On Stephanie Plum

From Disaster to Diva

Why Lula Should be the Next Self-Help Goddess

By Natasha Fondren

The idea popped in my mind before I could stop it: Lula asĀ self-help goddess.

Hah! I laughed at myself. Surely not.

Yet there the idea was, stuck in my head like a mosquito in a tent.

No, Lula? The 230-pound Lula? Goofy sidekick of Stephanie Plum? You mean, Lula the ho?

Yes! Yes, and yes. And no, she’s not a prostitute anymore.

Believe it or not, I thought very little of Lula when I first read the adventures of Stephanie Plum. I loved watching the cars blow up and the coffins pop open–and Ranger. Boy, was I distracted by Ranger. I dreamed of Ranger, fantasized about Ranger, and fell in love with Ranger. I only noticed Lula when she drooled over Ranger (that was something I could identify with).

No, the idea of Lula as self-help goddess was something that came on gradually, after I worked past my Ranger-frenzy and discovered I had fallen in love with all the characters in the Stephanie Plum series–especially Lula.

*

Well, see, this is fiction, not another one of the self-help manuals that you collect …

Me? I don’t collect self-help books, no.

A whole bookshelf filled with the things isn’t a collection?

Just research. For this article, you see.

Uh-huh. And that’s why you’ve got nearly every self-help book since I’m Okay, You’re Okay from the seventies?

Well….

Okay, it’s true: I’m a self-help addict. Self-help books have been my friends and therapists through many a life crisis. When life gets stressful, I read a self-help  …

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