Sarasota’s Man of Mystery: John D. MacDonald

A LEMON BAY FEST EVENT: Calvin Branche, a John D. MacDonald historian, speaks about a prolific author who had a major impact on Florida’s literary history. This program is ALSO part of One Book/One Community which honors the legacy of John D. MacDonald in 2016 for his 100th birth Anniversary. Presented by Cal Branche, a John D. MacDonald Scholar for 30 years, the program will consist of a presentation on MacDonald, along with readings of letters written during WW2 between John and his wife Dorothy MacDonald, read by Branche and his wife, Nola. John D. MacDonald was an American author who lived and worked in Sarasota from 1952 until his death in 1986. He was a prolific novelist and short story writer, completing 78 books across several genres including thrillers and science fiction, and publishing more than 450 short stories. He was most well-known for his 21 Travis McGee books, the first mystery series set in Florida (Ft. Lauderdale), and the novel The Executioners, which was adapted into the film Cape Fear twice. He was the first Florida fiction author to bring attention and concern to Florida’s rapid growth and environmental issues long before they were popular. His definitive hurricane disaster novel Condominium was just selected as the Florida Library Association’s One Book One State for 2016. His many accolades include being named a Grand Master of the Mystery Writers of America in 1972 and a National Book Award in 1980 for The Green Ripper, and an Honorary Award by Bouchercon in 1983. MacDonald’s Travis McGee set the stage for countless other Florida-based mystery authors and influenced scores of writers, including Randy Wayne White and James W.Hall.

At: Elsie Quirk Library

ENGLEWOOD Florida, 34223

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