Review of “Shelter in Place” by Nora Roberts

Roberts, Nora. Shelter in Place. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 2018.

Hardcover | $27.99 USD | ISBN-13: 978-1250161598 | 438 pages | Romantic Suspense

5 stars

Shelter in Place is the best in the admittedly short list of books I’ve read from Nora Roberts thus far. But I think what makes it stand out, especially having picked up a number of her romantic suspense novels, both under her own name and as J.D. Robb, is that it shows her at her full potential as a writer. Especially with the last book I read from her, I could not help but wish she had done more to make me care about the characters and their relationships with one another over time, while also developing the suspense plot and perhaps even putting it at at the forefront, and this fulfilled my criteria.

I love the care put into establishing who the main players are through their reactions to this senseless tragedy, especially since it’s an issue that is very relevant right now. I love the development of Simone and Reed and even some of the supporting players due to having gone through this experience, and how the story slowed down to give them time to grow and heal, thus making the romance, which kicks off about halfway through, much more rewarding.

One of the best parts, however, was the development of the perpetrator’s character. There is something bizarrely compelling about a psychopathic killer, and Roberts captures their twisted mind perfectly.

This was a nice breath of fresh air, especially since it does deviate from Roberts’ standard “formula” that I’ve started to notice in many of her books. I would recommend this to both Nora readers and new readers, especially those who love gritty thrillers with timely topics.