Pale Gray for Guilt
A Travis McGee Novel
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About the author
I remember the house in Utica, New York, where John D. grew up. The curtains were always closed and the atmosphere seemed invariably dark and somber. Nothing there predicted his imaginative outpouring. Imagination was frivolity and frivolity was not on the agenda.
He followed his own father's path toward the commercial world. While earning a Master's Degree in Business Administration from Harvard, he married Dorothy Prentiss, an artist, and produced one small son. Then he went off to war. The marriage of the business graduate and the creative person was the unrecognized first step in John D.'s becoming an author.
During service in China, Burma, and India, his mail was heavily censored. In frustration he wrote a short story and sent it to my mother. She saw his potential and sold the story. When my father came home, a Lieutenant Colonel and Harvard graduate, his father presented him with a list of plum career options. He turned them down and took an undemanding job so that he could pour his energy into writing.
Eventually, we moved to Florida. For my parents, Florida was the land of light, the place where the curtains were never drawn. The place itself became a topic and Travis McGee strode into the landscape.
"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, Jr.
The men who killed Tush Bannon knew he was a nice guy with a nice wife and three nice kids--trying to run a small marina on the Florida coast. They also knew he was in the way of a big land development scheme. Once they killed him, they figured they were on easy street. But Tush Bannon was Travis McGee's friend and McGee could be one tough adversary when protecting a widow and her kids....
Random House Publishing Group
; January 2013
320 pages; ISBN 9780307826701Read online
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Title: Pale Gray for Guilt
Author: John D. MacDonald; Lee Child
In the press
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