Midnight in Death – J.D. Robb

Midnight in Death – J.D. Robb

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(3/5)

Pros: It’s an OK story

Cons: But it’s completely unnecessary to the series.

I really enjoy J.D. Robb’s “In Death” series.  There are lots of books in the series, and for the most part, they’re quite enjoyable.  Besides the full-length novels, there are also a few short stories.  This review is for Midnight In Death, a story that fills fewer than 100 pages.

Like all books in the series, this story takes place in the future, and features Police Lieutenant Eve Dallas as she investigates bizarre murder mysteries.  This book takes place between Christmas and New Years Eve, in the year 2058.

A diabolical murderer that Eve helped put away a few years ago has escaped, and is back with a vengeance.  The judge who sentenced him is found after having been tortured and murdered.  Attached to the judge’s body is a list of the murder’s next intended victims.  All had something to do with his arrest, and of course, Eve’s name figures prominently on that list.

The story revolves around Eve trying to find this person.  It’s never a question of “who is he?” but the trick is to find him and capture him.  Because his identity is known all along, there is no mystery to solve, no surprise, and no twists or turns to keep us guessing.  We’re simply spectators to Eve’s search mission.

This type of story really doesn’t hold my interest nearly as well as the type where we have no idea who the bad guy is, and we get to enjoy the fun of solving clues along the way.  But, I suppose, a short story has far more limits in terms of what can be done.

In this case, there’s the initial setup, the search, and the ending.  That’s pretty much it.  There was no time for a whole lot of character development.  And while a few of the other characters from the series put in an appearance, nothing really new happens with them.  Eve’s husband Roarke helps her investigate the case, and for a change, he’s supportive to her without being too overbearing or annoying.  Eve’s assistant Peabody, and the electronics wizard McNab help her, too.  Dr. Mira, who helps Eve when she needs a psychological profile, is on the murder’s target list, thus she has a fairly big role in this book.

The story, itself, is just OK.  The murderer is certainly evil, and he’s very smart, and detail-oriented.  Thus he’s quite an interesting antagonist as he poses quite the challenge to Eve.  But, he’s not someone we will really get to “know” or understand.  No motives will be given for why he is the way is his.  He’s just evil for evil’s sake.

As there’s really nothing in this book other than the main story, readers enjoying the entire series can easily skip this book.  Nothing of importance will be mixed.  Read it if you come across it on your shelf, but don’t go out of your way to purchase it.

Other books in the In Death series

Betrayal In Death
Born In Death
Celebrity In Death
Ceremony In Death
Concealed In Death
Devoted In Death
Divided In Death  
Festive In Death
Glory In Death
Haunted In Death
Immortal In Death
Indulgence In Death
Innocent In Death
Interlude In Death
Judgment In Death
Missing In Death
Naked In Death
Obsession In Death
Origin In Death
Rapture In Death
Reunion In Death
Salvation In Death
Strangers In Death
Survivor In Death
Treachery In Death
Vengeance In Death
Visions In Death

Judgment in Death – J.D. Robb

Judgment in Death – J.D. Robb

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(3/5)

Pros: Interesting story that held my interest

Cons: Roarke’s a bully.

The 11th book in the “In Death” series by J. D. Robb starts out with a bang, that’s for sure. Lieutenant Eve Dallas is called to a particularly nasty crime scene. A man has been brutally slain in an upscale club. It turns out the victim is more than just the club’s bartender, he’s actually a cop doing some moonlighting. Eve’s digging reveals the cop to be “on the take”, perhaps that’s a motive for the murder. As more dead cops are discovered, each of them “dirty”, Eve realizes the perpetrator is most likely one of her own: A cop who takes his own way to “clean” the force.

As it progresses, the case gets more and more complicated. First Eve discovers that the club is owned by none other than her own husband, Roarke. Why Eve didn’t know about this before is a mystery. I found that a bit bizarre. Roarke has a not-so-squeaky-clean past, including an association with a really bad guy named Ricker. As Eve’s investigation takes her closer to Ricker, tensions mount between her and Roarke. There are also pressures from inside. Warnings from Internal Affairs to treat the case “gently”. Other cops who don’t like her going after “one of their own”. In short, Eve has her work cut out for her in solving this one.

Many of the characters in this book are featured in the prior books. Eve’s assistant Peabody provides some light-heartedness, especially since she’s enjoying some secret one-on-one time with McNab. Webster, an old lover of Eve’s figures prominently in this one. Readers who have read the prior books will enjoy watching these stories continue here. But if you haven’t read the other books, it’s OK. These stories stand up on their own.

Interestingly, this book takes place in 2059 which gives the author a lot of leeway when it comes to reliance on futuristic technology. There are flying cars (but not everyone seems to have them or use them??), guns with adjustable levels of power, so you can decide just how badly you want to hurt someone before you shoot them, and robotic droids that act as maids and butlers. They even mention a “drying tube” that you step into when you come out of your shower, instead of drying off the old-fashioned way with a towel. It didn’t mention how long it takes to dry in the tube, but I assume it’s really quick. I really like that idea! There are also subtle things mentioned but not described in great detail, like the “Urban Wars” that took place sometime in the past. Sometimes we get to just use our imagination.

Sadly, apparently in 2059, there is no such thing as a beef hot dog or real coffee – both are made from soy. Yuck!

While the case, itself, was interesting, and held my interest, there was one thing I did not enjoy in this book. And that was the relationship between Roarke and Eve. I found it bordering on abusive. Roarke has a “you are MINE” mentality when it comes to Eve, and he doesn’t hide it at all. As a result, he can be controlling, demanding, and at times physically intimidating to her. She doesn’t seem to notice this, or consider it abusive, but there were times when he really came close to crossing a line with her. He also has no respect for her authority, interfering in her job if he feels he should. I realize he does these things because he loves her, but I would have preferred a story spotlighting a couple where I can like and respect both partners. Definitely not the case here.

Still, this is an enjoyable mystery and a quick, fun read.

Other books in the In Death series

Betrayal In Death
Born In Death
Celebrity In Death
Ceremony In Death
Concealed In Death
Devoted In Death
Divided In Death  
Festive In Death
Glory In Death
Haunted In Death
Immortal In Death
Indulgence In Death
Innocent In Death
Interlude In Death
Midnight In Death
Missing In Death
Naked In Death
Obsession In Death
Origin In Death
Rapture In Death
Reunion In Death
Salvation In Death
Strangers In Death
Survivor In Death
Treachery In Death
Vengeance In Death
Visions In Death

Innocent in Death – J.D. Robb

Innocent in Death – J.D. Robb

 

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(4/5)

Pros: Very intriguing murder mystery

Cons: A subplot that went too far

I enjoy the In Death series by J.D. Robb.  Following the life and career of NY Police Lieutenant Eve Dallas, 50 years or so in the future, the books usually have an interesting murder or two to solve.  And we get a lot of character development, feeling like we “know” Eve, her co-workers, and her friends.

Innocent In Death takes a look at a murder that, on the surface, makes no sense at all.  Nice school teacher Craig Foster is found dead in his classroom, from an apparent poisoning.  Eve and her partner Peabody are on the case.  The problem is that absolutely no one seems to have a motive for killing this man.  Sure, one or two people had minor skirmishes with him over the years.  But nothing that points to a reason to eliminate him from the human race.

Eve is really in a bind, not used to murders that, for all intents and purposes, simply make no sense.  It’s only when a second victim is found, that pieces start to fall into place.

As usual, there are subplots in this book.  Most involve quirks in Eve’s personality.  And how different she is from Peabody.  Peabody is a really girl’s girl.  And Eve is – well – whatever the opposite of a girl’s girl is.  There are always humorous disagreements between the two ladies, times where neither can understand the other.  These usually involve one or the other’s choice of wardrobe, make-up, hair, or any number of other “girl” things.  I enjoy the banter between these two, always providing a few chuckles along the way.

In Innocent In Death we also get a subplot that’s quite different from other novels in the series.  A marital problem arises between Eve and her husband Roarke.  Throughout the series, Eve and Roarke are presented as very loving, very passionate, very in-tune with each other.  Sure, they argue, even fight occasionally, but not usually over matters as deep and personal as what’s discussed in this book.  And while I started out liking the subplot, its conclusion, I felt, was over-the-top.  It stopped feeling realistic and felt more like a cartoon – something that would never happen in a real marriage.

As for the real story – the poor, murdered school teacher – that story zigged where I was expecting a zag.  To say it turns out “different” is an understatement.  I give Robb credit for taking a story in a direction that others seem to shy away from.  I wouldn’t say I loved the outcome of the story, but I was certainly intrigued.

Overall, Innocent In Death is an enjoyable installment in the In Death series.

 

Other books in the In Death series

Betrayal In Death
Born In Death
Celebrity In Death
Ceremony In Death
Concealed In Death
Devoted In Death
Divided In Death  
Festive In Death
Glory In Death
Haunted In Death
Immortal In Death
Indulgence In Death
Interlude In Death
Judgment In Death
Midnight In Death
Missing In Death
Naked In Death
Obsession In Death
Origin In Death
Rapture In Death
Reunion In Death
Salvation In Death
Strangers In Death
Survivor In Death
Treachery In Death
Vengeance In Death
Visions In Death

Indulgence in Death – J.D. Robb

Indulgence in Death – J.D. Robb

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(2/5)

Pros: The returning characters are always a delight.

Cons: No mystery for us to solve.  Eve is a bit over-the-top.

In Indulgence In Death, the thirty-first book in J.D. Robb’s In Death series, the point is not to solve a mystery, but rather to prove what one knows to be true.

Like all of the In Death books, the main character is Eve Dallas, head of New York’s Homicide division.  The year is 2060 and Eve has just returned from an eventful vacation with her husband.  The events that took place during the vacation have no bearing on the rest of the book, but they help establish the kind of person – the kind of policewoman – Eve is.  For those of us who have read many of the books, we already knew these things, but a first-time reader will be intrigued.

It’s when Eve returns home that things turn weird.  A top-of-the-line limo driver is found murdered – a crossbow the weapon of choice.  With few clues, Eve is stumped.  Then another victim is found – also a woman at the top of her game – and the weapon this time is a bayonet.

Two murders, strange weapons, and the only clues point to innocent people who were recent victims of identity theft.  What is going on?

As the body count rises, Eve starts to see the pattern.  In fact, it’s quite early in the book when she figures out who’s killing these people and why.  Mystery solved, right?  No.  Because Eve knowing the answer and Eve proving it are two very different things.

The rest of the book follows Eve, helped by her usual array of friends and co-workers, as she tries to prove who the criminals are.  Mostly, she has to amass enough evidence to convince a judge to issue a search warrant.  But most of her evidence is circumstantial.  In fact, the only way Eve can get anything concrete is to pull off a sting, one that puts a target right on her back.

Compared to some of the other books in the series, this one was dull.  Knowing all along who the bad guys are (there really was no doubt in Eve’s mind, nor in the reader’s mind) meant we didn’t get to “solve” anything.  We just sat back and watched Eve do her work.

I also found Eve was a little over the top, when it came to being – well – Eve.   Readers of the series will understand what I mean.  Eve is always grouchy, curmudgeonly, sarcastic, opinionated, and sometimes downright nasty.  But we put up with her because we love her, and we’re touched by her background.  Still, in this book, she is extra- all of those things.  Some of her tirades are supposed to funny, but mostly, I simply found myself disliking her – just a bit.  New readers who don’t know her good side are likely to be put off.

So, Indulgence In Death is not the best book in the series.  Still, give the series a try – most of the books are better than this.

 

Other books in the In Death series

Betrayal In Death
Born In Death
Celebrity In Death
Ceremony In Death
Concealed In Death
Devoted In Death
Divided In Death  
Festive In Death
Glory In Death
Haunted In Death
Immortal In Death
Innocent In Death
Interlude In Death
Judgment In Death
Midnight In Death
Missing In Death
Naked In Death
Obsession In Death
Origin In Death
Rapture In Death
Reunion In Death
Salvation In Death
Strangers In Death
Survivor In Death
Treachery In Death
Vengeance In Death
Visions In Death

Haunted in Death – J.D. Robb

Haunted in Death – J.D. Robb

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(2/5)

Pros: I liked the connection to the 1980’s

Cons: But I could do without the ghosts and spirits

I have enjoyed J.D. Robb’s “In Death” series.  The characters are a lot of fun, and the investigations are usually quite interesting.  But because there are so many books and stories in the series, I particularly like when the author includes something really “different” and the short story Haunted In Death succeeds on that level.

The entire series takes place in the future – in the 2050’s and 2060’s.  For the most part, people are still the same as they are today, but they have some really cool gadgets, and a few strange laws.  Guns have been completely banned, in favor of “stunners”, so when Police Lieutenant Eve Dallas comes across a gunshot victim, she’s shocked.  After all, most people have never seen a bullet hole, except in some old movies.

It’s further shocking when the gun is found.  It had been buried for 85 years along with another victim – a famous singer who’d gone missing in the 1980’s.  Now Eve has two victims, both killed with the same weapon, 85 years apart.

Like I said, this story was definitely “different”.

I loved the connection to the 1980’s, and hearing the people discuss “the old days”.

But there was plenty that I didn’t love about this story, too.  The victims were discovered in a house that was rumored for years to be haunted.  But Eve is as level-headed as they come, thus it’s no surprise that she refuses to believe any of that nonsense.  And when her partner, Peabody, actually believes some of the stories, and shows fear around the house, that’s not really a surprise as it fits with her character.  But when Eve’s husband, Roarke, demonstrates a fear of the house, it was inconsistent with the way his character has been presented throughout the series.  I always felt he was as level-headed and down-to-earth as his wife.  To hear him prattle on about spirits was a departure from the character I’d come to know.

As far as Eve’s investigation into the murders goes, it wasn’t the most interesting.  And, I thought it was a bit hard to follow.  As the events in the 1980’s are tied with the current events, we get introduced to several generations worth of multiple families.  Furthermore, this is only a short story, with not a lot of time to develop these characters.  So we have a lot of people to keep straight in a short amount of time.  Toss in some supposed ghosts, and it was all rather convoluted.

It all shakes out, in the end, but I didn’t think the conclusion was particularly entertaining.

Readers of the series can absolutely skip this story, without feeling like they’ll be missing out on anything.  None of the recurring characters change or grow during this story, and I doubt the events of this story will play a part in any future story in the series.  So, read it, if you come across it somewhere, but don’t go out of your way looking for it.  You won’t be missing a thing if you skip it.

Other books in the In Death series

Betrayal In Death
Born In Death
Celebrity In Death
Ceremony In Death
Concealed In Death
Devoted In Death
Divided In Death  
Festive In Death
Glory In Death
Immortal In Death
Indulgence In Death
Innocent In Death
Interlude In Death
Judgment In Death
Midnight In Death
Missing In Death
Naked In Death
Obsession In Death
Origin In Death
Rapture In Death
Reunion In Death >
Salvation In Death
Strangers In Death
Survivor In Death
Treachery In Death
Vengeance In Death
Visions In Death

Glory in Death – J.D. Robb

Glory in Death – J.D. Robb

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(3/5)

Pros: I love these characters!

Cons: The murder investigation was pretty lame.
Glory in Death is only the second novel in J.D. Robb’s “In Death” series.  Even though it’s “an oldie” it still contains the charm that attracts me to this series.

Like all books in the series, this one takes place in the future – 2058 – and centers around Lieutenant Eve Dallas, a homicide cop in New York.  In each book, Eve handles a different crime.  In this case, someone is slicing the throats of some high-profile women.  Each of them women was adored – who could want them dead?  Of course the first thing Eve does is look for a commonality among the three women.  And of course, the only person she can find, with ties to all of them is her own boyfriend (in later books, husband) Roarke.

One thing I really like about this series is the consistency of the characters, over time.  Whether grabbing a book from the start of the series, or towards the end, the characters remain true to themselves.  They grow, mature, and make life-changing decisions, but their core personalities remain constant.

In this book, Eve meets Peabody for the first time.  Peabody appears in the rest of the books, and is always a lot of fun.  Her personality is very different from Eve’s, causing humorous friction between them, at times.  Sure enough, even though this is the first time we meet her, I immediately noticed Peabody’s personality already being developed.

Feeney, Nadine, Mavis, Dr. Mira, and Summerset are also present in this book – characters we get to know fully as the series movies on.

In this book, it comes to light that both Eve and Roarke had troubled childhoods.  Roarke remembers his, and has come to terms with it.  Eve can barely remember the details, and doesn’t wish to remember them.  Yet she is frequently haunted by nightmares.  I like how this story is introduced very slowly, and developed a little bit at a time, as the books move forward.  But if read as a stand-alone novel, the reader might be disappointed at the dropped storyline.

Taking place in the future, the author has a lot of leeway when it comes to technology.  In this book, a few “gadgets” are introduced to the readers, but nothing outlandish.  No magic “solve my murder investigation for me” button exists.  Eve has to solve her cases the old fashioned way – lots of hard work, and a few lucky breaks.  I’m happy about this – it would be “cheating”, I think, if the author relied on make-believe futuristic gizmos to solve crimes.  The technology in these books is more of the fun type (the Auto Chef that you program to cook your food) and doesn’t detract from the investigation angle of the story.

As far as the murder investigation goes, it was fairly lame.  A whole lot of time is spent chasing geese in the wrong direction, before a real clue is finally brought to light, one that sets Eve on the right path.  At that point, there is a bit of a “surprise” but nothing terribly drastic.  In fact, by the time it comes, many readers will have seen it coming.  I do feel that the murder investigation, which is supposed to be the main focus of this book, was its weakest part.

This book is fine, as part of the series.  While the investigation wasn’t anything too exciting, the characters are always enjoyable.  So read it, if you’re reading the entire series, but I wouldn’t recommend it as a stand-alone novel.

 

Other books in the In Death series

Betrayal In Death
Born In Death
Celebrity In Death
Ceremony In Death
Concealed In Death
Devoted In Death
Divided In Death  
Festive In Death
Haunted In Death
Immortal In Death
Indulgence In Death
Innocent In Death
Interlude In Death
Judgment In Death
Midnight In Death
Missing In Death
Naked In Death
Obsession In Death
Origin In Death
Rapture In Death
Reunion In Death
Salvation In Death
Strangers In Death
Survivor In Death
Treachery In Death
Vengeance In Death
Visions In Death

Divided in Death – J.D. Robb

Divided in Death – J.D. Robb

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(5/5)

Pros: Exciting story, Roarke’s matured!

Cons: None, really.  Robb did this one right!
Divided in Death is the 18th book in the “In Death” series by J.D. Robb. Like all of the books in the series, this one stars Eve Dallas, a New York Police Lieutenant, in the year 2059.

Eve’s always investigating a murder – in this case, it’s a double.  A man and his lover are found in bed, stabbed to death.  The man’s wife is standing over the bodies, covered in the victims’ blood.  Sounds like a simple case, right?  Except that the wife is Reva, a woman who works with Eve’s husband, Roarke.  Reva has been working on a top-secret project: build a computer program that will counter the effects of a massive computer virus, being developed by a terrorist organization.  It soon becomes clear that Reva has been framed for the murders, by someone who clearly wants to stop her work.

Of course, believing that Reva’s innocent, and proving it are two different things.  Especially since as Eve works the case, more bodies start piling up.  In fact, in this book, Eve relies on a lot of help from a lot of different sources.  Roarke, with his computer and security knowledge is drafted.  And Peabody, Tokimoto, and Feeny (all returning characters from prior books in the series) play major roles in solving the case.

So far, of all the books I’ve read in the series, this was the most enjoyable.  The story was exciting, with plenty of suspense.  While we (the readers) always believed in Reva’s innocence, we really had no idea who set her up, or why.  The story gets a bit convoluted but is tied up nicely by the end.

And, Roarke didn’t annoy me nearly as much in this book as the others.  In past books, I’ve always hated how possessive Roake acts towards Eve, and how he runs roughshod right over her authority.  But in this book he was completely supportive and kind.  In fact, there’s a major subplot that’s developed in prior books and continued in this book, concerning Eve’s tragic past.  And in the course of this subplot, Roarke has to make a choice.  He can follow his own instincts to make things “right” or he can bow to Eve’s desires, even though it means he won’t get the satisfaction of vengeance he seeks.  I was so proud of Roarke and felt that he’d really matured.  I hope he keeps this new & improved attitude in future books!

As these books take place in the future, Robb has some “leeway” when it comes to inventing technological advances that can be used to help Eve solve the cases.  To me, it can be a bit of a cop-out.  But I was happy that in this book, Eve didn’t rely on any futuristic technology to solve the case.  She solved it the old-fashioned way – by examining the clues, working on the puzzles, and investing lots of man-hours.  It made the book more enjoyable for me, as I didn’t feel like Robb “cheated” to get to the solution.

Overall, this was a very enjoyable book, one of the best in the series.

Other books in the In Death series

Betrayal In Death
Born In Death
Celebrity In Death
Ceremony In Death
Concealed In Death
Devoted In Death
Festive In Death
Glory In Death
Haunted In Death
Immortal In Death
Indulgence In Death
Innocent In Death
Interlude In Death
Judgment In Death
Midnight In Death
Missing In Death
Naked In Death
Obsession In Death
Origin In Death
Rapture In Death
Reunion In Death
Salvation In Death
Strangers In Death
Survivor In Death
Treachery In Death
Vengeance In Death
Visions In Death

Celebrity in Death – J.D. Robb

Celebrity in Death – J.D. Robb

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(5/5)

Pros: Intriguing murder mystery and a bit of humor, too!

Cons: None – this book is why I enjoy the In Death series!

I enjoy J.D. Robb’s In Death series.  Set 50 years in the future, and featuring Lieutenant Eve Dallas, a homicide detective with the New York Police Department, these books are fun to read.  Typically, Eve stumbles upon a murder, and works with her partner, Peabody, to solve it.  There is also a good deal of back story surrounding the main characters, thus readers really get to “know” them.

In Celebrity In Death, the murder takes on a unique twist, one that I found quite enjoyable.

As the book opens, we learn that a movie is being made about one of Eve’s recent cases.  In fact, the movie is about the Icove investigation (from the book Origin In Death).  The movie stars some very famous actors, who have been made into near-replicas of Eve, Peabody, and the other detectives who worked that case.  The movie is near its wrap, and there’s a celebratory dinner party for all involved in the film.  Eve and Peabody are honored guests at this party.  However, before dessert can be served, there’s a murder.  The actress playing Peabody has been drowned.

Here’s why I say this murder has a unique twist.  The author makes it clear that Hollywood makeup techniques are far more advanced in the 2060’s than they are today. Thus the actresses playing Eve and Peabody do more than “resemble” the real thing.  They are practically duplicates.  Thus this dinner party includes two Eve’s and two Peabody’s.  Now one of the Peabody’s is dead.  Imagine how the real Peabody must feel – working on dead body that looks eerily like herself.  Not to mention that the houseful of suspects includes look-alikes for the rest of the people involved in the case.  That includes Peabody’s boyfriend, McNab and Eve’s husband, Roarke.  Having suspects look just like the folks investigating the crime led to some very strange (and sometimes humorous) dialog.

Especially since the actress who was killed was none-too-popular.   She stirred up trouble, black-mailed people to get what she wanted, and was just your basic Witch-With-A-B to everyone.   It was funny to hear the real Peabody talk about her but use the first person voice.  As in “God, I hate me… I’m so nasty to everyone!”  Whereas the actress playing Eve was quite nice, so the real Eve got to respond to Peabody saying things like “Well at least I’m a nice person… I really enjoyed talking to me”.

More humorous dialog surrounded the ladies enjoying the attention of the second Roarke.  The real Roarke is known to be quite handsome, and would be quite the ladies’ man, if he weren’t so devoted to Eve.  But now there’s a second Roarke available for the ladies to drool over.

Like I said, this unique twist gave the story some comic relief.

As for the actual murder investigation, I was pleasantly surprised. What started out as a simple “who done it” evolved into quite a complex story, with a very nicely laid out backstory.    Furthermore, Eve solves the case using good old-fashioned common sense and hard work.  As opposed to some of the other books, Eve did not rely on any futuristic gadget, robot, or computer system.  While those devices can add interest to a story, I do prefer cases be solved without any “cheats”.  Thus, Celebrity In Death delivers, on many levels.

Overall, I enjoyed Celebrity In Death.  There’s quite a bit of humor, as well as an intriguing murder mystery.  Do note that as the events of Origin In Death are referred to in this book, it is preferable (although not vital) for readers to have read that one first.

 

Other books in the In Death series

Betrayal In Death
Born In Death
Ceremony In Death
Concealed In Death
Devoted In Death
Divided In Death  
Festive In Death
Glory In Death
Haunted In Death
Immortal In Death
Indulgence In Death
Innocent In Death
Interlude In Death
Judgment In Death
Midnight In Death
Missing In Death
Naked In Death
Obsession In Death
Naked In Death
Origin In Death
Rapture In Death
Reunion In Death
Salvation In Death
Strangers In Death
Survivor In Death
Treachery In Death
Vengeance In Death
Visions In Death

Born in Death – J.D. Robb

Born in Death – J.D. Robb

 

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See it at Amazon 

(4/5)

Pros: Plenty of intrigue between the different cases

Cons: A bit bogged down by financial jargon
Like all books in the series, our action takes place in New York, in the future.  In this case, it’s 2060.  We follow Lieutenant Eve Dallas, head of the homicide division of the Police Department.  We also follow her personal life and those of her friends, which usually provides the humor to these murder mysteries.

In this case, we have a double-murder, and one missing person to deal with.  The double murder involves an engaged couple – both working for a high-powered accounting firm with extremely wealthy clientele.  It becomes clear that they’ve stumbled onto some wrong-doing – either in the firm, itself, or with one of the clients.  And that someone went to a lot of effort to make sure that secrets remain hidden.  Eve uses her husband, Roarke, and her partner, Peabody, to uncover the layers of secrets in order to find out “whodunit”.

At the same time, Eve’s friend, Mavis is pregnant.  Very pregnant – and Eve is in charge of the baby shower, as well as being on Mavis’s “birthing team”.  (Apparently, in the future, births require a whole team of on-lookers, helpers, and cheer-leaders).  But Eve is definitely not happy in this role.  As is established throughout the series, Eve is definitely not a “girly girl”.  She hates anything the least bit maternal or sentimental.  Thus her being forced into the role of nurturer for her pregnant friend leads to some of the funniest lines I’ve ever heard, in a murder mystery.

But the humor goes away when Mavis’s friend – another pregnant woman – suddenly vanishes.

The stories in this book are pretty good.  The murder mystery involves several different characters, and a few side plots, before the full truth finally comes out.  My only real complaint: There was some dependence on financial jargon that bogged down the story a bit.  I couldn’t really follow the financial shenanigans at the heart of the matter.

I thought the plot about the missing woman was the more interesting one, even though it gets less attention.  The woman’s background, her clear joy at the thought of being a Mom, all of that made her disappearance intriguing, and made me really hope she hasn’t stumbled into terrible peril for her or her baby.  That story had me on the edge of my seat, more so than the murder mystery/financial tangle.

This book works as a stand-alone novel, barely discussing anything from the previous books.  When references are made to both Eve’s and Roarke’s past, enough information is given so that you understand the implication, even if you don’t know all of the details.

These books always include romance – after all Eve and Roarke are happily married.  This book – thankfully – doesn’t give us too many details of their love-life.  Sometimes Robb goes over-the-top with the love scenes.  But the multiple cases in Born In Death keep Eve so busy, there’s not much time for anything else.  And this reader is happy about that.

Overall, this is a pretty good addition to the In Death series.  Murders, missing person, and pregnant ladies all combine into an enjoyable book.

 

Other books in the In Death series

Betrayal In Death
Celebrity In Death
Ceremony In Death
Concealed In Death
Devoted In Death
Divided In Death  
Festive In Death
Glory In Death
Haunted In Death
Immortal In Death
Indulgence In Death
Innocent In Death
Interlude In Death
Judgment In Death
Midnight In Death
Missing In Death
Naked In Death
Obsession In Death
Origin In Death
Rapture In Death
Reunion In Death
Salvation In Death
Strangers In Death
Survivor In Death
Treachery In Death
Vengeance In Death
Visions In Death

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