One Fearful Yellow Eye

I'm something of a completeist when it comes to book series. So it was a bit of surprise to discover that there was a Travis McGee detective novel that I hadn't read. And not a late addition to the series or anything: #8 of 21 novels. In retrospect, the mental checkbox for "read all of the McGee books" probably should be listed under "read all of the McGee books available at the Howard County Public Library in the early '80s."

So how does One Fearful Yellow Eye hold up to my early teen memories? For starters, this is something of an aberation for Travis McGee -- most of the books are set in South Florida and strongly informed, as would be books by my faves Elmore Leonard and Carl Hiaasen, by that location. This time, however, McGee travels to Chicago to help out an old friend. He's not a fan of my fair city.

In fact, McGee is not a fan of a lot of things. Hot-air hand dryers are part of the "international communist conspiracy" to make us "too irritable, listless, and disheartened to fight" one half-page rant informs us. I think the effect is supposed to be "McGee the manly he-man shoots straight from the hip", but to my ear it sounds half-a-step from "you kids get off my lawn".

Maybe I need to give another shot to one of the Florida-based McGee novels, especially since I'm now sure there are several I haven't read. But this one didn't whet my appetite for another visit to the Busted Flush.

FuzzyCo grade: C+