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Sunday, July 18, 2010

Hollywood Moon A Novel by Joseph Wambaugh - Audio book Review

(This is an Amazon Associate's Link)

I won Hollywood Moon several months ago in a blog giveaway. I am a huge fan of audio books, and after reading a review by Stephen King in Entertainment Weekly, I was absolutely sold. Somehow I didn't catch that this was third in a series. The Hollywood Station series to be exact.

About the Book (from publisher Hachette Book Group site):

There's a saying at Hollywood station that the full moon brings out the beast--rather than the best--in the precinct's citizens. One moonlit night, LAPD veteran Dana Vaughn and "Hollywood" Nate Weiss, a struggling-actor-turned cop, get a call about a young man who's been attacking women. Meanwhile, two surfer cops known as Flotsam and Jetsam keep bumping into an odd, suspicious duo--a smooth-talking player in dreads and a crazy-eyed, tattooed biker. No one suspects that all three dubious characters might be involved in something bigger, more high-tech, and much more illegal. After a dizzying series of twists, turns, and chases, the cops will find they've stumbled upon a complex web of crime where even the criminals can't be sure who's conning whom.

Wambaugh once again masterfully gets inside the hearts and minds of the cops whose jobs have them constantly on the brink of danger. By turns heart-wrenching, exhilarating, and laugh-out-loud funny, Hollywood Moon is his most thrilling and deeply affecting ride yet through the singular streets of LA.

My review:

This was my first Joseph Wambaugh book.

I listened to Hollywood Moon while on a road trip to California. It literally made the miles fly by.

I had not read nor listened to the two previous books in this series, but I didn't feel lost at all. The story showed moments in the patrol life of the police at Hollywood Station, but also focused on the seedier side with the criminals, street hustlers and drug addicts. At times things were serious and others just humorous. Wambaugh's characters were all very well done and surprisingly sympathetic. I found myself with a torn loyalty with Dewey Gleason who was living his dreams as an actor by using his talents to portray several different characters he used for his various scams. It was hard not to sympathize with the guy considering his partner was his wife and his biggest critic. The police portrayed were as varied as all human beings are. There were some you could just love and some you tolerated, and really that is absolutely the way the world is. Nothing was sugarcoated nor too graphic.

Finally, the audio book was read by Christian Rummel who did a great job with distinguishing between the character's voices and bringing them to life. My only complaint was the surfer cops sounded like the ninja turtles, but then again, that is really probably the only way to perform their dialogue.

All in all this book was well done, and it truly made me want to check out the rest of the series. I hope that it continues. I am also glad that I have found an author that is new to me as Joseph Wambaugh has a lot of great books under his belt.

1 comment:

Cloud 9 said...

Thanks Kelly! This book looks good! I read a Joseph Wambaugh book years ago called The Choirboys. It was really, really good. You might want to read that one too.
Thanks for the great review.
P.S. You mentioned Stephen King, have you read his latest book called The Dome? I'm nearly finished reading it and it's fantastic. I highly recommned it.