REVIEW: Naked in Death by J.D. Robb

Title: Naked in Death (In Death, #1)
Author: J.D. Robb (pseudonym for Nora Roberts)
Format: paperback, 306 pages
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Source: personal shelf
Published: July 1995 by Berkley

In a world of danger and deception, she walks the line--between seductive passion and scandalous murder... Eve Dallas is a New York police lieutenant hunting for a ruthless killer. In over ten years on the force, she's seen it all--and knows her survival depends on her instincts. And she's going against every warning telling her not to get involved with Roarke, an Irish billionaire--and a suspect in Eve's murder investigation. But passion and seduction have rules of their own, and it's up to Eve to take a chance in the arms of a man she knows nothing about--except the addictive hunger of needing his touch.

Why I Read this Book: The In Death series is the #1 series that gets recommended to me the most. I had not read anything by Nora Roberts so I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect. But all this talk about the infamous Roarke and his relationship with Eve got me curious. Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy Naked in Death as much as I had hoped.

What I Liked: The futuristic elements were interesting. The book is set in 2058 (the book was first written in 1995 so it was originally a 60+ years look into the future). Most people drink fake coffee since the real stuff is hard to come by and is quite expensive. Same goes with flowers. Guns are outlawed and prostitution is legal.

I love crime solving reads and TV shows and I enjoyed it in Naked in Death. I don’t know what it is about forensics but it fascinates me. The suspect in this book wasn’t the obvious choice and I liked that it wasn’t predictable; it was a bit complex of a case. There was a personal, yet sad, connection for Eve with this case. It made sense why she was so affected by this particular case.

What I Didn’t Like: I wasn’t buying the Eve/Roarke relationship. It was a big disappointment for me. Roarke came on really strong and Eve was so resistant. I wasn’t feeling the connection or the attraction, especially from Eve’s POV. The relationship felt extremely one sided. Roarke seems to be more of a guy with connections than a lover. And Roarke was a little too carefree about things. Hopefully in the next book I’ll feel more of a connection between them. I don’t know how it going to work out for Eve and Roarke. Actually, I know the end result because I inadvertently saw a spoiler when I was reading about the author on Wikipedia but I don’t know how it gets to that point.

I wasn’t expecting such a dark read with grim subject matter. Naked in Death for those with a weak stomach. There was rape, child abuse, and incest. *shivers*

Overall Impression: With all the recommendations I got for this series, I had set the bar kind of high and unfortunately Naked in Death didn’t quite meet my expectations. Now don’t get me wrong, I liked the book. I enjoyed reading it. But I didn’t LOVE it. I know I’m in the minority by saying that; this seems to be a favorite series among readers. I had heard about the infamous and sexy Roarke but I just didn’t see it. I’m still undecided in regards to this series. I’ll give it one, maybe 2 more books, before deciding to continue on or throw in the towel. I have to admit that I find long series, especially one 30+ books deep, a bit daunting.


The Book Vixen’s Rating:

3 Frogs

About Brianna: Supermom by day, naughty reader by night. Addicted to chocolate, Twitter, her iPad, her Kindle, and 99¢ Kindle deals. You can follow Brianna on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, and Instagram.


  1. Oh it gets better and better i promise!! Let Roarke seduce you! hehe!

    Eve and Roarke together for me is just wonderful, they both have demons in their past that they still deal with and we see them go through bad times yet fall in love too, makes me all of a swoon!

    Hope you connect better with book two hun =)

  2. Sparklybearsy - I'll be waiting for Roarke to seduce me. And he'd better! LOL I hope there's a better connection between them in book 2.

  3. Dude! Finally someone else who isn't blown away by this book...yee haw! I also didn't buy their chemistry, the gross subject matter freaked me out, and although I think Roarke probably gets more interesting in later books, I thought he was a pansy-ass in this one (putting out bottles of wine to breathe while Eve kicked all the bad guys' butts!). Great review!

  4. Penelope - OMG yes! How many bottles of wine did Roarke open and let breathe? LOL

    I wish I was as captivated by Roarke's character as many other people were but it just didn't work out that way for me. Have you read any of the other books in this series?

  5. No. I'm not interested in reading any more of these. The subject matter is way too disturbing pour moi! Incest, rape, child abuse, mutilation, etc etc...holy cripes! I got a stomach ache reading this because I was so grossed out. Ugh. I like unicorns and rainbows in my romance novels...hee hee! :^)

  6. I have only read reviews but from those I have a crush on Roarke ;)

  7. I haven't read this series either and I've been very curious. I've resisted for so long because it just didn't intrigue me on it's own even though everyone recommends it. Great review.

  8. Penelope - I'm going to give it one or two more books. Things better improve between Eve and Roarke (connection-wise for me) and I hope there's not too much gore. Maybe the gore was limited to this book? *hopes*

  9. You may want to give it more than a couple of books. I hope I put this right, but they (the books) sort of 'grew' with time and the times. The writing and relationship smoothed out and got betters the series wore on.

    I am finding that the latest books don't seem to be going anywhere, the relationship has progressed as far as it probably can as I don't see Eve popping out any kids, and they have already dealt with their childhood issues.

  10. FYI pretty much all the books deal with either serial killers or pretty gross murders. Don't expect any downgrading of the grisly factor

  11. Jazz - Thanks for the info! That was what I'm hoping for; for the series to grow on me. But it better happen with the next book or two or I'm moving on.

    I think I read somewhere that Eve won't be having kids - or that the author won't be writing about that.

  12. Thanks for reviewing this book. I must admit the series interests me so I've bought all the book, but read none. (I'm able to find them all at Goodwill stores for either a buck or fifty cents). I had no idea there was so much gore. I might have been able to handle that before I had kids, but now my life is a "no gore" zone. I appreciate you reviewing a book thats not a "new release" and giving a "new to you" series a chance.

  13. Michelle - I hadn't known beforehand that the book was so dark and grim. And from what I hear, the gore factor stays the same throughout the series.


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