Saturday, July 16, 2022

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

Brotherhood in Death

J. D. Robb
Series: In Death (Book 42)
Publication: Berkley (February 2, 2016)

Description: In this thrilling novel in the #1 New York Times bestselling In Death series, Lieutenant Eve Dallas finds herself in the middle of a conspiracy when she investigates the disappearance of a former U.S. Senator.

Just as Dennis Mira is about to confront his cousin Edward about selling the West Village brownstone that belonged to their grandfather, he gets a shock: Edward is in front of him, bruised and bloody...and then everything goes black.

When Dennis comes to, Edward is gone. Luckily Dennis’s wife is a top profiler for the NYPSD—and a close colleague of Lieutenant Eve Dallas. Now Eve is determined to uncover the secrets of Edward Mira and learn what enemies he may have made in his long career as a lawyer, judge, and senator. A badge and a billionaire husband can get you access to places others can’t go, and Eve intends to shine some light on the dirty deals and dark motives behind the disappearance of a powerful man, the family discord over a multimillion-dollar piece of real estate...and a new case that no one saw coming.

My Thoughts: This is the 42nd In Death book but, in the internal chronology, only about three years have passed since Eve and Roarke first met. Eve (and Roarke) have made massive changes since the first book. Because Eve is the viewpoint character, we see her changes more closely. In this episode, Eve is called in when her friend Dr. Mira's husband is struck from behind in a house he inherited from his grandparents. He had come there to, very reluctantly, confront his cousin who inherited half the house and was determined to sell it despite the promises they made to their grandfather to keep it in the family.

Dennis Mira's cousin Edward is missing. This doesn't seem like Eve's kind of case since she is a murder cop but Dr. Mira is a friend and Eve has quite a crush on Dennis Mira who is a thoroughly nice man. When investigating Edward, she quickly learns how different he was from his cousin. They are quickly led to a number of women that Edward, very much married, had seduced in just the past year which leads Eve to think about marriage and fidelity. She knows she would not look the other way if Roarke chose to stray.

The case quickly turns to murder when Edward is found hanging from the chandelier in the foyer of his grandparents' house. He was beaten and tortured before his death. Because of the nature of the torture, focus turns to the crime being a result of some sexual relationship gone wrong which helps Eve's focus. 

I will say that the identities of the murderers were known pretty early in the story and the focus shifted on finding them before they could kill their next target. What made this story particularly interesting to me was that Eve had much more sympathy for the murderers than she had for the victims. However, her job was to stand for the victims no matter how unlikable or how unpleasant they were while they were alive. Also, the nature of the crimes committed by these men brought back memories of her own abused childhood. It was good to see the support network that she has built over the past three years. There's Roarke, of course, but there is also Dr. Mira and her partner Peabody who know her story. 

The nature of the case provides unique stress to Eve but so does Roarke's plan to redo her home office. He had created a duplicate of the apartment she lived in before they met and now he feels that it is time for a change. Eve was caught by surprise by the idea and it takes a while before she figures out why. This creates some tension between Eve and Roarke for a time. 

I loved this story and this opportunity to catch up on the lives of characters who are so real to me that I wouldn't be at all surprised to meet them on the street some day.

Favorite Quote:
"Could I what?"

"Forgive that. I mean, it's never going to happen, but hypothetically if, say, Roarke and I lost our minds for one wild night and had hot. crazed sex involving many multiple orgasms, then came to our senses and begged your forgiveness. Owned it, you know? Could you forgive us?"

Eve drove in silence a moment. "Well, it would be hard. It would be work, but marriage is work. So's partnership. I think I could. It would take time and that work, but I think I could forgive both of you. After I boiled you in big vats to make it easier to peel the skin, very slowly and carefully, off your bones while I danced to the music of your agonized screams. Then I made you watch while I fashioned people suits out of your skin for a couple of sparring droids I would then beat into rubble that I'd bury along with your quivering, skinless bodies in unmarked graves. After that," Eve said with a considering nod, "I think I could forgive you."
I bought this one in 2016 and read it right away. I chose to reread it now because I saw that Nora Roberts' publicist was pulling quotes from this one on their Facebook page. You can buy your copy here.

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