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5.0 out of 5 stars Sue Grafton Presents American Wit and Murder From S. Calif
I loved H is for Homicide and believe that it is Sue Grafton at her finest. As a Sue Grafton fan, I have read all of her books and loved them all but this one really hit the spot.
Kinsey Milhone, the main character, sets out to investigate a series of suspicious automobile insurance claims and ends up hanging out in the barrio with the perpetrators. Her entree...
Published on June 7 2000 by Liz

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Weakest of the 10 I've Read
I finally gave Grafton's "alphabet" series featuring Kinsey Millhone a try with "P Is For Peril" a year or two ago, when it was the newest of the series. I liked "P", and I've since been working my way through the rest, starting with "A" -- I've now reached "I."
I think "H Is For Homicide" is the weakest I've read. Much of the book has Kinsey undercover, living...
Published on March 1 2004


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Weakest of the 10 I've Read, March 1 2004
By A Customer
I finally gave Grafton's "alphabet" series featuring Kinsey Millhone a try with "P Is For Peril" a year or two ago, when it was the newest of the series. I liked "P", and I've since been working my way through the rest, starting with "A" -- I've now reached "I."
I think "H Is For Homicide" is the weakest I've read. Much of the book has Kinsey undercover, living with some crooks and auto insurance fraud artists in Los Angeles. The plot doesn't seem to advance very quickly in these segments, and Kinsey's acerbic observations begin to pall. We're left with a generally static narrative of fairly pointless minor incidents among uninteresting, vaguely threatening people. Kinsey's better when she's rushing around among a variety of mainly middle class specimens, observing their tastes and foibles, in my opinion.
The good news is that "I Is For Innocent" was a welcome return to form.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Really Disappointed, March 19 2004
By A Customer
I am new to this series of books and am reading them in order. I really enjoyed A through G, but H is a real disappointment. I simply do not like Kinsey in this one. She comes across as a bit stupid here. I'm surprised at her willingness to break the law. For example, she hits the female cop since this will get her arrested and she'll be able to stay close to Bibianna. What?! Or how about when she's with Raymond looking for potential accidents and she VOLUNTEERS to drive at one point. Then when she causes her first accident she feels a "thrill." Who is this person? What I really found ridiculous was the chapter with Dolan and Santos filling Kinsey in on what's going on and what they want her to do, and then low and behold, she inexplicably gets bailed out before she's supposed to. I hope the next books in this series that I read are a whole lot better.
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4.0 out of 5 stars 'H' is For Homicide, Feb. 28 2001
Sue Grafton's "H" is For Homicide is a thrilling adventure right from the get-go. The tale begins on a dark drive home at three in the morning. Kinsey Millhone had just finished one of her cases and was looking for a quiet weekend at home. Unfortunately she should have stayed at the hotel but her longing for home brought her back to Santa Teresa. Upon arrival, Kinsey finds her friend and co-worker, Parnell Perkins, dead in front of their work, California Fidelity. Besides trying to get on with her life, Kinsey is asked to check out an insurance claim that raises to the surface and smells like fraud. Bibianna Diaz was the one responsible for the claim. After tracking her down, Kinsey begins to gain Bibianna's trust as a possible buyer for her home. Unfortunately though Bibianna is running from someone worse than the police. She left her fiancé Raymond Maldonado, who doesn't like to be crossed. Raymond being the hostile, mob boss and head of the whole insurance fraud scandal has the inability to take no for an answer. Soon Kinsey finds herself in the middle of the problem when Bibianna is kidnapped and Kinsey comes along for the ride. Now Kinsey needs to find a way out and uncover Raymond's insurance scam without getting caught in the middle of Bibianna and Raymond's own love- hate war and before her true identity is discovered. This is a good book for those who like adventure and know how hard it can be in the middle of a love-hate relationship. Like every love affair this book has some complications that can lead you off into many different directions which may be confusing but in the end they all string together in the final chapter. If you want high pace excitement and thrills of high rolling stakes, this is the book for you.
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2.0 out of 5 stars A rare misfire from Sue Grafton, Dec 28 2000
By 
brad lonard (Sydney, Australia) - See all my reviews
Of all the major mystery writers of today, Sue Grafton must be the sloppiest plotter since Rex Stout. Often major plotlines are left dangling, major characters vanish without comment, and quite a few of the books don't end so much as simply come to a screeching halt. But, of course, we don't read Sue Grafton (or Rex Stout, for that matter) for plot. We read her for the richness of her writing, her psychological insights, and Kinsey Millhone's dry wit. Which goes quite a way to explaining just why this book in the Millhone series is so disappointing. Kinsey goes undercover -- accidentally -- in a hispanic gang which has an insurance racket going. Grafton tries to remake her lead character into an action hero, which neatly negates her virtues. Coincidence always plays a large part in Grafton's books, but in this case the sheer number of coincidences will cause you to yodel with disbelief. The two big plot twists can be seen coming a mile away. Hardly essential reading. Grafton quickly rebounded and the books which follow H are effortlessly superior.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Sue Grafton Presents American Wit and Murder From S. Calif, June 7 2000
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Ce commentaire est de: H Is for Homicide (Paperback)
I loved H is for Homicide and believe that it is Sue Grafton at her finest. As a Sue Grafton fan, I have read all of her books and loved them all but this one really hit the spot.
Kinsey Milhone, the main character, sets out to investigate a series of suspicious automobile insurance claims and ends up hanging out in the barrio with the perpetrators. Her entree into this secluded world was an evening spent in a very nasty bar posing as an after-hours tart whose mission is to befriend a for-real gorgeous tart who is the key to the insurance fraud ring. This is not the kind of duty that most of us would sign up for with any amount of enthusiasm. But Kinsey Milhone has guts of iron and nerves of steel. Those guts of iron allow her to swallow vast quantities of greasy restaurant food and the nerves of steel facilitate the endurance of the company of sleaze-bags for record amounts of time.
None of the miscreants, be they White or Hispanic are spared her cynical witty observations. Readers will, in all likelihood, be laughing cynically at the unvarnished truth that Kinsey uncovers time and again. She lets us know when people are negligent about washing their hands after using the public restrooms. She promptly informs us when residential bathrooms are less than clean and the housework in general has been neglected, when people don't smell or look good. The things that irritate Kinsey tell us the most about her--primarily that she has high personal standards and a great sense of boundaries.
Kinsey's level of tolerance for the creeps and oddballs that are the everyday encounters of her job is nothing short of remarkable. When she ends up hanging out with the denizens of the barrio in their apartment/headquarters, I thought that for sure she would end up dead in the apartment dumpster. Yet Kinsey's unique ability to blend in with her temporary surroundings and her skills as a private investigator combine to make a cliff-hanging suspense mystery novel.
Sue Grafton is at the top of her form in H Is For Homicide. I also highly recommend L Is For Lawless to newcomers who feel inclined to jump into the series at any point. Just grab any one of her novels, curl up, and let Kinsey Milhone take over!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Kinsey's in trouble again. . ., Oct. 18 2000
. . .it all starts innocently enough, when California Fidelity, the company who's given Kinsey free office space for years in return for the occasional fraud investigation, gets taken over by Gordon Titus, an "efficiency expert." He's got it in for her from the get-go, so she takes a last-ditch fraud investigation job. Next thing you know, an old school friend, who's mixed up with the woman Kinsey's investigating, enters the picture, and to help him, Kinsey follows the woman clear into LA and gang territory. Getting out is not as easy as getting in was, either. This is especially upsetting to Vera Lipton, Kinsey's old CF friend, who just KNOWS that Kinsey will not be able to squeeze in a shopping trip for a new dress to wear to Vera's wedding. The last sentence of the epilogue, even more than the previous ones, is a "cliffhanger," and I couldn't wait to read "I" and find out what would happen next. Have fun, folks. . .
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5.0 out of 5 stars Femal PI Extraordinaire, April 16 2004
Okay, it's been a few years since Sue Grafton wrote this book and I'm finally getting around to reading it and making commentary. Having been caught up in John Grisham, Elmore Leonard, and James Patterson, I am just now discovering the alphabet series of mysteries written by Grafton. Her use of a feisty female PI is refreshing, and so far none of her stories have been boring.
In H is for Homicide, Kinsey finds herself caught up in an undercover investigation of insurance fraud and spends time, virtually as a hostage, in the LA barrios. She's tough and manages to solve the mystery and save her hide. Also, in this book, there is an interesting twist at the end that is a bit unbelievable, but adds interest to the story.
Great read. Grafton never disappoints.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Insurance fraud, Jan. 23 2003
By 
Karen Potts (Lake Jackson, Texas) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
When private investigator Kinsey Millhone returns home after doing a consumer investigation, she is saddened to learn that one of her friends from California Fidelity Insurance has been killed. Kinsey has office space in the C.F. building and the dead man was an employee there. In the meantime, she is checking on insurance fraud cases, and suddenly the murder and her investigation begin to merge. What follows is a book-long wild ride into the underworld in the company of a young hustler named Bibianna Diaz. She spends an evening in a bar named the Meat Locker and things get only worse after that. Kinsey's and Bibianna's lives are threatened as the facts of the insurance fraud becomes clear. This is another good read in a dependable series.
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5.0 out of 5 stars You have to read it twice, Jan. 26 2002
By 
D. P. Birkett (Suffern, NY USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This one largely takes place in the Los Angeles barrio where Kinsey is (kind of) undercover investigating insurance fraud and murder for the California Indemnity Company. It's the last one in the series to have a major CIC connection.
You have to re-read this after you've finished because a final three-word sentence stands the whole plot on its head. An even better reason for re-reading is to savor Grafton's English prose style. When she gets a whole building to describe she slightly prolongs things too much, but I love descriptions like this one, of a garage "The late afternoon sun slanted onto the cracked concrete floor in tawny yellow stripes. The air smelled of oil, old tires. and hot metal."
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3.0 out of 5 stars H is for Hostage, not Homicide, May 26 2001
By 
Paul Skinner (Manassas, Virginia United States) - See all my reviews
From the title and the early entry of a dead body, the reader thinks that Kinsey is going to set out to solve a homicide. However, she gets tangled up in a most unusual situation, as a virtual hostage in a Latino run auto insurance fraud ring. This is the only alphabet book I have read where Kinsey is not working for a client, and I guess this is part of the reason I thought this book was sub-par, by Sue Grafton standards. There is little mention of the usual Santa Teresa characters. Even so, this book was an easy page turner, as all other alphabet books are. If this is your first Millhone mystery, don't worry. Most of them are much, much better.
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H Is for Homicide
H Is for Homicide by Sue Grafton (Library Binding - March 22 1992)
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