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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
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One sweltering New York July day in 2059, Louie Cogburn, suffering from a pounding headache, turns from his computer and answers a knock on his door with a baseball bat. After a frenzied attack on several people, he dies when the first cop on the scene hits him with a stun gun that should have only just knocked him out. Lieutenant Eve Dallas steps in as primary investigator to investigate this bizarre death and the cause of this unprovoked rage. Her only clue is a message left on Cogburn's computer - 'ABSOLUTE PURITY ACHIEVED'. The next day, another man dies, suffering from similar symptoms as Cogburn. The second victim is a policeman working gathering evidence from Cogburn's computer. It looks as though there is a computer virus on the loose, capable of passing from machine to humans, causing them to self-destruct. Dallas must solve this mystery soon as the city will be in a panic as more victims succumb to this new deadly virus. During the course of the investigation, Dallas begins to unearth a new vigilante group. It appears that most of the victims are drug pushers and pedophiles, but they have also taken the lives of several innocent bystanders as a result of the madness caused by the virus and Dallas must stop the perpetrators before absolute power corrupts absolutely and they begin to widen their criteria on who should be executed without trial and cause mob rule to spiral out of control. This is an emotive case for Dallas and her husband, the billionaire, Roarke, who both suffered from abuse as children. Dallas must stand for the dead and seek justice for their deaths (the dead choose her and not the other way around) but Roarke can't help but think that the world is a better place without such evil people, but innocents are also getting killed, so he throws in all the expertise and power that his money and influence can buy to help solve the case.
This is the fifteenth instalment of the 'In Death' series, but this novel still manages to be is as original as the previous fourteen. Many of the secondary characters from the series appear in this book, though some, only to pave the way for story lines for future books. This book could be read on its own, but like most series, it would be helpful to read the earlier novels. All the main characters are now well established and appear to have settled into a comfortable routine, but some events in the story upset the balance and make things a little more lively. All the elements of a J D Robb novel: murder, suspense, action, steamy romance and family drama are still evident, though it is darker in tone than some of the previous books and there is more focus on solving the crime. As the pressure mounts as the story unfolds, the pages keep on turning until the end with the crime solved, but leaving fans wanting the next book in the pipeline, Portrait In Death.
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on 7 March 2005
It is the summer of the year 2059 in New York and people are antsy due to the extreme heat, but for Louis K. Cogburn things get a little out of control when he uses a baseball bat to kill a neighbor and beat the girlfriend of the deceased. The life of the girl is saved only because a police officer was nearby and intervened, killing the aggressor. The officer is none other than Eve Dallas' protégé Trueheart, who instead of calling dispatch after the fact, calls the Lieutenant while he is still confused by the events. Now things get tricky, and Dallas has to step lightly to make sure that it does not look like cover up and that the termination is determined to be justifiable.
Louie was a small-timer who sold illegals to kids in order to start them in the vice, but he had no history of prior violent acts. Also, there is a strange message on the screen of Louie's computer: Absolute Purity Achieved. Things get complicated when Halloway, a detective working on EDD (Electronic Detectives Division) goes berserk while examining the computer found at the scene. In his rampage he stuns McNabb and takes Captain Feeney as a hostage. It is clear, that the computer has something in it that drives people crazy and then kills them, so Eve has to find the Purity Seekers, a group of terrorist that is using technology to kill scum.
J. D. Robb chooses a controversial issue for this novel, since the killers are going after people who deserve it; the innocents who have been harmed in the process are considered collateral damage by the group of avengers. The general public is quickly divided, and there are differences of opinion, even between spouses, in particular between Eve and her husband Roarke. As usual, the author creates a good balance between the topic at hand and the personal situations of the characters. In this case we find Peabody and McNabb having to deal with the aftermath of the injury he received, creating some highly emotional situations.
Those that have been following the series - and as I did in some of my other reviews I am going to recommend that you read it in order - will find a character from the past reintroduced here. Jamie is a kid that Eve met when she was going after a satanic sect. After the kid lost his grandfather and his sister both Roarke and Eve took the role of his protectors. He is extremely skilled in electronics, and comes as a great help in the current situation. Robb has a natural ability for reintroducing characters in this fashion and get the reader to establish a rapport with them. That is one of the many reasons why this series is still going strong.
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on 16 August 2014
Love these books - they are all great reads really enjoyed the characters/plot development looking forward to reading the others in this series - I started with New York to Dallas but have gone back to the 1st one and am working my way through them every time I finish one I don't want it to end so am glad there are more to read
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on 19 December 2002
I've read most of the series and many more of Nora Roberts' works. However I have to say that this latest installment was a little predictable to say the least.
Yes it is a wonderful idea and technically anything can and may happen in the future but I found this just a re-hash of previous books where Roarke + wife + butler + cat + limitless supplies of cash, property and anything else he wanted. OK so they remain a sexy couple - but a little nauseating.
The one bonus for this episode was the growth of Peabody and McNab, this was the highlight of the book for me as we needed to have some further depth to these important characters. Mavis made only a brief appearance in this one which was a shame.
The plot itself was pretty 'out there' even for me.
All in all I was disappointed with this one; if you have only read a few you will thoroughly enjoy it, perhaps the series itself has run its course or I need to leave a while before I read another.
Usually I love virtually everything this very talented lady writes and if you havn't read any of her contemporary romantic suspense - then do you will not be disappointed.
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on 19 November 2014
An exceptionally good novel in the in death series, with an intriguing plot, a good range of characters, and slight hints that Eve and Roarke might make good parents. Two female US presidents by 2059 -- a forecast?
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on 23 September 2002
I think to be reading this review you've got to know at least a bit about the 'In Death' series. Certainly by this, the 15th book in the series, there must be some familiarity. So I won't go into the history - take a look at earlier reviews in the series for 'the story so far'.
Eve Dallas and husband Roarke are again working together, as the crime they investigate here is one where a series of people are committing suicide in a drawn out, painful way. The clue as to why is that for each a message is left on their laptops or equivalent - ' Absolute Purity Achieved '. Eve and Roarke must identify the commonality (yes, a computer virus that can be transmitted to the targeted end user - an electronic virus becomes biological) and work to trace and apprehend the origin.
What I liked: As with earlier books in the series, the development of other characters, particularly Peabody and McNab, Officer Trueheart and Jamie is superbly done. I can see that the latter 2 will become increasingly important to the series. Peabody continues to make strides in her professional development as Eve's aide as well, and I enjoy seeing her character grow. Again, I enjoyed that this series is set just a little in the future and the way that Robb perceives the world will change - the little touches are often the best. Eve's own emotional development continues and she explores the concept of 'family' now, not just coupledom and friendship.
What I found difficult: With the focus on secondary characters, Roarke became more a part of the story - another element to it - rather than as previously Eve and Roarke's relationship being a reasonably equal focus. Roarke makes no developmental strides as Eve does - he helps out only as a techie, although also as someone who looks out for Eve. Mavis and Dr Mira barely appeared, and Leonardo not at all. For me a great deal of the charm in a long series is revisiting with old friends, however the oldest friends were not much a part of this particular book. I'd have given the book 5 stars for the writing, but have settled on 4 because of these points, particularly regarding Roarke as for me he is as much a part of the series as Eve is.
That said, I enjoyed the book as a part of a larger series. As usual the writing is uniformly excellent, the crime line compelling, the imagery well used and spot on. The moral issues were intriguing and of course characterisation, pace and plot development were well executed. I look forward to the next one!
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on 14 July 2013
I won't go into the plot details because others have already covered it, and you can read the book description. But I would say that this is a MUST READ.

I'm a big fan of "In Death" series but of course some books just work better than others. This is one of the more gripping ones. Eve's abilities as a cop shine here, and the complicated relationship dynamic not just between her and Roarke, but between the supportive characters are brilliantly portrayed.

It's not just about murder and police work - though that's interesting in itself. It's also about relationships, about the family we choose to make ourselves, about values and beliefs, and about personal identity.
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on 18 April 2012
In the sweltering heat of 2059 Eve is called to the scene of a baffling murder. Louie Cogburn was a nice enough guy, except for pushing drugs to school kids, and the level of violence at his apartment doesn't match her take of the victim. And on the screen of his computer is the message "Absolute Purity Achieved". His communications device is requisitioned by the E-division and this leads to devastating consequences for two long standing members of the series. As Eve follows the trail of violence, she finds herself up against a new terrorist organisation called Purity First and could Roarke be in their sights?

Another great chapter in the In Death series, but I would always recommend reading the books in order!
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on 4 March 2003
A young officer named Trueheart, on the NYPSD in 2059, calls his lieutenant, Eve Dallas, in shock. He has just killed a man in the line of duty, a man who was holed up in his apartment in front of his computer and suddenly went berserk, blood pouring from his body as he attacked his apartment building neighbors. On his computer screen is the single line: Absolute purity achieved. The case soon mushrooms when one of the NYPSD techs who studies the sick man's computer for clues goes berserk himself, with fatal consequences. Soon other cases are popping up, and in each instance the message left on their computer is the same. So are the victims' backgrounds. Pedophiles, drug dealers, everyone who has hurt the young and the helpless -- they are being targeted by a rebel group that's created a computer virus to infect humans. While the Purity Seekers are being hailed by the public as heros, behind the scenes Eve Dallas and her crew are working overtime to catch them and bring them to justice.
PURITY IN DEATH, the 15th book in Nora Roberts' "In Death" series, initially proved a pleasant surprise. Having never enjoyed Roberts' romance fiction, I was prepared to be similarly unimpressed by her futuristic work, but found myself reading the first half of this book with great interest. The characters, if not believable, are at least fascinating, especially Eve Dallas and her hot and brainy husband, Roarke, and two other officers on the NYPSD, Peabody and McNab, whose romance is a welcome subplot. (My favorite character was actually Trueheart, and I was disappointed not to see more of him, although I guess he's featured in earlier installments.) The plot, if hackneyed and implausible and without technical backup, has some interesting aspects. But the ending.... Roberts lost me about halfway through this novel, when I started skimming with a partial idea of the outcome and little interest in confirming it. What started out a fast-paced if immature read unfortunately became bogged down in a political morass that was resolved without fulfilling any of the promise delivered by the early chapters.
Readers interested in realistic futuristic fiction with cutting edge technology and gripping plotlines should look elsewhere, but no doubt fans of this series, having the information from the previous books to sustain them, will find PURITY IN DEATH a decent, if not stunning, addition to their collection.
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on 11 June 2011
if you like nora roberts you,ll like jd robb!
The In Death series is very entertaining even if you don,t read them in order!although it would probably be of benefit to read them this way.Eve and Roarke are great characters ,and \Peabody and Mcnab plus Mavis and Leonardo inject a bit of light relief!I have yet to be disappointed in any of this series.
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