It was the standard blackmail scheme. For years, sultry Lysa Dean's name on a movie had meant a bonanza at the box office. Now a set of pictures could mean the end of her career.
When first approached for help by lovely Dana Holtzer, Lysa's personal secretary, Travis McGee is thoroughly turned off by the tacky details. But being low on cash, and tenderly attracted by the star's intriguingly remote secretary, McGee sets out to locate his suspects -- only to find that they start turning up dead!
©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)
What we get here is a piercing fiction of what is most likely pretty real in the stark worlds of hollywood. Worthwhile.
I've read 4 of the books in this series and I am so hooked!. Robert Petkoff does such a wonderful job on the narration that I find myself searching for more books he has done.
Travis McGee is quite a character and I can't wait to read the next book.
No. Kept me entertained, but not archival by any means.
Yes. Several nice twists and surprises.
His voicing of Travis McGee. His female voices are not so good
Travis McGee--A romantic in a cynical shell.
I'm delighted that Travis McGee is on Audible. The books are entertaining and still have some excellent writing, although some philosophy found here is not PC.
These are classic mystery stories written at a time when $10,000.00 was equal to $100,000.00 in today dollars. Also men and women had different rolls. If you take that into the balance of the story, you can enjoy the mystery, and how Trav solves each problem he encounters. I have started with book one, and have now completed book 7. They all get better I have found. Just have to get used to some of the dated language and interplay between characters. It's not 2012, but late 1960's. I still find the stories really well written and have enough mystery and strange turns of events to make each Travis McGee story a gem.
The wisdom is reaching far beyond what we see. Delight in the journey
A Hollywood sex symbol Lysa Dean is receiving threats from someone who sounds quite deranged. Enter Travis McGee; he and Lysa's private secretary Dana Holtzer hit the road investigating the other people pictured in the orgy photos. While traveling through Florida to upstate New York; to San Francisco; to Las Vegas; to Phoenix Travis narrows down the the suspect list, and finds a killer. Dana naturally falls in love then into bed with him; huge surprise. The stopover in Vegas gives McGee an opportunity to verbally bash lesbians as MacDonald shows another side of his misogynistic attitudes. Then there is the ever present condescension MacDonald seems to feel for most of the human race. As usual though his ability to write overcomes his painfully out of date attitudes about sex and towards women and his almost supercilious attitude towards the rest of the world. This a short quick moving mystery that is a good read and a good listen.
Sex kitten Lisa Dean is most men's dream as a possible sexual partner, but not for Travis McGee, who is more attracted to Ms. Dean's private secretary. Too bad that this secretary is considered the Ice Queen, for he's instructed to work with the woman to find some damning photos taken at an impromptu swinging house party and see them destroyed.
Who killed the photographer, though, and appears willing to do anything possible to keep McGee and his female companion from completing their commission?
I last read this book shortly after it was first published, back in the sixties, as my older brother and I "borrowed" it from our dad's collection to read it for ourselves. John D. MacDonald founded the genre of the thriller as far as I'm concerned, and his books are as readable now as they were when they were first released.
I have heard raves about John D. MacDonald but never read any of his books until Audible started making them available. I have really enjoyed all that I've listened to thus far. I think the character descriptions in this one make them "visible" to the mind's eye.
I really liked Robert Petkoff's performance, however, I missed Darren McGavin. His voice is who I think on when I think of Travis McGee
Not quite the suspense of the first three, but still a very good story. The narration is wonderful and the story-telling is spell-binding. But it's hard to build much empathy for the characters because most of them are such sleaze-bags - but then again, I think that was one of the big points of the novel.
I write for myself, for my own pleasure. And I want to be left alone to do it. - Salinger ^(;,;)^
"The world is shiny and the surface is a little too frangible. Something can reach out of the black and grab you at any moment. Everybody wears a different set of compulsions. You can be maimed without warning, in body or in spirit, by a very nice guy. It is the luck of your draw. I did not feel like a nice guy."
- John D. MacDonald, The Quick Red Fox
A solid, early addition to the Travis McGee series. All the cynical, hard John D. MacDonald prose I could ask for. Part of what I love about MacDonald is his ability to both write like a cheap 10¢ noir novelist and at the same time like an iconic, modern-day Cassandra. 50-years ago, inside these pulp detective novels, he was warning past readers about our sick, slick present. Reading MacDonald is to constantly come across sentences and paragraphs that fill you with unbounded joy. Seriously. Here he is describing San Francisco:
"San Francisco is the most depressing city in America. The come-latelys might not think so. They may be enchanted by the sea of mystery of the Nob and Russian and Telegraph, by the sea mystery of the Bridge over to redwood country on a foggy night, by the urban compartmentalization of Chinese, Spanish, Greek, Japanese, by the smartness of the women and the city's iron clutch on the culture. It might look just fine to the new ones.
But there are too many of us who used to love her. She was like a wild classy kook of a gal, one of those rain-walkers, laughing gray eyes, tousle of dark hair -- sea misty, a lithe and lovely lady, who could laugh at you or with you, and at herself when needs be. A sayer of strange and lovely things. A girl to be in love with, with love like a heady magic.
But she had lost it, boy. She used to give it away, and now she sells it to the tourists. She imitates herself. Her figure has thickened. The things she says now are mechanical and memorized. She overcharges for cynical services."
But he is best when he is bemoaning the loss of privacy, the loss of liberty, the creep of industry an government interference.
"I get this crazy feeling. Every once in a while I get it. I get the feeling that this is the last time in history when the offbeats like me will have a chance to live free in the nooks and crannies of the huge and rigid structure of an increasingly codified society. Fifty years from now [this book was originally published in 1964, so 2014] I would be hunted down in the street. They would drill little holes in my skull and make me sensible and reliable and adjusted."
Not quite Philip K. Dick, but close. Different genre, different prophet writing in the wilderness, but same damn brain-dead apocalypse.
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