John D MacDonald Books

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John D. MacDonald was an American bestseller famously known for his entertaining thrillers, crime and suspense novel many of which were set in his adopted home in Florida. He was born in Sharon, Pennsylvania on July 24th, 1916 the son Savage Arms Corporation staff. Later his family moved to Utica, New York in 1926 where he was hired to work for the Utica Savage Arms.

Order of Travis McGee Series

1The Deep Blue Good-By 1964Description / Buy
2Nightmare in Pink 1964Description / Buy
3A Purple Place for Dying 1964Description / Buy
4The Quick Red Fox 1964Description / Buy
5A Deadly Shade of Gold 1965Description / Buy
6Bright Orange for the Shroud 1965Description / Buy
7Darker Than Amber 1966Description / Buy
8One Fearful Yellow Eye 1966Description / Buy
9Pale Gray for Guilt 1968Description / Buy
10The Girl in the Plain Brown Wrapper 1968Description / Buy
11Dress Her in Indigo 1969Description / Buy
12The Long Lavender Look 1970Description / Buy
13A Tan and Sandy Silence 1971Description / Buy
14The Scarlet Ruse 1972Description / Buy
15The Turquoise Lament 1973Description / Buy
16The Dreadful Lemon Sky 1974Description / Buy
17The Empty Copper Sea 1978Description / Buy
18The Green Ripper 1979Description / Buy
19Free Fall in Crimson 1981Description / Buy
20Cinnamon Skin 1982Description / Buy
21The Lonely Silver Rain 1984Description / Buy

Order of John D MacDonald Standalone Novels

1The Brass Cupcake 1950Description / Buy
2Judge Me Not 1951Description / Buy
3Weep For Me 1951Description / Buy
4Wine of the Dreamers 1951Description / Buy
5Murder for the Bride 1951Description / Buy
6The Damned 1952Description / Buy
7Ballroom of the Skies 1952Description / Buy
8Planet of the Dreamers 1953Description / Buy
9Cancel All Our Vows 1953Description / Buy
10Neon Jungle 1953Description / Buy
11Dead Low Tide 1953Description / Buy
12Area of Suspicion 1954Description / Buy
13All These Condemned 1954Description / Buy
14Contrary Pleasure 1954Description / Buy
15A Bullet for Cinderella 1955Description / Buy
16On the Make 1955Description / Buy
17Cry Hard, Cry Fast 1955Description / Buy
18Border Town Girl 1956Description / Buy
19Murder in the Wind 1956Description / Buy
20April Evil 1956Description / Buy
21A Man of Affairs 1957Description / Buy
22Death Trap 1957Description / Buy
23The Empty Trap 1957Description / Buy
24The Deceivers 1958Description / Buy
25Clemmie 1958Description / Buy
26Soft Touch 1958Description / Buy
27Cape Fear 1958Description / Buy
28Executioners 1958Description / Buy
29The Beach Girls 1959Description / Buy
30You Live Once 1959Description / Buy
31The Crossroads 1959Description / Buy
32Please Write for Details 1959Description / Buy
33The End of the Night 1960Description / Buy
34The Only Girl in the Game 1960Description / Buy
35Slam the Big Door 1960Description / Buy
36Where is Janice Gantry? 1961Description / Buy
37One Monday We Killed Them All 1961Description / Buy
38A Key to the Suite 1962Description / Buy
39On the Run (Short Story) 1962Description / Buy
40A Flash of Green 1962Description / Buy
41The Girl, the Gold Watch & Everything 1962Description / Buy
42I Could Go on Singing 1963Description / Buy
43The Drowner 1963Description / Buy
44Deadly Welcome 1965Description / Buy
45The Last One Left 1967Description / Buy
46No Deadly Drug 1968Description / Buy
47The Price of Murder 1972Description / Buy
48Condominium 1977Description / Buy
49Two 1983Description / Buy
50One More Sunday 1984Description / Buy
51Barrier Island 1986Description / Buy
52Hurricane 2014Description / Buy
53Murder Run-Around (Short Story) 2015Description / Buy
54In a Small Motel (Short Story) 2017Description / Buy
55What Christmas Did for Jerusha Grumble 2019Description / Buy

Order of John D MacDonald Short Story Collections

1The Good Old Stuff 1961Description / Buy
2End of the Tiger and Other Stories 1966Description / Buy
3Seven 1971Description / Buy
4Other Times, Other Worlds 1978Description / Buy
5More Good Old Stuff 1984Description / Buy
6Death Quotient and Other Stories (Short Story) 2010Description / Buy
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In 1934 John D. MacDonald was sent to Europe for several weeks, this adventurous journey sparked an interest in travel and photography. After completing high school, he joined Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania but unfortunately quit during his sophomore year. He worked at laborous jobs in New York for a short period before later joining Syracuse University where he met his wife, Dorothy Prentiss and got married to her in 1937. In 1939 he graduated from the Harvard University with a Masters degree in Business Administration. He later made use of his education in economics and business by incorporating detailed business swindles into the plotlines of his novels.

MacDonald’s writing career kicked off by sheer accident. In 1945 while still serving in the military, he wrote a short story and sent it to his wife. His wife submitted it to Esquire Magazine and got rejected. She then sent the same story to Story Magazine and got accepted for $25. After his discharge from the military, MacDonald spent up to four months writing short stories. Even though he received several rejections, he finally sold some to the Pulp Magazine and made $40. He then sold almost 500 short stories to western, sports, mystery, detective, adventure and sci-fi magazines.

MacDonald died at the age of 70 years in 1986 after developing complications that arose due to earlier heart bypass operation. The author wrote several series, anthologies, and short stories. Travis McGee series comprises of over 20 novels, The Deep Blue Good-by (1965) being the first book in the series. The series publication ended in 1985 when The Lonely Silver Rain was published.


The Green Ripper won the 1980 National Book Award for best mystery hardcover novel. Subsequently, in 1986, The Loney Silver Rain was nominated for the Antony Awards.


Several of MacDonald novels have been adapted into films. For example Cry Hard, Cry Fast was adapted as a two-part episode of the TV series Run for Your Life in 1967. The novel titled Linda was filmed two times, first during 1973 with Stella Stevens playing the title role and in 1993 with Virginia Madsen playing the lead role. A Flash of Green was adapted into a 1984 movie featuring Ed Harris.

The 1980 television miniseries Condominium was based on MacDonald novel and featured Barbara Eden and Dan Haggerty.


These are two best books written by John D. MacDonald, The Green Ripper (1979) and The Loney Silver Rain.

The Green Ripper: The eighteenth book in Travis McGee series. Now seeking to get to know why his true love, Gretel Howard, (first introduced in The Empty Copper Sea,) was killed, Travis McGee goes undercover as a commercial fisherman by the name Tom McGraw. He is only thinking of only revenge and the only clue that he has pointed to a fortified California encampment. Infiltrating himself into the group, which possess some militaristic bent, McGee now fully embraces his darkest side. Without feeling it or even expecting, he taps into a “great John Wayne Day when he is finally forced to act to stop the monsters.

The Green Reaper is a fascinating read; it features a different tone and theme as well, unlike earlier novels which focused on small-scale evil.

The Lonely Silver Rain: The 21st book in Travis McGee series. In this book we find Travis McGee searching for a wealthy friend’s yacht which lands him in the epicenter of an international cocaine trade which makes him a target of some of the evilest villains he has ever met. While contemplating his mortality, he discovers the surprise behind the cat-shaped pipe cleaners that someone left at his door. Soon he must fight for his life and unravel the mysteries surrounding him.

If you love thriller novels, John D. MacDonald books will be an excellent addition to your book library.

When Does The Next John D MacDonald book come out?

John D MacDonald doesn't seem to have an upcoming book. Their newest book is What Christmas Did for Jerusha Grumble and was released on December, 19th 2019.

1 thought on “John D MacDonald”

  1. Well Duh – since JMacD died in 1986, anything written under his name after that year is probably not actually by JMacD himself. Beware the internet!

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