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The Drowning Pool (1950)

by Ross Macdonald

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Lew Archer (2)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
7121224,336 (3.78)30
When a millionaire matriarch is found floating face down in the family pool, the prime suspects are her good-for-nothing son and his seductive teenage daughter. Private investigator Lew Archer takes this case in the L.A. suburbs and encounters a moral wasteland of corporate greed and family hatred and sufficient motive for a dozen murders.… (more)
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» See also 30 mentions

English (11)  French (1)  All languages (12)
Showing 1-5 of 11 (next | show all)
Though this is the third of Ross Macdonald’s Lew Archer novels that I’ve read, it’s the first one from the early years of his series. As such it was an especially interesting read, as I could see all of the elements that I’ve come to enjoy at an early stage of their development. Not only did it help me to better understand the formula to his stories that is emerging from my reading of Macdonald’s works, but it also highlighted the differences between the books and how his style changed over the years. This was all on top of my enjoyment of the book itself, of course, in which Archer is asked to investigate a case of blackmail that leads to murder and the unveiling of long-kept family secrets: in short, everything that I’ve come to enjoy in an Archer novel. ( )
  MacDad | Mar 27, 2020 |
A frightening and funny hard boiled detective novel. Plan on reading more ( )
  Abbey_Harlow | Oct 5, 2017 |
The settings and characters help you put yourself right into Archer's shoes. ( )
  Mark_Bacon | Jul 24, 2017 |
Four and a half stars - I'm the first to admit that I'm a bag fan of crime fiction (both hard boiled and cozy), so it was no surprise that I loved "The Drowning Pool". This is Ross Macdonald's second book in the Lew Archer series. Former cop, now PI, Lew Archer is hired to track down the writer of a blackmail letter. Things get mucky when what seems to be a simple case turns in to a murder investigation involving salacious affairs, family drama, theatre, and the oil industry. Wonderful prose, snappy dialogue and all you could want from a hard-boiled, LA noir, crime fiction. ( )
  SarahEBear | May 10, 2017 |
A frightening and funny hard boiled detective novel. Plan on reading more ( )
  abbeyhar | Nov 8, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 11 (next | show all)
The Drowning Pool, set in California and first published in 1950, is Archer's second outing and the most formally assured of the series...Macdonald unfurls his plot with the unforced majesty of an incoming Pacific tide, though it is in his laconic descriptive prose that he equals Chandler or Hammett.
 

» Add other authors (3 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Macdonald, Rossprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Andrés, Manuelsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Banville, JohnIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
di Luzio, AlessandraTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Saura, Marinasecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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TO TONY
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If you didn't look at her face she was less than thirty, quick-bodied and slim as a girl.
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They found her in the swimming-pool a little while ago. Maybe she jumped in for fun, or maybe somebody pushed her. You don't do swimming at night with all your clothes on. Not if you can't swim a stroke and got a weak heart in the bargain. The Chief says it looks like murder. (Chapter 7)
Her grey eyes were crepuscular. The lashes came down over them like sudden night. Her mouth was dark and glistening. I kissed her, felt her toe press on my instep, her hand move on my body. I drew back from the whirling vortex that had opened, the drowning pool. (Chapter 12)
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When a millionaire matriarch is found floating face down in the family pool, the prime suspects are her good-for-nothing son and his seductive teenage daughter. Private investigator Lew Archer takes this case in the L.A. suburbs and encounters a moral wasteland of corporate greed and family hatred and sufficient motive for a dozen murders.

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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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