I liked that we got a lot of Ranger/Stephanie and a lot of Ranger, period. And I enjoyed the bits with all the side characters with no exception. Morelli amused and I still haven't gotten tired of the "Stephanie Watch" discussions Morelli and Ranger have right in front of Steph all the time. Cracks me up every time. The mystery itself didn't quite seem to have the same amount of juice as they normally do, but who am I kidding? I don't read these for the mysteries. And I cracked up in general a lot.
My favorite bits off the top of my head --
- Ranger's complaint that no one tries to kill him anymore (which was delivered for laughs) and then how it so smoothly gave us a moment of poignancy when Stephanie reminded him that he'd almost been killed in her apartment not too long ago.
- Morelli's idea that Stephanie's alibi for Dickie would be his prowess in bed. (That might have been my single favorite laugh-out-line of the book.)
- The Dickie/Morelli/Stephanie scene the second time around.
- Disgusting, but the fact that BOTH Ranger and Morelli didn't care that Stephanie had her period and her reaction to both.
- Elmer's toupee slipping and his nonchalant reaction to it.
- Morelli pointing out that Lula called Ranger on his "mysterio silent shit."
- Drunk Stephanie needling Ranger and then smartly stopping.
- Stephanie's line to Ranger that he puts up with her because she amused him, he loves her and her relationship with Morelli keeps her in a category that allows him to not feel threatened.
- Morelli asking Ranger if he could trust him with Stephanie (another night) and Ranger's, "not for a second."
- The fact that when the toaster bomb was mentioned, both Ranger and Morelli had a small moment with Stephanie.
- I haven't reread all the books in a while (I'm going to start this weekend), but I'm pretty sure this is the first time that Ranger has gone to dinner at the Plum's and I've been waiting for that, so that was awesome.
Overall, pretty good. I was pleased.