Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Three Roads” as Want to Read:
The Three Roads
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Three Roads

3.4 of 5 stars 3.40  ·  rating details  ·  97 ratings  ·  14 reviews
Silken skin pale against dark hair, red lips provocatively smiling at him—that’s how Lieutenant Bret Taylor remembered Lorraine. He was drunk when he married her, stone cold sober when he found her dead. Out on the sunlit streets of L.A. walked the man—her lover, her killer—who had been with her that fatal night. Taylor intended to find him. And when he did, the gun in his ...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published January 11th 2011 by Black Lizard/Vintage (first published 1948)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Three Roads, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Three Roads

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 189)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Bill  Kerwin

"The Three Roads" is the fourth and final book that Ross MacDonald produced before writing his first Lew Archer novel, and it's a mess. It is written in a more mature and disciplined style than the three others, but it is stuffed to the gills with every MacDonald obsession, each exploited beyond its utmost, indulged before the writer had yet developed a coherent idea of how to use them to their best advantage. There is a corrupt coastal American city, a childhood wound and family trauma involvin
...more
Sara Backer
Ross MacDonald is just so good at describing a scene. I return to his books to learn how to write sentences. I had high hopes for this one and I was disappointed that the Oedipal story (The Three Roads = the three roads at Phokis where Oedipus unknowingly killed his father) wasn't a closer parallel. But you can't go wrong with any MacDonald.
Felix Hayman
"For now I am discovered vile, and of the vile. O ye three roads, and thou concealed dell, and Oaken copse, and narrow outlet of three ways, which drank my own blood..." - Sophocles, Oedipus Tyrannus

It seems that if you a review a book by the standard of today it becomes outmoded, outdated if it is written in the stye of its era. The year is 1948, the war is still in everyone's minds and its outcomes are the stuff of everyday thinking, not of 21st century legend. Ross Mcdonald's main character i
...more
Belinda
Absolutely stunning and fabulous. Lyrical, emotional, amazing twists, beautifully drawn characters--I could not possibly say enough about this fantastic novel. I literally cannot wait to get my hands on more of Macdonald's material--this was one of the best of the noir/detective type fiction reads I have ever had. The authors of this type of book often have a beautiful and lyrical style but this is more gorgeous than most that I have read without losing the gritty side of the story . About as cl ...more
Jim
The Freudian determinism of this novel does not mesh all that well with the individual responsibility that typifies the novel's genre. This novel was released the year after Hitchcock's mystery film The Paradine Case, which also heavily used psycological concepts in its plot and which also had a mentally damaged person as its detective. On the whole, an ambitious attempt to expand the limits of the detective story that is not all that successful.
Victoria Mixon
This one's a cheater, as the reader is told in the beginning that the culprit couldn't have done it. And the jumping around from point-of-view to point-of-view is distracting. Still, it's a solid, well-written mystery. Just don't take Macdonald's implied advice on what kind of person is safe to marry.
Joy
Ross Macdonald was still feeling his way into the craft of writing mystery novels, but his ability to write emotional experience has blossomed since he wrote BLUE CITY. His magnificently experienced characters are still, over all, too depressed to create a successful series as he was later to do.
Ram Kaushik
This is probably be hands down the worst Ross McD I have read. Full of amateur psychology, self-absorbed and an apology of a story line. Not sure why he was so off-form on this one, may be an early trial run.
Ben
This was the first disappointing Ross MacDonald book I've read. I think a big part was that I was expecting a detective/mystery story and instead I got a psychological melodrama. Just not my thing.
Larissa
Freudian crime fiction. Turns out, seeing your mother get it on with a man Not Your Father really *will* ruin your life...or at least cause lasting damage to your psyche. Damn you, mom!
Jay


Not as good as Macdonald's classic Lew Archer mysteries, but still an entertaining psychological thriller, set in Southern California after the Second World War.
Roshni
A bit different from Macdonald's usual in terms of plot, but the writing style is the same. This gets a little more psychological than his usual
Michelle
It stared off very melodramatic and then took a turn for the
"noir!"
Mark
Well done but not as good as his later writing.
Shelby
Shelby is currently reading it
Jul 06, 2015
Michelle
Michelle is currently reading it
Jun 26, 2015
Jay Sprankle
Jay Sprankle marked it as to-read
May 10, 2015
Levi
Levi marked it as to-read
Mar 30, 2015
Jenene
Jenene marked it as to-read
Mar 25, 2015
Jtsuruoka
Jtsuruoka marked it as to-read
Jan 19, 2015
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
70090
Ross Macdonald is the pseudonym of the American-Canadian writer of crime fiction Kenneth Millar. He is best known for his series of hardboiled novels set in southern California and featuring private detective Lew Archer.

Millar was born in Los Gatos, California, and raised in his parents' native Kitchener, Ontario, Canada, where he started college. When his father abandoned his family unexpectedly,
...more
More about Ross Macdonald...
The Drowning Pool (Vintage Crime/Black Lizard) The Chill The Galton Case The Moving Target The Way Some People Die

Share This Book