Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Book Review: Reunion in Death by J. D. Robb

Reunion in Death
Author: J. D. Robb
Publication: Berkley (March 5, 2002)

Description: A birthday bash sets the scene for a frightening reunion with a killer from Eve Dallas's past
At exactly 7:30 p.m., Walter Pettibone arrived home to over a hundred friends and family shouting, surprise! It was his birthday. Although he had known about the planned event for weeks, the real surprise was yet to come. At 8:45 p.m., a woman with emerald eyes and red hair handed him a glass of champagne. One sip of birthday bubbly, and he was dead.
The woman's name is Julie Dockport. No one at the party knew who she was. But Detective Eve Dallas remembers her all too well. Eve was personally responsible for her incarceration nearly ten years ago. And now, let out on good behavior, she still has nothing but bad intentions. It appears she wants to meet Dallas again -- in a reunion neither will forget.
My Thoughts: Just in time for Eve and Roarke's first wedding anniversary, an old enemy comes from Eve's past determined to take away the one thing she loves most - Roarke. This woman has made a career of meeting, marrying, and killing older men. She is an accomplished liar and very adept at presenting whatever image she needs. It is harder to track her down for this new set of killings because she has changed her pattern. She is still killing rich older men but she isn't forming a relationship with them first. The pieces of the story we get from her point of view show a thrill killer who is angry that she didn't get the respect she thought Eve owed her when she caught her the first time. 

Even while her Free Ager parents are visiting and charming everyone around them, Peabody gets her first cold case to investigate and amply shows that Eve's training is developing her into an excellent police officer. She even stands up to Eve once or twice which shows that their relationship is growing more to friendship and a relationship of equals. On another relationship front, LC Charles relationship is growing closer to Dr. Louise Dimatto. Louise has a bigger role in this one as she is called in to patch Eve up after various dangerous encounters. It is also at one of her fundraisers for her clinics in poor areas of town that the book's events come to a climax.

Eve is also starting to be willing to look into the past that has mostly haunted her nightmares since she was a child. When the case takes them to Dallas, Eve is forced to relive the time when she killed her father and escaped with a broken arm in the city. They find the hotel where she killed him and are surprised to find that it has undergone gentrification. The scenes where Eve and Roarke retrace Eve's steps are some of the most emotionally intense scenes I have ever read. 

This episode also sees Mira becoming more of a confident than just a colleague as Eve goes to talk to her and urges her to talk to Roarke too. 

This series has chilling villains and intriguing plots, but the best part for me is watching the relationships. I think watching Eve and Roarke build a strong marriage and relationship is the core of the series for me. This is, however, one of those series that has to be read in order. Yes, there are lots of books. But I recommend beginning this series and getting to know Eve and Roarke.

Favorite Quote:
"I didn't make you for a cop. That disturbed me for some time later as I prided myself for spotting a cop at half a mile in the dark. But when I turned and looked at you, I didn't see cop. I saw woman, I saw the woman, though I hadn't figured that out. I only knew that I looked, and I saw, and everything shifted. Nothing would be the same for me after that instant."
I am gradually buying and re-reading the In Death Series on my Kindle. You can buy your copy here.

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