two.

Yes, there is some humor in these books.  This is Janet Evanovich after all.  Overall, these aren’t as comedic as some of the books I read, but the laughs are fun.

We get the story from multiple points of view as things unfold.  Usually it’s either Kate or Nick, but sometimes it’s one of the other players in the caper.  I did notice a couple of head hops during the climax, but usually the point of view sticks with just one character per scene.  The writing is sharp, and it makes for a very fast read.  As always I flew through this book.

And I can already guarantee that I will fly through the next book.  With how this book ends, I need to know what will happen next.  Seriously, I’m counting down the days.

So if you are looking for a globetrotting adventure, pick up The Scam.  It’s a fun escape that will keep you entertained.

Don't miss a minute of the fun.  Check out the rest of the Fox and O'Hare books in order.

NOTE: I received an ARC of this book in exchange for my honest review.


  1. My library has several of these in audio and it sounds like this series would be a fun listen. This may have to be my next book!

    1. I haven't listened to any of these books, but I bet they would make for fun audio books.