Monthly Archives: March 2018

Read: D is for deadbeat: A Kinsey Millhone mystery by Sue Grafton

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Once again, Kinsey Millhone is on the trail of an unknown killer in D is for deadbeat. Sue Grafton’s next is the alphabet mysteries fits right in.

Once again, Grafton has a multitude of characters in this novel. That makes the whodunit aspect of the mystery much more intriguing. For me, it really did end up being a surprise, which was fun. Her characters feel realistic and especially in this one cover a range of emotions due to the plot and everyone’s terrible relations with the deadbeat that everyone is connected to.

As far as the plot goes, it is definitely well written but is by far the saddest so far in the series. The body count is higher and as readers we are invested in a couple of them. Oddly, the plot is a bit of a conundrum, as the deadbeat hires Kinsey first of all to deliver a cashiers check to someone that he can’t locate but then is himself killed towards the beginning of the novel and she sticks on to try to figure out who killed him because she has a sense it wasn’t an accident like the cops claim. So even though we don’t care for the deadbeat we care about the people around him who are connected to him and those who want to get even with him for the terrible things he’s done in the past. That’s what makes this plot most intriguing is because many people have a motivation to get rid of him.

As with Grafton’s other novels, this one is also a quick read, facilitated by her engaging and compelling writing that has a wonderful flow. Other than the sassy, no-nonsense main character Kinsey, her writing style is what keeps me coming back to this series.

Recommended?: Yes, as long as you don’t mind a sad ending (perhaps it’s more tragic than sad). First, of all the books so far, this one stands well on its own. There aren’t that many ties to the previous book and it is more self-contained than any of the other one so far. While the others are fun and do add to the bigger picture of Kinsey Millhone, this one could be picked up out of order or just as a single read of the series and it would be okay. There’s quite a bit of drama, lots of desire for revenge, and slightly more graphic descriptions of injuries. Still, it’s a great mystery novel.

D is for deadbeat book cover

My other reviews of the Kinsey Millhone series:

1 A is for alibi

2 B is for burglar

3 C is for corpse

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Read: Rich people problems: a novel by Kevin Kwan

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The final book in the trilogy, Rich people problems by Kevin Kwan achieves the same outrageous, glamorous, fabulous stratosphere of the first two novels. Kwan once again returns to Singapore to continue following the stories of Nick Young and his large and larger-than-life family. This time, his beloved grandmother Su Yi, owner of family estate Tyersall Park, is dying and everyone rushes home to be by her bedside.

Since the plot is so clever and complex, I won’t give away much about the novel. However, it really does follow the last two closely so the complete trilogy needs to be read. It wouldn’t be quite as enjoyable if read is a standalone book due to the backstory of all the characters, plot lines, and relationships that build up to the start of this final novel.

As with the first two in the trilogy, this third installment has the same satirical tone. It captures the glam and glitz of crazy rich Asians, from the posh old money Singaporeans to the brash new money Chinese mainlanders. Even among each group, there are reserved and flashy people as well. Kwan captures many nuances among the different types, motivations, and mentality of the über wealthy elites. He once again balances being bizarrely outrageous while still believable. For some reason, no matter what over-the-top occurrence happens, as a reader I was still completely bought into the characters and the story.

Rich people problems expands its breadth of main characters to encompass those who had previous lesser rolls and other books. While Nick and Rachel are still two of the main characters, Astrid and Charlie get more story time and another main focus surprisingly is on Kitty Pong–who has once again married up for even more fame and fortune. Quan deafly intertwined various storylines until they all match up and get resolved. However, he continues to use his true cliffhanger style, though sometimes irritating, in alternating chapters to different characters; sometimes I just wanted to keep reading a certain character’s storyline but that desire put aside as a reader, his novel is well-planned out just like the others.

Recommended?: Yes, for anyone who’s read the rest of the series. The other two are excellent so if you haven’t read them, start there first. There is so much back history between all the characters that plays into this novel that it only truly makes sense with all of the previous history. As it is the final book in the trilogy, all of the stories wrap up and some characters get what they truly deserve so a real pleasure comes from having read the first two in order to understand all the situations and relationships leading up to this final novel.

Rich people problems by Kevin Kwan book cover

My other Crazy rich trilogy reviews:
Book one: Crazy rich Asians
Book two: China rich girlfriend