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Festive in Death by J.D. Robb

ORDER A COPY: Festive in Death

Publisher: Putnam Adult
Publishing Date: September 2, 2014
Hardcover: 400 pages

Rating: 5 stars

Personal trainer Trey Ziegler was in peak physical condition. If you didn’t count the kitchen knife in his well-toned chest.

Lieutenant Eve Dallas soon discovers a lineup of women who’d been loved and left by the narcissistic gym rat. While Dallas sorts through the list of Ziegler’s enemies, she’s also dealing with her Christmas shopping list—plus the guest list for her and her billionaire husband’s upcoming holiday bash.

Feeling less than festive, Dallas tries to put aside her distaste for the victim and solve the mystery of his death. There are just a few investigating days left before Christmas, and as New Year’s 2061 approaches, this homicide cop is resolved to stop a cold-blooded killer.

This year Eve and Roarke are celebrating the holidays as they do each year with a party, good friends and murder.

Trina and her friend Sima are going to play a prank on Sima’s ex. The dirty bastard used her to pay his rent and his bills for months before he tossed her out for a new bimbo. But they’re just a little too late. Someone has already given Trey Zeigler his Christmas present early, a knife to the chest and a “Ho, Ho, Ho!” Trey Zeigler was an award-winning personal trainer. He was also a user, a blackmailer and a rapist. Eve would rather have put Trey in a cage, but since he’s on his way to the morgue, it is up to Eve to figure out who killed him. Unfortunately, the list of suspects includes his award competition for this year, all the woman Trey used or raped and their respective boyfriends and/or husbands.

With barely any time to holiday shop between interviews, Eve makes a deal with the devil, or some people call him Summerset. If he wraps her presents, she’ll help with the party preparation. Maybe she’ll get lucky and catch her killer and be too busy with interviews to help. It’s a long shot, but a cop can hope.

In between sifting through the life of the dirtbag known as Trey, and avoiding getting vomited on by Drunk Santa, Eve is trying to make time for just her and Roarke to enjoy the holidays and the life that they have created for each other.

I can’t rate an In Death book at less the 5 stars. Even a bad In Death book is better than most books out there. I love the characters that she has developed and how they have grown and bonded over the years.

This story had nice balance between the investigation and the personal. As we know, after 39 books, there are some stories more focused on either the murder or Eve’s personal life. I generally enjoy the personal in these stories more than the investigation and this was no exception. We have the big holiday party which brings together people who we haven’t seen in a while like Louise and Charles. We also have a few touching moments with Peabody and even Summerset. The relationship between Eve and Roarke continues to expand and bond them closer.

The murder of Trey Zeigler wasn’t the most exciting story she has written, but with so many suspects it did keep you guessing throughout the entire story.

I am looking forward to Book #40 which comes out in February. It sounds like she is going all out for the next chapter as we step into 2061.

Received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Favorite Scene:

“So I can open it now? I love when I can open it now. The paper’s so pretty.”

She picked at it delicately, carefully breaking seals.

“Jesus, Peabody, rip the damn thing open. I don’t have all night.”

“I can use it again. I haven’t wrapped everything yet.”

She slid the box free, carefully folded the paper, preserved the ribbon and bow. And finally opened the box.

“Oh!” She pulled out the gift, stared at it, eyes and mouth wide. “It’s a magic coat. It’s my own magic coat. It’s pink! It’s a pink magic coat. Holy shit! Holy pink magic shit, Dallas.”

“The pink was Roarke’s doing. You can’t hang that on me. I said brown.”

“I have to sit down. No, I have to try it on, then I have to sit down. Holy shit, you got me a pink magic coat.”

“Don’t blubber! Why is there so much blubbering today?”

“Thank God I used all waterproof, sweatproof, smudge-proof face enhancers, because I’m going to blubber. Dallas, wow. Just wow, it’s leather. It’s pink leather.”

“The pink’s not on me. Ever.”

“Holy, holy, holy shit. I can’t stop saying it.” She swung the coat on over the frothy dress. It looked silly with it, Eve thought, the military style of it over the party dress. But apparently Peabody didn’t think so. She twirled in it so the knee-length pink leather billowed and swirled.

“Oh my God, it’s beyond. Just beyond. It feels like leather. It is leather. It has pockets and pretty buttons. And it’s magic and it’s pink.”

“I can’t go around wearing coats with internal body armor when my partner’s not.”

Peabody stopped twirling. She didn’t blubber, but a couple tears trickled down. “It means so much to me, that you’d have it made for me. For my safety. That all by itself means everything. But the rest? It didn’t have to be leather, it didn’t have to be pink. But you did that because you knew it would make me happy.”

“You get stunned or stuck or blasted, it’s pretty damned inconvenient for me.” On Peabody’s water laugh, Eve sighed. “You’re…family. That’s it.”

Peabody grabbed her, squeezed. “Okay, okay.” Eve tapped her on the back. “Okay, okay.”

“I love you. People don’t say that to people enough, so I’m saying it. I really love you, and I’m going to let go in a second because I know it weirds you. But thanks. Thank you so much.”


“I have to go thank Roarke.” Peabody pulled back. “And show McNab. Then I need to put it away safe. Is there someplace I can put it?”

“Give it to Summerset. He’ll stow it.”

“Right. Oh, wow. Just wow. I’m thanking you again right now by not hugging you again and kissing you on the lips.”

“And I’m saying you’re welcome by not putting my boot up your ass.”

Friday Giveaway – Festive in Death by J.D. Robb

It’s Friday again. Oh so happy. :) We’re going to be playing with some other bloggers next week and joining’s Snark Week. So we’ll be snarking and complaining next week about bad books, bad tropes and book blogger issues. I am also posting a blog that I keep discussing with my friends — My Love/Hate Relationship with the Black Dagger Brotherhood.

So if you have some book issues that you want to get off your chest, stop by next week and gripe with us. *game face – Grrr* 


***NOTE:  I had a spaz moment and my Rafflecopter ended too early.  Leave a comment below (or just say Hi) to be entered.******

We’re gonna be snarking next week. Is there anything this summer that’s pissing you off? Not enough me time? Not enough beach time? Your anticipated new book sucked? Snark for us. *Grrrr*

This week’s giveaway is a hardcover copy of the upcoming release Festive in Death by J.D. Robb. Giveaway open to U.S. residents. 18 years and older please.  Giveaway ends Thursday, August 14th.

Personal trainer Trey Ziegler was in peak physical condition. If you didn’t count the kitchen knife in his well-toned chest.

Lieutenant Eve Dallas soon discovers a lineup of women who’d been loved and left by the narcissistic gym rat. While Dallas sorts through the list of Ziegler’s enemies, she’s also dealing with her Christmas shopping list—plus the guest list for her and her billionaire husband’s upcoming holiday bash.

Feeling less than festive, Dallas tries to put aside her distaste for the victim and solve the mystery of his death. There are just a few investigating days left before Christmas, and as New Year’s 2061 approaches, this homicide cop is resolved to stop a cold-blooded killer.

Concealed in Death by J.D. Robb

Concealed in Death (In Death, #38)

I’m giving away my uncorrected proof copy of Concealed in Death. Tell us one of your favorite stories in the In Death series.

Giveaway ends Monday, February 24th. Open to U.S. residents, 18 years and older please.

ORDER A COPY: Concealed in Death

Publisher: Putnam Adult
Publishing Date: February 18, 2014
Hardcover: 416 pages

Rating: 4 stars

In a decrepit, long-empty New York building, Lieutenant Eve Dallas’s husband begins the demolition process by swinging a sledgehammer into a wall. When the dust clears, there are two skeletons wrapped in plastic behind it. He summons his wife immediately—and by the time she’s done with the crime scene, there are twelve murders to be solved.

The place once housed a makeshift shelter for troubled teenagers, back in the mid-2040s, and Eve tracks down the people who ran it. Between their recollections and the work of the force’s new forensic anthropologist, Eve begins to put names and faces to the remains. They are all young girls. A tattooed tough girl who dealt in illegal drugs. The runaway daughter of a pair of well-to-do doctors. They all had their stories. And they all lost their chance for a better life.

Then Eve discovers a connection between the victims and someone she knows. And she grows even more determined to reveal the secrets of the place that was called The Sanctuary—and the evil concealed in one human heart.

Lt. Eve Dallas and her husband, Roarke, are once again drawn into a case which brushes too close to their own tortured childhood.

Roarke has purchased a rundown building which he is planning on gutting and creating a new safe haven. Like Duchas, his shelter for women, this place would be for kids who have been forced into the system and are in need a safe place away from the people who are supposed to care for them; just like he and Eve once were.

While taking down a wall, he finds bodies wrapped neatly in plastic, or more particularly the bones of young girls. Roarke calls in his wife to investigate what happened to them. It doesn’t take much searching to determine that the last use the property had was fifteen years ago as another shelter for troubled and runaway kids.

Eve has to follow a cold trail back to a killer but first she needs to put faces to these young girls.  Dr. Garnet DeWinter is brought in as a forensic anthropologist to work with Dr. Morris, the M.E., to determine who they were and what killed them.

When the lives of these girls brushes too close to home, Eve realizes that the difference between herself and these young girls is simply dumb luck. While Eve and Roarke grew up and made their own way out of the gutter of their own childhood, someone took away the chance for these girls. There is no statute of limitations on murder and Eve is determine to find their killer.

Although this is not one of the most thrilling stories in the series, it was another interesting investigation for Eve Dallas. There was more time spent determining who these girls were, talking to their families and putting together the whys and wherefores of what happened 15 years ago, than there was chasing down the killer.  The investigation was mostly handled by Eve and Peabody, so there was little interaction with the rest of the team.

There were some sweet moments between Eve and Roarke, but again nothing absolutely exciting. Move of a settling into married life.

Any fan of the series will, of course, read this story and enjoy the investigation, but if I was trying to intrigue someone into giving the series a try, there are much more exciting stories that I would suggest.

I will say for a happily married woman, Eve does not like when some woman gets to close to Dr. Morris. Interesting.

Received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest opinion.

Favorite Scene:

Then she picked up her coffee, put her boots up, and let her mind clear.

Because it was clear, the first thing that popped in when Roarke stepped inside was: He’s so pretty.

“You couldn’t have been more right or more succinct about the traffic. It was bloody vicious.”

“We won. We’re home.”

“You’re right. That calls for a drink.”

“I guess maybe.”

He came over to her first put his hands on the arms of her chair, leaned down to kiss her.

She surprised him, undid him, by rising up, wrapping her arms tight around him, and making it much more than a welcome home kiss.

“Well now, I might arrange for bloody vicious traffic daily.”

“You don’t have to. We live in New York.”

“What’s all this then?”

“I don’t know.” She’d surprised herself as much as him. “I guess…The Miras this morning, then this couple later. It…” Her mind, she realized, wasn’t as clear as she’d thought. “I’ll have that drink, and tell you.”

“All right. Let’s have it downstairs. You can come up with Mira if you feel you must,” he added, anticipating her protest, “but we should go down, greet them first, as friends.”

“You’re right.” She wrapped around him again, just to hold. “We’ll go downstairs.”

He tipped her head back, looked into her eyes. “You’re not sad.”

“No, I’m not sad.”

Thoughtful then, he decided, taking her hand as they went back down.

Summerset had lit the fire, and the tree. The parlor looked, well, amazing, she thought. It looked like home—her home— despite its elegance, its exceptional taste and style, the gleam of antiques, the art, the color, the lovely blending of old and new.

“What is it, Eve?”

She shook her head, sat on the arm of a chair because you could do that at home.

“I was in the Miras’ house this morning, and thinking how pretty it is there, how calm and pretty and easy to be in. This is, too. Isn’t that funny that this is, too? They have a tree. We have a tree. Well, I don’t know how many trees we have in here because who could count?”


“Okay. We have twenty trees.” It struck her suddenly. Twenty trees. “Seriously?”

“Yes.” He smiled, as much at his own need to fill the house with Christmas as with her reaction. “We’ll go around and have a look at all of them sometime.”

“It’ll take a while. Anyway, they had a fire, and we have one. But it’s not that, do you know what I mean? It’s the feeling. I used to envy that feeling. I could recognize it. You’d go into somebody’s place to interview the, notify them, even arrest them, and you’d recognize the feeling of home when it was there.”

“I know that envy, very well.” Which, he understood, explained all the trees, among other things.

“I thought when I moved in here it would always be a house, and always be yours. I don’t even know when that changed, not exactly, and it became mine. Ours. That’s pretty amazing.”

“It was a house, one I enjoyed very much. But it wasn’t a home until you.” He looked around the parlor as she had. Candles and firelight, tree glowing, colors rich, wood gleaming.

“What I put in it was for comfort, for show, or because I could. It mattered to have it, this place. My place. But I could never quite reach that feeling, until you.”

“I get that,” she realized. “It matters that you mean it, and that I get it.” She took a breath while he opened a bottle of wine. “You know how they are, the Miras. So connected, so just right. I swear if I didn’t love you, if it wasn’t for her, I’d really go for him.”

At Roarke’s laugh, she shook her head again, took the wine he offered.

“I think I could take him,” Roarke considered.

“I don’t know. He might surprise you. Anyway, it’s not like that really. There’s just…he’s just…There’s something about him that hits all my soft spots. I didn’t know I had some of them.”

“I think that’s lovely.”

“He brought me those silly gloves and that stupid hat, and put them on me like I was a kid. I ended up wearing them because he can’t button his sweater right half the time but he hunted up a cap and gloves for me because it’s cold out. He’s so kind, and they have this amazing connection between them.”

She had to take a steadying breath, amazed at how sloppy she felt about…all of it.

“I want that. I mean when we’ve been together like them a couple decades, I want that with us.”

“Darling Eve.” This time he pressed his lips to the top of her head. “There’s more every day.”

“It feels like it. Sometimes I don’t know how I got through not feeling it. And later, this couple. I need to talk to Mira about her. DeLonna.”

“Ah.” He sat now. “Sebastian came through. I thought he must have when you didn’t ask me to dig him up.”

“She goes by Lonna, Sebastian neglected to tell me he’d helped her change her name off the books. Lonna Moon. She and her guy own this swank little club. The Purple Moon.”

“I know it.”

“You don’t own the building, do you?”

“I don’t, but I’ve heard of the club. It has a good rep.” His hand glided gently along her thigh. Affection. Connection. “We should go there.”

“We should. Yeah, we should. I’ll get into the whole thing, but what I wanted to say to you was listening to her, seeing them together, it struck close to home. She’s solid, no washout, but he worries about her because of what she went through. She has nightmares.”

Those eyes, those wild blue eyes met hers. He didn’t have to say a thing to say everything.

“Looking at them, seeing them, I could see some of us. And it was really good, what I saw. I don’t know his story, but there’s something there. Slick, he’s slick, and looks like he can and has handled himself. But they were connected.”

“So.” She let out another breath. “I want to let you know if the day comes when you forget how to button your sweater—when you start wearing those button-sweater deals—I’ll fix it.”

“Every day there’s more,” he murmured. Swamped with love, he drew her off the arm of the chair into his lap.

Thankless in Death by J.D. Robb

Thankless in Death (In Death, #37)

Congratulations to our giveaway winner: Katie.

ORDER A COPY: Thankless in Death

Publisher: Putnam Adult
Publishing Date: September 17, 2013
Hardcover: 402 pages

Rating: 4 stars

Lieutenant Eve Dallas has plenty to be grateful for this season. Hosting Roarke’s big Irish family for the holiday may be challenging, but it’s a joyful improvement on her own dark childhood.

Other couples aren’t as lucky as Eve and Roarke. The Reinholds, for example, are lying in their home stabbed and bludgeoned almost beyond recognition. Those who knew them are stunned—and heartbroken by the evidence that they were murdered by their own son. Twenty-six-year-old Jerry hadn’t made a great impression on the bosses who fired him or the girlfriend who dumped him—but they didn’t think he was capable of this.

Turns out Jerry is not only capable of brutality but taking a liking to it. With the money he’s stolen from his parents and a long list of grievances, he intends to finally make his mark on the world. Eve and her team already know the who, how, and why of this murder. What they need to pinpoint is where Jerry’s going to strike next.

Lt. Eve Dallas is thankful to be ending year with a few quiet days. Time to catch up on some paperwork and get ready for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday. Roarke’s family from Ireland is on their way in and with some of Eve and Roarke’s friends, there will be a full house this holiday.

Eve is very thankful for those friends and family since it was not too long ago that her work was all that she had at the end of the day.

She is thankful to have a partner who she would go through any door with and know that she always has Eve’s back. Eve found Peabody as a green officer at a crime scene and saw the potential in her to make a good murder cop. Taking Delia Peabody under her wing was one of the best decisions Eve ever made. Now a Detective and Eve’s partner, Peabody has a soft touch with witnesses and the families of the deceased and even though she hates always being good cop to Eve’s bad cop, together they take down the bad guys.

Eve is thankful that she was given that same opportunity by her trainer and mentor Capt. Ryan Feeney and that Eve has the support of Commander Whitney to trust Eve to do her job and lead her team in the Homicide Division.

Eve is especially thankful to go home each night to the loving arms of her husband Roarke. She lucked out to find a man who could understand her so well and who always has time for her even while buying up everything in the known universe. It is his love and attention that keeps NYPSD’s top cop eating and sleeping and able to focus on the hard job of keeping NYC safe.

But not everyone is thankful this holiday season. Jerry Reinhold has finally snapped. He has had enough of everyone telling him what to do; his parents, his girlfriend, his bosses. They never treat him with the respect that he deserves. They always want him to do things, work harder, hold a job, nag, nag, nag. When his parents threaten to toss him on the street, just like his girlfriend did, if he doesn’t go find a job, that was the last straw. Now, Jerry’s making a list of everyone who has crossed him and they’re going to learn that he is a man to be respected and they will respect him, at least until he kills them.

Luck has been on Jerry’s side so far and he has been able to stay one step ahead of Eve and Peabody. This time they know who they are looking for and what he looks like, but with a hit list a mile long, they don’t who Jerry is going to go for next.

I am a big fan of the In Death series and love all the characters and the dynamics. I also love watching some of J.D. Robb’s futuristic gadgets become commonplace in today’s work, like the PPC is today smartphone, etc.

This was a good story. At No. 37 in the series, it won’t go up on my top 10 list of In Death books, but it was an interesting investigation and the personal relationships were featured in this story. There was a definite underlining of “be grateful for what you have” featured here.

As long as Nora Robert’s want to write about Eve and Roarke, I will definitely be reading them.

Received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you.

Favorite Scene:

To save time, steps, and to be sure, he stepped to the in-house board. “Where is Eve?”


Odd, he thought. It wasn’t the last place he’d expect,but it ranked high. Curious, he crossed to the elevator. “Roof terrace, east,” he ordered.

He doubted she’d gone up there to take in the view or the fresh air. His wife did little without specific purpose—especially when a case was hot. Just how did all this play into her case? he wondered. Something to do with height perhaps, or the view did play in and she needed that perspective and the scope to find something. Or…

He stepped out into the flowers, candlelight, the soft warmth and sparkle of crystal, and his mind went momentarily and uncharacteristically blank.

“Hey.” she shot him a distracted look. “I’ve just about got it.”

“Do you?” Bemused, and rapidly flipping through his mental calendar, he walked to her. “And what’s all this?”

“It’s dinner.”

She’d surprised him like this once before, he recalled, and had been wearing a red dress meant to be peeled off. A little different, this, he thought if his sense of things was on target. but just as lovely.

“Are we celebrating?”

“No. Well, maybe sort of.”

“You closed the case? The double homicide you caught this morning?”

“No. It’s…there’s stuff, but when I was thinking about the stuff, and how I wanted to bounce it all off you, I got this Peabody date night stuck in my brain.”

“We’re having a date with Peabody? I get two alluring women? Lucky me.”

She spared him one quick glance through narrowed eyes. “You got me, and that’s it, pal.”

“Thank God for it.” He cupped her face, leaned in for a soft, sweet kiss. “We’re having a date?”

“Not exactly. I can’t do the big D date thing where you shove all the stuff outside, but I thought I could pay you back a little for all the stuff. Nicer than pizza in my office.”

He looked at her for such a long, still moment, she feared she’d screwed something up. Then he pulled her in, wrapped around her, held tight. Tight.

“Thank you.”

“It’s not that big a thing.”

“It is to me, and especially tonight.”

“What’s tonight?” Shit, did she forget something? She pulled back, focused fully on his face. No, something else. “Did you have a thing mess up in the Universe of Roarke?”

He smiled at her, tapped the dent in her chin. “You could say.”


“Not important, especially since I see we have champagne.”

“No.” She shifted before he could walk past her. “You take my stuff. I’ll take yours.”

He trailed a hand down her arm, over the soft sleeve of her sweater. “Marriage Rules?”

“That’s right.”

Calculated in Death by J.D. Robb

Calculated In Death (In Death, #36)

Sorry for the delay.  Rafflecopter gave me the finger this morning and told me to come back later.  Our winner of the ARC copy is Joanne B.

Congratulations and thank you to everyone who entered!


ORDER A COPY: Calculated in Death

Publisher: Putnam Adult
Publishing Date: February 26, 2013
Paperback: 416 pages

Rating: 4 stars

On Manhattan’s Upper East Side a woman lies dead at the bottom of the stairs, stripped of all her valuables. Most cops might call it a mugging gone wrong, but Lieutenant Eve Dallas knows better.

A well-off accountant and a beloved wife and mother, Marta Dickenson doesn’t seem the type to be on anyone’s hit list. But when Eve and her partner, Peabody, find blood inside the building, the lieutenant knows Marta’s murder was the work of a killer who’s trained, but not professional or smart enough to remove all the evidence.

But when someone steals the files out of Marta’s office, Eve must immerse herself in her billionaire husband Roarke’s world of big business to figure out who’s cruel and callous enough to hire a hit on an innocent woman. And as the killer’s violent streak begins to escalate, Eve knows she has to draw him out, even if it means using herself as bait.

As we near the end of 2060, the city is gearing up for the holidays and all the talk is about the upcoming premiere of The Icove Agenda. But not everyone is focused on the holidays, some are focused on murder.

Lt. Eve Dallas and her partner, Det. Peabody are called to the scene of what is supposed to look like a mugging gone wrong. Marta Dickenson is found at the bottom of a stairway with a broken neck, but her body was dragged off into a corner and her injuries aren’t consistent with a fall. What is Marta, an unassuming wife and mother, doing strolling around a neighborhood, no where near her home or her office? And why would a mugger go through the trouble to stealing her coat, but leaving her really expensive boots? This set up is so sloppy, it wouldn’t fool a rookie. Marta wasn’t mugged—Marta was the victim of cold-blooded murder.

It doesn’t take long for Dallas to track Marta back to her job as a financial auditor or to learn that Marta has just been reassigned several new files that morning. What could Marta have learned so quickly that would lead to murder? Mug her, steal her briefcase and files in case she was taking work home, but murdering her is overkill and brings up too many questions.

When Dallas and Peabody start to ask too many questions and makes someone very nervous, but what kind of idiot would make an attempt on not just one cop, but two? Killing a cop wouldn’t stop an investigation. It would just focus all attention on their current case.

Dallas has used her skills and her ability to get into the mind of a killer to solve many cases over her decade as a cop, but how do you outthink a murderer who isn’t acting logically?


I’m a huge fan of Eve Dallas and the whole gang. It is always enjoyable to me to pick up one of these stories both for the thriller aspect as well as the personal aspect of the story. Although this was not the most exciting story on either front, it was still an enjoyable read.

What I like about the series is that something that happens in one story might be slightly discussed in one book but it will become very important several stories later. For example, when Mira tells Dallas a story about her childhood in one book, and Dallas doesn’t call her on the discrepancy in her story until the next book, or if a gift Dallas gets from Roarke, it is just a gift in one story, but becomes an important and necessary tool in the next. I guess when you know you will continue to write stories, you have the time to subtly set up scenarios for the future.

Although this was not the most exciting case they have ever worked on, it was still enjoyable to “work” with Dallas and the gang again.

Received an ARC from the publisher. Thank you.

Favorite Scene:

Considering, enjoying, Roarke rocked back on his heels as he studied the image. “We have samplings, the fingerprint, and the exterior views here. It’s certainly doable.”

“How long?” Eve demanded.

“Oh, with some luck and another two skilled men, maybe a week. With more luck, three days.”

“Crap. Does it look like I have a week?” She paced away, then back. “I’ve got the resources of the entire EDD, I’ve got the ridiculous resources of the biggest, slickest, most conniving e-geek on or off planet—“

“Thanks, darling.”

“And you need a freaking week to outgeek some skinny hacker who likes to call himself the Mole?”

Roarke only smiled at her. “That’s about right, yes.”

“Dallas, the freaking Enterprise,” McNab reminded her. “You have to understand the complexities, the filter, the—“

“No, I don’t.” She pointed to McNab. “You do.” She pointed again, more vehemently when he started to speak again.

“I got it!”

Eve sung around toward Peabody. “What?”

Peabody waved her PPC triumphantly. “It’s the Kirk thing, The Enterprise thing. It reminded me I’d hit this name that made me snicker when I was running the van—the Cargo. Here is it is. Tony Stark.”

“Oh, baby.” McNab blew her a double-handed kiss. “Good call.”

“It’s gotta be, right?” Peabody said to McNab. “It’s his style.”

“Who the hell is Tony Stark?” Eve demanded.

“Iron Man,” Roarke told her. “Superhero, genius, innovative engineer, and billionaire playboy.”

“Iron man? You’re talking about a comic book guy?”

“Graphic novel,” Roarke and McNab said together.

“What do you bet it’s him, Dallas?” Peabody asked. “Heroes from classic novels and vids. It fits. They used his van.”

“Possibly. Okay, from the looks of you three, probably. We’ll push on it once we have him, but first we have to get him. Now let me think.”

So she paced, and she plotted. There was no way in hell she’d get this close and surrender to some ferret-faced electronic asshole who used aliases based on fictional characters from science fiction and comic books.

A geek, she considered. And one who like to see himself as the hero, the smart one. Billionaire playboy? The one who got the women.

“Your high-tech can’t beat his high-tech? We go low. We go goddamn classic. Peabody, ditch the jacket.”

“My jacket?”

“Ditch it.”


When Peabody took it off, Eve fisted her hands on her hips, took a hard study. “Unbutton the shirt.”

Peabody’s eyes popped, shocked brown balloons. “What!”

“Two—no three buttons down. Jesus, Peabody,” Eve strode over to do it herself. “We’ve all seen tits before.” She arched her eyebrows at the fancy lace number Peabody wore under the shirt, which nearly matched the color that currently heated her cheeks. “We could get blown up or something, and this is what you want people to see an NYPSD detective wearing under her clothes?”

“I wasn’t planning on getting blown up today. Or undressed by my partner.” She lifted a hand to draw the shirt back together. Eve slapped it away.

“Shove them up,” Eve ordered.


“Shove them up there.”

“I’ll do it.”

“Stand down, McNab,” Eve said mildly. “You know what I mean. Pump them up some.”

When Eve started to do it for her, Peabody jumped back. “I can do it myself, thanks.” Muttering, she turned her back. Her shoulders wiggled. And flushing furiously, she turned around again.

“Mmmm. She-Body.”

Ignoring McNab’s comment, Eve circled her partner. “It’s going to work.”

“Classic,” Roarke said.

“What’s going to work? What’s classic? I want my jacket.”

“Forget it. You’re going to walk right up to the Mole’s front door, and he’s going to answer.”

“I am? He is?”

“Damsel in distress, right?” Eve said to Roarke.

“A very alluring damsel. Clever, Lieutenant.”

“Oh, okay. I get it. I look like I’m in trouble—all alone, unarmed. Harmless. Girl. He opens up to find out what’s what. You should do it,” Peabody told Eve.

“You’re the one with the tits. Men are stupid for tits.”

“Harsh,” Roarke observed. “But largely true.”

“Plus, you’re the type, obviously, who appeals to skinny geeks.”

“Oh yeah,” McNab confirmed. “Completely.”

Celebrity in Death by J.D. Robb

Celebrity in Death

ORDER A COPY: Celebrity In Death

Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons
Publishing Date: February 21, 2012
Hardcover: 389 pages

Rating: 5 Stars

Lieutenant Eve Dallas is no party girl, but she’s managing to have a reasonably good time at the celebrity-packed bash celebrating The Icove Agenda, a film based on one of her famous cases. It’s a little spooky seeing the actress playing her, who looks almost like her long-lost twin. Not as unsettling, though, as seeing the actress who plays Peabody—drowned in the lap pool on the roof of the director’s luxury building.

Talented but rude, and widely disliked, K. T. Harris had made an embarrassing scene during dinner. Now she’s at the center of a crime scene—and Eve is more than ready to get out of her high heels and strap on her holster, to step into the role she was born to play: cop.

In this 34th book in the In Death series, we join Lt. Eve Dallas on the movie set of The Icove Agenda. When her friend, reporter Nadine Fuerst decided to write a book based on Eve’s most famous murder investigation, Eve never expected the hype that surrounded the book’s release and now a movie based on that book.

It is disconcerting to watch your life played out before your eyes. Eve is overwhelmed by the feeling of déjà vu standing outside of herself and seeming to watch her own cloned copy and that of her partner, Det. Delia Peabody reenact their murder investigation of a year ago. Now she is watching her life played out before her and she’s standing on a set which looks identical to her own bullpen, the only thing missing is the smell of coffee and sweat…and cops.

Although, Marlo Durn, the other Eve, is very pleasant in person, K.T. Harris, the other Peabody, is nothing like her friendly and stalwart partner. K.T. has not made any friends among her fellow cast members. She actually seems to go out of her way to make everyone uncomfortable. Even going as far as being confrontational with Eve during a dinner party.

When someone steps out of the party just long enough to help K.T. take an unexpected swim in the roof pool, Eve quickly learns that there are worse things than watching your life played out before you, and that’s looking in the face—the lifeless face—of your best friend and partner. K.T. Harris looks so much like Peabody, that it strikes a nerve in the always steady Dallas.

It seems that K.T. has been spending her time doing more than learning her lines. She has been obsessed with learning the deep dark secrets of her co-stars and blackmailing them.

Eve needs to work past her distress and find a murderer among a room full of actors, professional liars whose job is to be something they are not, especially when every one of them has a motive to be rid of K.T. Harris.

Even though this book #34, I am still excited to go back to the world of Lt. Eve Dallas, and her gorgeous husband Roarke. The last novel, New York to Dallas, which was released last Fall was a very dark novel, dragging Eve back into the nightmares of her childhood. We also most of that story in Dallas, TX without Peabody, Feeney, McNab and the rest of the gang. It was nice to be back in New York, and although murder is never lighthearted and this one involved the murder of a Peabody double, which brought some distress to everyone in the story, it was not such an emotionally shocking story.

Although it is daunting to look at a series with 34 novels with various short stories connected to it and decide whether to give it a try, most of the In Death novels can be enjoyed on their own for just the murder investigation, and you might decide you like the characters enough to stick around and try a few more.

Received an ARC courtesy of Penguin Group. Thank you.

Favorite Scene:

She stalked over to the closet, opened it. And scowled again.

“What am I supposed to wear? There are too many choices in here. If you’ve got one thing, you don’t have to think about it. You just take it out, put it on. This is too complicated. Peabody hounded me about this until I wanted to pull her tongue out and wrap it around her neck. Between her and Trina, my brain’s fried.”

Amused, he walked over, stepped into the closet. “This.” He lifted a dress off the rod.

Short, she noted, with a kind of drape to the skirt from where it was caught at the side of the waist with a flower in the same material and color as the dress. Not really blue, not really green, with a kind of shimmery overcast. She eyed it, the wide scoop of neck, the thumb-width straps.

“How do you know this one?”

“The little black dress is a classic for a reason, but often expected—especially in New York. So you’ll go with color, rich color in a soft sheen. It’s feminine without fuss, sexy without trying to be.”

She took it, turned it around, and lifted an eyebrow at the deep plunge in the back. “Without trying.”

“Very hard. You have shoes to match.”

“I do?”

“You do, yes, and go with diamonds. Leave the color to the dress.”

“Which diamonds? Do you know how many you give me? Why to you do that?”

The aggrieved sound of her voice amused him nearly as much as giving her diamonds. “It’s a sickness. I’ll get them for you once you’re dressed.”

She said nothing, and stood where she was as he selected a dark suit from his forest of suits, a slate-color shirt, and a stone-colored tie.

“How come you don’t wear color?”

“The better to serve as the backdrop for my beautiful wife.”

She narrowed her eyes. “You had that one ready.”

“The truth is always ready.”

She jabbed a finger at him. “That one, too.”

“Such a cynic.”

New York to Dallas by J.D. Robb

Cover Image

ORDER A COPY: New York to Dallas (In Death)

Publisher: Penquin Group
Publishing Date: September 13, 2011
Hardcover: 416 pages

Rating: 5 stars

The new novel from the #1 New York Times-bestselling author, which takes readers deeper into the mind of Eve Dallas than ever before.

The number-one New York Times-bestselling author J. D. Robb presents an intense and terrifying new case for New York homicide cop Eve Dallas, one that will take her all the way to the city that gave her her name-and plunge her into the nightmares of her childhood.

When a monster named Isaac McQueen-taken down by Eve back in her uniform days-escapes from Rikers, he has two things in mind. One is to pick up where he left off, abducting young victims and leaving them scarred in both mind and body. The other is to get revenge on the woman who stopped him all those years ago.

In the summer of 2060, dangerous pedophile, Isaac McQueen, has escaped from jail, and the only thing more pressing to him than restarting his collection of young girls, is getting revenge on Lt. Eve Dallas who put him in jail 12 years ago.   Knowing Eve’s violent childhood, he takes hostages and forces her to confront him in Dallas, Texas.  In Dallas, she’s out of her element, off her game and steeped in the nightmare of her past.  Eve and her husband, Roarke, work with the FBI and the Dallas PSD to track this killer before he has an opportunity to destroy more young lives.

If you have never read any of the In Death stories, let me tell you that Lt. Eve Dallas is one of those amazing, unforgettable characters.   You don’t need to have read the whole series to read this story.  But I warn you, you will need to clear your calendar because you will want to start this series from the beginning, and this was book #33.

Now for those of us who have read ALL the In Death stories, we know that Eve, with the help and love of Roarke, has been recovering from her abusive and tragic childhood.  This case is going to dredge up a lot of those childhood nightmares which Eve has just begun to work past.   Because so much of the horror of Eve’s past is relived in this book through her nightmares and with reviewing the original case arrest of McQueen, it is a relatively darker and more emotionally draining story.  And yes, admittedly, stories about a murder cop don’t usually generate happy stories.  Some of the stories have been more violent than others, and some of the stories delve more into the technology of the future; and still others seem less about the murder and more about the development of the relationships between the main characters.  This one, I feel, is the darkest story of the series. 

New York to Dallas is well written, intriguing and definitely worth reading, although I missed Peabody, Feeney and McNab as much as Dallas does this time around. 

This story also caused a dilemma for me since it was the first In Death story released since I got my Nook.   So the question was to read it on my Nook or listen to the audiobook.  I really enjoy Susan Erikson’s talent, so I decided to stick with audiobooks on this series.  Plus side: I can listen and clean the house.  My house thanks you for your talent Ms. Erikson.

Favorite Scene:

“The mayor wanted more exposure for the cops that took down Renee Oberman’s ring, and for himself if you ask me.  You figure it’s going to get another big bounce in the media.  Good cops against bad cops and all that.  Anyway Peabody’s at her desk.”  He jerked a thumb over his skinny shoulder.  “With her head between her knees.  Maybe you could smooth her out so she doesn’t boot when the mayor pins the medal on her.”

“Oh, for Christ’s sake.”

She strode out, long and lanky in the uniform, into the bullpen and over to Peabody’s desk.

“Pull yourself together, Detective.   You’re embarrassing yourself, and more important, you’re embarrassing me.”

“They’re going to do it outside.  In public.”

“So the fuck what?”

“Public,” Peabodysaid, head still between her knees.

“You’re being honored by this department and this city for having the integrity, the courage and the skill to take out a blight on this department and this city.  Dirty, murdering, greedy, treacherous cops are sitting in cages right now because you had that integrity, courage and skill.  I don’t care if they do this damn thing in Grand Central, you will get on your feet.  You will not puke, pass out, cry like a baby, or squeal like a girl.  That’s a goddamn order.”

“I had more of a ’Relax, Peabody, this is a proud moment’ sort of speech in mind,”  McNab murmured to Roarke.

Roarke shook his head, grinning.  “Did you now?  You’ve a bit to learn yet, haven’t you?”


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