X by Sue Grafton
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
The plot of "X" opens up with the story of a woman attempting to steal a painting. Then Grafton switches to present day, catching us up with Kinsey. "X" details several threats - mainly Kinsey trying to track down a recently released felon for a client and Kinsey working with Pete Wolinksy's widow to assist her with finding some files related to an IRS investigation. There's also a subplot involving Henry and Kinsey's new neighbors.
I have to state up front that I love Grafton and I love Kinsey Millhone. I hope they never make this series into a film, because I have my own picture of Kinsey in my mind, and I don't want anyone to ruin it. I started reading this series in middle school (!) and look forward to each and every release. Alas, while I enjoyed "X," it seemed a bit lackluster compared to many of Millhone's previous Kinsey efforts.
If you've read any Grafton book (or truly any mystery), you can envision that Kinsey's disparate cases will somehow overlap at some point. Her cases are fairly interesting, though Kinsey hems and haws a bit about her past with Pete. The side plot with Kinsey and her new neighbors (while somewhat appalling) just drags on, which makes me sad, because it involves Henry, and I do enjoy Henry.
Overall, it's a quick read and also good to catch up with Kinsey. However, I found myself wishing we could progress a bit more with Kinsey's personal life (besides Henry). Though perhaps the book represents how stagnant Kinsey feels in life? Hard to tell. But I do hope the next book brings her a little more excitement and happiness in both work and her personal life.
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