More than a decade ago, Sue Grafton said that the title of her final Kinsey Millhone mystery would be “Z” is for Zero, ending the bestselling series that began in 1982 with “A” Is for Alibi. Or so André Bernard reported in his Now All We Need Is a Title: Famous Book Titles and How They Got That Way (Norton, 127 pp., $11, paperback).
I first wrote about Grafton’s plan for the last Kinsey Millhone mystery when I reviewed Bernard’s book for the Plain Dealer in 1995. And because Now All We Need Is a Title was widely reviewed, I thought her intention was well known, especially now that it’s turned up on Wikipedia.
But I found a surprising comment on the page for Grafton’s new “T” is for Trespass on the site Powell’s, the great Portland bookstore: “We don’t know what Z will be, except that it will be very, very good.” So consider this post a reminder: It’s “Z” is for Zero. But it comes with a warning: Grafton could get an idea for a novel about, say, a compulsive womanizer who meets a ghastly death involving his hyperactive zipper. Would you really want her to ignore that one so she could stick with “Z” is for Zero?
© 2009 Janice Harayda. All rights reserved.