Literary Techniques

Evanovich's technique in Hot Six is characterized by slapstick and parody. Written in the first person singular, so as to increase the immediacy of events for the reader, Evanovich describes fantastically disastrous events that spiral out of Stephanie's control, as opposed to the usual first person detective protagonists, who control events through their proficiency and stoicism. Evanovich raises the reader's expectations by lavishly describing recognizable stock vignettes of detective fiction, such as the aforementioned standoff between protagonist and villain, only to frustrate those expectations with disaster. This frustration of reader expectations serves to heighten the almost manic humor. An even more ludicrous example is Habib and Mitchell's attempted kidnapping of Stephanie's dog, Bob, who, like her hamster, is like the child that Stephanie has never had. Evanovich describes Stephanie's horror as she watches the villain's car race away only to have the car stop dead. The doors burst open, Habib and Mitchell stagger out, followed by a happy and unharmed Bob. But it is not the protagonist's quick thinking that has thwarted the bad guys: it is the cumulative laxative and emetic effects of the two boxes of prunes that Bob had eaten, which puts their car out of commission.

Evanovich, however, does not rely solely on slapstick and parody. She provides a detailed narrative framework on which to mount the hilarious vignettes described above, a...

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