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Friday, December 30, 2011

V is for Vengeance

The 22nd entry in author Sue Grafton’s “alphabet series” of mysteries, this story departs from the usual first person narration by protagonist Kinsey Millhone. Instead, Kinsey shares the space with two other characters, businessman/Mafia boss Lorenzo Dante and society wife Nora Vogelsang. After witnessing a department store shoplifting and reporting it to security, Kinsey is dismayed to later find out that the woman supposedly committed suicide. Kinsey is hired by the woman’s fiancé to investigate whether she really was murdered. Alternating stories include that of Dante’s family problems with a thuggish brother and senile father combining with an FBI investigation of his affairs, all coming to a head; and of society wife Nora Vogelsang’s plotting of justice against a cheating husband. As usual, the occurrences of seemingly unrelated events evolve into the satisfactory resolution of main and minor mysteries. We meet a variety of criminals and law enforcement officials, both good and evil; and are observers of an illicit love affair. The tying up of loose ends is a delight.

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