Title: Delusion In Death (In Death #35)
Author: J.D. Robb
Publication Date: September, 2012
Genre: Mystery / Thriller
Description: After years on the force, Eve Dallas didn't think she could be shocked anymore... until now.
It was just another after-work happy-hour bar downtown, where business professionals unwound with a few drinks, complained about the boss, maybe hooked up with someone for the night. Until something went terribly wrong. At first it was just a friction in the air. The noise intensified. The crow seemed oppressive. some sharp words were exchanged, some pushing and shoving.
Then the madness descended. And after twelve minutes of chaos and violence, eighty people lay dead.
Eve Dallas is trying to sort out the inexplicable events. Surviving witnesses talk about seeing things—monsters and swarms of bees. They describe sudden, overwhelming feelings of fear and rage and paranoia. When forensics makes its report, the mass delusions make more sense: it appears the bar patrons were exposed to a cocktail of chemicals and illegal drugs that could drive people to temporary insanity—if not kill them outright.
But that doesn't explain who would unleash such horror—or why. Eve's husband, Roarke, happens to own the bar, yet he's convinced the attack wasn't directed at him. It's bigger than that. And if Eve can't figure it out fast, it could happen again, anytime, anywhere. Because it's airborne....
My Thoughts: Well, bless your cotton socks, Eve Dallas! After 35 books, I was pretty much convinced that there wasn’t a case or crook out there that Eve wasn’t shocked by. Angered, enraged, yes; determined to solve and catch, absolutely. Shocked, never, but she definitely is shocked with this case. In addition, she’s worried and a little frightened by the turn of events her new case has brought down on the city of New York. That’s what made this book so enjoyable for me. The plot was believable and frightening in its realistic delivery. Day to day activities like going to happy hour or grabbing a bite to eat at lunch time takes on a whole new apprehensive angle. Nobody is safe, nobody is exempt and the killer is virtually invisible.
If you have been with Eve and her crew from the beginning, you already know that she doesn’t let a lot of people get close to her. You have to be invited into her inner circle, which is where you get to see the real Eve. The woman cares about her friends, family, cat and yes, even Summerset. Go ahead and pick your jaw up off the floor; I’ll wait. As much as Eve and Summerset enjoy getting under each other’s skin hurling insults and looks of disgust toward one another, I loved seeing this side of Eve and Summerset. In Delusion in Death, Eve and Summerset sit down together to a meal, having polite and civilized conversation and sharing a bond over this case. A truce has not been called and they will probably be right back at each other’s throats in the next book, but this was my favorite part of the book. I enjoyed seeing two adversaries come together over a common goal to work together to achieve successful results.
We also see Eve being proactive trying to protect Mavis, Leonardo, Bella and Dennis Mira. Most of the time, she reserves her worry exclusively to Roarke, usually because he is neck deep in the case with her. I got an excellent sense of how deeply Eve feels for the people she truly cares about, though she has a hard time expressing it most of the time.
As usual, Eve quickly figures out who is responsible, though she is in store for a few twists and surprises near the end. I thought the twists were brilliantly executed. It never ceases to amaze me how quickly Eve deduces who the responsible parties are for each case. She must have some kind of a super computer brain instead of the thought patterns of a mere human. By the time I come even remotely close to being comfortable with just a guess, Eve has already identified her suspect and taken steps to bring them to justice.
My Final Verdict: If you are already a fan of this series, you will not be disappointed by this very good installment. If you are new to this series or have never read the series, I highly recommend it and not trying to sound like a broken record, but starting at the beginning of the series is the best place to begin. Meeting Eve for the first time and seeing how her relationships with Roarke, Mavis, Mira, Peabody and everyone else all began is a treat. J.D. Robb has done a brilliant job of creating characters you get to know and care about in a series so rich with detail that illustrates vividly in my mind’s eye what it truly is like living in New York City in the mid-21st century.
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