`My name is Kinsey Millhone. I’m a private investigator, licensed by the state of California. I’m thirty-two years old, twice divorced, no kids. The day before yesterday I killed someone and the fact weighs heavily on my mind . . .’
When Laurence Fife was murdered, few cared. A slick divorce attorney with a reputation for ruthlessness, Fife was also rumoured to be a slippery ladies’ man. Plenty of people in the picturesque Southern California town of Santa Teresa had reason to want him dead. Including, thought the cops, his young and beautiful wife, Nikki. With motive, access and opportunity, Nikki was their number one suspect. The Jury thought so too.
Eight years later and out on parole, Nikki Fife hires Kinsey Millhone to find out who really killed her husband. But the trail has gone cold and there is a chilling twist even Kinsey didn’t expect . . .
`Skilful and ingenious’ Irish Times
`I love Sue Grafton’s Kinsey Millhone novels . . . you are never disappointed’ Guardian
`Will keep you awake until the last page has been turned’ Daily Mail
`Female, age thirty-two, self-employed and wiser than she used to be. For Kinsey Millhone, private investigator, only one thing stays the same. When a client sits down in the chair across the desk, she never knows what's going to happen next . . .'
There was nothing about Beverly Danziger to cause Kinsey concern. She was looking for her sister. There was a will to be settled. She paid up front. And if it seemed a lot of money for a routine job, Kinsey wasn't going to argue.
She kicked herself later for the things she didn't see - Beverly Danziger did not look as if she needed a few thousand dollars and she didn't seem like someone longing for a family reunion. But just as Kinsey begins to suspect foul play and start asking questions, Beverly Danziger pulls her off the case and fires her . . .
`One of the best written crime novels by anybody in recent memory' New York Times
`Kinsey Millhone [is] just about the gutsiest as well as the shrewdest of her kind' Observer
`An unusually compelling series of novels with a notably convincing central character' Guardian
D is for Deadbeat is the fourth in the Kinsey Millhone mystery series by Sue Grafton.
My name is Kinsey Millhone. I’m a private investigator . . . female, single and self-employed, with a constitutional inability to work for anyone else. I’m a purist when it comes to justice, but I’ll lie at the drop of a hat. Inconsistency has never troubled me . . .
It was late October, the day before Halloween. He introduced himself as Alvin Limardo. The job he hired Kinsey to do seemed easy enough . . . until his cheque bounced. His real name was Dagett. John Dagett. Ex-con. Inveterate liar. Chronic drunk. And dead.
The cops called it an accident – death by drowning. Kinsey wasn’t so sure. The man, it seemed, had a lot of enemies . . .
My name is Kinsey Millhone. I'm thirty-two years old, twice married, no kids, currently unattached and likely to remain so given my disposition, which is cautious at best . . .
Seventeen years had passed since Jean Timberlake's body had been found at the foot of the sea wall.
At the time, Bailey Fowler, an ex-boyfriend of hers, pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter. Now he'd changed his tune.
Kinsey Millhone was called in to solve the case - then she stumbled on the dark secrets of a family's buried past . . .
`Kinsey Millhone is one of the most convincing private investigators in operation' Independent
`An alphabet of prime puzzles' Sunday Times
`Kinsey Millhone is up there with the giants of the private eye genre . . . exhilarating stuff' Times Literary Supplement
For the record, the name is Kinsey Millhone. Private investigator. One hundred and eighteen pounds of female in a five-foot six-inch frame. Just turned thirty-three (after what seemed like an interminable twelve months of being thirty-two) . . .
Three things happened on May 5, the day everyone sang `Happy Birthday' to Kinsey Millhone.
The repairs were completed on her apartment, and she moved back in. She was hired by Mrs Clyde Gersh to bring her mother back from the Mojave Desert.
And lastly, a real surprise. The news that she'd made one of the top slots on Tyrone Patty's hit list . . .
`Terrific action' The Times
`Sue Grafton is on top form - literate, sexy and funny' Today
`Shivery, skilful and fast-paced' Sunday Times
It was one of those occasions when I suddenly realised how happy I was. I was female, single, with money in my pocket . . . I had nobody to answer to and no ties to speak of. As usual I'd forgotten how surges of goodwill merely presage bad news.
After a three-week-long investigation, Kinsey couldn't wait to get home.
What she needed most was a few quiet days by herself - but two things happened to change all her plans. First she ran into a murder case. Then Kinsey met Bibianna Diaz, and before the night was over they were sharing a prison cell . . .
`Vintage Grafton, terminal bullets and all' Sunday Times
`Terrifying, hilarious and rather touching . . . S is for Super Sleuth in a scorching story' Daily Mail
`Sue Grafton, creator of Kinsey Millhone, is the most exciting crime novelist around' City Limits
I feel compelled to report that at the moment of death, my entire life did not pass before my eyes in a flash . . . What I experienced was a little voice piping up in an outraged tone: "Oh come on. You're not serious. This is really it?"
It was a Monday early in December when Kinsey Millhone first got involved in the Isabelle Barney murder case.
She was out of work. Attorney Lonnie Klingman's usual private investigator had just dropped dead of a heart attack. Kinsey was more than happy to oblige.
The trouble started on the very first day of the investigation. Either Kinsey's predecessor was incompetent - or someone had been getting away with murder. And next time it might turn out to be hers . . .
`Terrific build-up to a satisfyingly shocking climax. This edges Kinsey to the top of my personal American private-eye hit parade' The Times
`It's a joy to open I is for Innocent and know within a couple of pages that this is a book you're going to enjoy to the end' Sunday Telegraph
Lorna Kepler was beautiful and wilful, a loner who couldn't resist flirting with danger. She has also been found dead in mysterious circumstances and her death pulls Kinsey Millhone into a netherworld of deception, betrayal and unavenged murder . . .
'Crisply written, ingeniously plotted, with a regard for humanity striving against the odds that's both tonic and rare' Literary Review
'K is for Killer is another exciting novel from the excellent Sue Grafton' Daily Mirror
It was the week before Thanksgiving when Kinsey Millhone first heard the sad story of the late Johnny Lee, the World War II fighter pilot of whom, rather mysteriously, the military authorities have no record. His family are concerned - perhaps Kinsey could make a few calls, straighten things out?
Then Johnny's apartment is ransacked. In the debris a hidden safe is uncovered - and in that safe is a mysterious key marked LAWLESS.
That night Kinsey's on a plane to Dallas, at the start of a thrilling rollercoaster ride through Texas and Kentucky on the trail of long-buried treasure. Unfortunately there's a fire-raising psychopath on her tail . . .
And she's going to be late for a very important wedding . . .
'An alphabet of prime puzzles' Sunday Times
'M' is for Malek Construction, the $40 million company that grew out of modest soil to become one of the big three in California.
'M' is for Malek family: four sons now nearing middle age who stand to inherit a fortune - four men with very different temperaments and needs, linked only by blood and money. Eighteen years ago, one of them - angry, troubled and in trouble - went missing.
'M' is for Millhone, now hired to trace that missing black sheep brother.
And, in brutal consequence, 'M' is for murder . . .
'Another treat from the alphabet queen' Daily Mail
'An unusually compelling series of novels with a notably convincing central character' Guardian
'First there was a phone call from a stranger, then a letter showed up fourteen years after it was sent. That's how I learned I'd made a serious error in judgement and ended up risking my life . . .'
The call comes on a Monday morning from a guy who scavenges defaulted storage units at auction. Last weekend he bought a stack. They had stuff in them - Kinsey stuff. For thirty bucks, he'll sell her the lot. Kinsey's never been one for personal possessions, but curiousity wins out and she hands over a twenty (she may be curious but she loves a bargain). What she finds amid childhood memorabilia is an old undelivered letter.
It will force her to re-examine her beliefs about the break-up of her first marriage, about the honour of her first husband, about an old unsolved murder. And it will put her life in the gravest peril.
'A fascinating insight into what made Kinsey the women she is now' Daily Express
'Grafton's fans will be thrilled with this knockout Kinsey Millhone mystery . . . One of the very best entries in a long-lived and much-loved series' Publishers Weekly
She was a "Jane Doe", an unidentified white female whose decomposed body was discovered near a quarry off California's Highway 1. The case fell to the Santa Teresa County Sheriff's Department, but the detectives had little to go on, and after months of investigation, the murder remained unsolved.
That was eighteen years ago. Now the two men who found the body, both nearing the end of long careers in law enforcement, want one last shot at the case . . . and they turn to Kinsey Millhone to help them find closure. But revisiting the past can be a dangerous business, and what begins with the pursuit of Jane Doe's real identity ends in a high-risk hunt for her killer.
Based on an unsolved homicide that occured in 1969, Q is for Quarry, and Grafton's interest in the case, has generated renewed police efforts. In the last year, the body has been exhumed, and a facial reconstruction made that appears in the last pages of the novel. It is hoped that the photograph will trigger memories that may lead to a positive identification.
Kinsey Millhone, employed by Nord Lafferty to drive his daughter home from her incarceration at the Californian Institute for Women, marvels at the simplicity of the task. But Reba Lafferty emerges feisty and rebellious, and Kinsey is soon fighting to prevent her charge from breaking the conditions of her parole.
As she finds herself befriending the ex-gambler, ex-alcoholic and ex-con, Kinsey discovers that Reba had taken the fall for her boss, also her lover, when he conducted a highly-crafted money laundering scam. Alan Beckwith has so far escaped the clutches of the FBI. Now they believe he is laundering money for a Columbian drug cartel - they just need the proof.
When Kinsey is asked by the police to persuade Reba to unveil crucial evidence guaranteed to put Beckwith behind bars, she doesn't expect cooperation. But when she hears of shocking new information about her lover, Reba is suddenly all too eager to do everything she can to ruin him.
Embroiled in a cunning challenge of wits, and meanwhile bemused by her own blossoming romance, Kinsey must try to control the bitter, angry Reba as she launches her dangerous revenge . . .
In the small California town of Serena Station, tongues wagged. Some said she'd run off with a lover. Some said she was murdered by her husband.
But for the not-quite-seven-year-old daughter Daisy she left behind, Violet's absence has never been explained or forgotten.
Now, thirty-four years later, she wants the solace of closure.
In S is for Silence, Kinsey Millhone's nineteenth excursion into the world of suspense and misadventure, S is for surprises as Sue Grafton takes a whole new approach to telling the tale. And S is for superb: Kinsey and Grafton at their best.
It was like being in the presence of a snake, first hissing its presence and then coiled in readiness. I didn't dare turn my back or take my eyes off of her. I stood very still. I let go of my fight-or-flight defense and decided to play dead. If you run from a bear, it gives chase. That's the nature of the beast. Likewise a snake. If I moved, she might strike.
When her elderly neighbour Gus has an accident, Kinsey Millhone is relieved when his niece organises a nurse for him. Verifying a background check on Solana Rojas doesn't turn up anything suspicious. But Kinsey's not convinced - especially when Gus seems to be getting worse under his nurse's tender care.
Realising that her neighbourly concern isn't going to get her past the front door Kinsey turns to more unorthodox methods to step up her investigation. And gets far more than she bargained for . . .
Not only is Solana not who she seems to be but she's more than able to play Kinsey at her own game. Suddenly the tables have turned and it's Kinsey who's on the wrong side of the law...