One of the most reliable mystery series on the planet

Umpteen books into
this series  (she’s on “V” now, however many books that is), Sue Grafton’s still got it. I marvel at her with each new book
that emerges, because usually, in my experience, authors go kind of flat
somewhere around book 11.
But not Sue Grafton. No, she’s just getting better.

How’s she do it?
Well, whatever magic she’s working, it’s all happening in this
One thing I love about this series is that the author has stuck
with the original timeframe to keep the chronology true. So this book is set in
1988. (Retro, baby.)
And there’s a loveliness to that.
The other thing that really works in this series is that Kinsey
Millhone is likeable yet a bit ornery, and that makes her very real.
And I love the affection she has for her landlord Henry, the
retired baker. In this book, he’s out of town due to a family emergency, and
she misses him.
And one other thing, and it’s small but significant. Kinsey
Millhone cleans her home and office, and that stuff’s included in the book. For
some reason, I really like this. I guess because in so many books, it seems
like people are living in a bubble that doesn’t include housecleaning.
This story is one of those classic PI situations, in which someone
hires the detective to look into something, then changes his mind—but the PI is
too far in to let it go, so she keeps investigating on her own time (and her
own dime). And havoc ensues.
Oh, it’s just all too good.
If we believe the alphabet, there’re only 4 more of these puppies
coming down the line. The only consolation is that at least this series is