Her death had raised a host of tough questions. The cops suspected homicide, but they could find neither motive nor suspect. Even the means were mysterious: Lorna's body was so badly decomposed when it was discovered that they couldn't be certain she hadn't died of natural causes. In the way of overworked cops everywhere, the case was gradually shifted to the back burner and became another unsolved file. Only Lorna's mother kept it alive, consumed by the certainty that somebody out there had gotten away with murder. So she hired Kinsey Millhone, P.I.
Don't miss the other titles in the Kinsey Millhone Alphabet Mystery Series.
©1994 Sue Grafton; (P)1994 Random House, Inc. Random House Audio, a division of Random House, Inc.
"Grafton's latest is one of her best." (Booklist)
The Path Between the Seas to The Great Bridge ~ Kagan's Peloponnesian War to Gaddis' Cold One ~ Mornings on Horseback to a River of Doubt ~ Tom to Huck ~ Lennie to Charley ~ Cadfael to Cross ~ Rhyme to Reacher ~ Blomkvist and Salander to Wallander and Wallander ~ Moving Cheese or Eating Frogs ~ On the Road and Into Thin Air ~ The End of History to A Short History of Everything to ... well ... everything else.
It's almost worth skipping this one. If Grafton's character development didn't take place over multiple novels, I would. As it is, you probably should give this a listen if you are already committed to the series. I did and I found that all the typical Grafton weaknesses were on display and new ones were added. Unfortunately, the strong plot development that ordinarily compensates for these weaknesses is lacking this time.
Major weakness include:
Non-existent character development, especially with most characters that do not recur in the series, and including this novel's villain.
Unusually poor plot development. Ordinarily, this is Grafton's strength. It is MIA with this novel.
Exceptionally poorly drawn villain. When the villain is revealed, I wager you will find yourself asking WHO??? followed quickly with WHY??? If so, your questions will go largely unanswered.
An incredibly abrupt ending, with virtually all minor plot lines left dangling.
An uncharacteristically maudlin summary from Millhone in the Epilogue.
Typical Series weaknesses also continue, including:
The absence of the sort of cues that most author's use to remind readers of the identities of different characters, especially when many characters are introduced throughout the novel. Here, at most, you will be reminded of a character's first name. If you don't remember who they are among the dozen plus characters new to the novel, well, at least you have a rewind button.
And perhaps the greatest weakness of the series ~ the narrator. These novels were recorded early in the evolution of audiobooks, which is the only reason I can imagine that this narrator found any work. It seems to me that a narrator should, at least, pronounce words correctly. This one muffs some incredibly common ones ~ very distracting when listening. Characterizations, dramatic pacing, inflection ... all the other narrative skills are also weak or missing altogether.
I am 11 books into this series, and beginning to despair. Unusually, writers improve as they develop a series. That is not happening here. Sigh.
If you like Sue Grafton, then you will like this one. Nothing out of the ordinary, but that's what I like about the Grafton books is that you pretty much know you are going to have a decent detective story without wondering if you are going to hear something that you don't want to un-hear.
This is a very solid series of mysteries. Even though this is close to the middle, the setting has barely budged from the 80's where it began. Which is fine, in a world of gadgets, because everything is simpler (and the book was written in '97). The books have a lot of little insights and little snippets of humor. Characters are described at length, and there is a general sense of gray (not truly dark) everywhere. This is probably one of the darker in the series, being about a woman (the deceased) who is a very successful prostitute. Basically, this is the meat of the series, that the people are complicated, and there are lots of corners to explore. Most of the books in the series have a lot to say about how hard it is to be young, and how tragic it often turns out to be. If you want a long series of books to read, the Grafton's are a good possibility.
I'm a WAHM with a rambunctious 5 year old, two dogs, and two cats! I love reading, sewing, and watching lots of BBC.
Wow - It's tough to just pick one thing I love about this book. Every Kinsey book is wonderful and special in it's own way. However, I loved seeing the friendship develop between Danielle and Kinsey.
I would compare this book to C is for Corpse, simply because of the protectiveness and loyalty Kinsey develops towards certain characters much like she developed for Bobby and his family.
Judy Kaye is the only narrator I consider as the "voice" of Kinsey.
I repeatedly listen to all the 'alphabet' series I have and am in the process of getting the ones I have missed in the past. The stories are very engaging.
Yes, and wish I could.
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