Random House to Release MacDonald’s Travis McGee Novels as E-books, Trade Paperbacks

When I was in 6th grade, I was given a paperback copy of THE DEEP BLUE GOODBYE by John D MacDonald. Travis McGee, the hero, was a tough dude clad in shorts and living on a house boat. It sounds like the ideal life and I became a lifelong fan of the P.I. genre (Mcgee was sort of a P.I.).

Today, Random House announced they would be releasing the Travis McGee titles, as well as others from MacDonald, as both E-books and trade paperbacks.

On January 8, 2013, Random House Trade Paperbacks will launch their new publishing program to release, for the first time ever, eBook editions of 70 of John D. Macdonald’s novels, including all of the Travis McGee novels which will kick off the program. At the same time, Random House will publish—also for the first-time ever—the McGee novels in trade paperback, starting with the classic THE DEEP BLUE GOOD-BY on January 8, with trade paperback reissues of the rest of the McGee novels below coming throughout the year.

In addition, Random House will publish some of MacDonald’s long-out-of-print classics as eBook-only editions, starting in June 2013, and will continue the trade paperback and eBook releases of MacDonald’s most notable stand-alone novels, including the iconic Cape Fear, throughout the year and into 2014.

MacDonald’s work has influenced some of today’s critically acclaimed authors from Stephen King and Mary Higgins Clark to #1 New York Times bestselling author Lee Child, who wrote a new introduction for the reissued McGee series, a hero he has called “a knight in rusted armor.” Sue Grafton has called MacDonald “a dominant influence” in the genre, while Dean Koontz crowned him “my favorite novelist of all time.”

The covers for these new editions introduce an entirely new look for MacDonald, which will appeal both to paperback readers and to eBook consumers. Leaving behind the pulpy character of his original paperbacks and the slick appearance of the 1995 repackages, these new covers have a classic and timeless feel. Consistent across all 21 Travis titles with bold fonts, bright colors, and vibrant photographic imagery, these covers evoke time and place while balancing the dark humor of McGee’s narration with the serious themes that underlie all of MacDonald’s work.

John D. MacDonald was an American novelist and short-story writer. His works include the Travis McGee series and the novel The Executioners, which was adapted into the film Cape Fear. In 1962, MacDonald was named a grandmaster of the Mystery Writers of America; in 1980, he won a National Book Award. In print, he delighted in smashing the bad guys, deflating the pompous, and exposing the venal. In life, he was a truly empathic man; his friends, family, and colleagues found him to be loyal, generous, and practical. In business, he was fastidiously ethical. About being a writer, he once expressed with gleeful astonishment, “They pay me to do this! They don’t realize, I would pay them.” He spent the later part of his life in Florida with his wife and son, and died in 1986.