Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1946/11462
The Girl Instinct. A Post Feminist Look at the Relationship Between Foil and Hero in the Plum Novels by Janet Evanovich
This essay explores, from a post feminist perspective, the relationship between the main character and the sidekick in three novels, by Janet Evanovich, which belong to the genre of chick lit: One for the Money (1994), Hard Eight (2003) and Smokin’ Seventeen (2011). A chick lit novel is post feminist literature aimed at female readers in their 20s and 30s. These novels generally follow a similar theme of love, friendship, career, sex and consumerism; however they also deal with the more serious issues of the ongoing quest for equality and the female working environment. In the post feminist era of today women are fighting for what is important to them, their rights to choose how to live their lives, if and when to have a family and which career they would like to pursue. The three novels are part of the Plum Series, eighteen novels about Stephanie Plum and her life as a female bounty hunter. She befriends a former prostitute, Lula, who becomes her sidekick. I look at this relationship between the women, as it is the typical one of protagonist and sidekick: they are opposites. However the sidekick has much to offer to the relationship, and complements the hero. The women deal with female objectification, abuse, being shot at, and also with weight issues while they enjoy devouring fast food and doughnuts. Another matter of interest are the problems Stephanie has, with cars and the tools of the trade of bounty hunting, that make her seem out of place in the profession. Lula, on the other hand, has no problems with these perceived masculine tools, even though she wears stiletto heels and short skirts. The women‘s relationship statuses and sexual experiences are also considered important for a post feminist analysis, as Lula is a retired prostitute while Stephanie is a promiscuous divorcée who has problems with commitment.