Festive in Death by J.D. Robb
Narrated by Susan Ericksen
13hrs 9min 44sec
Personal trainer Trey Ziegler was in peak physical condition. If you didn’t count the kitchen knife in his well-toned chest.
Lieutenant Eve Dallas soon discovers a lineup of women who’d been loved and left by the narcissistic gym rat. While Dallas sorts through the list of Ziegler’s enemies, she’s also dealing with her Christmas shopping list—plus the guest list for her and her billionaire husband’s upcoming holiday bash.
Feeling less than festive, Dallas tries to put aside her distaste for the victim and solve the mystery of his death. There are just a few investigating days left before Christmas, and as New Year’s 2061 approaches, this homicide cop is resolved to stop a cold-blooded killer.
My Review: I love this series. I realize that this is number thirty-nine but I loved this one just as much as I’ve loved the others. I think that what draws me to this series is the bubble that the series exists in. A few books back Eve’s best friend had a baby and I was really worried that J.D. Robb was getting ideas about shifting the series around. I was actually worried that at some point she was going to make Eve and Roarke parents. I don’t think I could live with that. These books are about Eve’s cases and I like them that way. I would be equally devastated if Peabody (Eve’s partner) couldn’t investigate with Eve anymore. Not that I would want Peabody as the main character. I like her but not enough to read about the cases she investigates.
My favorite thing about these books has always been Eve. I like that she’s logical and doesn’t carry her heart on her sleeve. She is what I think strong heroines should be. She’s tough and fair. She is a wife, partner and best friend without compromising the traits that make her a good cop. I think a lot of what makes Eve interesting comes from Nora Roberts experience writing her romance books. Anyone who has hundreds of characters under her belt knows how to make characters live on the page. I don’t think there is anyone else who could have created Eve Dallas and written her as balanced and believable as J.D. Robb. I don’t think that I’ve read any of her romance books but Nora Roberts has my undying gratitude for creating a character as complex and as real as Eve Dallas.
This book takes place around the holidays and those are my very favorites. As I mentioned before this is number thirty nine; there have been Christmas books before. Eve and Roarke’s parties are always fun. It’s nice to see Eve interact with the people she works with outside of the high pressure situation of their jobs. It’s always very entertaining. It was also entertaining to listen as Eve complained about Christmas. Buying presents is the thing that Eve fears most in life and she always puts it off till the last moment. It isn’t actually the gift buying but the gift giving that Eve fears most. Eve isn’t a hugger and she tries hard to avoid messy emotions. She’s gotten better over the thirty nine books. That’s character development for you.
I enjoy the partnership between Eve and Peabody. They investigate well together and that fact is more important in this story than ever because all of the suspects are lying. Everyone is covering up for themselves or someone else. I can honestly say that I didn’t see the end of this one coming. I had made up my mind who I thought was guilty at the beginning so ignored the evidence.
Susan Ericksen is one of my favorite narrators. She’s amazing. She’s also read so many of these that she could probably do the voices in her sleep. She is fantastic.
The only downside to this book is that it is number thirty nine. I’ve read them all so I don’t know how it would be for someone to start this series with this book. I think it’s possible and you should do it. I think you could miss some of the emotion by not understanding why a character is doing something. As an example Feeney, Eve’s mentor and surrogate father, gives her a gift. The emotion comes from the case that inspired the gift. You wouldn’t know that unless you read the book that contains the case. Eve and Roarke exchange gifts inspired by another case and it’s nice to look back and remember the other cases we’ve read about. I suppose that is the benefit of thirty nine books. So if you haven’t read this series before try it out but don’t blame me when you race back to the beginning and start with book one.
There is a sex scene but it is tasteful and not graphic.
Original Background Image: Red Christmas Present by Petr Kratochvil from PublicDomainPictures.net