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Some Can Whistle

3.49  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,032 Ratings  ·  51 Reviews
In his most moving and richly comic contemporary novel since Texasville, Larry McMurtry returns to the modern West he created so masterfully in The Last Picture Show and Terms of Endearment. SOME CAN WHISTLE spins a tale of Hollywood glitz and texas grit; of an extraordinary young woman and a murderous young man; and a middle-aged millionaire running head-on into the longi ...more
Paperback, 376 pages
Published September 1st 1990 by Pocket Books (first published 1989)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,492)
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Debbie Reschke Schug
As “All My Friends are Going to be Strangers,” the predecessor to “Some Can Whistle,” is punctuated by constant movement and restlessness, stagnation and resignation characterizes the second book in the series.

Just like some people have the genes to roll their tongue and some don’t, some people have the ability and capacity to live life, and some don’t. Danny Deck doesn’t have it, his daughter, T.R., does. He can’t connect to anyone, and she seems to haphazardly connect to everyone, even if it l
Jackson Burnett
The premise of this book is the failure of this book.

"Some Can Whistle" is a sequel to Larry McMurtry's "All My Friends Are Going to Be Strangers," that time capsule novel of the 1960's. Danny Deck now is late middle-aged, retired, ill, and depressed. It goes down hill from there.

"Some Can Whistle" would likely have been richer with a newly imagined protagonist. Danny Deck's final image from "All My Friends..." should have remained his final image.

All My Friends are Going to Be Strangers by Larry McMurtry
Mr. Gottshalk
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Carol Waters
The only reason I gave this book 2 stars because I'm persisting in my liking This author. The story is both simple and stupid in the idea that he could simply drive to Houston and run into his adult kid is ridiculous. Fast food workers have career paths of about 90 minutes. She drinks too much, she's not very smart and she sleeps around with very bad boys. And on top of all that even though he pays voluntary child support he has a lame excuse for failure to make contact in 22 years. Despite occa ...more
Jun 14, 2015 Mary rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This story is filled with fun but funky characters and lots of laughs. I enjoyed the read because it is not your usual rich guy story. I loved the character of TJ the daughter of the rich author Danny Deck. He did not meet her until she was 22 and she is one bad-ass character and he loves her anyway because she is his daughter. She comes into his life at a time he just exists and paves the way for him to become a vibrant person again. Even with all the craziness including a lot of unrealistic ev ...more
May 23, 2016 Graham rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Joe Zillmer
Jul 15, 2014 Joe Zillmer rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
McMurtry is obviously one of America's treasures. "Lonesome Dove" may be the most celebrated novel of our generation. That being said, this ("Some Can Whistle") is my favorite McMurtry novel...hands down.
The dialogue rings in my head, sticks in my crawl. I am an interloper, an eavesdropper to the most intimate moments of this hilariously dysfunctional family.

I was hooked in the first paragraph and was never released. The relational drama of the characters: daddy, lost daughter, hanger's on, and
Dixie Diamond
Dec 19, 2014 Dixie Diamond rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, texas, my_books
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Ryan Curell
If Larry McMurtry symbolically declared the death of the Old West with "All My Friends Are Going to be Strangers," he at least demonstrates that you can tell any tale as a Western with its sequel, "Some Can Whistle."

Danny Deck, the drifter protagonist from "All My Friends..." is back - aging and listless in his giant Texas mansion. Since drowning his failed second novel in the Rio Grande, he's become a multi-millionaire television producer of the hugely popular sitcom "Al and Sal." Recently reti
May Wong
May 05, 2014 May Wong rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Although I enjoyed some of McMurtry's other books, I just could not get into Some Can Whistle. I persisted to page 80 and gave up, without ever warming up to any of the characters, least of all the main one - Danny Deck, nor caring about where the plot was going to go. It was just too frivolous a story, with awkward hints of salaciousness.
Oct 23, 2014 Laurie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book made me laugh and cry and ultimately broke my heart. Larry McMurty is definitely an acquired taste, but once you've come to appreciate him, you can't get enough of his books. Filled with quirky characters and the messy reality of real life
Dec 05, 2014 Penny rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: general-fiction
I wanted to like it more than I did ... it was sad, even while shocking stuff was happening, and especially at the end. A strangely passive narrator.
Feb 21, 2011 Rcw70 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Some interesting situations and a wildly varied cast, diversity in action - the cast included an aged Vietnamese woman, a Mexican girl and old Mexican man, a black girl, a Hispanic girl - a dumb thief and a killer, not to mention the main characters, the Daughter, a 22 year unmarred mother of two - her two children and the wealthy but repressed father who told the tale

It was a quick read and enjoyable but I was displeased by the gratuitous use of foul language - I am no prude and swear words are
Holly Geist
Jan 21, 2015 Holly Geist rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I like his non-westerns best. This book had a great line that I still randomly quote.
Jeff Dickison
Aug 02, 2013 Jeff Dickison rated it liked it
A sad and ultimately meaningless tale of a 50-some year old screenwriter who is unable to connect with people emotionally. His 22-year old duaghter, from whom he had been separated at birth, returns to his life. She has a life force that he cannot hope to match. But basically this is not a book about life, it is a book about death; the relationships that die, the people that die, and the man that for all practical matters, is already dead. Recommended if only you feel like going into therapy for ...more
Dean Morris
Feb 07, 2016 Dean Morris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great. One of the main plot elements was a bit clumsy, but the characters were very engaging and made for an enjoyable read.
Aug 05, 2014 Dani rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really like Larry McMurtry's work. Loved Lonesome Dove, but this book was only ok. He is great writer but in this case the characters were too quirky to be believable or likable. I wanted to like them but I never could. Also, you wanted the main character, Danny Deck, who had isolated himself from the world, to break out once finding his daughter. He just seemed to carry a bunch of freeloaders, some more than others, through life. But he himself never really changes.
Margaret Kumma
Larry McMurtry is an excellent writer. He writes characters that I really care about, and his books are tough to put down. This one is no exception, but I only rated it at 3 stars because (without giving too much away) it gets really morose. It was extremely difficult to read at that point. But I don't regret reading it, and I will likely read it again one day, since I know what's coming. It was quite shocking when I read it the first time.
Kurt Reichenbaugh
Jun 24, 2012 Kurt Reichenbaugh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Danny Deck, rich and lonely, years after the events in All My Friends are Going to be Strangers. I'd read this novel before All My Friends, after a co-worker gave it to me, telling me how much he hated it. "It's about a guy up to his neck in a cesspool, and the levels just keep rising. It's miserable from beginning to end."

It's sad, and moving. Read All My Friends first, and it will make more sense. On its own it's still pretty good.
Jan 27, 2010 Megankellie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is good, another terrific female character and a book about thinking it's okay not to love or be loved and the reality of the stupidity of that statement. There is a part of it that is so powerful I almost ripped it in half at the spine and would have punched Larry McMurtry in the genitals 50 times and he is my favorite author.
Apr 06, 2012 Olivia rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
On the surface, this is not a book for a deep thinker. However, there does come a point where the storyline takes your breath away and you catch your breath. Broke my heart. I got drawn into the storyline and am thankful I read this book. Grippingly real and overwhelmingly heart wrenching.
Aug 15, 2010 Laura rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm rereading this since I just found and bought a copy of "All of My Friends Are Going to Be Strangers" and so a rereading of both Danny Deck books was inevitable since I will force them on my dear Dad next. I feel like McMurty's characters are like gifts given to us to befriend.
Jeffrey Stalk
The same guy who wrote "Lonesome Dove", but you will not be able to tell from this book. The tone of the book is too remote to get the reader truly involved.
Randy Lynn
Nov 17, 2011 Randy Lynn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this a long time ago; just thought of it for some weird reasons tonight. I can still remember scenes from this book--like his daughter laying on the tiled bathroom floor with a migraine. The father/daughter elements in this book seemed true to me.
Chris Ford
Jul 02, 2011 Chris Ford rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Funny, tragic, moving. Most McMurtry novels choke you up, this one goes a little farther. Trade-mark strong female lead, hilarious sidekick, goofy cast of characters. Great read. Poignant is probably the word.
BC or Brenda
This is my car book. I have read many books by Larry McMurtry and this was not up to his usual style. The last section did clear somethings up but at times I wondered why I was reading it.
Lisa Daur
Apr 14, 2008 Lisa Daur rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: recently-read
A story of a father who reconnects with his daughter when she is in her 20's and has two children....Quirky....not a gripping book found myself putting it down...but still had to finish it.
Paul Parsons
Classic McMurtry with a cast of dysfunctional characters stumbling through life and ultimately wondering what it all means. Okay read, and doesn't take very long.
Probably the most under - rated and under - read of Larry's books. It is a shame because this is a GREAT book. I loved it.
Forgot I had read this one. I really like Larry McMurtry's character development and slow plot. My kind of book.
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Larry McMurtry is the author of twenty-nine novels, including the Pulitzer Prize-winning Lonesome Dove, three memoirs, two collections of essays, and more than thirty screenplays.

Among many other accolades he was the co-winner of an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay for Brokeback Mountain in 2006.

Larry McMurty was born in Wichita Falls Texas in 1936. His first published book Horseman, Pass By was
More about Larry McMurtry...

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“I don't know why you would even want to stay with me," I said.
T.R. looked stunned for a second and then whipped her elbow into my side as hard as she could--months later it was determined that the jab cracked a rib.
Oh, get fucked!" she said, jumping up. "No wonder you don't have no girlfriend if you don't have no more feelings than to say a horrible thing like that. All I want to do is love you. Ain't you even gonna let me?”
“You should be proud of her. She cracked the wall, and I never thought I'd live to see it cracked."
What are you talking about?" I said. "What wall?"
The one you built around you," Jeannie said. "Don't say it wasn't there. It was there. I tried to crack it but I didn't have the confidence, you know? What happened is, it cracked me, but that's okay, I'm working around my crack pretty well. But you were dying behind your wall, and you're lucky to have a daughter who has the guts to crack it. I hope she smashes it to fucking smithereens and you never have another peaceful day in your whole fucking life, Mr. Deck!”
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