Summary

He's a self-described beach bum who won his houseboat in a card game. He's also a knight errant who's wary of credit cards, retirement benefits, political parties, mortgages, and television. He only works when his cash runs out, and his rule is simple: he'll help you find whatever was taken from you, as long as he can keep half.
Nothing that John D. MacDonald wrote is better loved and more enduring than the 21 books in his series about Travis McGee, the Florida-based “salvage consultant” who recovers property for a fee so he can take his retirement “a piece at a time”. Narrator Robert Petkoff, hand-chosen to narrate with the approval of MacDonald’s estate, brings McGee’s world of the Busted Flush (his houseboat, which he won in a poker game) and “Miss Agnes” (his custom Rolls-Royce pickup truck) to vivid life.
©1964 John D. MacDonald Publishing, Inc. Renewal © 1992 Maynard MacDonald (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
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Critic reviews

"[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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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Adam J Wright on 11-03-14

Brilliant Start to a Great Series!

Where does The Deep Blue Good-By rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

One of the best. Travis McGee is great.

What other book might you compare The Deep Blue Good-By to, and why?

The other Travis McGee books in the series. They all have the same main character.

Have you listened to any of Robert Petkoff’s other performances? How does this one compare?

Not heard Robert Petkoff before. He handled this story fantastically

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes, it was great but listening in pieces of stolen time was perfect for this book. Between times I was wondering what would happen.

Any additional comments?

Superb start to a wonderful series of books.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By WarwickStudent on 10-07-18

Good but dated in places

This starts out quite slowly but is a decent punchy little thriller. Overall it was pretty decent but I think I'll try a lot of other authors before coming back to this one for the reasons below:

Lists. Endless lists. It become quite common for Travis McGee to suddenly list things he doesn't like (credit cards, ID documents, savings accounts) or things in his boat or whatever. These lists add absolutely nothing to the story and just feel like the author ranting.

Travis becomes the authors mouthpiece far, far too often. Streams of internal dialogue about how the world's going to pot, how women aren't what they used to be, how the government is too big, how the labour market is too saturated. I ended up just tuning out the main character which isn't a good sign.

Travis is a very inconsistent character, ready to murder the bad guy if necessary but not able to steal gems for him later? Not easy to empathise with in general.

The women are also portrayed very oddly, falling into hysteria and bouts of submissiveness. Compared to Paul Temple (which was set in a similar era in the UK) the woman are almost unrecognisable.

And Travis's career is fairly stupid. The author's trying to find a modern day Robin Hood role but I can only imagine that will stretch further and further as the series goes on, unless the bad guys keep their money in a pot under the bed then there's little for old Trav to grab.

It was, however, a thrilling read once it got going. Good yarn but you'll find better without looking too hard.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Michael Cavacini on 15-06-12

An Entertaining Start To A Classic Series

I went into this book as a fan of Lee Child and Stephen King, two authors that were influenced by John D. MacDonald. After reading the first book in the Travis McGee series, I can understand what attracted these two modern-day masters of mystery to MacDonald in the first place.

This book is filled with memorable characters, engaging dialogue and captivating action. It also has a good deal of vulgar language, which I'm perfectly fine with; it just surprised me considering when this book was originally published.

Like many great authors, MacDonald takes this story to another level by weaving in thought-provoking analysis and commentary. This introspective awareness helps flesh out who the main characters are, where they've been and where they're going, both in the book and beyond the pages.

Entering this book without any preconceptions, I feel the narrator did a fine job with all of the characters' voices.

I'm looking forward to listening to the rest of the books in this series, and I recommend you give "The Deep Blue Good-By" a shot; it's enjoyable from start to finish.

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72 of 76 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Susan on 20-07-14

Classics for a reason

Travis Magee is a rough, retired, military man with a big heart who lives on "The Busted Flush", a houseboat he aquired in a poker game. When he runs short on funds he takes on the occational investigative, recovery job for the fee of half of whatever he recovers. In this first addition Travis try's to help a young girl find her sadistic ex-boyfriend who stole a fortune that had been buried on the families property for years.

I enjoy this series because it returns us to the simpler days before the complications of modern technology. A fast action mystery series with grit, well developed characters and captivating stories. John MacDonald's writing has been touted and emulated by some of the best writers of our day and when coupled with Robert Petkoff's articulate narration produces an impressive combination.

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40 of 45 people found this review helpful

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