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A Purple Place for Dying: A Travis McGee…

A Purple Place for Dying: A Travis McGee Novel (original 1964; edition 2013)

by John D. MacDonald (Author)

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8091317,499 (3.63)41
From a beloved master of crime fiction, "A Purple Place for Dying" is one of many classic novels featuring Travis McGee, the hard-boiled detective who lives on a houseboat. Travis McGees taking his retirement in installments while hes still young enough to enjoy it. But sooner or later, his money runs out and he has to work. This time McGees lured out West to a strangely secretive meeting with a woman in trouble, in a place whose beauty hides some ugly, dangerous secrets. "John D. MacDonald created a staggering quantity of wonderful books, each rich with characterization, suspense, and an almost intoxicating sense of place."--Jonathan Kellerman Mona is in love with a poor, young college professor and married to a wealthy man whom she is convinced is stealing from her trust fund. So she does what any self-respecting girl would do: She hires someone to steal her money back so she can run away with the love of her life. Travis isnt sure he wants to help out until he sees Mona getting shot and killed out on the cliffs near her cabin. Now hes a lead suspect in a plot to help her escape, and to clear his name, he needs to get to the bottom of things. But the murders just keep mounting, and for Travis, even working with Monas husband doesnt seem to help matters. Will he be able to uncover the complex plot in time to save his own skin? Features a new Introduction by Lee Child… (more)
Title:A Purple Place for Dying: A Travis McGee Novel
Authors:John D. MacDonald (Author)
Info:Random House Trade Paperbacks (2013), Edition: Reprint, 240 pages
Collections:Your library

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A Purple Place for Dying by John D. MacDonald (1964)



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One of MacDonald's famous Travis McGee novels. This one is #3 in the series but it does not matter in which order you read. This very successful author can really tell a story. These are period pieces set in early sixties and work really well today if you understand the times. Great author! ( )
  ikeman100 | Aug 10, 2019 |
Going through McGee one o time. I pay more attention to the details and the markets for the era, things like Formica and pay phones. Still out of Florida. Waiting for MacDonald to bring him back. ( )
  waldhaus1 | Feb 23, 2019 |
Travis is lured out west. has a secretive meeting with a woman in trouble. Her husband is hiding some ugly secrets. ( )
  pgabj | Aug 13, 2018 |
I came across my old copies of John D MacDonald's laconic McGee when clearing out a dusty old box. First published in 1964 (53 years ago!) Travis McGee's third adventure is still rollicking good fun.

Excellent writing that has stood the test of time - comments like "remorse is the ultimate in self-abuse" and "education is something which should be apart from the necessities of earning a living ... it needs contemplation, fallow periods, the measured and guided study of the history of man's reiteration of the most agonsing question of all: Why?" never age; they are as applicable today as they were when I first read McGee's adventures in the early 70's.

To enjoy the stories in the second decade of the 21st century a reader has to put aside the gender and racial politics of the day. McGee is the Hero who saves the little woman, and does a damn fine job of it too! Great plotting, fast pace, interesting characters and a maverick hero. What more can one ask when whiling away a lazy afternoon? ( )
  JudyCroome | Sep 30, 2017 |
This is a tale of murder and despair in the enchanted hills of the Southwest. Travis McGee is almost like a fish out of water in this world. Not only is he far from his beloved marina in Florida, but this is a county ruled by a feudal oligarchy and he isn’t quite one of the good old boys in this neck of the woods. At one point, he muses that “This was the foolish end of all foolish things, in a purple place for dying. I was too far from the bright water and the bright boats.” This is also one of the best, most well-written, of the twenty-one Travis McGee novels.

It is more of a classic hardboiled murder mystery than most of the McGee novels. This one involves a woman named Mona Yeoman with eyes that “were the beautiful blue of robins’ eggs, and had just about as much expression.” She didn’t seem to fit this rough, isolated country. “She was a big ripe-bodied blonde of about thirty.” She was arrogant, in control. “She would have looked more at home on Park Avenue and Fifty-Something,” but here “she strode up the gravel road in six-stitch boots, twill trousers, a tweed hacking coat, a sand-pale cowgirl hat.” “She was destined to walk ahead with most of the world following in single file.” “She had a lot of vitality, a lot of gloss and bounce and directed energy.” She was married to an older gentleman, the richest man in the county, who owned every lawyer, every banker, and every judge in the county, and she told McGee that she had a boyfriend, a poor college professor, and she wanted him to find some way out of her marriage and he would get half the settlement. She was tired of being a captive princess, but moments later, there was a “wet hole punched high in her spine, through the silk blouse, dead center, about two inches below where her neck joined her good shoulders.”

McGee is now somehow mixed up in something he didn’t bargain for and no one seems to want him hanging around, not the sheriff, and not the businessmen. No one buys his story. Not much. What with Mona and the boyfriend having been seen at the airport that afternoon, catching a flight out.
This is one terrific novel that is more focused and tight than most McGee novels are. There doesn’t seem to be any ranging off into banter about unconnected things here. There are no wasted words or wasted actions. It’s a mystery and McGee is going to solve it or die trying. The mood and atmosphere of this novel is captured by the dry harsh climate of the Southwest so different from McGee’s native world in Florida. ( )
  DaveWilde | Sep 22, 2017 |
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Travis McGee, an ex-football player detective is both tough and kind, short on illusions, long on action, good to his friends, and bad to his enemies. As is typical for Travis, he is out of money and needs a job. Lured to a strangely secretive meeting with a woman in trouble, he quickly finds himself right in there with her!
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