Tuesday, July 28, 2009

'M' is for Malice, by Sue Grafton

(pb; 1996: thirteenth book in the Kinsey Millhone mysteries)

From the inside flap:

" 'M' is for. . . the Malek family: four sons nearing middle age who stand to inherit a fortune. But for any of them to claim their millions, the fourth brother must be found. Eighteen years before -- angry, troubled, and in trouble -- he disappeared. No one's seen or heard from him since. Now Kinsey Millhone must track him down. And when she does, she unknowingly sets in motion a bitter payback from the past that can end only in murder."


Kinsey locates a long-disappeared ne'er-do-well son (Guy Malek) of a recently-deceased wealthy business man, which sets into a motion a cycle of familial pettiness, deceit and murderous retribution, all of which culminate in a reader-affecting, impossible-to-set-down read.

Robert Dietz, Kinsey's fifty-year old on/off lover (last seen in 'G' is for Gumshoe), two years gone, makes a warm, welcome reappearance in Kinsey's life, adding emotional depth and turmoil to the novel.

As a mystery, this was one of the twistier tales from Grafton. I guessed some of the twists, but not all of them, and the identity of the killer(s) was/were a surprise to this reader, until the last moment.

One of the more emotive entries in the Kinsey Millhone series, this: it brings to mind the heartache of 'C' is for Corpse.

This is also one of my favorite Kinsey Millhone books.

Check this series out!

Followed by 'N' is for Noose.

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