Friday, September 7, 2018

Book Review: "L" is for Lawless by Sue Grafton (Kinsey Millhone #12)

Stars: 5 out of 5
Pros: Unpredictable story, strong characters
Cons: None
The Bottom Line:
Doing quick favor
Leads to unexpected twists
Proves plenty of fun

Simple Favor Gets Out of Control

I love books that are very unpredictable.  While there are some things you know you can count on when you pick up on the Sue Grafton’s Kinsey Millhone books, you never know where the plot will take you.  That’s definitely the case with “L”is for Lawless, which went in some very fun, very unexpected directions.

Kinsey is actually taking a week off from her business as a PI.  Her friends William and Rosie are finally getting married on Thanksgiving Day, but the festivities are going to take a week, with William’s family coming in from out of town, and Kinsey is taking the time off to relax and participate.    She is a bridesmaid, after all.

However, Henry, her landlord and William’s brother, comes to her with a favor.  One of their neighbors recently died, and his family is having a hard time getting the government to pay for his burial, something they should do since he was a World War II veteran.  It’s not the kind of work that Kinsey normally does, but she decides a quick conversation can’t hurt.  After she leaves, the man’s house is broken into and ransacked.  Kinsey’s interest is peaked, and she just can’t let it go.  What has she found herself in this time?

What follows is a wild ride and Kinsey gets caught up in a series of events that she never would have expected.  Heck, I never would have guessed where the case would lead her either.  Even when we get to the place where we know most of what is going on, the pace doesn’t lag since Kinsey has now gotten into quite a mess and we have to know just how she will get out of it all.

While Kinsey is the star of the series, she has an interesting group of supporting players in her life, and I enjoyed getting to meet Henry and William’s siblings when they came to town for the wedding.  They provide some fun before the plot kicks into high gear, at which point we are surrounded by an interesting assortment of characters of a different kind.  I keep saying that Sue Grafton was a master of character, and this book proves it yet again.

I was disappointed that the previous book didn’t follow up on a storyline I had hoped we’d get to see more of, but this book picked it back up.  Yes, I’m being vague on purpose.  I have a feeling this is something that will pop in and out of the rest of the books in the series.

Mary Peiffer is still narrating the unabridged audio books, and her narration is still a delight.  She breaths some life into the characters without overshadowing the story.

I can’t believe I’m nearing the half way point of this series.  I realize I’ve come late to Kinsey’s adventures, but I’m so glad I did.  If you have missed Kinsey as well, don’t wait any longer to enjoy her adventures.  Whether you jump in with “L” is for Lawless or start a different letter of the alphabet, you are in for a great time.

This review is part of this week's Friday's Forgotten Books.

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