Pros: Fun; page-turning; great characters & emotion
Cons: A few awkward point-of-view changes; telegraphed the murderer a bit heavily
Rating: 4 out of 5
Okay, I admit it. After four books I’m full-bore sucked into J.D. Robb/Nora Roberts’s ‘in death’ series. Glory in Death is the second book in the series; after initially reading one of the later books, I started borrowing the earlier ones from a generous friend. The series employs a shamelessly over-the-top homicide detective & erotic romance combination to wonderfully fun effect. Lieutenant Eve Dallas stalks killers in the slickly futuristic world of 2058. She takes her job of standing for the dead very seriously, and finds it difficult to set aside time for a real life. She’s going to have to learn, however, now that she’s falling in love with Roarke, a similarly stubborn and willful man with incredible wealth and resources at his disposal.
Eve’s latest case will be particularly difficult: the murdered woman was a high-powered, well-liked prosecuting attorney from a wealthy family, and there’s no shortage of potential killers. Several of her family members have recent debts to pay off, and none of them are accustomed to being questioned by the police. To make matters worse, they’re personal friends of Eve’s boss.
Then another woman, an actress, dies in the same vicious manner as the attorney, and the investigation is thrown into a tizzy. What’s the connection between the two women? Who would benefit from their deaths? Eve’s investigation leads her to suspect one of the family members, but evidence is in short supply and the family’s pulling every string it can.
On the one hand, the answer to the murder seemed a bit obvious to me even early on; it was telegraphed a little more heavily than usual. On the other hand, Roberts managed to make me doubt my conclusions by throwing a few curve-balls into the mix, and that helped to keep me from feeling the kind of frustration I usually feel when it seems as though the mystery is revealed to the reader too early.
Eve and Roarke’s relationship continues and deepens in enjoyable ways. It’s still early enough that there are serious conflicts and sparks, but they’re turning into a fantastic team. They have wonderful chemistry that brings both romance and sex alive on the page. (Standard erotic romance/mystery novel notes: sex scenes are explicit but not kinky. There’s some blood and bad language, but it isn’t gratuitous.)
In this novel we meet Peabody, who’s still in uniform (later in the series she becomes Eve’s partner). I’m curious to read the intervening books, because at the moment I’m having trouble reconciling her current somewhat stern demeanor with her later openness and excitability. I’m looking forward to seeing how she changes over time and goes from one to the other.
All in all, this is an enjoyable follow-on to Naked in Death, and I look forward to continuing my read through the series!