A Deadly Shade of Gold (Travis McGee Series #5)

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When Travis McGee discovers a face from his past lying in a pool of blood on a cheap motel room floor, he wants answers. But so far, all he has are questions—plus the dubious inheritance of his friend's vengeance-driven girlfriend, and a valuable ancient Aztec golden idol. Part rebel, part philosopher, and every inch his own man, Travis McGee plunges into a wild and perilous trek for a killer that takes him from the Lauderdale beaches to the seething corruption of American expatriates in a distant Mexican town, ...
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A Deadly Shade of Gold (Travis McGee Series #5)

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Overview

When Travis McGee discovers a face from his past lying in a pool of blood on a cheap motel room floor, he wants answers. But so far, all he has are questions—plus the dubious inheritance of his friend's vengeance-driven girlfriend, and a valuable ancient Aztec golden idol. Part rebel, part philosopher, and every inch his own man, Travis McGee plunges into a wild and perilous trek for a killer that takes him from the Lauderdale beaches to the seething corruption of American expatriates in a distant Mexican town, to the lush high life of the California jet set.
"A master storyteller, a wizard of dialogue, characterization, and plot."
Chicago Tribune Book World
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
MacDonald, whose 21 Travis McGee novels represent arguably the best U.S. mystery series of the past 50 years, died in 1986, leaving behind a legion of fans. Sadly, Travis McGee seems lost amid today's hip, violent, and politically correct private eyes and series detectives, so much so that most of today's younger mystery readers may never experience this National Book Award-winning series. Yet audio producers seem committed to keeping the series alive for a new generation of readers and audiobook fans, as this example proves. Bright Orange for the Shroud tells of a dangerous confidence scheme that traps one of McGee's friends. Soon, McGee infiltrates the group and takes on its sexy operative, with explosive results. In A Deadly Shade of Gold, McGee comes into possession of an evil-looking, solid gold Aztec icon that leads to a perilous fortune. Reader Darren McGavin, who narrates the entire series for Random Audio, employs a world-weary, laid-back voice that is perfect for the enigmatic McGee. Recommended wherever good mysteries circulate. Random Audio offers the entire Travis McGee line in abridged format; libraries seeking unabridged versions should look to Books on TapeR.-Mark Annichiarico, "Library Journal"
From the Publisher
Praise for John D. MacDonald and the Travis McGee novels
 
The great entertainer of our age, and a mesmerizing storyteller.”—Stephen King
 
“My favorite novelist of all time . . . All I ever wanted was to touch readers as powerfully as John D. MacDonald touched me. No price could be placed on the enormous pleasure that his books have given me. He captured the mood and the spirit of his times more accurately, more hauntingly, than any ‘literature’ writer—yet managed always to tell a thunderingly good, intensely suspenseful tale.”—Dean Koontz
 
“To diggers a thousand years from now, the works of John D. MacDonald would be a treasure on the order of the tomb of Tutankhamen.”—Kurt Vonnegut
 
“A master storyteller, a masterful suspense writer . . . John D. MacDonald is a shining example for all of us in the field. Talk about the best.”—Mary Higgins Clark
 
“A dominant influence on writers crafting the continuing series character . . . I envy the generation of readers just discovering Travis McGee, and count myself among the many readers savoring his adventures again.”—Sue Grafton
 
“One of the great sagas in American fiction.”—Robert B. Parker
 
“Most readers loved MacDonald’s work because he told a rip-roaring yarn. I loved it because he was the first modern writer to nail Florida dead-center, to capture all its languid sleaze, racy sense of promise, and breath-grabbing beauty.”—Carl Hiaasen
 
“The consummate pro, a master storyteller and witty observer . . . John D. MacDonald created a staggering quantity of wonderful books, each rich with characterization, suspense, and an almost intoxicating sense of place. The Travis McGee novels are among the finest works of fiction ever penned by an American author and they retain a remarkable sense of freshness.”—Jonathan Kellerman
 
“What a joy that these timeless and treasured novels are available again.”—Ed McBain
 
“Travis McGee is the last of the great knights-errant: honorable, sensual, skillful, and tough. I can’t think of anyone who has replaced him. I can’t think of anyone who would dare.”—Donald Westlake
 
“There’s only one thing as good as reading a John D. MacDonald novel: reading it again. A writer way ahead of his time, his Travis McGee books are as entertaining, insightful, and suspenseful today as the moment I first read them. He is the all-time master of the American mystery novel.”—John Saul
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780449123690
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 11/12/1982
  • Series: Travis McGee Series, #5
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback

Meet the Author

John D. MacDonald was an American novelist and short-story writer. His works include the Travis McGee series and the novel The Executioners, which was adapted into the film Cape Fear. In 1962 MacDonald was named a Grand Master of the Mystery Writers of America; in 1980, he won a National Book Award. In print he delighted in smashing the bad guys, deflating the pompous, and exposing the venal. In life, he was a truly empathetic man; his friends, family, and colleagues found him to be loyal, generous, and practical. In business, he was fastidiously ethical. About being a writer, he once expressed with gleeful astonishment, “They pay me to do this! They don’t realize, I would pay them.” He spent the later part of his life in Florida with his wife and son. He died in 1986.

Biography

One of the most influential names in crime fiction, John D. MacDonald (1916-1986) was born in Sharon, PA, received his M.B.A. from Harvard University, and served in the OSS in India during WWII.

MacDonald's literary career began accidentally. While he was still in service, he wrote a short story, purely for entertainment. He mailed it home to his wife, who sent it to a magazine without his knowledge. The story was accepted. When MacDonald was discharged, he decided to try his luck at writing for a living. After dozens of submissions and rejections, he finally sold a story to Dime Detective, one of the popular pulp magazines of the day.

For several years, MacDonald made a decent living writing mysteries, Westerns, crime stories, and science fiction for the pulps. Then, in 1950, just as the demand for paperback books was increasing, he made the crossover to full-length fiction with The Brass Cupcake, a classic hardboiled detective novel featuring mobsters, corrupt cops, and a disaffected loner who falls for a beautiful woman. The writer had found his niche!

During the 1950s and '60s, MacDonald specialized in hardboiled crime novels -- mostly set in Florida, where he and his wife had moved after the war. For a long time, he resisted the siren call of series fiction. Then, in 1964, he succumbed -- introducing his legendary amateur sleuth Travis McGee in The Deep Blue Goodbye. A cynical knight errant and self-described beach bum who lives in Ft. Lauderdale on a houseboat named "The Busted Flush, McGee went on to star in 20 more adventures. His influence as a "type" can be clearly seen in the writing of several contemporary crime writers, including Carl Hiaasen, Lawrence Block, and George Pelicanos.

Throughout his long, prolific career, MaDonald would alternate the McGee books with standalone novels, nonfiction, and short story collections. As a genre stylist, he is without peer; yet most critics agree that his literary skills transcend the limitations of genre. Perhaps the novelist Kurt Vonnegut said it best when he made this shrewd assessment: "To diggers a thousand years from now, the works of John D. MacDonald would be a treasure on the order of the tomb of Tutankhamen."

Good To Know

Although MacDonald always included a color in the titles of the Travis McGee novels, he never used either black or white.

Several of MacDonald's novels have been adapted for movies -- most famously his 1958 novel The Executioners, which was filmed twice as Cape Fear.

Carl Hiaasen wrote this in the introduction to the 1994 reissue of The Deep Blue Goodbye: "Most readers loved MacDonald's work because he told a rip-roaring yarn. I loved it because he was the first modern writer to nail Florida dead-center, to capture all its languid sleaze, racy sense of promise, and breath-grabbing beauty."

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    1. Date of Birth:
      July 24, 1916
    2. Place of Birth:
      Sharon, PA
    1. Date of Death:
      December 28, 1986
    2. Place of Death:
      Milwaukee, WI
    1. Education:
      Syracuse University 1938; M.B. A. Harvard University, 1939

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 4 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 7, 2014

    Highly recommend for mystery/suspense readers.

    I was pleased to see that John MacDonald has been revived for Nook readers. They are fun and lighthearted mysteries and good reads for planes and beaches.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 22, 2013

    Jordan

    *Puts down a 1 month rent pay and walks in.* Thank you!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 27, 2013

    Good

    Good

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2013

    Wooooo so scary

    SKYLER SMITH HERE SEXY 15 YEAR OLD GIRL IN ARLINGTON VA 22204 TYPE TO ~ PIPER~
    I DONT KNOW what this is

    0 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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