[REVIEW] Glory in Death – J.D. Robb

I know we pretty much decided J.D. Robb not being true urban fantasy because she doesn’t write about fantasy/mythological creatures/monsters, but I think the futuristic romance genre crosses over enough to at least warrant a quick book review now and then.


In Death series, book 2

J.D. Robb {aka Nora Roberts]

Berkley Publishing Group, 1995

Glory in Death is the second of Robb’s In Death series, following the investigations of Lieutenant Eve Dallas. The first victim was Prosecuting Attorny Cicely Towers. The second was Emmy-winning actress Yvonne Metcalf. Both victims led high-profile and interconnected lives. Their deaths garnered lots of media attention. It’s up to Eve Dallas to find the glory-seeking killer, going so far as to offer herself up as bait.

As always, Robb serves up the perfect summer read. Glory in Death is breathtaking with action, hot romance, and a gripping suspense story.

More opinions behind the cut.

There are several things Robb does so well in this book. The characters develop. In deed, the romance pair, Eve and Roarke, actually argue and then make-up like normal people. It’s not storybook perfect. It’s not even a contrieved argument, but a totally understandable, natural one that evolved out of a growing relationship. Eve and Roarke feel like real people living real lives.

This mystery isn’t quite as good as others of Robb’s I’ve read. I knew who the killer was by chapter 5. I also knew the motive. That didn’t leave much of a reason to read to the end. Except for the Eve/Roarke relationship. That was good. It was also nice to see the development of several secondary characters. Plus, it’s just un-put-down-able writing.

I should also mention I didn’t feel quite sunk into the story. In many places I had no idea what the characters were doing. In some places I didn’t know who was talking. I realize this sparse prose is in part Eve’s fault. She’s not one to willingly offer up what’s on her mind. I also realize the absence of description moves the story along faster and helps deliver suspense. Indeed, the light prose is part of what draws me into the Robb novels. But it’s not for everyone. If you’re reading tastes lean more towards thickly written descriptions like those in big, fat fantasy novels, you probably won’t like Robb. But for anyone who needs a quick, light read and a damn good story, this should fit the bill.

I also loved the issues playing out in the background. On the one hand we have a look at how the media shapes a criminal investigation, a staple of a Robb novel, and can change a person’s life. While at the same time, we’re also exploring what it means to be family. These issues bring a depth to Robb’s novels, a depth that is severely lacking from so much popular fiction these days.

Grade: B+