I honestly do not remember exactly when I was introduced to Sue Grafton and her heroine, Kinsey Millhone. I suspect it was when the first of her Alphabet Mysteries moved into paperback, somewhere around 1982. At that point I was devouring several women mystery writers, but only one stayed on my To Be Read List. Sue.
I should tell you that at that point in time I was young, broke, and frequented the local library when budget would not stretch to cover new paperbacks, let along hardback books. Grafton quickly moved to my Hardback list and stayed there until I acquired my first Kindle.
The Alphabet series was set in the 1980s and stayed there. Something novel after a while because Sue had to construct her stories without computers, cell phones, and a plethora of other tech that just was not available. While Kinsey might have maneuvered the world of paper files and pay phones, many of her later readers wouldn’t have a clue.
Originally intended to have one book per letter for the entire 26 letters, sadly Sue passed away just after book 25 came out. Somehow, it just seemed right. Even now.
Kinsey is sharp, funny, quirky, and a whole host of other things that endeared her to me. I love her sense of humor, her loyalty, her guts and her fears. The books cover her journey not only to crack the cases her clients bring her, but also the quirks of her own life. The books are not just the unfolding of the crime(s) but of life’s mysteries, too.
The audio books are a delight to listen to. Perfectly matched with Judy Kaye’s narration, they bring Kinsey to life.
I won’t lie, I miss Sue and Kinsey. Both are interesting women who put everything into their work. I am grateful, not to mention thankful, that I have several versions of the books (audio, paper and electronic) so I can visit them, not to mention Henry (I can smell his baking from here…) whenever I want.
Check out more about Sue here.