So, my initial thoughts of “Connections in Death” hold. However, I have to admit that I can’t give this five stars because I am now realizing it’s a bit off that Eve doesn’t get that maybe other people have different upbringings and it’s not all roses. I am happy that we get to see another side of New York though and it’s not just the rich and famous all of the time.
“Connections in Death” focuses on Eve investigating when a woman she just meets comes home to find her brother Lyle dead from an apparent drug overdose. The connections in the title refers to the fact that Rochelle is not only connected to Roarke (he interviews her for a position at one of his “houses” he is building for young girls) but also Crack (from the very first In Death book I think). When Eve meets Rochelle at a party that Nadine throws she gets her hackles up a bit because apparently she has learned nothing about being overly involved in who her male friends date. Seriously I will forever be salty about the DeWinter thing. Thank goodness though Roarke makes her see she’s being a dumbass. I loved the unraveling story in this one and we actually get to see more of Eve investigating and taking notice of people and histories. Eve finding out about gangs in New York is not really part of what she does, but she does end up talking to Strong again in this one (which I loved).
There is growth to Eve in this one. She realizes that sometimes the system doesn’t work for a lot of people. Her finding out about what the gangs have been up to (extortion, rape, drug running, assault, etc.) knocks her for a bit. That said there was some light moments too. I laughed a bunch of times when we have Eve bringing in food for her squad and everyone automatically thinking it was Roarke that did it and thanked him instead.
Roarke was pitch perfect in this one. There were no dumb couple fights. Just two people supporting each other. I maybe laughed at Roarke wanting to take down an attorney and realizing it was too easy. And I loved that he was really busy and couldn’t be there all of the time like he would have done in prior books.
Peabody was not as annoying. I maybe got a bit irked when she starts singing about love and romance and knows they are going to a morgue to view a dead man that is connected to at least two people she knows. I am still on the train that Peabody is still a straight psychopath.
Mira was in this too, but for once her expertise is allowed to shine. We don’t have Eve just going to her and telling Mira her read on a potential suspect (which has happened in the last bunch of books which drove me up the wall).
We get glimpses of Nadine, Mavis, and others, but I was glad to see Crack again and he was actually great. It was nice to see Eve knocked a bit off her axis. I am starting to wonder if Crack is her only friend that is a POC. Hmm I think two of her people working for her are too, but to me they are not really friends, they work for her. Anyway, it was a nice change for an “In Death” book to look more at POC. I hope the next one doesn’t just have them being the central plot point on gangs though.
The writing was really good in this one. Everything seems well researched and I liked the introduction of new characters in this one that we get. The flow was really good too. I will say that sometimes it’s okay if Eve can’t nail every suspect. Her close rate has to be like 100 percent at this point. It be fine that maybe she doesn’t get everyone and then she lives with that and they follow it up in a book later down in the series. Heck even Sandford did a good job with setting up Lucas Davenport with his own Moriarty.
The setting of New New York seems like it is more technology advanced, but still showing that there are the poor and those who will take advantage. It was good for once to not see all the bright and shining celebrities or rich that Roarke and Eve usually meet with in these books.
The ending seemed to be signifying a new maturity to Eve. Her realizing that sometimes what she does won’t matter, but she can still keep trying.