I loved John D. from the time I began reading him around 1959. I never liked the McGees as much as the earlier novels and really grew weary of the lectures in the later novels. I've tried to reread a few in recent years and I can't finish them. The holier-than-thou tone and smugness ruins any chance of enjoyment.
Worse yet, I read the book of letters between John D. and comedian Dan Rowan and several of his letters written to novelist Bordan Deal published elsewhere, and that voice...his personal voice...comes across even more as a smug prick. I will be curious to see if my growing negative feelings about his later-day voice will carry over to any rereading of the earlier novels.
I don't think it will. I loved A KEY TO THE SUITE, for example, and read it several times. I don't believe I would remember it so fondly if it had any of the tone that so grates on me now.
--- In email@example.com, "James Reasoner" <jamesreasoner@...> wrote:
> I wonder if McDonald's appeal, or lack of same, is generational as much as it is geographical. I know I read most of the McGee books when they were brand-new, buying them off the spinner rack at the local drugstore. I wasn't part of any sort of mystery fandom at the time, didn't know anybody who read the books that I read and didn't discuss them with anybody. Later when I came across complaints about McGee's lectures and rants, my reaction was "Huh?" I didn't even remember them. I guess they were just a seamless part of the books to me.
> That said, I've never reread any of the McGees. I don't know how they would hold up. In recent years, though, I've read some of JDM's stand-alones for the first time and didn't care for a few of them.
> James Reasoner
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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