LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- Sue Grafton's writing career spanned more than 25 years. Her first book in her alphabet mystery series, "A is for Alibi," was published in 1982 and its hooked readers ever since.

"I thought she had a great sense of humor. She had a very sharp mind," said avid Grafton reader Pam Platt.

She's read all of her books, including "Y is for Yesterday," which was released in August 2017.

"I think detective stories, you have to be really smart to write them because you have to stay ahead of the reader. I think the thing about detective stories is it allows you to write about the best about people and the worst about people," Platt said.

Platt believes Grafton was one of the best about doing that. She received a Hometown Hero banner in 2016 and appeared on Great Day Live over the years, talking to us about her success.

"It seems to be building which is amazing. But somebody converts somebody else, you know. It's like wives and mothers and sisters talk their kids into doing it. Librarians pitch my books," Grafton said with a smile.

Grafton also appeared with WHAS11's Doug Proffitt during our solar eclipse coverage this summer, telling him she was taking her time in writing the last in her alphabet series.

"I hadn't started it. I was kind of hoping you'd give me a suggestion while I'm here," she said.

Grafton's husband says she was in a morphine coma in her final days, having fallen and breaking her hip before Christmas. He says Grafton will be remembered by her readers as someone who was careful with her writing - calling her 'talented' and 'rigorous.' Grafton was surrounded by family and close friends.

"Just sat and kept her vigil and friends would come in and hug her and cry, whisper to her and the family was there. She left in a cloud of love," said Steve Humphrey.

A private celebration of life will be held in Santa Barbara, California on Sunday. A similar celebration of life will be held in New York and Louisville in the spring.