Kindred In Death

J.D. Robb
2009, Futuristic Romantic Suspense
Putnam, $26.95, 374 pages, Amazon ASIN 0399155953
Part of a series

Grade: B
Sensuality: Warm

Both Eve and Roarke have seen and experienced much in the course of their lives, but the crime that opens Kindred in Death shakes them both.

Itís Peace Day in New York Ė a holiday that commemorates the end of the Urban Wars, and Eve has two whole days off. She and Roarke are just lying about doing whatever they feel like doing and talking about Charles and Louiseís upcoming wedding. Roarke has almost persuaded Eve to take a fast trip to one of his vacation homes, when her link buzzes. Itís Commander Whitney and sheís needed. When Eve gets to the crime scene, what she sees chills her to the bone. Sixteen year old Deena MacMaster whose father has just been promoted to Captain in the NYSPD, has been brutally raped and killed. Whoever did it, drugged and tortured her and drew out her ordeal for hours. Eve is profoundly disturbed and so is Roarke Ė Deenaís ordeal brings back memories of Summersetís daughter Marlena who met a similar fate.

It doesnít take long for Eve to piece together some facts. Deena was a sweet and innocent young woman who recently had fallen for a boy who was a student at Columbia. Jamie Lingstrom (from Ceremony In Death) was a friend of Deenaís and he proves to be a valuable asset while Eve is working the case. As the investigation continues, it becomes evident that Deena was killed in retaliation for a case her father worked on in the past. But which one? Eve has to find out what case set the killer off, and then she can find out who did it. As always, the threads of the puzzle prove to be knotted and tangled, but Eve is nothing if not persistent.

Iíve read all the In Death books, but itís been a while since Iíve actually ďreadĒ one. Usually, I listen to the books since I like Susan Erickson so much as a reader. While I was reading, I was taken aback by the constant shifting point of view. There was so much head hopping that I had to stop and backtrack several times just to figure out who was talking. I canít help but think that when Susan Erickson is reading these, her copy has penciled notes by the lines of dialogue telling her which character is speaking.

After I got my bearings, I enjoyed Kindred In Death, not so much for the story as for the chance to meet all the characters again. Louise and Charles are busy planning their wedding and their happiness is infectious Ė so much so that Eve offers to let Louise stay the night before the wedding at her home and even volunteers to have Trina over to do the hair and make-up. Lest you think that Eve has gone all soft, her interrogation of the suspect at the end of the book shows she hasnít lost her edge Ė and even Peabody gets a chance to play the role of bad cop.

I donít think that Kindred In Death, is the best book in the series, but itís still a good solid read. J.D. Robb has made the background and characters so real and vivid, I can almost smell the soy dogs, and hear the maxibuses. This is the 29th book in the series and itís still going strong.

-- Ellen Micheletti

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