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J is for Judgment: A Kinsey Millhone Novel…
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"J" is for Judgment: A Kinsey Millhone Novel (edition 1993)

by Sue Grafton (Author)

Series: Kinsey Millhone (10)

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3,537472,981 (3.66)44
Wendell Jaffe has been dead for five years -- until his former insurance agent spots him in a dusty resort bar. Now California Fidelity wants Kinsey Millhone to track down the dead man. Just two months before, his widow collected on Jaffe's $500,000 life insurance policy -- her only legacy since Jaffe went overboard, bankrupt and about to be indicted for his fraudulent real estate schemes. As Kinsey pushes deeper into the mystery surrounding Wendell Jaffe's pseudocide, she explores her own past, discovering that in family matters, as in crime, sometimes it's better to reserve judgment.… (more)
Member:hosier
Title:"J" is for Judgment: A Kinsey Millhone Novel
Authors:Sue Grafton (Author)
Info:Holt Paperbacks (1993), 386 pages
Collections:No Longer Have
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J Is for Judgment by Sue Grafton

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Showing 1-5 of 44 (next | show all)
I love Kinsey Millhone. But she's not everyone's cup of tea. I started reading the Alphabet series a few years ago - I think at the time it was up to O is for Outlaw. The idea of a mystery series each title beginning with a new letter amused me. I don't know why. I don't think it's particularly original. At least - I've seen a few others since. At the time though it was new to me and it just struck me as perfect. I flew through the series. Kinsey is riveting. She's brash and harsh and charming. She's fierce and flawed. She gets scared. She holds her own. She pushes herself to run often and tackles cases without judgement and with an open mind. Rosie and Henry are brilliant and I love the little family she builds around her.

But Kinsey Millhone isn't Jack Reacher - her speed is more Tracy Crosswhite. [book:My Sister's Grave|22341263] Her cases aren't full of action and high speed chases - they're slowly nitpicking away until something clicks into place. She writes down all her thoughts and places her facts and ideas on 3x5 index cards - which she often shuffles and rearranges to help her solve her case. And I love it. Kinsey Millhone is great - but she's not for everyone.

For some reason I've seen reviewers compare this to Stephanie Plum - I don't know why - this is absolutely NOTHING like that. Stephanie Plum is a very different character and an extremely different type of book. That's more fluff. Kinsey Millhone is more procedural mysteries. And this series isn't current - it was first published in the 80's - there's not really technology. Messages were relayed by calling the landlines. Paper files were still the main form of storage. Not everyone will enjoy reading this. But if you like your mysteries to be more like procedurals with a determined and fierce character - Kinsey Millhone is for you.



Solid mystery. Lots of twists and turns. This is also the book in which Kinsey finds she has living family. A woman she meets while canvassing asks if she's a Kinsey from Lompoc. Kinsey is pretty anxious and unsure about being part of a family but she steels herself to at least do some research to find out. In the meantime though, her cousins get in touch with her. The whole story isn't revealed yet but the initial contact has been made. William and Rosie get engaged - or at least William proposes - not sure if Rosie says yes or not yet. Kinsey is her usual badass self. Struggling with her good angel/bad devil personality - hmm should I break in? Well...I've been so lawful up until my earlier break-in, so what's one more for the night? Lol.



3 stars. ( )
  funstm | Aug 10, 2022 |
Fiction
  hpryor | Aug 8, 2021 |
Some major changes for KM in this instalment of the series. I can’t wait to see how the new direction is played out in the next part of the story ( )
  Vividrogers | Dec 20, 2020 |
***This is a project of re-reading Grafton's series -- I started reading these back in the 1980s and would read each release as they came out over the years. To prevent spoilers, I will not attempt to summarize in detail. ***

Kinsey is hired to investigate the re-appearance of a man originally declared dead for an insurance payout to the widow. This is also the one where Kinsey discovers she has family other than her deceased parents and the aunt who raised her. Re-reading this also reminded me how dangerous the 1980s could be — if you had car trouble you had to walk miles to the nearest gas station or pay phone, as Kinsey does. I‘ve had to do that too. ( )
  ValerieAndBooks | Oct 7, 2020 |
Wow. This was a really good one to sink your teeth into. We have Kinsey showing why she is really a good investigator and her also having to deal with changes to her professional life. I thought the writing was great as well as the flow of the book. The ending comes with a very nice gut punch too. What is great though is that some of these characters pop up in a later book.

In "J is for Judgment" Kinsey is asked to investigate if Wendell Jaffe is still alive. This is an issue because years ago, Wendell Jaffe disappeared, believed to die at sea. Too bad this happened before he disappeared after taking a lot of investors money with him. Kinsey works for an insurance company which is asking her to go where Jaffe is presumed to be hiding out (in Mexico) and get evidence he is still alive.

Kinsey ends up becoming wrapped in the lives of Jaffe's family (two sons and a wife) who struggled to go on after he was presumed dead. Now collecting the insurance money should help their lives out. And one of Jaffe's sons has a problem that really is going to need a lot of money to deal with.

Kinsey feels a lot more freer to me in this one. We get to see how she was able to track down Jaffe and how she went about tying all of the pieces together once she returns back to Santa Theresa. We still get updates on characters like Henry and Rosie. We also get a really good look at Kinsey's history. We know her Aunt Gin raised her, but now we get even more details that leads to more questions about her past for Kinsey.

I loved the writing and flow. Sometimes the flow can get dragged down when Grafton tried to juggle too many things, but this one was really well done.

I always love these books for being set pre-cell phone and computer age era (the 1980s). We see Kinsey using her brain a lot and her piecing things together with her notecards (or her deduction cards).

The ending was a surprise. We are led to one mystery with Kinsey giving us readers a partial answer. I am so sad we will never get to see Z is for Zero. But it's fun re-reading this series. ( )
  ObsidianBlue | Jul 1, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 44 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (8 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Grafton, Sueprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Holleman, WimTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kaye, JudyReadersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Moya, Antonio-PrometeoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Dedication
For Torchy Gray,
in honor of a friendship that began
with a green bean collage...hers, not mine.
Western Kentucky State Teacher's College
Bowling Green, Kentucky
1958
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On the face of it, you wouldn't think there was any connection between the murder of a dead man and the events that changed my perceptions about my life.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Wendell Jaffe has been dead for five years -- until his former insurance agent spots him in a dusty resort bar. Now California Fidelity wants Kinsey Millhone to track down the dead man. Just two months before, his widow collected on Jaffe's $500,000 life insurance policy -- her only legacy since Jaffe went overboard, bankrupt and about to be indicted for his fraudulent real estate schemes. As Kinsey pushes deeper into the mystery surrounding Wendell Jaffe's pseudocide, she explores her own past, discovering that in family matters, as in crime, sometimes it's better to reserve judgment.

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