The Moving Target

The Moving Target

Book - 1998
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The first book in Ross Macdonald's acclaimed Lew Archer series introduces the detective who redefined the role of the American private eye and gave the crime novel a psychological depth and moral complexity only hinted at before.

Like many Southern California millionaires, Ralph Sampson keeps odd company. There's the sun-worshipping holy man whom Sampson once gave his very own mountain; the fading actress with sidelines in astrology and S&M. Now one of Sampson's friends may have arranged his kidnapping.

As Lew Archer follows the clues from the canyon sanctuaries of the megarich to jazz joints where you get beaten up between sets, The Moving Target blends sex, greed, and family hatred into an explosively readable crime novel.
Publisher: New York : Vintage Books, 1998, c1977
Edition: 1st Vintage crimeBlack Lizard ed
ISBN: 9780375701467
Call Number: M MACDONAL
Characteristics: 245 p. ; 21 cm

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Sep 01, 2018

I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this classical private eye story to solve what appears to be a kidnapping. Interesting action and plot twists. I am looking forward to reading more stories featuring Lew Archer.

Jul 14, 2016

Ross Macdonald (not to be confused with another crime writer, John D. MacDonald) wrote a bunch of California-set books with private eye Lew Archer as his hero. He's definitely in the same vein as Sam Spade and Philip Marlowe. Chandler saw Marlowe as more of a hero, while Archer is more cynical and less principled. The story involves a missing husband, a sultry stepdaughter, a wacky cult, and a lot of people with suspect motives. This was filmed with Paul Newman as Archer, but they changed the title to "Harper." If you like this, there are a bunch more in the series. PS-Per another comment, I didn't find the writing "cute."

Apr 22, 2015

"The Moving Target" was first published in 1949 when the hardboiled private eye genre was still in vogue. I would rate it at 4 stars for a first book effort. Ross Macdonald would go on to write another 17 novels in his Lew Archer private eye series, all of which were successful in the marketplace.

Ross Macdonald was the President of the Mystery Writers of America and also received their Grand Master Award in 1974.

If you enjoy reading the hardboiled private eye genre, then "The Moving Target" is a good choice.


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