X – Sue Grafton


This is a book in the author’s Alphabet series featuring private investigator Kinsey Millhone. I started reading them when the first book was released, and faithfully followed all the way through to the middle of the alphabet. At that point, I read one that fell completely flat, and lost interest. Fortunately, the missing parts did not prevent me picking up the flow of Millhone’s life, as I rejoined her adventures.

The story starts with a request to locate a son put up for adoption. Of course, all is not what it seems, and soon Kinsey is trying to find out the truth. At the same time, there are other threads in the book, including an unlikely diversion into plumbing and water conservation, and a widow needing help with her tax records.

The author does bring all the threads together in a reasonable conclusion, but at times I felt as if the story was going off on its own accord, for no good reason. It was as if the author had lost control, and was no longer able to tell the difference between quirky and boring. I think boring won out too often.

This was OK, but did not demonstrate the author’s talents at their best. I do recommend the series – especially the opening dozen or so books – but this experience means I am unlikely to try and fill in the unread parts of the series, nor bother about Y and Z if ever completed.