“A” Is For Alibi by Sue Grafton was the July pick for our mystery book club, chosen by one of our members.
Here is another “Jenn Reads” that is not a newer book! I’m a huge fan of book
clubs picking books that are not necessarily new, something every other book club in the world is reading (Can I tell you how many times I’ve seen Gone Girl or The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Societyhas been read by book clubs?), and perhaps a little off the beaten path.
Grafton’s W Is For Wasted comes out in September, so it was appropriate that our member chose this title. Grafton started this series more than 30 years ago and has been plugging away at the alphabet ever since. Wonder how relieved she’s going to feel when she finishes this series and can start another?!
“A” Is For Alibi starts with the main character, Kinsey Millhone stating that she murdered someone just days before. Well! How about that for a setup! Makes you curious to know whom she killed. Kinsey, a private investigator, has been hired by Nikki Fife to investigate the murder of her husband, which she has just spent eight years in prison for.
Laurence Fife was a divorce lawyer, excellent at his job, but a scoundrel, adulterer, and abusive man. So there are many who would have liked to do him in. The story twists when it comes out that his accountant, Libby Glass, was killed in the same manner he was. It was suspected the two were having an affair.
Kinsey sets off on an investigation that takes her to Las Vegas and Los Angeles. Most of the story takes place in Santa Theresa, California and Grafton does a fantastic job at describing the location. I could feel the California sunshine on my face as Kinsey went on her runs (which, by the way, I didn’t need to know every time she went for a run) and the sand at my feet as she visited her lover Charlie while he dog sat.
Kinsey displaces some very rookie moves for a season private investigator and former police officer, specially trusting people she shouldn’t trust. She wipes down her room in Las Vegas, thinking the police might tie her to a murder there, but forgets that she checked in and paid with a credit card.
What I do like about Kinsey is her doggedness, want to do right, and perseverance. Unlike Stephanie Plum, who is just terrible about being a bounty hunter and lucks into a lot of her leads, Kinsey actually sits down and does the work, and follows through.
I’ll probably continue with the series, as it is one of my mother’s favorites, and I’d like to see how Kinsey develops as a character. “A” Is For Alibi is a good start to the series.
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
See you in the stacks,