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A is for Alibi

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A is for Alibi PDF is a crime novel written by Sue Grafton and was first published by Henry Holt and Company in 1982. It is the first book in the Kinsey Millhone Alphabet Mysteries series, which features the private investigator Kinsey Millhone as the main protagonist.

A is for Alibi has received positive reviews from readers and critics alike. The New York Times Book Review called it “a splendidly tense first novel” and praised Grafton’s writing style, while The Washington Post said, “Grafton has created a woman we feel we know, a tough cookie with a soft center, a gregarious loner.” The novel has also been praised for its strong characterization and intricate plot.

The themes of the novel include betrayal, revenge, and justice, as Kinsey tries to uncover the truth about the murder and clear Nikki’s name. The novel also explores the dark side of human nature and the consequences of one’s actions. A is for Alibi is available in multiple formats, including hardcover, paperback, audiobook, pdf, and ebook.

Plot Summary

It is a crime novel written by Sue Grafton. The story is set in Santa Teresa, a fictional town based in Santa Barbara, California, and follows the private investigator Kinsey Millhone as she tries to solve the murder of Laurence Fife, a prominent divorce lawyer. The novel starts with Kinsey receiving a phone call from a woman named Nikki Fife, who has recently been released from prison after serving time for the murder of her husband, Laurence. Nikki claims she did not commit the crime and hires Kinsey to find the real killer.

Kinsey begins her investigation by talking to Nikki and learning about her relationship with Laurence. She discovers that Laurence had been having affairs and that Nikki had found out about them, leading her to believe that Laurence’s infidelity was the motive for his murder. Kinsey also talks to Laurence’s former partners and clients, trying to uncover any leads that might help her solve the case.

As Kinsey digs deeper, she discovers that Laurence had been involved in some shady business deals and that there were several people who had reasons to want him dead. Kinsey becomes convinced that Nikki is innocent and sets out to prove it. She pieces together the evidence and tracks down witnesses, finally uncovering the identity of the real killer.

Critical Analysis

  • Engaging Protagonist: One of the key strengths of the novel is the character of Kinsey Millhone. She is portrayed as a strong, independent, and resourceful protagonist. Critics praised her sharp wit, determination, and relatability, which made her a compelling lead.
  • Well-Crafted Plot: The plot of “A” is for Alibi is intricate and tightly woven. Grafton skillfully introduces various suspects, motives, and red herrings, keeping readers engaged and guessing until the end. The pacing is generally well-maintained, with a good balance between action, investigation, and character development.
  • Authentic Setting: Grafton’s portrayal of Santa Teresa, a fictional town based on Santa Barbara, California, was highly regarded. Critics appreciated her attention to detail, which brought the setting to life and added depth to the story. The atmospheric descriptions helped readers immerse themselves in the world of the novel.
  • Character Development: While the focus of the novel is primarily on Kinsey Millhone, Grafton also delves into the lives and backstories of secondary characters. Critics praised the author’s ability to create well-rounded characters with their own motivations and complexities. This added depth to the story and made the supporting cast more compelling.
  • Writing Style: Grafton’s writing style was widely applauded for its clarity and accessibility. The prose is straightforward and engaging, allowing readers to follow the story effortlessly. The dialogue is natural, and Grafton’s ability to capture the nuances of conversation was highly praised.
  • Genre Conventions: “A” is for Alibi is a traditional detective novel that adheres to the classic conventions of the genre. Some critics noted that while the book offers a satisfying mystery and resolution, it doesn’t necessarily push boundaries or offer groundbreaking innovations. However, this adherence to genre conventions was also seen as a strength, providing readers with a familiar and enjoyable reading experience.

Where to Buy?

A is for Alibi is available on Amazon in various languages including English, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Dutch, Portuguese, and more. The availability of different language editions may vary by region and publisher.

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About Sue Grafton

Sue Grafton was an American author born on April 24, 1940, in Louisville, Kentucky, and passed away on December 28, 2017. She was best known for her Kinsey Millhone Alphabet Mysteries series, starting with A is for Alibi, and wrote a total of 25 books in the series, ending with Y is for Yesterday.

A is for AlibiA is for Alibi

Grafton began her writing career in the 1960s, writing for television, movies, and publishing several standalone novels. However, she found her greatest success in the 1980s with the publication of A is for Alibi, which became a bestseller and launched her career as a successful mystery writer.

Grafton received numerous accolades for her work, including multiple Anthony Awards, Shamus Awards, and the Grand Master Award from the Mystery Writers of America. She was also a New York Times bestselling author and her books have been translated into over 20 languages.

In addition to writing, Grafton was a dedicated advocate for literacy and supported various literacy organizations throughout her life. She was married to Steve Humphrey, a former professor of law, and had three children.

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