Guest Review: Thankless in Death by J.D. Robb


Thankless in Death by J.D. Robb (In Death #37)
Futuristic Romantic Suspense
Released: September 17, 2013

It has become a tradition *grins* Back again to guest review, is Roarke lover extraordinaire, Claire!

Blurb: Lieutenant Eve Dallas has plenty to be grateful for this season. Hosting Roarke’s big Irish family for the holiday may be challenging, but it’s a joyful improvement on her own dark childhood.

Other couples aren’t as lucky as Eve and Roarke. The Reinholds, for example, are lying in their home stabbed and bludgeoned almost beyond recognition. Those who knew them are stunned—and heartbroken by the evidence that they were murdered by their own son. Twenty-six-year-old Jerry hadn’t made a great impression on the bosses who fired him or the girlfriend who dumped him—but they didn’t think he was capable of this.

Turns out Jerry is not only capable of brutality but taking a liking to it. With the money he’s stolen from his parents and a long list of grievances, he intends to finally make his mark on the world. Eve and her team already know the who, how, and why of this murder. What they need to pinpoint is where Jerry’s going to strike next.

Roarke Hook-up from The Queen Mandi of Smexybooks. Thanks so much once again, babe!

This new homicide that lands on Eve’s desk seemingly is an open and shut case. Lieutenant Eve Dallas knows almost instantly as she’s wading through the bloody murder scene just who has committed this heinous crime. An ordinary husband and wife battered to death without cause or reason by their spoiled twisted and disturbed son. On paper it is cut and dried. If only Jerry Reinholds was not one step ahead and intent on making others who have crossed him over the years his next victims. Chasing a narcissistic maniac all over New York makes for a very gripping Thanksgiving for Eve and her police and civilian team. 

My thoughts on Book 37: Thankless in Death.

First, Oh Happy days, It’s that time of year again when an ‘In Death’ book is released and my love of all things Roarke amplifies like a 12 year old fangirl at a One Direction concert! Like Christmas or the beginning of Autumn, an In Death release date really is one of my favourite times of year. Secondly, going into “Thankless in Death” I was a little belly churning nervous apprehensive, since the last book “Calculated” was one of my lowest rated JD Robb books since the series began. Still cringe-sulking over it. With 37 books strong, they are not all going to be to your liking, but it really did pain me to not love the last installment.

Having said that… I loved ‘Thankless in Death’!! Hallelujah! It was resonate of some of the very first ten or so books in this series and made for such an enjoyable read it was sad to see it end. With very few new characters to remember, an ordinary crime of simple stupidity and a man’s spoiled anger,  and a lot of secondary beloved faces all added to the brilliance of this book. Now, while the crime was straightforward, and I just love when the format shows who the murderer is right from the get go, it was by no means boring. We had Jerry’s POV throughout and this was actually my favourite part. To see how twisted and calculatingly devious this man was, to brutally murder his own parents for daring to suggest this lazy SOB go out and get a job, to then plot the murders of people who he thought had wronged him in his life, from his ex girlfriend to a school teacher to a buddy of his. To travel with him as he glorifies in outwitting the law, in changing his appearance and living like a fat royal on his spoils of murder. It really is an ingenious move from Robb who puts you right into the mind of this person throughout the book, seeing his madness evolve until he ultimately is outsmarted by the best damn cop that ever was.

You know two things going into an In Death book. There will be murder and Eve will catch her criminal(s).  It’s all about joining the dots and the journey along the way that makes these books so worthwhile.

Adding into the In Death mix this go around is the Thanksgiving holiday and the impending visit from all of Roarke’s Irish clan. Eve of course is skittish. But Aunt Sinead! Oh I love this woman, she makes me have the warm feels and I just smile when she’s on the page. I wish she’d just move to New York, into Roarke’s huge mansion and marry Summerset. Wouldn’t that just be perfect?! Happy sigh. I don’t even need an excuse of a holiday for the Irish part of Roarke’s family to be in any book,  put them in all the books, for no apparent reason and I would love it. The secondary characters really stand up and shine in ‘Thankless’ There’s snark from Summerset, always a favourite, give the butler more airtime, though, he needs it, something to make him and Eve bond further.

There is two extremely happy emotional standout moments in this book, one involving Nixie from way back in “Survivor in Death” a sweet little girl Eve saved after her whole family were slaughtered and she took into her home and later saw adopted by a nice family. The kid is attached to Eve, but as usual with her antisocial dyslexia, not quite understanding still why all these people flock to her and actually love her, is apprehensive about seeing the kid again, figuring she would bring bad memories for Nixie, it takes Roarke’s calm insight to explain to his darling cop just why the little girl would want to be around Eve. The other moment, which had me all sniffle-filled was so effing lovely and I’ve been waiting for this for at least 10 books! No spoilers, but it involves both our favourite cop and Irishman and it’s just endearing and very well deserved for them both.

Quick points:

  • There was mention of the candy thief. Still no culprit, but for now Eve has him outsmarted! 

  • I’m never happy with the amount of Roarke page-time. The gorgeous tall glass of Irish water needed more, I mean c’mon, how hard is it to make him take his shirt off and or shower some more? Give me more.  At least 200 pages.

  • No Nightmares for Eve. Only amusing dreams of her talking to the pissed off dead people.

  • Romantic dinner date planned by Eve. You have to see it to believe the mush.

Favourite Quotes:

– “I ought to be able to be fucking brilliant at my work without them making me stand in front of crowds of people and cameras and Christ knows. How come I get punished for being good?” 

– "And here was Roarke, cat-quiet in his perfect black trousers and leather jacket"

– "He collapsed on her , his breath gone, his mind gone. She’d destroyed him. He thought"

– "Mind my cop till I see her next" My feels can’t take it!

Thankless in Death by J.D. Robb goes back to the good ol’ days of one murderer and one excellent cop on his trail, with a smattering of world building progression in what is one of the best series you will ever invest your time in. Eve is brilliant and humorous and snarky and diligent.  My beloved book boyfriend Irishman is as always the love of my eyes forevermore amen. I was so happy I loved this book. Really happy. Relieved happy.

37 Books and still going strong. That my lovelies says a lot for these returning characters story after story. Are you an In Death virgin?? Then you have an helluva journey to go on throughout what is still an amazing well structured series. And for the fans already, know this is a jewel of a read. Great paced, exciting and a smidge of emotion that I defy you to say you didn’t have a lump of happiness in your throat when you read it.

I give Thankless in Death 4.5 out of 5. (B+)

Sparklybearsy. Aka Roarke’s very happy bit on the side Aficionado.

Read more of Claire’s Guest Reviews HERE.

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  1. Victoria says

    You had me at Roarke being cat-like. Unf! So happy to hear this one was much better than the last, I was of the same opinion with “Calculated in Death” It barely held my attention and I was so nervous that the series was winding down.

    Can’t wait to read this one, it’s on my Kindle waiting!

    Love reading your Roarke —- I mean In Death reviews =)

    PS. I think Roarke loves me more. (( Sorry Eve AND Claire )) It is known! Hhaaaa.

  2. Linda says

    After Thankless in Death, I give up on JD Robb. I haven’t enjoyed her last few books and kept telling myself that I wouldn’t buy they anymore but the minute they come out, I’m there like a druggie. I’ve been reading them for so long that I couldn’t make myself quit but Thankless has finally cured me.

    I feel ripped off and want my money back. I couldn’t even finish this story. The killer was an idiot that I wanted to kill. Eve came off as an idiot when she couldn’t even figure out that he was going to kill another person after his parent, much less who he was going to kill. STUPID! And of course, she admits; I screwed up and instead of saying “Yeah you did, learn from it, don’t be so arrogant next time and learn from it”, everyone rushes in to tell her how great she is and not to be too hard on herself, ARRRRRRGH! The poor woman has been killed in a horrible fashion, but hey let’s all make Eve feel better; WTF!!!!!

    I’m not a cop and even I figured out who he was going to kill before he’d even finished killing his mum. The torture scenes were far too gruesome and getting inside the killers head was far to unnecessary. I just skipped all that crap because I couldn’t stand it. I stopped reading this book half way in, skipped to the end to read him being caught and that’s it. I’m done with these books once and for all.

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