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MEMORY IN DEATH by Nora Roberts

MEMORY IN DEATH

By Nora Roberts

Pub Date: Jan. 4th, 2006
ISBN: 0-399-15328-4
Publisher: Putnam

Just what Lt. Eve Dallas needed to make Christmas in the 2050s complete: a visit from the wicked witch who made her life hell when she was in foster care.

The holiday season kicks off with Santa opening a window on an office party and taking a header onto the pavement 36 stories below, killing a bystander in a hard landing. It was drugs, his shocked coworkers admit to Lt. Dallas of New York Police and Security Department, who promptly collars the dealer and thinks she’s ready for anything. Well, one thing she’s not ready for is Trudy Lombard, the foster mother who terrorized the eight-year-old Eve back in Texas until she ran away. Now Trudy’s made the journey to the big city, her son Bobby and his accountant/bride Zana in tow, and she wants nothing more than to coo over her former charge, now world-famous as a homicide dick (Origin in Death, 2005, etc.), and incidentally to put the squeeze on Trudy’s billionaire husband Roarke. It seems that Trudy’s been following her protegée’s career with rapacious interest and is ready to go public with her every misstep on the way to success and celebrity. Roarke tosses her out with brusque counterthreats, of course, and when Eve pays her a call the next day to repeat the brush-off in person, she finds Trudy beaten to death in her hotel room. The setup promises to land Robb’s answer to the Jetsons in hot water—but it doesn’t, because they both have ironclad alibis and nobody believes they’d hire a hit. So the case at the center of the futuristic trimmings and the connubial romance comes down to nothing more weighty than figuring out whether Trudy’s relatives got rid of her, or whether the perp was some other survivor of her unique brand of nurturing who decided enough was enough.

Middling for this venerable, well-regarded series.