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"G" is for Grafton: The World of Kinsey Millhone [Paperback]

Natalie Hevener Kaufman , Carol McGinnis Kay
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Sept. 1 2000
Finally in paperback and now fully revised and updated through "O" Is for Outlaw, the reader's companion to the world of Sue Grafton's Kinsey Millhone

With the cooperation of Sue Grafton, who provided unprecedented access to her working journals, authors Natalie Hevener Kaufman and Carol McGinnis Kay have created a fully dimensional biography of Kinsey Millhone that will answer every question readers have ever had. Here is a feast for Kinsey's fans, including such features as time lines, maps, floor plans, case logs, and photographs.

But this book is also a revealing journey into the mind and work habits of Kinsey's creator. You'll learn why Grafton chose to write detective fiction and how she responds to runaway plot lines and unruly characters. You will find out what titles she has discarded in the series, what she plans for Kinsey's future, and how she sees their evolving relationship. Ultimately, you'll understand why Grafton is so esteemed in the field of detective fiction and, from an analysis of her craft, why she has earned so prominent a place in American letters.

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From Amazon

If you need help picturing Kinsey Millhone's sweats and tousled hair; listing her personality traits; modeling your dietary habits on hers; or reviewing her early childhood, education, career and marriages, pick up G Is for Grafton. Coauthors Kaufman and McGinnis--a political scientist and an English professor, respectively--have, with the cooperation of Sue Grafton, delved into the writer's working journal to flesh out this fictional biography. Once and for all, those nagging questions that keep fans pacing and tooth-gnashing between the M-N and O of Grafton's series will have something to keep their heroine alive between mysteries. How old is Kinsey, exactly? Why do her car and her home need to be so small? Why did she become a PI--was it the wardrobe?

Included in this monument to Millhone is a delightful spread of black-and-white photos of Kinsey's Santa Teresa haunts: her offices, the marina, and, yes, the jogging path. Readers are also treated to Sue Grafton's discussion on the creation of her famous character: "Kinsey is my alter ego--the person I might have been had I not married young and had children.... While our biographies are different, our sensibilities are the same.... I think of us as one soul in two bodies, and she got the good one." G is for Grafton will grab Kinsey Millhone fans. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Kaufman and Kay (both Univ. of South Carolina, Columbia, who have served on panels on women in detective fiction for the Popular Culture Association, are great admirers of Sue Grafton and her fictional heroine, Milhone. Their new work does include biographical information on Grafton, but is primarily devoted to discussions of Grafton's fictional detective and her world. The book should prove interesting to some of Grafton's many fans, but mystery readers who have not read all of the Kinsey Milhone books should be forewarned that it contains many spoilers regarding whodunit. The authors state that the book is meant to be read as an organic whole, but it could also be used as a reference work to answer trivia and reference questions on Grafton and her work. Fervid fans will enjoy this book, but many readers will find it repetitive since the same examples and situations are mentioned in several of the book's sections. Recommended for public libraries.?Denise Johnson, Bradley Univ. Lib., Peoria, Ill.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
Sue Grafton says she lets Kinsey Millhone's personal history unfold from novel to novel at the pace Kinsey chooses. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Essential Kinsey Millhone Jan. 19 2004
Format:Paperback
The authors should retitle the book The Essential Kinsey Millhone! They have done a thorough and masterful job deconstructing the heroine of Sue Grafton's successful detective series, analyzing her traits (both physical and spiritual), her preferences, her work habits, her milieu, and her history. This book does what similar companion books somehow fail to do, presenting Kinsey in a logically organized snapshot that somehow embraces every facet of her contradictory and compelling character.
Reading this book is like finding a treasure chest of information on someone you only thought that you knew well.
If anyone has left a negative review, I would attribute their disenchantment to a disparity between the reader's own expectations and the structure or function of this book. In other words, dissatisfied readers must have expected or desired something other than an impossibly thorough, finely tuned, extraordinarily detailed, carefully categorized, and fully documented dossier on the details that turn Kinsey from a two-dimensional paper heroine into Grafton's virtually three-dimensional creation.
I will grant that the meticulousness of the case study could become tiresome for someone only lukewarm about Kinsey. Mild fans beware! However, for the many readers who wait eagerly for the next installment of the alphabet series, your satisfaction with this companion book is all but guaranteed. I myself was intrigued by the relevant minutiae that abounded page by page, and I approached the end of the book with thrill as well with regret; I hope the authors continue expanding their study as Grafton begins the last third of the series.
This document gives blood and bone to a fictitious series of narrative mysteries, and it's a joy to read!
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5.0 out of 5 stars THE ULTIMATE BIOGRAPHY OF A FICTIONAL CHARACTER Aug. 30 2001
Format:Paperback
One of my proudest days as a mystery writer came the July day that I participated on the same MWA/UCLA mystery literature program as Sue Grafton. Ms. Grafton was the event's keynote speaker. I was one of a couple of dozen other author-presenters. Sue Grafton is the reigning queen of American mystery fiction, and G IS FOR GRAFTON proves that point conclusively. In this book, Natalie Hevener Kaufman & Carol McGinnis Kay have written a biography of Ms. Grafton's lead character, Kinsey Millhone. Kaufman and Kay had Ms. Grafton's cooperation in preparing this work, and they have done a terrific job. Everything you ever wanted to know about Kinsey but didn't know enough to ask, is covered here. Kaufman and Kay have achieved a remarkable accomplishment. This book is must read for any serious Grafton fan or informed reader of the mystery genre. I especially enjoyed the "photographic record" of Kinsey's life, including snapshots of her home, her offices, her car, her jogging path, and several other scenes from Santa Teresa. G IS FOR GRAFTON is a great book.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Everything you wanted to know Sept. 16 2000
Format:Paperback
G IS FOR GRAFTON, won the 1998 Edgar Award for best Biographical work.
Kinsey Millhone's world is one that many of us have been visiting for eighteen years through the pages of Grafton's popular alphabet detective series. By now with Grafton more than half way through the alphabet, many readers have become thoroughly addicted to this appealing private detective who lives and works in Santa Teresa, California. So naturally we want to know every single thing about her. Kinsey's combination of toughness and vunerabilty, bravery and intellectual keenness, compassion and aloofness, engages a wide range of reader of all ages and careers. Kinsey's ability to defeat the enemy in a terrifying final confrontation. The personal struggles that she goes through in order to do the clean-up, reassure us that our own fears and phobias are both normal and manageable. If Kinsey is scared of getting an injection from the nurse, yet is capable of running after a murderer and tackling him to the ground, then maybe we can gather up nerve to go on with our daily lives.
Each chapter of the book explores some aspect of Kinsey's life or character, beginning with the specifics of her biography, her daily life, her friends, her favorite places, and her work. Readers may want to use the table of contents which is detailed enough to allow a reader who, for example, wants to know how Kinsey found Henry Pitts and her apartment or when her apartment was bombed and rebuilt, can learn the answer in chapter 3: Kinsey's daily life under apartments. In Chapter 4 you will find out why you will never know her full name.
This book is a very informative book about an intriguing character that most of us love. We learn everything about Kinsey and everything in her life that we ever wanted to know. What a wonderful book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars G is for Grafton elevates the mystery genre June 9 1998
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
I loved revisiting one of my favorite characters through this unique text that combines literary criticsm with prose that is like a visit with your next door neighbor( if you had a next door neighbor as interesting as Kinsey). One of the most vexing things about the content of this book is that I learned that my mental images of Kinsey's apartment and it's spatial relationship to Henry's house are incorrect. I've decided to stay with my own mental imagery, rather than changing to the "correct" versions offered in the schmatic drawings in the book. I also loved the photographs of Kinsey's jogging path and her office.
G is for Grafton might more correctly be titled, K is for Kinsey. It is a wonderful read that reminds one of a conversation with a long, lost friend. I loved revisiting her cases and recalling how much I enjoyed reading each of them. I will continue to refer to the charting of her cases as I read O,P,Q...
Kaufman and Kay are to be congratulated on their careful treatment of Kinsey and Grafton's body of work.
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