When I first learned the release date of Sue Grafton’s new book, Y is for Yesterday, I immediately cleared my schedule for the day. I’ve been patiently waiting for another visit with Kinsey Millhone since closing the book on X. I couldn’t wait to spend the day with her and catch up.
I first met Kinsey in the late ‘80’s on a rainy Saturday morning in a quiet bookstore while looking for a new mystery read. D is for Deadbeat was prominently displayed and it caught my attention. A drunk with a phony name hired Kinsey to deliver a check for $25,000 to a kid. His payment for her services bounced and by the time she figured out who he really was and caught up with him, he was dead. I was intrigued. I curled up with a cup of tea and started turning pages. The story grabbed me and kept me hooked all day. I even canceled plans with friends that night because I couldn’t put it down. (I’m an introvert so this was an easy decision!)
The next week I was back at the bookstore to pick up A is for Alibi, B is for Burglar, and C is for Corpse. I’ve been friends with Kinsey ever since. I know, I know, she’s a fictional character and we can’t really be “friends.” But if she was real, I’d be privileged to know her. She’s smart and tough with a soft vulnerable side. She’s confident in who she is and doesn’t try to be something she’s not for anyone. She’s strong and independent and she fiercely protects the people she loves. What’s not to love?
I’ve been missing her so much since X that I started reading the series all over again while waiting for Y is for Yesterday. And now the day has finally arrived and I get to spend more time with her.
First, I had to prepare for the day. I was devoting the entire day to reading after all. I needed nourishment. I made a pot of Harney & Sons Paris tea (strong and smooth with hints of vanilla and fruit, absolutely delicious!), Lemon Basil Chicken Salad, and a little hummus and cucumber on crackers. And since I also need something sweet, apple pastries with warm caramel sauce. Now I was ready for my day!
Y is for Yesterday by Sue Grafton
Y is for Yesterday starts off with a backstory ten years in the past. A student steals test answers to help a friend who needs a passing grade and that starts a ripple effect that eventually leads to a murder. Now, ten years later, the murderer is free from jail and he is being blackmailed. Enter Kinsey Millhone who is hired to locate the blackmailer.
While I’m not in love with Kinsey’s client and his friends, they’re a bunch of spoiled kids, Kinsey is always on the side of right whether she likes her clients or not. Let’s face it, many of us do not always like our clients. That’s just the way of the world. And Kinsey has had some disgraceful ones in the past. Still, she continues to fight for justice.
Y is for Yesterday is very different from Sue Grafton’s other books in the alphabet series as this one tells two stories consecutively. We see not only Kinsey’s search for the truth but also the backstory of what truly happened ten years ago that brought us to this point.
In a previous book, Kinsey had a run-in with a serial killer who tried to kill her then escaped, but now he’s back. Knowing that he’s out and that she’s being watched, makes Kinsey feel a little unhinged. Changing her routine and taking extra precautions, it becomes a battle of wits between Kinsey and someone who’s out to get her.
Y is for Yesterday is a well-crafted story with characters you’ll love and others that you’ll love to hate. It’s a joy to read, not only for the great characters and plot but also for Ms. Grafton’s beautiful use of language. Sue Grafton is truly gifted in the way she magically weaves words together to build a story that you can immerse yourself in. Y is for Yesterday will keep you guessing (as Sue Grafton’s books usually do) right up until the end.
If you haven’t read any of the previous books in the series, don’t worry. Kinsey’s narration ensures that you have all the information you need from a previous book to fully understand this story.
I’m sad to be so close to the end and hope for a happily-ever-after for Kinsey in Z, as well as her landlord Henry Pitts who I must admit I’m a little in love with. Y is for Yesterday is another masterpiece from Sue Grafton. A great read that I know you’ll enjoy.