“An inventive plot and incisive character studies elevate MWA Grand Master Grafton’s twenty-fourth Kinsey Millhone novel...This superior outing will remind readers why this much-loved series will be missed as the end of the alphabet approaches.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
X: The number ten. An unknown quantity. A mistake. A cross. A kiss...
Perhaps Sue Grafton’s darkest and most chilling novel, X features a remorseless serial killer who leaves no trace of his crimes. Once again breaking the rules and establishing new paths, Grafton wastes little time identifying this deadly sociopath. The test is whether private investigator Kinsey Millhone can prove her case against him—before she becomes his next victim.
An inventive plot and incisive character studies elevate MWA Grand Master Grafton's 24th Kinsey Millhone novel (after 2013's W Is for Wasted), which includes a variety of X's (a divorced couple named Xanakis, a spot on a map, etc.). Wealthy Hallie Bettancourt hires the Santa Teresa, Calif., PI for a simple assignment find Christian Satterfield, a bank robber recently released from prison who was the baby 15-year-old Hallie gave up for adoption years earlier. Meanwhile, Kinsey agrees to help her friend Ruthie Wolinsky settle some papers belonging to Ruthie's late husband, Pete, a private detective who was shot the year before in a robbery gone wrong. The two investigations spiral into complicated personal tales. Hallie has myriad secrets, and Pete's papers lead Kinsey to finish one of his old cases, putting her in the crosshairs of the hate-filled Ned Lowe, who may be a murderer. This superior outing will remind readers why this much-loved series will be missed as the end of the alphabet approaches.
Not up to Grafton's usual quality. Story really never gets going, and then fizzles out with little narrative arc. Doesn't seem like her heart was in this one.