About Your Privacy on this Site
Welcome! To bring you the best content on our sites and applications, Meredith partners with third party advertisers to serve digital ads, including personalized digital ads. Those advertisers use tracking technologies to collect information about your activity on our sites and applications and across the Internet and your other apps and devices.
You always have the choice to experience our sites without personalized advertising based on your web browsing activity by visiting the DAA’s Consumer Choice page, the NAI's website, and/or the EU online choices page, from each of your browsers or devices. To avoid personalized advertising based on your mobile app activity, you can install the DAA’s AppChoices app here. You can find much more information about your privacy choices in our privacy policy. Even if you choose not to have your activity tracked by third parties for advertising services, you will still see non-personalized ads on our sites and applications. By clicking continue below and using our sites or applications, you agree that we and our third party advertisers can:
  • transfer your data to the United States or other countries; and
  • process and share your data so that we and third parties may serve you with personalized ads, subject to your choices as described above and in our privacy policy.
Entertainment Weekly


Mystery writer Sue Grafton dies at 77

Posted on

Sue Grafton, the New York Times best-selling author behind the Alphabet Series, died Thursday night after a two-year battle with cancer. She was 77.

Grafton’s daughter, Jamie, announced the news on the writer’s official Facebook page.

“She was surrounded by family, including her devoted and adoring husband Steve,” Jamie wrote in a message addressed to Grafton’s readers. “Although we knew this was coming, it was unexpected and fast. She had been fine up until just a few days ago, and then things moved quickly. Sue always said that she would continue writing as long as she had the juice.”

The Alphabet Series, about private investigator Kinsey Millhone in the fictional town of Santa Teresa, California, kicked off in 1982 with A is for Alibi.

“I was reading an Edward Gorey cartoon book, and it went ‘A is for Amy, who fell down the stairs, B is for Basil, assaulted by bears, C is for Clara’ … and I thought, God bless America, what a great way to link titles!” Grafton told The New York Post. “So I wrote as many crime-related titles [alphabetically] as I could think of to see if there were enough for 26 books. Again, not having finished the first. I was completely free to do anything I wanted and had nothing at stake. When that sold, I thought, ‘Uh-oh. Now I’m in trouble!’”

Set in the 1980s, the series included subsequent titles like B is for Burglar, H is for Homicide, M is for Malice, and T is for Trespass. Natalie Hevener Kaufman and Carol McGinnis Kay also penned a companion book called G Is for Grafton: The World of Kinsey Millhone.

Grafton’s last entry, Y is for Yesterday, was released this year with Z is for Zero meant as the final installment for release in 2019.

Her husband, Steve Humphrey, told the Associated Press “nothing’s been written” for the Z book. As he explained, Grafton struggled for an idea while undergoing treatment for a rare cancer of the appendix. “There is no Z,” he said.

“Many of you are asking (some quite plaintively) what I intend to do when I get to ‘the end’ of the alphabet,” Grafton wrote in a letter published on her website. “I’ve been consistent in my response which is ‘no clue.’ I want to see what kind of shape I’m in mentally and physically. I don’t want to keep on writing if the juice is gone. These novels about Ms. Millhone take incredible focus, ingenuity, energy, and imagination. If I have the wherewithal, I may write a Kinsey Millhone standalone or two. If I feel I’ve lost my touch, I’ll retire with grace.”

As far as Grafton’s family is concerned, “the alphabet now ends at Y.”

“Many of you also know that she was adamant that her books would never be turned into movies or TV shows, and in that same vein, she would never allow a ghost writer to write in her name,” Jamie wrote. “Because of all of those things, and out of the deep abiding love and respect for our dear sweet Sue, as far as we in the family are concerned, the alphabet now ends at Y.”