Review: Apprentice in Death (In Death #43) by J.D. Robb

Print Length: 375 pages
Publisher: Berkley (September 6, 2016)

From Nature versus nurture... 
The shots came quickly, silently, and with deadly accuracy. Within seconds, three people were dead at Central Park’s ice skating rink. The victims: a talented young skater, a doctor, and a teacher. As random as random can be.

Eve Dallas has seen a lot of killers during her time with the NYPSD, but never one like this. After reviewing security videos, it becomes clear that the victims were killed by a sniper firing a tactical laser rifle, who could have been miles away when the trigger was pulled. And though the locations where the shooter could have set up seem endless, the list of people with that particular skill set is finite: police, military, professional killer.

Eve’s husband, Roarke, has unlimited resources—and genius—at his disposal. And when his computer program leads Eve to the location of the sniper, she learns a shocking fact: There were two—one older, one younger. Someone is being trained by an expert in the science of killing, and they have an agenda. Central Park was just a warm-up. And as another sniper attack shakes the city to its core, Eve realizes that though we’re all shaped by the people around us, there are those who are just born evil...


My Rating: 4 stars out of 5

As someone who has devoured every book in this series - this one was a bit of a let down for me (although it had its moments). To start with, if Roarke was able to in the span of a night, develop a computer program to track a possible sniper nest - why was this program not already developed and sold to police departments? For someone as tech and business savvy as he is, one would think he would have already had something like this in production. With the amount of work that would have had to go into it, it almost seems inconceivable that he was able to do it in such a short span of time. 

I was also a bit disappointed with how quickly the suspects were identified. One of my favorite things about this series is typically how the case unfolds and how the killer is (sometimes) hiding in plain sight. This one missed the mark, even though it did take the second half of the book in order to actually apprehend the culprits. 

On the flip side of things, I was honestly touched at the interactions between Summerset and Eve. While I have come to enjoy their sniping matches, the fact that in that moment they were able to admit to their mutual respect for one another was lovely to see. I wouldn't want it to become a "common" thing, but in that moment, it was absolutely perfect for the story. 

I also found the overall story arc to be an engaging one, perhaps not as fast moving as some of the other stories, but I feel like the way we got to see inside the mind of the killers as well as the police, it gave the story a more interesting feel. It was also interesting to see how the police would find a connection to the murders, if indeed there was one to be found.

Overall, I do think that this book will appeal those who enjoy a well-written police thriller! I will definitely read more from this author! 

Apprentice in Death (In Death #43)  is available from

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