Saturday, April 21, 2012
Readathon Update: Two Books Read Today!
If you are a fan of mysteries and you haven't read Grafton's Kinsey Millhone series (also known as the Alphabet series), do yourself a favor and start at the beginning. As Grafton is working her way through the alphabet, there will eventually be twenty-six books; V is for Vengeance is the most recently published, leaving only four remaining to be written. Although it may seem like after twenty-two books, both Grafton and Millhone would have little to say, that isn't the case with this series. Although there have been a couple of misses in recent years, overall I would say this is one of the most consistently good series I've read.
Set in the late 1980s in Santa Teresa (a fictional name for Santa Barbara), California, private detective Kinsey Millhone works her way through cases of all sorts. Grafton shares with readers the best of these, always coupled with an excellent side story. V is for Vengeance took me a while to get into (after those first hundred pages, the book sat ignored for a month or more), but reading the rest in its entirety today gave me a renewed appreciation for Grafton's writing.
It's also sometimes hard to read a single book in a series when you've read the others back-to-back in the past. I tend to get obsessive about a character or series (the same is true for television series -- I've watched the first three seasons of Sons of Anarchy over a month or so's time on Netflix), and to read all the books in order that I can get my hands on. After doing that, waiting a year or two between books tends to lessen my obsession -- and cause me to forget things about a character that I loved.
Kinsey is plenty worthy of character worship, so if you've never read Grafton's books before, you're in luck. With twenty-two books to read, you probably won't finish until the next book is already released, giving you a happy surprise after falling for Grafton's 1980s California world.
I'm going to keep reading, although I haven't decided what's next. I may try Jonathan Tropper's This Is Where I Leave You, as I feel the need for something different. Switching up writing styles and genres seems like a smart move for readathon reading -- so my day will be British chick lit, 1980s mystery, and literary fiction. Who knows how late I can stay up (I mean, let's be honest -- I've taken two naps already today!), but perhaps I can try for two more to wrap up with four. I would be highly pleased with that!