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Publisher's Summary

Lorna Kepler was beautiful and willful, a loner who couldn't resist flirting with danger. Maybe that's what killed her.

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.

Critic Reviews

"Grafton's latest is one of her best." (Booklist)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Bill
  • Kailua Kona, HI, United States
  • 07-08-12

Weak Entry in the Kinsey Millhone Series

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.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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The Usual

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.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • George
  • United States
  • 04-01-13

This Series Covers a Lot of Ground

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.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Amanda
  • FORT GORDON, GA, United States
  • 03-03-14

Another Kinsey Millhone favorite!

What did you love best about K Is for Killer?

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.

What other book might you compare K Is for Killer to and why?

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.

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Mary Peiffer?

Judy Kaye is the only narrator I consider as the "voice" of Kinsey.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Kinsey Millhone is a great character

Would you listen to K Is for Killer again? Why?

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.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes, and wish I could.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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The weakest story so far

The weakest story so far. Could say more but want to give others the option to judge themselves

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need Judith Kay reading it for full effect. ending

was too brief would've liked a fuller ending along with a few loose ends tied up

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wonderful

Sue Grafton is always fun and exciting, leaves you wanting more wish that there were more letters in the alphabet.

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Great Book

Loved the book, I really like Mary performance as Kinsey. I found that I had to back up the story a few times because I missed ques. Sue has you guessing who it is until the end.

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Kinsey is so determined to find who killed this be

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes, I recommend the whole series.

What other book might you compare K Is for Killer to and why?

Sort of like following the Patricia Cornwell series.

What about Mary Peiffer’s performance did you like?

Yes, I do not like the new narrator.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes but it usually takes me a week listening while I work.

Any additional comments?

I have been very happy with Audible because they give you free offers and have sales and pretty good prices. I also like how you can read a little about each story before purchasing. Love listening don't get headaches like reading for hours.