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Origin In Death    by J. D. Robb order for
Origin In Death
by J. D. Robb
Order:  USA  Can
Putnam, 2005 (2005)
Hardcover, Audio, CD
* * *   Reviewed by Martina Bexte

Robb (aka Nora Roberts) hits on a timely and thought-provoking theme in her latest installment of her popular In Death series. This time, Eve Dallas and her partner Peabody are called to the Center for Reconstructive and Cosmetic Surgery to investigate the death of its highly regarded and beloved founder, Dr. Wilfred B. Icove. The elderly doctor has been murdered with brutal efficiency - a single stab to the heart with a laser scalpel. The method, and the lack of any sort of struggle, tell Eve that Icove knew his attacker and that she is well versed in murder. The fact that the killer is female is made evident in the security tapes that show a stunning woman calmly walking into the facility and leaving ten minutes later in the same manner.

So begins Eve's thorough investigation of a Nobel Prize winner, regarded by the medical community as not only an innovator in his field, but a national treasure without a black mark against his name. Eve however, is not convinced that the good doctor could be that squeaky clean. In her world, nobody is perfect. With the help of her billionaire husband Roarke, she begins a more in depth search of Icove's background and medical dynasty. This includes investigating his grieving son, Wilfred Jr.. When Wilfred is murdered in the same manner and by the same shadowy woman, Eve's suspicions go on high alert. Roarke has by this time uncovered enough information to indicate that the Icoves were obsessed with perfection - and that over the last few decades they played with the laws of nature and with human morals in their quest to create the perfect woman.

The story grabs you from page one and ends with an edge-of-your seat hunt and chase scene that Eve and Roarke barely survive. In between there's the briskly paced and gritty procedural side of Eve's work, as well as nice segues of comic relief as Eve interacts with her team. She also must deal with the prospect of the Thanksgiving bash that Roarke is planning for his newly discovered and very large Irish family. J.D. Robb is once again in top form in Origin In Death.

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