Friday 6 November 2015

Book ~ "X" (2015) Sue Grafton

From Goodreads ~ X: The number ten. An unknown quantity. A mistake. A cross. A kiss.

X: The shortest entry in Webster’s Unabridged. Derived from Greek and Latin and commonly found in science, medicine, and religion. The most graphically dramatic letter. Notoriously tricky to pronounce: think xylophone.

X: The twenty-fourth letter in the English alphabet.

It features a remorseless serial killer who leaves no trace of his crimes. Once again breaking the rules and establishing new paths, Grafton wastes little time identifying this sociopath. The test is whether Kinsey can prove her case against him before she becomes his next victim.

There are a couple mysteries going on in this book.  Kinsey is a private investigator in Santa Theresa, CA.  She is hired by a rich woman to find the adult son she gave up for adoption when she was young.  Kinsey gets the job done but her involvement doesn't end.

Kinsey's former colleague, Pete, was killed the previous summer.  His widow asked Kinsey to go through some of his personal effects.  She comes across a padded envelope full of mementos and a cryptic note.  She becomes involved with a not-so-nice person as she is determined to deliver the envelope to its owner 20+ years later.

In the meantime, Kinsey and Henry have new neighbours.  An older couple have moved in next door and are continually imposing on them for favours.

This is the 24rd in the "alphabet series" featuring Kinsey Millhone.  I discovered them in the mid-1990s and have been a fan since and have read them all ... the first one, A is for Alibi, was written in 1982.  They are all set in the 1980s (this one takes place in March 1989) before everyone had a computer, cell phone, etc.

I thought this book was okay.  I like the writing style ... it's like Kinsey was talking to me and telling me what's going on.  The writing could have been tighter, though, as there were a lot of details and descriptions.  As a head's up, there is some swearing.

During this time, there was a drought and everyone was asked to be diligent about water conservation.  Henry, Kinsey's landlord, was doing his part in cutting back and still found that his water bill was increasing, which was driving him crazy.  There was waaaaaay too much time spend with Henry going into great detail about irrigation, water usage, etc.

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