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Book Club Discussion Questions: Secrets in Death by JD Robb

Updated: Mar 18, 2022

For those of you that haven't or couldn't attend book club lately, we'll be publishing the previous months' discussion questions here. I hope eventually to post discussion questions for all of the books we've covered since I took over a couple of years ago and beyond, all the way to the beginning over a decade and a half ago. It will take a while. Until then, we will be posting discussion questions on a weekly basis. Here are the questions from a 2018 title, Secrets in Death. We hope these questions spark discussions of your own.


Secrets in Death

by JD Robb (aka Nora Roberts)


The chic Manhattan nightspot Du Vin is not the kind of place Eve Dallas would usually patronize, and it’s not the kind of bar where a lot of blood gets spilled. But that’s exactly what happens one cold February evening.

The mortally wounded woman is Larinda Mars, a self-described “social information reporter,” or as most people would call it, a professional gossip. As it turns out, she was keeping the most shocking stories quiet, for profitable use in her side business as a blackmailer. Setting her sights on rich, prominent marks, she’d find out what they most wanted to keep hidden and then bleed them dry. Now someone’s done the same to her, literally—with a knife to the brachial artery.

Eve didn’t like Larinda Mars. But she likes murder even less. To find justice for this victim, she’ll have to plunge into the dirty little secrets of all the people Larinda Mars victimized herself. But along the way, she may be exposed to some information she really didn’t want to know…


Discussion Questions

  1. What is the most important part of a mystery or thriller to each member of the group-characterization, action, dialogue, or setting? How does this book rate in each of these areas?

  2. Seeing as we started so far into the series, number 56 of the current 58, I have to ask if anyone has read previous books in the series

    1. If yes: Were you surprised by any of the “reveals” (i.e. Summerset’s secret)

    2. If no: What did you think of the near futuristic world JD Robb created? What echoes of today’s world in her world of tomorrow really hit home? What seemed over the top, if any? Was there anything about the setting that completely threw you? Did she use enough details to keep you in a futuristic world or did you find yourself forgetting you were in the future?

    3. If no: How has reading a book so far into the series affected your enjoyment of the story? Your understanding? Would you go back and read more of the series?

  3. Discuss the various interpretations of the title in terms of the book

  4. Nora Roberts is best known for her romance novels, of which she has written over 188 titles. Do you think her experience with romance affected how she approached the characters or plot? How well do you think she does in the mystery field? What could she have done better? What did she excel at?

  5. How effective is the author's use of plot twists and red herrings? Were you able to predict certain things before they happened, or did the author keep you guessing until the end of the story? Was the plot believable?

  6. Agatha Christie wrote in her autobiography about her dislike of mysteries having a romantic subplot. Do you agree or disagree with her views? Did this book have an element of romance? If so, do you feel the love aspect enhanced or detracted from the story?

  7. Did this book remind you of another? Of TV series or movies?

  8. Did you find the characters relatable? Were they fully realized? Or did you find the characters to be repetitions of one another?

  9. Have you read any other books by this author? How did they compare to this book?

  10. How original / unique was this book?

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