Monday, January 11, 2010

Where is Bloodshot Rainbow?

Well, 2009 has come and gone, and the promised new John D MacDonald biography is nowhere to be seen. Schaffner Press, a small, independent publisher located in Tucson, Arizona, had been touting a new bio since early in 2008, with an expected publication date of Fall 2009. A recent check of the company's website does not look good. While the site is still up, the homepage is still advertising their Spring 2009 releases. Their last press release issued was in March of last year and the link to the MacDonald bio page is dead. I emailed them with an inquiry a few weeks ago and have yet to receive a reply. At least it didn't bounce...

Which is a shame, since it promised to be a great book, at least based on the press release below. One can only hope that if indeed the publisher has gone belly up, that James Walling can peddle the work to a different publisher. I'll stay on the look-out and report back with anything I learn.

Schaffner Press: Upcoming Releases Archives: "BLOODSHOT RAINBOW: The Life and Work of John D. MacDonald
James Walling
Fall '09
Trade Paperback

John D. MacDonald, the hugely prolific bestselling writer of crime novels whose iconic hero Travis McGee became the template for dozens of contemporary mystery writers has until this book largely escaped biographical scrutiny and literary appraisal. With research
ranging from literary archives and correspondence and information gleaned from as yet unpublished military records, author James Walling will retrace Macdonald's footsteps from his years in Burma with the OSS in WWII to his single titles bestsellers, (one of which, THE EXECUTIONERS, was the basis for the movie CAPE FEAR), to the immortal Travis McGee series and the twenty-one books in which the legendary protagonist starred, as well as the final uncompleted ' Black Book' which supposedly featured McGee's demise. In examining not only the mysteries and crime novels, longer works of fiction such as CONDOMINIUM, and even MacDonald's forays into sci-fi (THE GIRL, THE GOLD WATCH AND EVERYTHING) this book will firmly establish MacDonald in the firmament of quintessentially American literary figures, sadly underappreciated due to the commercial genres in which he chose to ply his trade."


  1. Any word lately on whether or not this is still being published? I tried to email the publisher last week and have yet to receive any word yet either, but thought you might have the skinny. I'll probably go ahead and get the Campbell, Geherin and Merrill bios + the Rowan letters. Should keep me well occupied in the meantime, even if they aren't so hot. While I've got you: do you happen to know if THE WORLD ACCORDING TO TRAVIS MCGEE by R. Ackroyd has ever been published? Tried to find a copy to no avail, couldn't even track down the publishing house - Amereon LTD. to find out anything. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks for this fantastic and much needed blog!!!

  2. Thank you Clark.

    My attempts to contact the publisher of BLOODSHOT RAINBOW met the same fate as yours: dead silence. I can only assume that the enterprise has folded. Hopefully the author will shop the work to another publishing house.

    I am unaware of the R. Ackroyd work you are asking about. I don't see it cited in the most recent JDM books (Moore's and Merrill's). How did you learn of it?

  3. I believe I first read about it here:

    There is an Amazon listing for it: - date published Dec. 2004 - it's currently listed as "out of print / limited availablity" (Amazon UK lists a 1911 publication date and "currently unavailable"). I found, online, an address and phone number for Amereon LTD in Mattituck, NY, but it seems they have very limited web presence. This article does offer some insight into what sort of books they publish and reprint:

    Probably worth a call or letter to find out just what the book is all about.

  4. I'm still hard at work on BSR, gentleman. Hope to have it finished soon.


    James Walling

  5. That's great news, James! Let me know if you need any help with the short stories. You can always reach me directly through the email link in my profile.

  6. A bit of hope:

    James Walling