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Saturday, October 21, 2006

***** Interlude in Death by J. D. Robb. Futuristic romantic suspense. Re-read.

Again, this is one I've re-read several times, so it's hard to think of something new to say about it. So I turned to the Amazon reviews for inspiration.
  • "Charlie's Angels meet Thelma and Louise"??? I really must have missed something in my 4 or 5 times through this story. I don't see that at all. Not even close.

  • "Listeners of both genders will find themselves relieved when the book's capable heroine Lt. Eve Dallas comes to the end of a reckless motorcycle ride." Huh. That was a very short, very minor scene. Hardly worth mentioning.

  • "A timeless, empowering love story doesn't need "wrist units" when "watches" will do." Er. Okay, this particular story could conceivably be set in the present day, if you eliminate the off-planet setting and the legalized self-termination drugs (though those were a key clue). But much of the series as a whole depends on the futuristic setting, and has from the beginning. The mystery in the very first story, Naked in Death, for example, would be entirely different were it not set in a future in which guns were banned completely. Sure, you could change details and get the gist of the stories in a contemporary setting, but isn't that true of any book?

  • "Nothing earth shaking happens in it, so this story could be "anytime" in the later half of the series." Well, unless you count the revelations about Roarke's father, which is huge in the ongoing series arc.

  • "It is less than 100 pages long and about 1/4" thick. I know it is a "value" book but it's a tiny, quick read that would be more suitable to a Good Housekeeping magazine (granted not PG rated!) than a book." (this on a 2-star review) Well, duh. Buyer beware, and pay attention. Sheesh. How difficult is it to scroll down to where Amazon clearly states it has 96 pages? Granted, I too am irritated that Amazon doesn't list the original copyright dates, just the publication dates, but are you really expecting a 350-page novel for $2.99?
Including the two novellas, of which this is one, this is the 14th book in the In Death series. It has Eve and Roarke & much of the usual cast at Roarke's off-planet resort for a police conference.

Eve has an unpleasant run-in with former commander Skinner, a legendary hero from the Urban Wars. He has a serious vendetta against Roarke, and tries first bribery, then threats to get Eve to help him take Roarke down. It culminates in Eve hitting one of the commander's bodyguards, who's later found murdered, with the fairly obvious clues pointing to Roarke.

Unlike in Naked in Death, Roarke's not a suspect, but Eve has to figure out why Skinner is so bent on Roarke's arrest, and whodunit, while trying to avoid stepping on toes, as she's out of her jurisdiction. There's much about vengeance, and gray areas, about how obsession can cloud and warp a mind, and the aforementioned revelations about Roarke's father.

If you haven't read the rest of the series, the characters might not be as clear due to the novella length, but then again, if you haven't read the rest of the series, why not?


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I love mysteries--my guilty pleasure literature-wise. I'll be looking for this one to take on my trip.
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