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  • The Dreadful Lemon Sky

  • A Travis McGee Novel, Book 16
  • By: John D. MacDonald
  • Narrated by: Robert Petkoff
  • Length: 7 hrs and 36 mins
  • 4.3 out of 5 stars (8 ratings)

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The Dreadful Lemon Sky cover art

The Dreadful Lemon Sky

By: John D. MacDonald
Narrated by: Robert Petkoff
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Summary

Hero of The Dreadful Lemon Sky is Travis McGee, a man of universal interest and independent means who lives on an old houseboat he won in a poker game. One evening a young woman shows up with a suitcase full of cash. McGee agrees to be bagman. She tells him what to do if she doesn't return. When she doesn't, McGee is left alone to deal with an intrigue that involves drugs, fear, passion, and death.

©1974 John D. MacDonald Publishing, Inc. (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

What listeners say about The Dreadful Lemon Sky

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

A rare miss for MacDonald

A promising start but a slow pace and convoluted plot makes me feel that MacDonald is bored with his creation and going through the motions.
After some of the best in the series this feel like it's run it's course.
A miss, that lacks atmosphere or drive in the flabby middle with a good ending, but is it worth the journey? maybe for completists but there are better.

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John d mcdonald

I have been reading his books for c.50yrs ,still love rereading them.always
1st.class. particularly travis

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  • Lifeisshort
  • 04-06-14

Florida; Oh Florida

McGee and Meyer head north to find out who killed a woman who came to Travis for help. Trav and Carrie Milligan once had a one night stand and it cemented an aura of trust. Carrie tells him if she can't get back for the money to give it to her sister Susan and not to worry about finding out the reason she didn't get back. Well we both know that McGee and Meyer can't do that so they unhook the lines and head north to Bayside. On the way up someone takes a shot at them in McGee's boat The Busted Flush. Upon arriving at the marina before they've even had the chance to check in; the behemoth who owns and runs the marina assaults both his wife and McGee. As the dynamic duo endeavor to locate Carrie's killer more people die; her sister Susan is sorta, kinda, maybe raped; at least that's MacDonald's 1974 definition of sexual assault. I won't go into specifics about anymore of the books main events in order to avoid spoilage. This is a good solid Travis McGee mystery; I rate it in the top half if not the third of the series.

3 people found this helpful

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  • John Powell III
  • 09-06-13

McGee gets back on his swaybacked steed again

If you could sum up The Dreadful Lemon Sky in three words, what would they be?

desperate poignant saddening

What did you like best about this story?

McGee is not a superhero, nor a secret agent. He is merely a man of slightly above average size and intellect, gifted with excellent reflexes and a changeable manner. Smooth operator comes to mind, but that doesn't fit, either. McGee struggles to understand what is going on himself, while the story unfolds, he is as lost as the reader and it shows.

What about Robert Petkoff’s performance did you like?

He was great

If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

I've no idea how to draft a tag line...

2 people found this helpful

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  • ann
  • 04-06-12

Grabbed my Attention on First Page

Would you listen to The Dreadful Lemon Sky again? Why?

No.

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

Sort of.

Which scene was your favorite?

Sorry. Can't bring one to mind.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Not that kind of book.

Any additional comments?

This is the kind of book I listen to while walking my dog. If I miss a bit of it, doesn't seem to matter. Keeps me interested but not really involved. Sort of like TV.

2 people found this helpful

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  • eclectic reader
  • 27-02-20

Investigation of a crime based on marijuana smuggling

While Trav doesn't salvage anything on the sense of most of his adventures he gets Tangled with an unsavory group and to many girls die. The premise is clever and the convolutions interesting. Changes in legal attitudes towards marijuana make the crime seem less plausible but the was plenty of smuggling across the shores of Florida for a very long time. If you enjoy the adventures of Travis McGee you should enjoy this.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Joshua
  • 02-04-18

Late disappointing entry

by this point in his career, JDM was pretty sick of Travis McGee. This novel shows that distain in spades. A convoluted detective plot is the only thing to recommend this book. the bitter hopeless anger expressed by all of the characters makes it a real bummer and not a satisfying entry into the McGee Canon.

1 person found this helpful

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  • P. Brown
  • 27-09-21

Good stuff

If you like Macdonald you like this one. Solid entry to Travis McGee. Five Stars

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  • Big Earl
  • 16-08-21

another good read/listen from a master

If you are a fan of John D. Macdonald this is another good one of the Travis McGee series. Although written long ago it still holds up. Give it a try and the Audio performance was great as to be expected from the series.

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Profile Image for Colonel Jay Smith III
  • Colonel Jay Smith III
  • 02-08-15

Great

Liked it all, could use less 'dears' and 'darlings'. Makes the relationships sound superficial, a bit sugary.