In the "...in Death" series of books by J.D. Robb, Lt. Eve Dallas is one tough cop. She works homicide and sees death every day and in the year 2059 homicides occur in some very creative fashions. She has to be tough to bring down the criminals and to do right for the victims. One of the things that have made her the tough cop she is, is her dark past. She was abused by her father until she was 8 years old. To get away from him she killed him...an 8 year old girl stabbing a man with a steak knife to keep from getting raped and beaten...that's tough. After she killed her father she was found wandering the streets. She was then put into the "system" and the State had her in and out of foster care. Now she is no longer a victim. She now stands for the victims and is better for it.
However we all know no matter how tough we may be, our pasts can come back to haunt us. That is just what happens to Eve Dallas in this book, "Memory in Death." Eve's nightmares did not end once she killed her father, in foster care she was abused as well. In this book Eve's first foster parent, Trudy Lombard, sees on the vidscreen the news reports of Eve and Roarke cracking the case of what is now international news of the cloning scandal. Trudy decides to take a vacation from Texas and take her son and daughter-in-law to New York to see how "their little Eve" is doing.
When Trudy makes a surprise visit to Eve's office Eve becomes overwhelmed by the horrid memories of the time with Trudy and becomes physically ill and demands Trudy to leave. Eve is so ill she leaves early, plopping the final touches of a case into Peabody's lap, with no explanation. When she gets home Roarke eases some of her illness by allowing Eve to talk about that dark part of memory he then gives her a soother and sends her to bed. You know Eve is ill when she takes a soother and goes to bed like that.
After hearing Eve's story, Roarke suspects Trudy had more up her sleeve than just reliving old times, and he's correct. Roarke sets up a meeting with Trudy and she reveals here true reason, to get some money or release Eve's old records, which she luckily has kept on all the kids she kept as a foster parent. After telling Roarke she wants $2 million, which is nothing to Roarke, Roarke threatens her and sends her running from his office. Side note here, the way Roarke threatens her is classic and that small scene alone is worth reading this book. Roarke has a way.
The next day Trudy is found dead by Eve, who wanted to tell her personally to go back to Texas. Eve discovers the body and immediately finds herself in the awkward position of trying to find a killer of someone she hates. As the investigation turns Eve finds that she was only one of many girls abused by Trudy Lombard's foster parenting, and all of them wanted her dead. But which one did it?
This is one great whodunit. Less on the sci-fi as some of the other books, but a great mystery.