Inset shows Author Donald McPhail, with background photo of the author taken in 1959, at Giza.

Contact Donald McPhail at: dmacinfo@comcast.net

 

“The Millionaires Cruise: Sailing Toward Black Tuesday” is a unique first novel by Donald McPhail, now 78 years old. He was a longtime freelance writer, and for more than forty years a marketing executive in the airline and hospitality industries.

"Prisoners Of War" is a sequel, due out in 2018. This is a powerful examination of human cruelty and resilience. Despite explosive scenes of war, this is a gentle book, and an unwavering anti-war story. Meticulously researched, “Prisoners Of War” is alive with tales of conflict and love, deceit and honor, politics and idealism.

Set in Hawaii, Asia and South Africa, “Prisoners Of War” is a provocative and original story that examines crucial questions and presents compelling examples of terrible cruelty and personal resilience, from the pre-war Thirties through the turbulent, Vietnam-dominated Seventies.

“Prisoners Of War” begins late in 1934, in the exciting startup days of Pan American Airways in the Pacific, where Duff Malone is Pan Am’s division manager. The brewing conflict with imperial Japan presents complications and delays for the airline, and crucial battles for America and its allies.

Born in Santiago, Chile in 1940, McPhail was raised in Palo Alto, California. He traveled the world for many years, gathering ideas and observing different cultures. McPhail first discovered his interest in people and places in 1959, when he visited his father’s home country, South Africa, a place he loves and has visited many times since.

An avid sports fan, he attended Menlo College on a football scholarship, then joined the U.S. navy and spent two years as a sailor before qualifying for the Naval Academy at Annapolis, where he lettered in football and baseball. While at the Academy he was drawn to literature and the arts after visits to St. John's College, just outside the Academy’s main gate. He transferred to San Francisco State College, where he graduated in international relations and world literature and continued his football career.

During his full and varied life, McPhail has taken a unique path. While his career was in marketing and strategic planning, his passions were athletics, music and writing. Along the way, has sung with iconic singer Joan Baez, coached and trained with Olympic decathlon champion Bill Toomey, and was backup quarterback to the legendary Roger Staubach at Annapolis. At San Francisco State, he was twice voted all-conference quarterback, and was inducted into their athletic hall of fame in 2001. At twenty-eight he was national sales manager for the world's largest airline, and for the next forty years he managed and consulted for leading airlines, resorts, hotels and tourism bureaus in Hawaii, Oregon, Las Vegas and California. As a freelance writer, his first article was featured in the San Francisco Examiner in 1984. Since then his travel articles and political commentaries have appeared in newspapers and magazines around the globe.

McPhail lives in Northern California with his wife Gretchen, and still coaches Little League baseball with his grandson Jack, at the same ballpark in Palo Alto where his own baseball career began. For the past fifteen years he has devoted his energies to Hanna Boys Center, a leading residential school and treatment center for troubled boys. He now organizes reunions and fundraising events for his old high school and college.