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0042 Please Write for Details

July 11, 2011
  • Title: Please Write for Details
  • Language: English
  • Country: USA
  • Format: Paperback
  • Year: 1960
  • Publisher: Fawcett
  • Collection: Crest
  • Collection #: S359
  • Cover Price: $0.35
  • Cover Artist: Mitchell Hooks


I read the book once years ago and didn’t like it. I’ll try it again sometime and let you know if it ages better than I thought. There are plenty of covers for it so I have plenty of time.

The cover is something else again. Mitchell Hooks did about three covers for JDM, all of them good. This one appeared in several forms over the years, changing the number of leering men.

As far as I know, this book was never printed outside the United States, which puts it in rarified country indeed. Only four John D MacDonald novels were never translated from English: Please Write for Details and Cancel All Our Vows, which were printed only in the USA, and The Beach Girls and (incredibly) A Flash of Green, which appeared in British versions. I exclude Weep for Me, of course, as it never had much of a chance.

Update (9/4/2011): How did I botch up that last paragraph so badly? As thousands of readers pointed out (or would have, if I had thousands of readers), I myself asked for an image of the German version of Weep for Me in one of my first posts. And although I know I went through Shines’ A Bibliography of the Published works of John D. MacDonald line-by-line, I somehow missed the fact that both Cancel All Our Vows (Danish, Norwegian) and The Beach Girls (Italian) have foreign editions, which only goes to show that you should never trust anything you read on the internet. Let me try the last paragraph again:

As far as I know, this book was never printed outside the United States, which puts it in rarified country indeed, being the only John D MacDonald novel so … er … honored? Just one other novel was never translated into a foreign language, that being (incredibly) A Flash of Green, which at least was printed in the UK.

Update (9/9/2011): Shocking. It’s simply shocking what unsubstantiated garbage people are allowed to post on their blogs. Please Write for Details did appear in a UK edition, which means every JDM novel was printed outside the U.S. I’m hoping I was at least right about A Flash of Green, but my confidence is completely gone.

Milk Carton

Have you seen me? I am a USA version of Please Write for Details, printed by Fawcett in 1986 under their Gold Medal imprint (ISBN-10 0449129268, ISBN-13 9780449129265). My cover price was $4.95.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Freiler permalink
    September 20, 2011 1:05 am

    I think that you’ll find the character development quite pleasing. It has several of the components of a “Murder in the Wind” or “Cry Hard, Cry Fast” with the dynamic characterization that is so indicative of MacDonald. Plus it makes you want to move to Cuernavaca in the 1950s, which would be an interesting feat.

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