RITA Reader Challenge Review

RITA Reader Challenge: New York to Dallas by JD Robb

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Title: New York to Dallas
Author: JD Robb
Publication Info: Putnam 2011
ISBN: 978-0399157783
Genre: Romantic Suspense

New York to DallasThis RITA Reader Challenge review comes from Silver James. This book is nominated in the Romantic Suspense category.

The summary: The number-one New York Times-bestselling author J. D. Robb presents an intense and terrifying new case for New York homicide cop Eve Dallas, one that will take her all the way to the city that gave her her name-and plunge her into the nightmares of her childhood.

When a monster named Isaac McQueen-taken down by Eve back in her uniform days-escapes from Rikers, he has two things in mind. One is to pick up where he left off, abducting young victims and leaving them scarred in both mind and body. The other is to get revenge on the woman who stopped him all those years ago.

Normally I'd post reviews books that haven't been mentioned yet, but Silver's review really spoke to me and I wanted to share it. Here is Silver's review: 

When SB Sarah offered up books for the RITA challenge, I wanted to review NEW YORK TO DALLAS for several reasons. I’m going to get a little personal so if TMI isn’t your thing, look away. Go ahead. I’ll wait. Move along, there’s nothing here to see… *hums theme from that trivia show where contestants ask questions about the answers*

Ready? Great. Caveat time. I didn’t discover JD Robb, Eve Dallas, or the In Death series until nineteen had already been published. A friend suggested I might like the series, given my career in law enforcement and the fire service. I checked out NAKED IN DEATH from the library, and when I discovered I couldn’t get the rest of the books in order because they were often checked out, I set about assembling my collection. Starting with #20, SURVIVOR IN DEATH, the hardbacks showed up at my door soon after release.

NAKED IN DEATH is my “chicken soup” book. Had someone asked why, I couldn’t have answered. Until I reread NEW YORK TO DALLAS for this review. See, I read it during mid-April. Mid-April, specifically April 19th, is a Very Bad Time™ for me. I suffer from PTSD related to the Oklahoma City Bombing. You’d think that 17 years would be enough time to get over it. Nope. It’s not. I finally got it. The dots I’d not connected finally filtered through my Swiss-cheese brain. I now understand why Eve resonates with me, why this series—despite some ups and downs in the stories—keep me awake at night reading. Eve’s PTSD is so deeply personal, could be so deeply debilitating that more people than not simply wouldn’t get out of bed in the morning. But not Eve. She not only gets out of bed, she charges headlong after the very things that haunt her.

In this particular episode of Eve’s life, she must return to the root of her nightmares and confront them in ways unimaginable to most of us. Like a few of the books along the way, this one is a defining point in Eve’s life. This is not the book to pick up if you want to start this series. This is the book to read after you’ve read them all. To understand the button in Roarke’s pocket, Eve’s reluctance to form relationships, and the horror she faces in the end, start at the beginning. You’ll thank me for suggesting it. Trust me.

I would give this book an A+ but two other books in the series hold that grade—NAKED IN DEATH and TREACHERY IN DEATH, which is the full-length novel just preceding NYtD. Those of us who love the In Death books are nigh on fanatics. And I finally figured out why I am—Eve and Roark and all the other characters, the stories themselves—they all touch me on a deeply personal level that I didn’t recognize until this reread. These are books that touch my heart. My soul. And they make me feel not quite so alone and like I can confront the past and move on with my life. Thank you for giving me the opportunity for some self-exploration, and self-understanding.


This book is available from Goodreads | Amazon | BN | Sony | Kobo.

Comments are Closed

  1. 1
    library addict says:

    Thanks for sharing.

    My top 5 books in this series tends to change with my mood. Today I will say they are Conspiracy, Portrait, Divided, Memory, and NY2D

    Though on any given day Naked, Glory, Judgment, Reunion, Survivor, and Innocent could be there, too.

  2. 2
    Karen H near Tampa says:

    I don’t have a particular favorite book in the series, and, in fact, found NY2D difficult to read because of the pain, but I love this series.  Yes, I love it for Roarke who is totally hot but also gets Eve and loves her and takes care of her. And I love Eve because she’s smart and she gets so upset about girly things and whacks at (I put “cut” first but that’s not really what happens) her hair with a scissors and doesn’t care what she wears as long as she’s comfortable and covered and she had trouble realizing that people cared for her. And the people in her “posse,” both the law enforcement friends and the Mavis group and Sommerfield, are so well drawn that I love them, too. I wish Nora could write these faster!

  3. 3
    Sarah says:

    Thanks for being so open, and for the excellent review.  Eve is such a survivor, I can see how she would resonate with you.  I first read an Eve Dallas book when I picked up Survivor in Death from a remainder bin. And then my world was rocked.

    If we’re all listing our top 5, I’m going to go with Innocent, Loyalty, Treachery, Salvation and Naked.  But library addict is right – those can always change!

  4. 4
    TrishJ says:

    Great review.  I too consider Naked in Death a comfort.book, having read it about 10 times.  I love how Roark just gets Eve.  He lets her just be her .. and takes such good care of her.  Sigh.  I own all of the books in this series. 

  5. 5
    Kaetrin says:

    I enjoyed this one too but I didn’t grade it quite as high.  All of the In Death books are at the least a B for me though!  I missed the interactions between Peabody, Morris, McNab, Feeney etc in NY2D but I love Roarke and Eve so it was still a very enjoyable read.  I have all the series in print and also on audio – both are excellent.

  6. 6
    FairyKat says:

    That was a truly heroic reviewer, one that not only faced the things that haunted her, but then was prepared to rehearse them in public for us to share in.  Respect.

  7. 7
    CarrieS says:

    Great review, and thanks for sharing your story.  It helped me not only understand the book better but understand a little more about PTSD.

  8. 8
    Amelia says:

    Great review. Thank you for sharing your story, it couldn’t have been easy.

  9. 9
    Julaine says:

    With some many writers with longevity comes disappointment, they literally write their series into the ground after awhile.  Not Nora Roberts/J. D. Robb.  When I pick up the newest book and settle in to read about the latest adventures of Eve and Roarke and all the friends and colleagues I KNOW I’m going to be satisfied with the outcome and looking forward to yet another tale. 

  10. 10
    JanLo says:

    I too am an addict and have all of the books both in print and on audio. I listen on my way to and from work each day.
    Living with someone who suffers from PTSD, these books resonate with me and help me understand the sudden panic attacks, debilitating paralysis, and magical thinking that often accompany this disorder. The books help me maintain patience when otherwise I might be tempted to (oh, okay, sometimes I do) roll my eyes and sigh.
    I love the relationships – both friend and lovers in the books and can hardly wait for the next installment. Keep going La Nora, we hang on to each book and wonder where the path will lead next.

  11. 11
    Joy says:

    I found this book hard to read since Eve’s pain was so well portrayed. What I’ve found interesting about the series is that Eve is healing and coping better with her PTSD.  Yes, she hurts at times but we all do when confronted with painful events in our pasts.  This is a much healthier Eve than in Naked.  So often writers with a long standing series characters don’t show the complexity and growth of these characters the way the in Death books do.  Roarke isn’t just a sexy alpha hero but carries his own scars and learns to deal with his past, his father and mother, in positive ways.  Great work, Nora!  Who says romance novels are just escapist fluff or mommy porn….millions of readers know differently!

  12. 12
    Sunshinelvr73 says:

    I know I’m coming to this discussion super late but I’ve just found this site and I love it.
    I also own every book in this series, in paperback and on my nook, and I re-read them at least once a year, if not more.  When I first came to the series there were only 5 books and every time a new one was released I’d read the whole series from the beginning.  I had to stop that after the 20th book came out because it was taking too long.
    My favorite aspect of the series, besides Roarke’s obvious love for Eve, is the way Nora Roberts has grown the characters gradually, a little more each book, so that it’s not a jarring change, but a realistic representation of the human experience.  No one changes overnight, it’s a growth process that takes time and she does such a wonderful job showing that with all of the characters.
    I sincerely hope this series never ends.

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