He's a self-described beach bum who won his houseboat in a card game. He's also a knight errant who's wary of credit cards, retirement benefits, political parties, mortgages, and television. He only works when his cash runs out, and his rule is simple: he'll help you find whatever was taken from you, as long as he can keep half.
Nothing that John D. MacDonald wrote is better loved and more enduring than the 21 books in his series about Travis McGee, the Florida-based “salvage consultant” who recovers property for a fee so he can take his retirement “a piece at a time”. Narrator Robert Petkoff, hand-chosen to narrate with the approval of MacDonald’s estate, brings McGee’s world of the Busted Flush (his houseboat, which he won in a poker game) and “Miss Agnes” (his custom Rolls-Royce pickup truck) to vivid life.
©1964 John D. MacDonald Publishing, Inc. Renewal © 1992 Maynard MacDonald (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
"[T]he great entertainer of our age, and a mesmerizing storyteller." (Stephen King)
"[M]y favorite novelist of all time." (Dean Koontz)
"[W]hat a joy that these timeless and treasured novels are available again." (Ed McBain)
This book is well written, and well narrated, but I found it depressing. The bad guy brakes the mind and soul of his female companion through systematic abuse. I was expecting something lighter.
Interesting, but a little slow.
Good voice for this story.
No, not enough meat to the story.
from Literary Exploration
I’ve never read a John D. MacDonald book before and I’ve read a lot of good things about his Travis McGee novels, so I thought I might start at the beginning for this series. This is the first in what is now a 21 book series and the first time we meet Travis McGee, a self-described “salvage consultant”, almost like a treasure hunter but instead he recovers the property of his clients for a fee; half. He is hired and has to go up against the pathologically evil antagonist Junior Allen, who may seem friendly but has a very sinister agenda.
For a hard-boiled style “salvage consultant” McGee seems to be very ordinary; I felt like all the guys liked him (except the antagonist) and all the girls wanted him. There wasn’t much depth in the character at all except in one scene where he was ready to torture someone for information and I saw a glimpse of a sociopath in McGee. This just made me want to read a book with a sociopath hard-boiled detective, so if you have any recommendations let me know.
The story felt very predictable, it was more of a quick enjoyable story being told to me. I think, while this series might work well as filler reading to help recover from something heavy, there are much better books out there to read instead of this series. The sex and violence that was in this book was pretty intense for a book written in 1964 so I really don’t want to just write off the entire series because of predictability; so if you share a different opinion or can recommend me one of the Travis McGee books that could change my mind, please let me know.
I almost enjoyed this audiobook. It has all the elements you'd want - an enigmatic main character, an interesting, complex plot and a compelling victim, there wasn't enough payoff in the end to warrant the investment of time. The showdown with the villain, the loathsome Junior Allen, was too brief. Also, I felt like the character was fighting with the writing towards the latter part of the book.
The narration was fair, but it too often felt at odds with the writing. I've heard that there are earlier Darren McGavin versions, however, and those might be more compelling.
The skill of the narrator makes this audio book worth the time. The story is weak. I have read this same basic story a hundred times. Character development is rudimentary, to say the least. But, if you need something to listen too while traveling, it will do.
I really wanted to like this book and dig into the series, but I just couldn't get into it. I tried for over half the book, but it just didn't seem to be going anywhere, and there wasn't enough teeth to make me care much about any of the characters. I'm sorry to have to give it 2 stars, but that's all I can muster.
Story was okay but not intriguing or fascinating. Disappointing after all i had read about this series!
No, not good enough to hold one's attention.
Added life to the characters.
Not if written in this same style. Way too much flowerly self reflection that did not enhance the story!
First.. not have the character nickname "Trav". Very irritating and unbelievable.Second.. The character as written, was not strong enough for all of its social pronouncements. Just not a believable lead character.
Anne Perry, Craig Johnson, Vince Flynn or Brad Thor
I would not have published it. So I guess that would be all scenes?
I try to purchase hardcover editions of the books I like, this author's works would not have a home in my library Further, I downloaded all 3 audio books and now wish I could have the credits back.
What a nauseating character this Travis Mcgee. I'm a huge fan of mysteries. thriller's etc.. but really couldn't stand the teenage boy outlook on women and himself - won't be bothering with any more in the series.
I thought I would try reading the first book of this series. I was disappointed. He just rambles on and on and I got very bored - no action to speak of. I wouldn't recommend this book. There are so many good books to pick from.
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