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E Is For Evidence (2005)

E is for Evidence (2005)

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3.86 of 5 Votes: 3
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0312939035 (ISBN13: 9780312939038)
st. martin's paperbacks

About book E Is For Evidence (2005)

Plot/Summary of Book: It was the silly season and a Monday at that, and Kinsey Millhone was bogged down in a preliminary report on a fire claim. Something was nagging at her, but she couldn't pin it. The last thing she needed in the morning mail was a letter from her bank recording an erroneous $5,000 deposit in her account. Kinsey had never believed in Santa Claus and she wasn't about to change her mind now. Resigning herself to a morning of frustration, she phoned the bank and, assaulted by canned carols, waited on hold for an officer to clear up the snafu. It was with something less than Christmas cheer that Kinsey faced off only minutes later with California Fidelity's Mac Voorhies. Voorhies was smart, humorless, stingy with praise, and totally fair. He was frowning now. "I got a phone call this morning," he said, his frown deepening. "Somebody says you're on the take." Suddenly the $5,000 deposit clicked into place. It wasn't a mistake. It was a setup. "E" is for evidence: evidence planted, evidence lost. "E" is for ex-lovers and evasions, enemies and endings. For Kinsey, "E" is for everything she stands to lose if she can't exonerate herself: her license, her livelihood, her good name. And so she takes on a new client: namely, Kinsey Millhone, thirty-two and twice-divorced, ex-cop and wisecracking loner, a California private investigator with a penchant for lost causes -- one of which, it is to be hoped, is not herself. As Kinsey begins to unravel the frame-up, she finds that her future is intimately tied to one family's past and to the explosive secret it has protected for almost twenty years. Digging deeper, she discovers that probing the past can have lethal consequences as she follows a trail of murder that leads to her own front door. And in what may well be her most challenging case, Kinsey comes up against the fact that sometimes, "E" is forever.

Another end sequence ((the last sixth or so of the book) that comes out of nowhere plot- and character-wise. This book, 'E,' is the one where I left off when I commenced Grafton's series more than a decade ago, so now I've reread those first five and am ready to move on (should I bother?) with F Is for, I mean, F Is for Fugitive. Specifically regarding this one: the plot of Kinsey being alone for the holidays and thus more susceptible to an ex-lover reeling her in psychologically for a few days isn't absurd or anything, but I'm not sure she really sells it. It is just kind of offered up as an explanation. As for the big reveal, which I won't spoil here (because after all the book is still a blaze-through-it-in-a-day page-turner that can entertain mildly), it really is offered up as an implausible explanation that just mysteriously remained hidden for no other reason than to have a book plot. So far, I don't think more than one of these (A through E) has been a mystery the reader could actually solve. To be clear: I'm not big on being That Reader, the one who prides herself on seeing it coming and getting all high and mighty about mystery writers' inability to fool them. I could give a shit--AND besides I don't want to know what's going to happen before it happens. But I'm not sure how I feel about Grafton's pulling things out of nowhere. There has to be a happy medium in there somewhere.

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This book was slow. I would like to read the entire series, but I do not think I can handle too many more books like this. The novel starts off with Kinsey working an insurance fraud case and being set up to look like she is helping cover up the fraud. I'm not sure what it would take to make that interesting for me, but this book did not succeed in finding it. I was slightly confused for parts, but I think that may have been due to the fact that I wasn't paying close enough attention due to being bored. I found it to be a frustrating read as it didn't seem like Kinsey was making much progress. She seemed frustrated as well for much of the book and mentioned the only perk being that at least she was working for herself for this case. That perk only lasted until people started dying, and then Kinsey seemed to only be frustrated and depressed with not having enough friends. Really hoping that F is a better book as I have it at home right now from the library. If it is not, well, I guess I will be done with Kinsey. At least for a long while.

There is possibly a whole alphabet of these books now. This was the first I've read and probably the last. It is the story of a Private Investigator, caught up in what seems to be an insurance fraud but turns murderous. The P.I. is Kinsey Millhone, a 32 year old based in California, single after going through two husbands. The second of which, a talented jazz musician turns up suspiciously after going AWOL for several years. The plot was plodding and the characters weren't engaging. Apart from the PI most of the characters were from one family who had stakes in a company whose warehouse fire is being investigated, it looks as though Kinsey and the oldest son, Lance, are being framed for insurance fraud. The other four siblings...Kinsey's schoolfriend Ash, bossy Ebony, aloof, fashionable Olive, and deadbeat Bass...flit in and out of Kinsey's investigation as she tries to figure out who might be framing their brother, and her, for setting fire to a company warehouse. The fraud isn't particularly interesting but a couple of corpses and a bomb make for more interesting entertainment. The denouement in the last ten pages isn't really hinted at in the rest of the book, so it is not like a more traditional mystery. I like crime novels with well written heroines like Sara Paretsky's V.I.Warshawski or Linda Barnes' Carlotta Carlyle, Kinsey Millhone just left me "I" for indifferent.

Another great read from Sue Grafton featuring her detective, Kinsey Milhone in her alphabet series of mysteries. After Kinsey discovers a large sum of money deposited to her account that she didn't make, she gets caught up in a mystery involving a family's past that somehow involves her future, her livelihood, and her life. E is for Evidence is an enjoyable read that at times doesn't seem to be about the mystery as much as it feels to be about Kinsey herself. But that is all right since I very much enjoy getting to know Kinsey and her past better with each new case as she drives around California investigating while meeting people that find themselves caught up in something they can't quite understand. And indeed, it is the characters in these stories that I find so appealing. With each new story I am enjoying all the familiar characters that populate Kinsey's life. They are becoming as comfortable to me as old friends are. With each new book, I continue to enjoy Kinsey's wit and wry observations as she investigates another case. Thankfully I am only on the letter "F".

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