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W Is for Wasted: A Kinsey Millhone Mystery | [Sue Grafton]

W Is for Wasted: A Kinsey Millhone Mystery

Two dead bodies changed the course of my life that fall. One of them I knew and the other I'd never laid eyes on until I saw him in the morgue. The first was a local PI of suspect reputation. He'd been gunned down near the beach at Santa Teresa. It looked like a robbery gone bad. The other was on the beach six weeks later. He'd been sleeping rough. Probably homeless. No identification. A slip of paper with Millhone's name and number was in his pants pocket. The coroner asked her to come to the morgue to see if she could ID him.
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Publisher's Summary

Of the #1 New York Times best-selling Kinsey Millhone series, NPR said, "Makes me wish there were more than 26 letters."

Two dead bodies changed the course of my life that fall. One of them I knew and the other I'd never laid eyes on until I saw him in the morgue.

The first was a local PI of suspect reputation. He'd been gunned down near the beach at Santa Teresa. It looked like a robbery gone bad. The other was on the beach six weeks later. He'd been sleeping rough. Probably homeless. No identification. A slip of paper with Millhone's name and number was in his pants pocket. The coroner asked her to come to the morgue to see if she could ID him.

Two seemingly unrelated deaths, one a murder, the other apparently of natural causes.

But as Kinsey digs deeper into the mystery of the John Doe, some very strange linkages begin to emerge. And before long at least one aspect is solved as Kinsey literally finds the key to his identity. "And just like that," she says, "the lid to Pandora's box flew open. It would take me another day before I understood how many imps had been freed, but for the moment, I was inordinately pleased with myself."

In this multilayered tale, the surfaces seem clear, but the underpinnings are full of betrayals, misunderstandings, and outright murderous fraud. And Kinsey, through no fault of her own, is thoroughly compromised.

W is for…wanderer…worthless…wronged….

W is for wasted.

©2013 Sue Grafton (P)2013 Random House Audio

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (1207 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Tamara Kanab, UT, United States 10-09-13
    Tamara Kanab, UT, United States 10-09-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    ""W" is for Whiny"
    What did you like best about W Is for Wasted? What did you like least?

    I don't remember Kinsey being so whiny in the past. The character was so bad this time I almost didn't finish it.


    Would you recommend W Is for Wasted to your friends? Why or why not?

    No, I wouldn't recommend the book. Overall, it was pretty boring.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    The narrator is too old for Kinsey's voice.


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    Depends on who played Kinsey.


    Any additional comments?

    I've always enjoyed these books in the past but this one was really hard to get through.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathi Sterling, VA, United States 09-30-13
    Kathi Sterling, VA, United States 09-30-13 Member Since 2010

    Have re-discovered "quality time." Evenings listening to good books have replaced mindless tv watching. What a difference!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Liked it, in spite of the narrator"

    I'm a long time fan of the whole series. This one was good. Perhaps it lacked a little of the vitality the books had back in the beginning, but after all, Ms. Grafton has nearly made it through the alphabet at this point. This was also the first I have listened to, rather than reading. I think I might stick with the written version in future. I had probably imagined them differently in my mind for too long.

    The author took on the interesting challenge of interposing two mysteries, and the reader knows they must be connected, but not how, till well into the book. Kinsey Millhone, whom we have known from A through V as a virtual orphan is presented with new family. Unfortunately she doesn't get to know one before he turns up dead, at which point she is presented with her ensuing tasks as a private investigator.

    It is fun to read these Kinsey Millhone books, and over time we've all gotten to know the cast of characters. I felt that some of them are beginning to feel the least bit stale and take up a little too much "filler" space now, but that didn't detract from the story.

    My main complaint was that the narrator seemed uneven. Usually reading quite smoothly, occasionally would have the jarring effect of mis-reading a line, or whole character in a way that just sounded "off." I was a little surprised that it wasn't better directed or produced. I would have expected more for a series this popular.

    But all in all, it was wonderful finally to get to read the long-awaited "W" episode in this alphabet mystery series. Nothing could take away the pleasure of going on another adventure with Kinsey.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David HULL, MA, United States 09-25-13
    David HULL, MA, United States 09-25-13 Member Since 2005
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    "You have to be over 65 to enjoy"
    What disappointed you about W Is for Wasted?

    Incredibly boring, incredibly predictable. Why would Sue Grafton keep writing for the 1980's? Because she doesn't know anything newer? Every phrase was painfully outdated. Characters were cliche and annoying. Get a ghost writer to write X, Y , and Z!


    Has W Is for Wasted turned you off from other books in this genre?

    No, but I will be more careful to be sure they are writing in this decade.


    How could the performance have been better?

    Voices for many characters were just plain annoying. Like fingernails on a chalkboard.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from W Is for Wasted?

    too many to count.


    Any additional comments?

    Seriously, unless you are 65-70+ and have never kept up with the times - i.e. still in love with the 80's, then don't read this book. you will find it as painful as i did.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Patricia NOLENSVILLE, TN, United States 09-24-13
    Patricia NOLENSVILLE, TN, United States 09-24-13 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "W is for waited for this awesome book"
    Would you listen to W Is for Wasted again? Why?

    Yes, because I like the way Sue Grafton writes and I may have missed something the first time.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The way Kinsey has found more family in a crude way. And the way she finds out what she is looking for in an investigation.


    Which character – as performed by Judy Kaye – was your favorite?

    Kinsey


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    More like laugh and fuss.What I mean by fuss is when you knew the answer and Kinsey would leave you hanging to wait til she got around to what she wanted you to know.


    Any additional comments?

    I can't wait til the next books come out to finish the alphabet X, Y & Z. Then on to more of Kinsey Millhone in a different setting at least I hope she keeps going. I have all of this series so far.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elizabeth Lincoln, MA, USA 09-24-13
    Elizabeth Lincoln, MA, USA 09-24-13 Member Since 2005
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    "W is for Waste of Time"
    What disappointed you about W Is for Wasted?

    This is a shadow of Grafton's previous books -- it's tedious, wordy, the mystery is not very compelling . . . the characters are flat.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Sue Grafton again?

    Maybe. I am a long time fan. In the past, I've been quick to purchase her mysteries.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from W Is for Wasted?

    The scene where the lawyer strips in her office and then dresses in business attire. Why? If a lawyer walked into her office and took off all her clothes I'd run for the hills!


    Any additional comments?

    I hope Ms. Grafton wakes up and writes a better book next time!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lamagna Tempe, AZ, United States 09-18-13
    Lamagna Tempe, AZ, United States 09-18-13 Member Since 2008
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    "Love, love, love Kinsey!"

    This book has once again reminded me why I adore this series! Kinsey is someone I want to know and a friend I want to have. The details are perfection, and the narrator is perfect. Thanks you Sue Grafton for bringing Kinsey into my life once again.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C. Walker IN 09-14-13
    C. Walker IN 09-14-13 Member Since 2005

    CWalker

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    "Slow"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    I have always loved SG's book but this was painfully slow. And Kinsey's lack of a spine is annoying. Have read or listened to all the Alphabet books but this is the last I'm buying. Could listen to Judy Kaye forever, though.


    What was most disappointing about Sue Grafton’s story?

    Slow development. Uninteresting characters. Sue being taken advantage of w/o question.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Can't think of any. Difficult to finish.


    Any additional comments?

    Sorry, really looked forward to this but disappointed.

    7 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C. Telfair Shepherdstown, WV, United States 10-03-13
    C. Telfair Shepherdstown, WV, United States 10-03-13 Member Since 2006

    Audible has changed my life! Dry , itchy eyes were destroying one of my greatest pleasures - reading. Now I am experiencing books again!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    ""W" is for "Why?""

    Grafton rejuvenated her Kinsey Millhone series during the past few entries. That momentum kind of gets lost in "W".

    Although the story lines are cleverly brought together, there's a sluggishness to this one. Kinsey puts up with a lot of stuff that Kinsey just wouldn't put up with - and that results in some frustration for the reader. I kept wanting to just "smack her upside the head"! There is one particularly obvious (and pointless) red herring. And, although Grafton presents a realistic and nonjudgmental view of the homeless, other seemingly-important characters and topics just sort of disappear along the way.

    Hopefully, we'll see Kinsey rebound again at the very last of the alphabet.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bob Longmont, CO, United States 09-20-13
    Bob Longmont, CO, United States 09-20-13 Member Since 2011
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    "Sue's too famous for an editor."

    I went back read some of Grafton's earlier work. The stories were nicely plotted, pleasingly intricate and punchy. Those "Kinsey moments" we all love were pithy and somewhat surprising.

    However, W and, frankly, maybe the last 10 or so mysteries are just bloated with more "Kinsey moments" than I ever needed or cared about.

    The stories are about the same in terms of plot and intricacy, so what fills up the extra 100 pages? Instead of a hard bitten, hard nosed Kinsey, we get an introverted, self absorbed, self doubting detective who lets events control her instead of the other way around. We get long, completely unrealistic sequences of conversation and events.

    It's been pretty obvious, ever since the Millhone series started to break the 200 page limit, that Sue is tired of Kinsey. It's time for Grafton to re-hire her editors so that they can re-invigorate and harden up the series for the final episodes.

    5 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Karla TOPEKA, KS, United States 06-01-14
    Karla TOPEKA, KS, United States 06-01-14 Member Since 2012
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    "Don't take so long to get to the story"
    What did you like best about W Is for Wasted? What did you like least?

    The story would have been better if she didn't itemize everything around her. Probably could have shorten the book by 10-12 chapters.


    Was W Is for Wasted worth the listening time?

    eventually


    Any additional comments?

    I would have given up if this hadn't been for the book club. Could have skpped the first 8-9 chapters and still been okay.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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