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on April 23, 2011
The strongest entry yet in the JP Kinkaid chronicles.

JP Kinkaid, guitarist with the great rock band Blacklight, suggests Delta bluesman
Ferris "Bulldog" Moody for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Imagine his joy when he
learns that his idol is still alive, just several hours south. Of course, things
are never what they seem. Graceland touches on themes of family, lies, ethics,
and of course, music, food and mystery.

Ms Grabien's strength is atmosphere. Blacklight is fictional. On one hand, too
bad. But then, because of her writing, I absolutely know what "Liplock" sounds
like. I can hear JP's riffs for "Moody's Blues." Elsewhere I have tried to
describe this series as the next best thing to a backstage pass.

JP and Bree step out of the pages, into my life. Ms Grabien's descriptive power
includes showing us a glimmer of what dealing with MS is like on a daily basis.
The odors emanating from Bree's kitchen make me hungry.

She writes in a conversational, first person style. Usually first person is my
least favorite POV, but it works for this series. Being in JP's head is what
gives the books their reality and sense of the moment. I find myself using JP's
language, to the puzzlement of my family. They are not used to the exclamation
"Gordon Bennett!"

I recommend this series strongly, but please do read them in order. Which is,

Rock and Roll Never Forgets Rock and Roll Never Forgets: A JP Kinkaid Mystery
While My Guitar Gently WeepsWhile My Guitar Gently Weeps: A JP Kinkaid Mystery (JP Kinkaid Mysteries)
London CallingLondon Calling - Book #3 of the JP Kinkaid Chronicles
GracelandGraceland (The Jp Kinkaid Chronicles)
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on August 28, 2011
I became a fan of Deborah Grabien after reading her "Haunted Ballad" series. I love the JP Kinkaid series. Partially because I am of an age of JP Kinkaid {Woodstock Generation} and remember fondly the edited version of my younger days, but mostly because I enjoy MS Grabien's style. I feel as if I know the characters and the characters stay with me for several days after I have finished a book. The reviewer who commented about the male POV has a valid point but I am female and this in no way lessens my enjoyment and appreciation of this series.
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on April 21, 2011
Richer and darker than earlier Kinkaids, full of the luscious rock and roll detail we long for and expect. Backstage at the Rock Hall of Fame, how the jamming gets done, who plays with whom and how. Told, as always, in JP's voice. There's a death only later seen as murder, there's JP meeting one of his blues heroes, there's a lot of Delta blues history, and there's JP and Bree, after 30 years together still finding in each other power and mystery. Crank it up loud.
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on June 13, 2011
It comes down to this, mostly...I just don't think women authors, well, some women authors, well, certainly this woman author, can write convincingly from a male POV. I mean, the male protagonist keeps going on about what shoes and dresses "his" partner is wearing, and even thinks about how her feet might be feeling after she's been standing in high heels. "He" also goes into detail about what she cooks to the point where you almost expect these books to come with recipes. And of course "he" is always up for endless blabbering about his feelings and where they stand as a couple, bla bla bla, despite a few token disclaimers along the lines of "I'm a man, I don't like to talk about feelings" which "he" then goes on to disprove.

And oh yeah, more female wishful thinking...although the men in the book all tend to be pushing 60 and the women are at least late 40s, the men are all completely faithful to and entirely in love with and still madly attracted to the wives they've had for decades. This despite, one assumes, having had plenty of options to look elsewhere. I mean, I can see maybe one, possibly two, committed celeb couples, but in real life, hello, this is a RARITY. In a chick-lit romance novel, however, I guess it's pretty de rigeur. But having a supposedly male narrator for such obviously girly fantasies of romance and cooking and shoes just does not ring true at all.
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