Book Review: A is for Alibi by Sue Grafton

If you look back through my book review history you’ll see that I read quite a bit of crime fiction. Although I like pretty much anything with a bit of mystery, I really like those strong, female heroines like VI Warshawski and Temperance Brennan, so I don’t quite know why it’s taken me this long to discover Sue Grafton’s detective Kinsey Millhone.

I have seen the ‘Alphabet books’ around before, but I think the fact that Grafton is already up to something like V or W has always put me off starting them, but after seeing the Kindle book of A is for Alibi for only 99p, I thought I’d try it.

Kinsey Millhone lives in Santa Teresa, California and is a rebellious and independent detective who has no thrived as a police officer, so set up on her own. A is for Alibi joins her with two mysterious marriages behind her and as she is asked by a convicted murderess to investigate her husband’s death – and find the real killer.

So excellent so far – all the best ingredients of a mystery including a business partner, a bitter ex-wife, a pair of dysfunctional children and a blackmailing secretary. All have motive to kill, but what about the seemingly unconnected death of a Los Angeles paralegal? This is just one of the lines of enquiry Kinsey finds herself thrown down as she tries to prove that a woman has been wrongly convicted, and the closer she gets to the truth, the more danger she is in.

As I said, I love the strong, female heroines of crime fiction and Kinsey Millhone has made my list. I know that I’ll have to read over 20 books to get up to date with her but, based on this one, it will not be a chore. Grafton creates a believable world and an engaging heroine, with just the right amount of secrets to keep you reading the series, which I definitely will.

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