Publishing 7th February 2017
Hardback | £18.99 | Also available on eBook
Blurb: A dark and gripping new case for Lieutenant Eve Dallas – from number one bestseller J.D. Robb
New York at night. A young woman stumbles out on to a busy street – right in front of Lieutenant Eve Dallas and husband Roarke. Her name is Daphne Strazza, and she has been brutally assaulted. Confused and traumatised, she manages to tell them one thing. Her attacker wore a devil’s mask.
As Eve investigates this shocking case, she soon discovers a disturbing pattern. Someone is preying on wealthy couples, subjecting them to a cruel and terrifying ordeal. Worse still, the attacks are escalating in violence and depraved theatricality. Eve and her team are now in a race against time to find the man behind the mask – before he strikes again. But for Eve, this case in particular has unsettling echoes of her own troubled past . . .
My Rating: 5/5
Review: Anyone who is friends with me on Goodreads or regularly looks at the little Goodreads box on this blog will notice a lot of J.D. Robb books on it, especially since I discovered how good the audiobooks are therefore it won’t come as much of a surprise to learn that I loved this book. However, despite the fact that there would have to be something seriously wrong with this book for me to not at least enjoy it, this one has surpassed my expectations hence the rating. I have given this book the rating that I have because I feel that, out of the ones I have read, this is the best book of the series so far. There have been other excellent books but this one just has the edge on them.
For those who have read all or some of the series and know Eve’s background you’ll also know that it is mentioned in every book (at least every one I’ve read) and this one is no exception, having said that it is mentioned briefly and nowhere near as much as in the earlier books which I think helped the story a lot. For those unfamiliar with this series, I’m not sure I’d start with this book but should you choose to there is enough background in the book that you will get a reasonable grasp of who is who and what their history is. There is nothing wrong with starting the series with this book but as the blurb above says it is dark and gripping and perhaps a little too dark for those who are not used to these books.
As ever the writing is brilliant and I found myself double-checking I’d locked my doors the first night after I’d started the book, that’s how much I was drawn into it. Eve and Roarke are their usual charming selves, Peabody is of course brilliant but the one character that was a scene stealer for me was Galahad. That cat really needs a series of his own! There was more focus, I felt on the story and the victims here than the usual characters, though many of them make an appearance at least briefly, however that didn’t dampen the story for me. I felt the balance between regular characters and new ones particular to this story was just right and if these books get any better I may have to change my rating method to accommodate them.
If you already love the series then this review will probably make no difference to your decision to read the book. However, if you are new to this series then I would say this is a series, admittedly based a little in the future, that features good solid characters and solid detective work. There are some funny moments, intentional or otherwise and a lot of mentions of the traffic in New York (if anything it’s worse than it is now), bad drivers and irritating sale blimps that puzzle Eve and even make me stop and think briefly. This is also a series that involves solid police work, characters that work for the victim or victims and don’t let money or power get in the way of them solving a case. There are a lot of details, it can be quite dark and is very descriptive of the crimes, what happened to the victims so that won’t be to everyone’s taste but murder is not pretty and I don’t think it should be sugar-coated even in fictional stories. As I’ve said this is perhaps not the book I’d recommend starting the series with but I would also say that you don’t need to start the series at book 1 either, at 44 books and counting it would take a long time to get to this one if you did it that way. I know many people will read these books in order but I don’t and I feel they work just as well randomly chosen as they would read chronologically.
This is, in my opinion, an excellent story and addition to the series and I can’t wait for the next one.
Author bio: Nora Roberts is the number one New York Times bestseller of more than 200 novels. She published her first novel using the pseudonym J.D. Robb in 1995, with the In Death series, Robb has become one of the biggest thriller writers on earth, with each new novel reaching number one on bestseller charts over the world. With over 450 million copies of her books in print, she is indisputably one of the most celebrated and popular writers in the world.