Saturday, March 8, 2014

Concealed in Death, by J.D. Robb

Rating: 3.5/5
402 pages
Publisher: Putnam
Source: Library book

Description: In a decrepit, long-empty New York building, Lieutenant Eve Dallas’s husband begins the demolition process by swinging a sledgehammer into a wall. When the dust clears, there are two skeletons wrapped in plastic behind it. He summons his wife immediately—and by the time she’s done with the crime scene, there are twelve murders to be solved. (From Goodreads)

Review: This book started out fairly promising. Eve catching what's, effectively, a cold case is a change of pace for the series. Plus her having to rely on the expertise of someone she doesn't know for the basic information about the victims which was clearly set up for some interpersonal conflicts.

However, we barely got any interaction with the new forensic anthropologist and they mostly felt a bit stilted. Plus, while there was some lip service given to the idea that people might not have the best memories of events that happened fifteen years earlier, most people they interviewed seemed to be able to conveniently remember enough relevant information to make a detailed investigation possible.

I also had issues with the ending, which I really can't explain properly. Something about the book's portrayal of the killer left a bad taste in my mouth. Unfortunately, the whys lean heavily into spoiler territory, even if whodunit is pretty obviously telegraphed by the book.

The book did at least keep the interactions with Eve's growing circle of friends to a reasonable level and, for a change, most of the investigation was handled by just Eve and Peabody, rather than having what seems like half her department helping out with one case. (I didn't go back and check, but this has been the impression a number of the more recent books have left me with.)

I still enjoy the series, but, at book 38, there are signs it may be running out of steam.

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