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4.7 out of 5 stars
Thankless in Death
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon 17 September 2013
It is Thanksgiving time in New York and Eve Dallas is being coerced into spending time with her extended family and friends to celebrate the season. She is feeling very thankful for a number of things and some good and happy things happen to her in the course of this novel which she deserves but doesn't always appreciate. Jerry Reinhold on the other hand is thankful for nothing. He holds serious grudges and believes that people have been stopping him for getting everything he wants and deserves in life. This Thanksgiving he will hit back at them.

There are two narratives in this novel and the author splits the book more or less equally between them giving equal time to the thankful and the thankless. It is an effective technique as we move from Jerry and his crimes to the police officers trying to stop him. Everyone knows that Jerry is the murderer here but the police seem always to be one step behind him. Despite it being the holiday season Eve and her colleagues are going to put all their time and energy into catching him.

This is an effective story and rather self contained despite it being number 37 in a series. I think that if you hadn't read any of the others or only a few of them you would easily be able to follow the plot. If you are a fan of these stories you will be pleased to meet many familiar characters, including quite a few who reappear from previous books, but the author has not indulged herself in trying to make sure that all of them make an appearance in this story - some previous novels gave the impression of being be stuffed full of minor characters to the detriment of the story-telling.

This is a smooth and easy read. The tension builds up as Jerry traps and takes yet another victim and we are not sure if the police will get there in time or not or who he will target next. The investigation makes sense and the way in which he is tracked is realistically because of police work and not because of some sudden burst of intuition. There is the usual light humour and the ongoing romance between Roarke and Eve but the crime plays the largest part in this book.

I have read all the other JD Robb novels and enjoyed them. I did find some elements of the story here to be familiar but that is probably inevitable. The way that the story is told, in giving a large amount of time to the criminal's viewpoint, is new and effective. The book poses the question - how could someone from a normal upbringing suddenly behave this way ? It doesn't answer it, but it does provoke some thought. The author does have a moral viewpoint about being grateful for what you have and by the end she is driving it home a little too forcefully - the epilogue was very nearly too sentimental but just managed to keep on the right side of that line.

JD Robb has created an excellent detective figure in Eve Dallas and we have seen that character grow over the books in this series. Here, she is in total control of herself and her investigation (no more nightmares although some rather odd dreams). She has accepted herself for what she is and is even beginning to accept and understand those who love her. This is excellent storytelling and a definite return to form for JD as this is one of the strongest novels she has written recently. Very enjoyable and rewarding reading.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
"Thankless in Death" by J. D. Robb is another thriller in author's "In Death" series of books.

This time the book is about 26 years old Jerald Reinhold who killed both of his parents and escaped with lot of stolen cash and things that can be sold.
But it seems that these two killings weren't enough for him because he obviously enjoys torturing and killing people that he held responsible for experienced disregarding and insults.

Detective Lieutenant Eve Dallas was put on the case, and although she knows who is the killer she must figure out how to catch the killer, to understand the way he thinks in order to know where his next hit will be. But all that time, the number of victims is increasing...

This book is a bit different from previous installments of "In Death" series. The major difference is due to the fact that reader from the start will know who is the killer, the only problem being how to catch him without any more casualties. Also the book is a bit thicker although it's still page-turner that is easy to read.

If you love thriller books and never read any of J. D. Robb books you should know that these books are the true representatives of the thriller genre.
The reader inside will find all necessary ingredients that make the book exciting - violent crimes, mystery, dark memories from the past, romance, sex...

But although I enjoyed J. D. Robb books earlier, this one was slightly less exciting than the previous ones.
I'm not sure what the whole reason is, but it seems that all or most of it became a routine, that there is no so much passion and excitement in author's writing like there was before.
Mostly that can be seen in the books' characters that are start repeating in each following book, changing their names only.
Maybe it would be good for author to take some time between writing the next book, to be able to deliver it at the level of quality that will match the first books in a series.

Nevertheless, it's still the must-read for J. D. Robb fans that they will certainly enjoy.
For all others thriller lovers, I suggest you to first read some of the other books from the series, because they'll provide a bit more excitement.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 21 December 2013
I kept going with this book, hoping it would improve. I've read the whole series & a couple have been a tad weak but I hated the way this one was written.
I only managed to get half way through & was so revolted I gave up! As another reviewer mentioned, not enough humour & friendship between Eve's "gang" & personal life to offset the nastiness of the murderer. I shan't describe the plot line as most reviewers have already done enough of that.
I'd be annoyed if I'd paid full price is all I can say! I'm hoping the next one is back to JD's/Nora's usual top form, I may wait until I can get it from the library tbh in case she's lost her touch.
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on 4 June 2015
Almost pointless reviewing this as the author's work either as J.D. Robb or Nora Roberts (or any of her other pen names) is pretty well review proof. Ms Roberts started writing romantic fiction in the early '80s and while most novelists manage one book a year she has written over 200 since then, regularly topping best sellers lists. Her 'In Death' series is so different from her other work that she coined the name J.D.Robb for it. Set around 40 years in the future, the series is much more hard edged than you might expect from her previous fiction. Yet every book in the series is still basically a love story, centred on policewoman Lieutenant Eve Dallas and her enigmatic husband Roarke. Like all series novels it has a formula - steamy sex between the two main characters; banter with her police team; she's going to forget to eat or sleep while hunting the bad guys etc etc. And the main characters are basically cliched. Roarke is the impossibly handsome, rich, former bad boy; Dallas is the cop with the tortured past. You know how this goes. It's police procedural with a dash of Mills & Boon and a dollop of Blade Runner, especially in the futuristic technology. Her future New York has survived a never-explained Urban War that apparently wracked America decades previously but there's still a massive gap between rich and poor. The rich eat real meat. Everyone else eats soya and drinks coffee substitute. You can criticise the fact that no one seems to question this or the fact that the Urban War doesn't seem to have changed anything. But then, that's not what this series is about. That's all background noise to the action. Thankless In Death features a psychopathic bad guy who finally finds his life's work after killing his nagging parents. He then sets about eliminating everyone who has ever crossed him, from a former school teacher to an ex-girlfriend who booted him out after he stole her cash and blew it in Vegas. Coupled to the frustrating search for the bad guy is the imminent arrival of Roarke's relations from Ireland. All that adds to the pressure on the heroine's social and professional skills. If you've read other books in the series this will all be comfortingly familiar. Yet it still works. I shouldn't like this stuff but I guess it's my guilty secret.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 7 October 2013
I usually love reading about Dallas and Rourke but in this edition it took me a while to relate to the characters as it felt as if I was reading a book written by a different author. Some of the terminology just didn't ring true with the characters I know and love. It was not until a good way into the book that I started to enjoy them again. Please go back to the way you usually mode of writing.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 3 October 2013
I know it's the "in death" series but this was awful. Some thing about it that really turned your stomach and there was very little lightness at all in the book. As I say I love Nora's books but this one will be deleted from my reader.
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on 19 May 2014
I really enjoy the touch of the future. The stories are placed so the innovations are believable. I don't like the thought of the 'Urban Wars' but the warring factions in the World at the present time makes everything possible. JD Robb doesn't dwell on the horrors but eases them into the books with gentle regard for the squeamish. .
I had two copies so returned one to Amazon to be exchanged for 'Calculated in Death'. Can I have information on the exchange deal please. I have not read 'Concealed in Death' as this follows, I try to keep in sequence.
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on 15 October 2013
I love the in Death series but this was one of the few that disappointed. Usually, when reading I am laughing quietly at the humour in the middle of all the action. I think that the in-depth relationship thoughts/conversations/repartee which add this interest to the mix was missing. I love the attitude of the cat in a huff, Mavis in a flurry and Eve's fear of being made over combined with the interaction between Eve, Roarke and Summerset that make the books such good reads. I await the new book eagerly, hoping it will be back to the norm.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon 24 September 2013
I think that this novel is the most in-your-face gory violent of all those in this series. You are up-close and personal to the violence as it is happening, which is not the same as in the others, where you largely come to it after the scene, as does Eve.

Spoilt son, who always blames others for anything wrong in his life, goes on the rampage and realises that violently killing people that he personally knows gives him a buzz he has never know before. This is contrasted with Eve nervously agreeing to host a Thanksgiving dinner for Roarke's Irish family and his and her friends. For once she is enjoying not having any cases and the time to catch up on paperwork before the holiday. However, two violently killed bodies soon put paid to that. Then there is a third and Eve and Co., desparatly need to guess who is going to be the next on Jerry's list. They know who the killer is, even why, they just need to second guess him as to whom he is going to go for next.

Enjoyable, as all this series. However, you do need a strong stomach for this one.
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on 8 March 2014
well deserved honours for both Eve and Roarke in this story. It is also great to see some past characters weaved into the story. The theme of thanks giving and the importance of family as part of the plot was well done and shows a much more mellowed Eve embracing relationships she found difficult or struggled with in past novels. She still however manages to kick serious bad guy butt with Peabody, Roarke and the rest of the NYPD team. J D Robb has written an outstanding and very entertaining story please keep up the the good work.
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