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Q Is for Quarry [Audiobook, Unabridged] [Audio Cassette]

Sue Grafton , Judy Kaye
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (139 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Oct. 15 2002 Sue Grafton
A Kinsey Millhone mystery. . .

She was a "Jane Doe," an unidentified white female whose decomposed body was discovered near a quarry off California's Highway 1. The case fell to the Santa Teresa County Sheriff's Department, but the detectives had little to go on. The woman was young, her hands were bound with a length of wire, there were mulitple stab wounds, and her throat had been slashed. After months of investigation, the case remained unsolved.

That was eighteen years ago. Now, the two men who found the body, both nearing the end of long careers in law enforcement, want one last shot at the case. Old and ill, they need someone to do the legwork for them, and they turn to Kinsey Millhone. They will, they tell her, find closure if they can just identify the victim. Kinsey is intrigued by the challenge and agrees to work with them.

But revisiting the past can be a dangerous business, and what beings with the pursuit of Jane Doe's real identity ends in a high-risk hunt for her killer.

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From Amazon

Private investigator Kinsey Millhone has served Sue Grafton well through 16 letters of the alphabet in a perennially popular series that occasionally breaks new ground but more often traverses familiar territory, as is the case here. Two old, ailing cops--one retired, the other disabled--try to breathe some life into an 18-year-old mystery that haunts them both for different reasons. They enlist Kinsey's help in identifying the victim, a young woman who was murdered and left for dead in the old quarry of the title. Neither they nor Kinsey expect that reopening an old case will incite the killer to strike again--not once, but twice. And while the real case of the still-unidentified victim that inspired this fictionalized scenario continues to languish in the cold case file in the Santa Barbara sheriff's office, Grafton's solution is as plausible as any. While the unlikely trio of Millhone and her cranky geezer sidekicks offers a few chuckles, the inner reaches of Kinsey's soul remain largely inaccessible to her as well as to the reader, which will probably not bother most of Kinsey's or Grafton's many admirers. --Jane Adams --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Publishers Weekly

Although this latest Kinsey Millhone novel features all of Grafton's tried and true elements of suspense and humor, there's something unusual here: the story-of an unsolved homicide that occurred in 1969-is based on a real event. Grafton became interested in this case, of an unidentified white female whose decomposed body was discovered near a California quarry. While Grafton was writing the novel, Jane Doe's body was exhumed and a forensic artist did the facial reconstruction, in the hopes that seeing the victim's image might trigger someone's memory. Kinsey is pulled into working on the case when her old friend Con Dolan asks for her help as a favor, to help Stacey Oliphant, an aging, ailing policeman, fulfill his dream of solving the mystery of Jane Doe's murder. There's not much to go on, as the case has been cold for years, yet the trio-Kinsey, Dolan and Stacey-persevere; slowly, leads begin to turn up. Kaye gives a fine performance. While she's well accustomed to reading Kinsey (she's been the audiobook reader for the entire series) and performs that part with gusto here, she also deftly handles the craggy old voices of Dolan and Stacey (although at times it's hard to distinguish between them). By turns sassy, professional and heartbreaking, her portrayal of Grafton's beloved heroine will delight fans.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
PI Kinsey Millhone is at it again, this time trying to solve the eighteen-year-old murder of a previous `cold case'--an unidentified female victim.

Teamed ironically with two elderly cops, the ones who had originally found the woman's body, Kinsey sets out to discover both the identity of the victim and her killer who dumped the body in an old quarry.

Sue Grafton's 17th suspense novel in the `alphabet series' is filled with unexpected twists and turns, not to mention infused with Grafton's wry sense of humor. I loved the quirky relationship between the two old cops, Dolan and Oliphant! Amidst a story of tragic death and horrific murder, they were a great addition and added definite comic relief.

I would have like to see Kinsey's past delved into a bit more, but Grafton is the Queen of `dangling the carrot'. I'll be sure to read the next one (although I'm a bit behind in my reading as I'm busy writing my own novels). It's going to be a sad day when Sue Grafton finally gets to the letter `Z'.

~Cheryl Kaye Tardif
[......]
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3.0 out of 5 stars not great, but typically entertaining July 19 2004
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
I've read all of these except the new one, "R", at this point. Obviously, I like them. I think "Q Is For Quarry" is a perfectly respectable specimen of the series, if not one of the best.
As is happening more and more often, Kinsey spends most of the book far from Santa Teresa, this time in a small town near the Arizona border. This location is better executed than the small California town in "N Is For Noose," I think, though there seems to be less of an effort to produce a sense of local colour. There's more just a feeling of isolation, of being stranded in the desert, which works for these characters.
As also often happens in these books, the last few pages, in which there is a sudden outbreak of action and danger and the perpetrator stands revealed, are not really satisfying or convincing. And there are a few scenes involving Kinsey's landlord Henry, who has a new girlfriend, and his sister-in-law the Hungarian cook Rosie, apparently intended as comic relief, which I didn't like at all. Luckily, Grafton abandons this stuff early on.
The meat of the book, as far as I'm concerned, consists of Kinsey's interactions with a variety of ordinary unhappy people in ordinary American settings, credibly described. I get the feeling that Grafton can write this stuff in her sleep, but I enjoy reading it. Her friends and co-workers the unhealthy older ex-cops also provide some reasonably interesting interaction that doesn't detract from the story.
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2.0 out of 5 stars The Odd Couple engage Kinsey April 19 2004
By saliero
Format:Hardcover
*****WARNING: THERE MAY BE A SPOILER*****
First, the good things about this, the 17th outing for Kinsey Millhone:
* the setting is excellent. I enjoy both the coastal and desert locales in which it is set, and, although I was about to scream if Grafton told us the colour of the desert soil once more, she did manage to capture the landscape extremely well. As well, throughout the series, Grafton has had a pretty good way with bringing to life Smalltown, USA and its inhabitants. This is no exception.
* the 'Odd Couple' like characters - the two retired / medically unfit police officers. I could see Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau perfectly cast (if they weren't dead alreay).
* Aspects of the police procedural.
* The interesting depth added to Kinsey's family relationships in this book. A newly emerging relationship with an aunt, which has surprised even Kinsey in the way it has affected her. At last she is beginning to open up to possibilities.
Now, what I didn't like:
* I agree with the reviewer who says everything is over-described. Cutting down the number of adjectives and 'languid' takes on every action and place would make a tighter read.
* However, my biggest disappointment and the reason for the 2 stars is that I think there is a major plotting / logic flaw in this novel. The key clue is dropped on page 19. To me, it stood out a million miles away. I spent the rest of the books getting angrier and angrier at what was to me an elemental flaw in something which was meant to be a police procedural. Surely, given the notes taken at the time a record was kept of who and where the missing person report, later retracted, came from. It would have eliminated about half the book, in hurrying the solving of the 'who was Jane Doe' part of the story.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Back to her pace and quality mystery writing. April 6 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I really enjoyed this mystery. It's been a while since I enjoyed an American female writer's series...they often tend to drop off in quality of writing, and it becomes hard for authors to retain the interest in the major character/protagonist. I cannot tell how many times after about five (when you know they are going for a series) that I just barely get through the book, and I am sure the author feels that way too.
This must be a lucky letter of the alphabet for Grafton. I enjoyed the dusty desert scenery I am familar with from my youth (grandparents in Mesa and we were in SF). Also the added information about Kinsey's family is a bonus.
Kinsey finds it a treat working with two older cops who are both having health problems on a cold case. As per usual, stirring the pot causes things to come to a boil, but Grafton manages to weave into the storyline several different possible motives, which makes it very hard to determine who killed the young girl in the cold case. Kinsey also shows a more caring side of her in her treatment of the women in the story, one who loses a brother, one who is an alcoholic. Maybe she find a way to care about her family?
Karen Sadler
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Better the second time around
I've recently re-read books M through Q, and have to say Q is for Quarry is a favourite. The second time around I noticed all the Q words Grafton sprinkled through the pages, from... Read more
Published on Sept. 6 2009 by La Raine
5.0 out of 5 stars Q is for Querlous
The 'real-life' crime which is at the root of Q is for Quarry is a story of such poignancy that anyone who has maintained a shred of compassion over the years can identify with. Read more
Published on Feb. 3 2008 by Catherine N. Cole
1.0 out of 5 stars Darker and Darker
I've mostly enjoyed the Alphabet series, but Sue Grafton's last few books have been darker and darker. Read more
Published on June 24 2004 by L. Baumgartner
1.0 out of 5 stars C is for crappy
I read a lot. I enjoy mysteries. After finally getting around to reading a book by Sue Grafton, I have to say that I'm utterly disappointed. Read more
Published on June 10 2004
4.0 out of 5 stars Yes, I have read them all
...and Q is for Quarry is not the best of the best of this Grafton series, but it's pretty darn good. Read more
Published on Feb. 17 2004 by Mary Smithers
3.0 out of 5 stars Your typical cookie cutter mystery.
This was my first time reading a Sue Grafton novel, and I must say it was sort of boring. However, if you are a mystery fan, than I am sure you will like it. Read more
Published on Jan. 31 2004 by S. Lucyk
3.0 out of 5 stars Q is for Quite Good, But...
I've enjoyed the Kinsey Millhone series over the years and read this one quickly and with real pleasure .. so for me it was a genuine page-turner. Read more
Published on Jan. 24 2004 by C. I. Black
4.0 out of 5 stars Kinsey rocks!
Well, instead of fictionalized Santa Barbara, this one is set down in the rather remote southeastern corner of CA. Read more
Published on Jan. 9 2004 by Peggy Vincent
3.0 out of 5 stars Mediocre read
I've read every novel in the Kinsey Millhone alphabet series, but this one was sub-par, at best. It wasn't terrible, but it wasn't great, either. Read more
Published on Jan. 4 2004 by Pascal
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