When McGee picks up the phone and hears a voice from the past, he can't help it. He has to meddle. Especially when he has the chance to reunite Sam Taggart, a reckless, restless man like himself, with the woman who's still waiting for him. But what begins as a simple matchmaking scheme soon becomes a bloody chase that takes McGee to Mexico, a beautiful country - and one from which he hopes to return alive.
©1965 John D. MacDonald Publishing, Inc. Renewal © 1993 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)
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"Great story; Horrible attitudes"
As always MacDonald tells a good story. On the other hand of all the books in the Travis McGee series McGee is at his most anti social and misogynistic in this one. The story is the typical buddy gets killed; I have to avenge him; staple of adventure novels. The police officer who understands the way to investigate crimes is an interesting aside.
The professor in the Florida college who advises him on the gold statue is a nice touch. As is the story on the creation of a totally new way of life along the Mexican gulf coast. His opinion of the real estate in the greater LA area is amusing.
But now for the attitudes. For starters McGee is awfully condescending towards a good percentage of the people, cities, buildings, and systems on planet Earth. His overblown sense of rightness is especially apparent in his attitude towards women. He is highly judgmental about the sex lives of every woman who crosses his path. Yet in this book alone he manages to get himself into bed with five different women that he has no intention of pursuing a relationship with. Three of those women he assaults prior to falling into bed with them; evidently being slapped around really turned women on back in 1965. He also has no qualms about sleeping with women he thinks little of as human beings since he dissects them ruthlessly both before and after bedding them.
His torture of Alma Hitchens he is able to rationalize with no problem. After all the whole situation was her fault; poor Sam having no chance of retaining his moral center after having been seduced and tumbled by a beautiful third grade actress. Pity us poor men who can't be expected to resist doing anything we're asked to by a hot woman once we've had sex with her.
Also as in many of his pre-1970's works he is all atwitter concerning communist plots and conspiracies. Though his willingness to touch on the 1956 Hungarian revolution will provide an important reference to those unfamiliar will it.
Given all the negatives if you're able to skim over the 19th century attitudes towards women and sex MacDonald is a great writer. His mystery fiction works contain excellent information he's researched on tangential subjects to his books. This one got a four star rating from me despite those abhorrent attitudes and actions portrayed in this work; if not for them it would have earned five.
"J Dickey's prose + I Fleming's narrative flourish"
John D MacDonald presents a combination of James Dickey's prose with Ian Fleming's narrative flourish. With John D. MacDonald, however, you are also likely to find weird paragraphs sprinkled into the novel that deal with economics, politics, love, lust, the John Birch Society, and the ethics of hunting. Reading MacDonald is like having a surprisingly lucid conversation with a drunk economics professor who you recently discovered just killed a man with his golf club. You can't pull away from the conversation and aren't quite sure if the story is going to continue, or if he is going to explore a tangent more appropriate for an economics class or his therapist. HIs brain is amazing and his stories definitely titillate on several levels at once.
"Travis McGee - a hero for all time"
John D. MacDonald's writing is the ultimate in the craft. He's been my own (writer's) hero since I began reading his work decades ago. Yet now, I can be intimately engaged in his world through the brilliant interpretation of Robert Petkoff. Unbelievable talent - this man has more "accents" than most actors in Hollywood. I'm hooked for good and have bought and listened to many of the books and intend to buy them all, even though I read the print books years ago over and over again.
My favorite aspect of this particular title was the love Travis cultivated for Nora, and the scene painting he accomplished in Mexico.
All of the Travis McGee series are comparable, but there was something even a bit more compelling in this title than the rest. Just so intriguing. So sad in parts. So .... John D. MacDonald! (the master...)
I love his interpretations of female voices. It's truly amazing how he moves from one voice to the other (Trav's is very deep) and seems to flawlessly accomplish this transition. I especially loved his Mexican and Jewish Bronx accents!
Absolutely. I want to listen to all the Travis McGee books.
Thank you, Mr. Petkoff, for bringing us a consistent list of all the books with the SAME narrator's voice. It is soothing and comforting to know ahead of time that you will portray our hero, Travis McGee!
"Fabulous narration of a good yarn"
Mr. Petkoff has to be the best narrator in the business. He does full justice to MacDonald's rich characterizations in a lively, if somewhat bloody, adventure.
"The adventures continue"
Poor Travis sure has a hard time keeping his friends alive. But this is another great story. Glad I came across these books!
"one of the best Travis McGee books so far.."
good story with believable characters... also well told.. written in the the mid 60s it has that retro feel
Everything you remember. Fun and worth it!
Toughness, beautiful women, and Mayer and his muses.
mr MacDonald is always good. whatever genre. McGee is a wise earthly superman. with human adventures. as nd interesting companions.
"Philosophy most profound"
The Travis McGee series are ridiculous. Ridiculously good & entertaining. John D was a great and prolific author. Trav provides a model of how a life should be lived though I have found it rather tiring.
"The narrator makes this book"
The story falls into fiction and the theft of goods isn't plausible. Trav isn't the chivalrous male he claims to be. This series isn't about the mystery, this series is about the sex.
The book is written in the 1960s and is reflective of the issues at the time - Cuba, sexual revolution, dissatisfaction with government. For a period piece it works, for being a better person because I've read it - nah.
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