Aug 17 2015

Read of the Town: X by Sue Grafton

Are you familiar at all with the Alphabet Series written by Sue Grafton? I’m familiar with them because one year (over a decade ago) for Christmas my grandmother presented me with books A through P! I’m a book lover mostly because of my mom, but my grandmother had a hand in my love of reading as well. When I was little I remember reading to her over the phone. But then I grew out of it and she felt I was old enough for Sue Grafton. I remember reading A through M in under one month! I devoured each one. Granted, the first couple of letters are under 200 pages so that helped. But after the letter P (with the exception of M) all of the books are 300+ pages and much more involved.

Sue Grafton is easily one of my favorite authors of all time! I went to a book signing of hers when she was promoting U is for Undertow. I wish I had known then that she would sign all of the books if we were willing to wait till the end of the event, cause I would easily have trekked with all the books to get them signed. FYI: Every book I have happen to be first editions! Turns out my grandmother handed down to me her collection of Sue Grafton’s books. Which made them even more special to me. But enough reminiscing. I’m here to discuss the next book in the series, coming much sooner than anticipated actually since she said she would release one every 2 years. I don’t think it’s been 2 years yet since W is for Wasted was released, but you’ll get no complaints from me.

People guessed and guessed and guessed what X would stand for. There aren’t many words in the dictionary that begin with the letter X so I wasn’t surprised when she opted to simply name her book X. Each book, if you didn’t know, is a mystery centered around Kinsey Millhone, a private detective, during the 80’s. What I love about the books besides the main character is how she doesn’t age all that much each book so when the series ends it might be around the time of cellphones and beepers! I love the 80’s and I love detective work so these series are right up my alley.


Unfortunately, I kind of dropped the ball on reading each letter of the alphabet. The last book I read was Q is for Quarry. I’ve been debating going back to A and reading them all through again so by the time Z comes out I will have read them all and have them fresh in my mind…

There are only two books left now! What will the world do without the genius of Sue Grafton? I know I’ll be sad. She’s already said once the alphabet is complete she won’t write another book. In the meantime, the question of what Y will be called is still up in the air? I think she’s already stated that Z is for Zero.


X:  The number ten. An unknown quantity. A mistake. A cross. A kiss.

 The shortest entry in Webster’s Unabridged. Derived from Greek and Latin and commonly found in science, medicine, and religion. The most graphically dramatic letter. Notoriously tricky to pronounce: think xylophone.

The twenty-fourth letter in the English alphabet.

Sue Grafton’s X: Perhaps her darkest and most chilling novel, it features a remorseless serial killer who leaves no trace of his crimes. Once again breaking the rules and establishing new paths, Grafton wastes little time identifying this sociopath. The test is whether Kinsey can prove her case against him before she becomes his next victim.