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Publisher's Summary

Helena Pearson. Undeniably beautiful... indisputably rich... incredibly wanton... the perfect client for Travis McGee. He did a big favor for her husband and then for the lady herself. Now Helena is dead, and McGee finds out that she had one last request to make of him: find out why her beautiful daughter, Maurie, keeps trying to kill herself. So, half-convinced that Maurie needs a good doctor and not a devil-may-care beach bum, McGee makes his way to the prosperous town of Fort Courtney, Florida, a respectable, booming, deadly little place.

©1968 John D. MacDonald Publishing, Inc. (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

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  • Bonnie
  • 01-08-2015

Love me my Travis McGee

I read this last in print back when I was in college and it had just come out. Trav receives a letter from a woman he'd known years earlier asking him to find a way to save her older daughter from an apparent self-destructive bent. But little is as it appears once he arrives and meets again the woman he last saw as a bereaved adolescent.

Well written and paced, and the appreciation for what was being done to the woman was way ahead of its time.

Definitely recommended. And Petkoff has definitely made the McGee series his own!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Me & My Girls
  • 17-06-2014

Aha, There Were Black People in Florida

Travis is given the assignment of saving a dying lover's child. I swear being a lover of McGee's has a higher fatality rate than smoking three packs a day in an Asbestos factory full of hazardous waste. Perhaps I'll do a study of the percentage of his paramour's that died early; it must be about the same level as that of a wartime infantry platoon.
When McGee gets to the daughter's home in Fort Courtney Florida he finds a beautiful married woman with a childlike demeanor and a history of suicide. He checks into a motel; is picked up by a woman trying to set him up with a barbiturate loaded bottle of gin; he has a fight with her married boyfriend and then spends the night with the woman after the two of them argue; hey what a day.
McGee gets involved with a couple of the motel's black maids when one grabs a few drinks out of the bottle of doctored gin and passes out in his room. Another of the maids at the motel agrees to help McGee find information; for a price. An assignment that she fulfills by presenting him with information that helps him greatly in solving the case. It was a long time coming for a man living in south Florida but in the tenth book in the series McGee interacts with a person of African descent.
As always all the women in the book are eager to share McGee's bed but he only racks up two notches on the bedpost in the present.
His attitudes gradually became more enlightened as the series continued and this time there are no misogynistic comments on the sexuality of any of the women in the book. Though when it came to the mother, Helena some of his opinions smack of turn of the century Freudianism. As always the writing is top notch and if you can ride with the implausibility's of the plot and the outdated attitudes this is a great listening experience.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Darwin8u
  • 09-10-2017

That's because we always want to know why

One of the better MacDonald novels I've read this year. He appears to be unable to escape the bizarrely sexualized, woman-in-peril, sex kitten cliché, BUT for a book that came just 15 years after Playboy and James Bond made their entrance into the Western consciousness, turning women into bunnies and well-oiled sex kittens, some roughness can be forgiven (not overlooked or excused). Generationally, it is understandable, if still hard to really tolerate for more than a couple pages at a time.

Why do I read him if I can't stand MacDonald's attitude toward women? Because there is something there. Because I like his perspectives on a great deal more. Because he isn't just writing crime fiction, but doing a mini-exegesis on the American, male psyche of the 1960s and 1970s. And, each book seems just about to escape the confines of his highly marketable form of misogyny. The bright spot in this book, published in 1968, was his brutal (for the time) honesty about race as it intersected with commerce, law enforcement, sex, and justice.

The dialogues between Travis and Lorette, a black maid at the hotel he is staying at, is almost worth the entire price of admission. I kept reminding myself that this book was MacDonald's 10th McGee novel and published in 1968. That was the year that Johnson passed the Civil Rights Act of 1968 (Fair Housing Act). It was written from the perspective of a white libertarian (Travis McGee) living in Florida. His perspective on race was refreshing and honest, given the time and place. It shows that we have made some strides as far as sex, and some strides with race too. Just not as many or as quickly as many would prefer.

12 of 15 people found this review helpful

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  • htoneill
  • 13-08-2012

Predictable but Still Very Worthwhile

A series like this can get very predictable and tiresome. John MacDonald was a rare author that managed to deliver interesting stories even in such a challenging context. McGee and Meyer are interesting characters and I continue to enjoy watching them evolve from one book to the next. This series is the diametric opposite to Stuart Woods' Stone Barrington books, which are mind-numbingly predictable and formulaic. The Travis McGee series is one of the more compelling options in the genre; strong recommendation to start at the beginning and read them all...

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 09-09-2012

The hits just keep on coming

I really wish I had read these books when I was younger! Who knows, I might be a boat bum now! But this is excellent Travis McGee. A really good listen and lot of fun,

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Jonathan Maberry -NY Times Bestseller
  • 11-06-2012

Another superb performance

What does Robert Petkoff bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Robert Petkoff has really captured the balance of idealistic optimism and jaded cynicism that defined Travis McGee.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • THoward
  • 04-01-2016

Seemed to stretch along

This story seemed to progress slowly and not always logical.

The narrator is excellent and really makes the story.

Not my favorite McGee.

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  • melanie
  • 06-08-2015

More entanglements than usual.

Had to re-listen to the reveal because there were so many bad guys caught up in it. Usually, McGee gets himself into more trouble.

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  • Glenn
  • 30-07-2015

Not his best

Not his best but still enjoyed. Damn if I don't want a Plymouth Gin every time I listen to a McGee novel.

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  • Hillie
  • 25-03-2015

Brilliant

This was a gripping story and very well narrated. I am definitely going to read many more Travis McGee books!