“Isn't it odd how much fatter a book gets when you've read it several times?" Mo had said..."As if something were left between the pages every time you read it. Feelings, thoughts, sounds, smells...and then, when you look at the book again many years later, you find yourself there, too, a slightly younger self, slightly different, as if the book had preserved you like a pressed flower...both strange and familiar.”

Cornelia Funke, Inkspell

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Salvation In Death by J. D. Robb

Seconds after partaking of wine during a Catholic funeral mass, Father Miguel Flores is dead on the altar. Detective Lieutenant Eve Dallas confirms that the consecrated wine contained enough potassium cyanide to kill a rhino. And though the East Harlem neighborhood is a long way from the stone mansion she shares with her billionaire husband, Roarke, it’s the holiness flying around St. Christóbal’s that makes her uneasy.

The autopsy reveals faint scars of knife wounds, a removed tattoo—and evidence of plastic surgery suggesting “Father Flores” may not have been the man his parishioners thought. Now as Eve pieces together clues that suggest identity theft gang connections and a deeply personal act of revenge, she hopes to track down whoever committed this unholy act. Until a second murder—in front of an even larger crowd of worshippers—knocks the whole investigation sideways…

This is what the front of the book says this story is about. Salvation In Death delves into the complicated matter of revenge and salvation. When does revenge bring us salvation? Or, does it ever result in salvation?

J. D. Robb does a fantastic job of bringing forth answers to those questions or making us rethink what we believe about revenge. So what is this story about? This is a story about blurred lines between right and wrong, justified murder or unjustified murder. Can one be given absolution when the murdered victim deserved punishment? Is punishment ours to net out?

Judgement is not ours to give. I believe all too often one gets lost in the crime of murder, in the loss of that someone special. One gets lost in wanting the perpetrator to pay the price and finds themselves on the road to netting out the punishment. A person needs to be careful not to fall into that mindset.

It can test one’s faith during the times one learns that his religion condones murder in special circumstances.
“Let me ask you this…Is killing ever permitted in your religion?”
“In war, in self-defence, or to defend the life of another.”
This is a conversation between Eve Dallas and one of the priests in this story. We can see here were lines may become blurred between right and wrong. Murder may not be murder in special cases religion can turn a blind eye. However, it is also true that murder cannot be a solution to the crime of murder. One murder leads to a second murder, possibly out of revenge, this second murder may lead to a third one done as a copycat to the second. And so a vicious cycle is started. Salvation does not come in death—in murder. “Murder does not resolve murder. It perpetuates it.”(J. D. Robb, Salvation In Death).
By its ripple effect what happens now—murder—affects some or all of us at a later time period. A murdered son has a mother who grieves and eventually nets out what she believes is justice by taking the life of the one who took her son’s. Two people die and one (a mother) goes through the court system as the perpetrator of a crime linked to the death of her son. What type of justice should this mother be given? Should justice be kind and lenient, or should it be tough and uncompromising. Do you believe a mother has a right to take the life of the murderer of her son or do you believe as Eve Dallas does? “She took a life…Maybe it was a bad life, but it wasn’t her right.”

J. D. Robb deals out a face paced murder mystery with many twists and turns and the line between right and wrong becomes blurred. You may find yourself feeling bad for some of the characters in this story and may even believe that they had a right to do what they did, but unfortunately the law has a different take murder. You will need to read the story to find out if there is ever Salvation in Death. I give a 5 star rating. I enjoyed this book and its fast pace. It made what to keep reading. If you have not read any of J. D. Robb’s books then Salvation In Death is a good place to begin.

1 comment:

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