Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Review: Naked in Death by J.D. Robb

Title: Naked in Death
Series: In Death
Author: J.D. Robb
Read copy: eBook (Kindle)
Published: July 1, 1995
Publisher: Berkley

In a world of danger and deception, she walks the line—between seductive passion and scandalous murder...Eve Dallas is a New York police lieutenant hunting for a ruthless killer. In over ten years on the force, she's seen it all—and knows her survival depends on her instincts. And she's going against every warning telling her not to get involved with Roarke, an Irish billionaire—and a suspect in Eve's murder investigation. But passion and seduction have rules of their own, and it's up to Eve to take a chance in the arms of a man she knows nothing about—except the addictive hunger of needing his touch.

My rating:

A high-end prostitute, and a senator's granddaughter, is found dead in her bedroom. She was shot three times (in the head, the heart and the groin), her body obscenely arranged on her bed. The case goes to Lieutenant Eve Dallas, the murdered woman's familial ties demanding utmost secrecy proving quite a challenge in catching her murderer.

And then, another prostitute is murdered, with an identical MO...

This was a bit different from her NR ventures into romantic suspense; first because it's set in the future (nice world building) and second, because it was grittier without the usual flourishes and poetic descriptions.

The heroine was familiar, though, prickly, self-sufficient, stubborn, independent... But needing someone to anchor her, to care for her, to care about her.
The hero was also familiar with that special combination of alpha and beta, confident in his "masculinity" to let the heroine lead, determined to be there for her no matter how hard she pushed him away.
I loved both Eve and Roarke and they were absolutely perfect together. No wonder this series is so long with two strong protagonists to lead.

The mystery was intriguing and gripping, the pace absolutely spot on, the suspense engaging, the truth (when revealed) chilling and a real surprise, since I didn't see it coming...

Amazing characters, wonderful romance and great suspense. What more could anyone want?

Read the "review" from 2011

I kept putting this series to the back of my mind, because it's long (and growing longer) and I wasn't really sure about NR writing a futuristic suspense series.

But then I read Nora Roberts's Night Tales series, and my fellow reviewers kept mentioning that 1990's Silhouette/Harlequin series being the building stone for In Death, especially in the h/H department, and I really liked the Night Tales books, so I decided it was time to give In Death a spin.

And let me say it loud and clear—I wasn't disappointed. Quite the opposite really.

The style was completely different from her alter ego's contemporaries—it was grittier, more "down-and-dirty", it didn't have that "flowing prose" you can spot in her later novels, the dialogs were were more 'staccatto' than 'legato'...Nothing was "smooth" and it worked perfectly, presenting a slightly different world than we live in now, complimenting the character of Eve perfectly.

Eve was great, flawed, issue-filled, but so utterly realistic that it was a real pleasure to read. Dedicated, stubborn, strong, self-reliant, but with a deep-seeded need to be loved, to be held, to be taken care of that scared her to death.
And here's where Roarke comes in. Tall, dark, handsome, brooding, sexy as hell, dangerous, "bad boy" to the core that can't help but fall for our valiant detective, even when she's still investigating his possible involvement in a triple murder. I loved the guy to bits, and that love turned into a little fan-girl obsession when he said the L-word first. What's not to adore about a guy like that? A guy that brings you fresh coffee, that keeps you in bed for hours (and not to sleep), that needs to take care of you, wants to take care of you no matter how much you struggle, that goes to the line for you...Oh, boy.

Now, having read this first book (and planning on reading all of them in the very near future), I can see the "similarities" between the characters in this book and some of the characters in the Night Tales series (the first books' heroine's last name was O'Roarke, the second book's heroine was her sister and hooked up with a guy very similar to Roarke—complete with a mansion and a bed under the skylight, the heroine in the third book was a determined cop with a dark and painful past—sound familiar?, there are not much similarities with the fourth book, but the fifth one has it all—a determined female cop, a self-made man, filthy rich, that doesn't hurt women, skirting the edge of legality, a protective father figure who's also a cop...). If the Night Tales series can be considered as warm-up, research, and drafts for In Death, I'm really in for a treat. And I cannot wait.


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