M is for Malice by Sue Grafton
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Oh, Kinsey. The more things change, the more they stay the same.
Dietz is back, Henry is still awesome, Kinsey's cousins are still trying to build a relationship with her while she snarls and snaps like a scared, wounded animal, and she solves the mystery through sheer tenacity and stubbornness. Because she's Kinsey, and she's awesome.
Imagine a world where you have to solve crimes through legwork instead of computers. Where you can miss important calls because cell phones aren't a thing. Where you have to send off a form, in the mail, with a real stamp and everything, to get a copy of a DMV report. Grafton's choice to freeze Kinsey in the late 80s makes the mystery more interesting in a lot of ways. Crime fighters today have it so easy! A google search on your iPhone, and bam, the bad guys go to jail!
This one is about the prodigal son, an inheritance, and redemption. I would have never guessed the culprit--in fact, she kept me guessing right up until the reveal, but it all made sense in the end. Dietz might be back, or not, and I'm as conflicted as Kinsey on whether or not he should be. And the beat goes on.
This is the first one that I've noticed didn't end with Kinsey's case notes. I missed the "Respectfully Submitted, Kinsey Millhone" ending. Not sure why she chose to end this one differently, but it made the ending seem less tied up for me. All in all, classic Kinsey. 3 solid stars.
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