Monday 30 October 2017

Book ~ "D is for Deadbeat" (1987) Sue Grafton

From Goodreads ~ When Alvin Limardo walks into P.I. Kinsey Millhone's office, she smells bad news. He wants Kinsey to deliver $25,000. The recipient: A fifteen-year-old boy. It's a simple matter. So simple that Kinsey wonders why he doesn't deliver the money himself. She's almost certain something is off. But with rent due, Kinsey accepts Limardo's retainer against her better judgment.

When Limardo's check bounces, Kinsey discovers she's been had big time. Alvin Limardo is really John Daggett - an ex-con with a drinking problem, two wives to boot and a slew of people who would like to see him dead. Now Kinsey is out four hundred dollars and in hot pursuit of Daggett. 

When Daggett's corpse shows up floating in the Santa Teresa surf, the cops rule the death an accident. Kinsey thinks it's murder. But seeking justice for a man who everyone seemed to despise is going to be a lot tougher than she bargained for - and what awaits her at the end of the road is much more disturbing than she could've ever imagined.

Kinsey Millhone is a private detective in Santa Teresa, CA.  She is hired by Alvin Limardo to deliver a cheque for $25,000 to a 15-year-old boy named Tony.  According to Limardo, Tony helped him through a tough time in his life, leaving him indebted.  When the retainer cheque bounces, she discovers that Limardo is actually John Daggett, who had recently been released from prison.  As it turns out, Daggett had been driving drunk a couple years ago and ran into a car, killing everyone but Tony.  Daggett is then found dead on the beach a couple days later.  The police say he got drunk and drowned but Kinsey thinks he was murdered.

Kinsey is then hired by Daggett's daughter, Barbara, to find out what really happened.  Daggett wasn't well-liked so there could a lot people who wanted him dead.  And who was the blonde woman he had been partying with the night he died?

I thought this book was just okay.  I liked the writing style.  It is written in first person perspective in Kinsey's voice.  I found there were a lot of characters involved and I had a hard time keeping them straight.  As a head's up, there is swearing and adult activity.  I wasn't crazy about the ending ... I found it kind of sad and think it could have ended better.

This is the fourth in the "alphabet series" featuring Kinsey Millhone.  I discovered this series in the mid-1990s and have read them all.  Since the series will soon come to an end (I finished the latest, Y is for Yesterday, yesterday), I am starting at the beginning and rereading them.  They are all set in the 1980s before everyone had a computer, cell phone, people still smoke in public places, etc.

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