Hollywood Hills (Hollywood Station Series #4)

Hollywood Hills (Hollywood Station Series #4)

3.6 47
by Joseph Wambaugh
     
 

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The legendary Hollywood Hills are home to wealth, fame, and power—passing through the neighborhood, it's hard not to get a little greedy.

LAPD veteran "Hollywood Nate" Weiss could take or leave the opulence, but he wouldn't say no to onscreen fame. He may get his shot when he catches the appreciative eye of B-list director Rudy Ressler, and his

Overview

The legendary Hollywood Hills are home to wealth, fame, and power—passing through the neighborhood, it's hard not to get a little greedy.

LAPD veteran "Hollywood Nate" Weiss could take or leave the opulence, but he wouldn't say no to onscreen fame. He may get his shot when he catches the appreciative eye of B-list director Rudy Ressler, and his troublemaking fiancée, Leona Brueger, the older-but-still-foxy widow of a processed-meat tycoon. Nate tries to elude her crafty seductions, but consents to keep an eye on their estate in the Hollywood Hills while they're away.

Also minding the mansion is Raleigh Dibble, a hapless ex-con trying to put the past behind him. Raleigh is all too happy to be set up for the job—as butler-cum-watchdog—by Nigel Wickland, Leona's impeccably dressed art dealer. What Raleigh doesn't realize is that under the natty clothes and posh accent, Nigel has a nefarious plan: two paintings hanging on the mansion's walls will guarantee them more money than they've ever seen.

Everyone's dreams are just within reach—the only problem is, this is Hollywood. A circle of teenage burglars that the media has dubbed The Bling Ring has taken to pillaging the homes of Hollywood celebutants like Paris Hilton and Lindsay Lohan, and when a pair of drug-addled young copycats stumbles upon Nigel's heist, that's just the beginning of the disaster to come. Soon Hollywood Nate, surfer cops Flotsam and Jetsam, and the rest of the team at Hollywood Station have a deadly situation on their hands.

Hollywood Hills is a raucous and dangerous roller coaster ride that showcases Joseph Wambaugh in vintage form.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publishers Weekly Audio
Wambaugh once again delves into the life of his quirky LAPD officer, "Hollywood Nate," and the surfer dudes, officers Flotsam and Jetsam. It would be enough to merely follow these cops on their patrol as they encounter all the odd, comic, and at times tragic characters that "Hollyweird" has to offer, but Wambaugh ties in smart complications: two drugged-out kids who quite by chance become involved in a perpetually troubled art theft attempted by a pretentious art dealer and the ex-con turned house man that he enlists as his partner in crime. Christian Rummel offers a well-thought-out, nicely rendered performance, shifting in tone from the wry and humorous to the pragmatic and heartbreaking. His characterizations are simple and effective, never overreaching in execution but still giving each character a distinctive and individual voice. Fans of Wambaugh will not be disappointed. A Little, Brown hardcover. (Feb.)
Maureen Corrigan
What fun it is to read Joseph Wambaugh! His Hollywood Station police procedurals—peppered with the requisite gunshots and groin kicks, sleaze and sunshine—are word-drunk wonders…Hollywood Hills doesn't offer profound insights into the evil that lurks in the human heart. Instead, this series serves up something perhaps even more welcome as the drear days of winter settle in: an absurdist take on crime, as well as plotlines and sentences that perform buoyant loop-de-loops all over the page before making flawless landings.
—The Washington Post
Publishers Weekly
The LAPD's Hollywood Station deals with some of the strangest lawbreakers anywhere, as shown in MWA Grand Master Wambaugh's amusing fourth novel to feature Hollywood Nate Weiss, surfer cops Flotsam and Jetsam, and the rest of the series' colorful police crew (after Hollywood Moon). In the main plot line, the paths of a pair of drug-addled thieves--high school dropout Jonas Claymore and his down-on-her-luck housemate, Megan Burke--converge and collide with those of snooty art dealer Nigel Wickland and sleazy part-time butler Raleigh L. Dibble with results both absurd and tragic. Meanwhile, Wambaugh diverts with smaller episodes about such odd Hollywood denizens as the Wedgie Bandit and the Goths, a couple whose dress and house channels the Addams family. Veteran police officer Della Ravelle's sage mentoring of young officer Britney Small lends some gravity to this deliciously convoluted caper. (Nov.)
Marilyn Stasio
good news for fans of the Hollywood Station trilogy that was supposed to have ended with Hollywood Moon. Now here comes Hollywood Hills, extending another golden opportunity to ride with the uniformed crew at what must be the most colorful cop-shop under the sun.... Wambaugh salts the narrative with variously funny, sad and thoughtful anecdotes featuring a cast of characters we've come to treasure: handsome Hollywood Nate, the surfer cops Flotsam and Jetsam, and veterans like Viv Daley and Della Ravelle, burned by experience, but conscientiously training the next generation to face the fire.
New York Times Book Review
Tom Nolan
If Los Angeles police detective-sergeant-turned-author Joseph Wambaugh didn't invent the modern cop novel, he's been one of its most prolific and successful practitioners.... Dark slapstick—with rimshot dialogue worthy of Jay Leno—often ensues when these police officers cross paths with eccentric Hollywood-dwellers. But there's nothing comical about the murder and mayhem lurking behind the palm trees.... Yet one way or another these enforcers of the law—like their author—continue to get the job done.
Wall Street Journal
Robin Vidimos
Joseph Wambaugh's Hollywood series was supposed to be a trilogy. Good news for readers that he changed his mind. His take on the Hollywood cop shop is colorful...these characters fighting crime are not to be missed. Neither are the criminals they pursue.... And in addition to stupid criminals, there are some gut-wrenching, psychologically difficult criminal interludes that remind the reader that for all the stupid wrongdoers who find their reward, there are also innocent victims, and these victims take their own kind of toll. Wambaugh mixes the light and the dark in a unique way. Hollywood Hills is a keeper.... The book should be satisfying to those familiar with the series, and a tantalizing starting point for those who are not.
The Denver Post
Jonathan Shapiro
It's Joseph Wambaugh's world. Other crime writers just live in it. Beginning with his 1971 novel, The New Centurions, and his 1973 nonfiction masterpiece, The Onion Field, the former Los Angeles Police Department detective all but created the modern L.A. police procedural. Wambaugh's work chronicles the true lives of those involved in the dirty business of law and order, and has provided the foundational language, style and conventions for the countless writers who have tried, with mixed results, to follow in his footsteps. Hollywood Hills, Wambaugh's newest novel, is a cogent reminder that he remains on the beat, and as effective as ever.
Los Angeles Times
Paul Davis
No writer describes the cop world's twin masks of comedy and tragedy as well as Joseph Wambaugh.... In Hollywood Hills, the fourth novel in a series that portrays the LAPD cops who work out of Hollywood Station, Wambaugh again offers dark humor, social satire, and police drama. His carefully drawn characters are colorful but utterly believable. The cops aren't super cops, but fairly ordinary, vulnerable, and imperfect human beings, which adds to their appeal.... Like Wambaugh's previous novels, Hollywood Hills is an entertaining and starkly realistic ride-along with the LAPD.
Philadelphia Inquirer
Jonathan Shapiro - Los Angeles Times
"It's Joseph Wambaugh's world. Other crime writers just live in it. Beginning with his 1971 novel, The New Centurions, and his 1973 nonfiction masterpiece, The Onion Field, the former Los Angeles Police Department detective all but created the modern L.A. police procedural. Wambaugh's work chronicles the true lives of those involved in the dirty business of law and order, and has provided the foundational language, style and conventions for the countless writers who have tried, with mixed results, to follow in his footsteps. Hollywood Hills, Wambaugh's newest novel, is a cogent reminder that he remains on the beat, and as effective as ever."
Maureen Corrigan - Washington Post
"What fun it is to read Joseph Wambaugh! His Hollywood Station police procedurals - peppered with the requisite gunshots and groin kicks, sleaze and sunshine - are word-drunk wonders. If James Joyce had imagined Finnegans Wake as a crime story (hmmm, not a bad idea since plot was never Joyce's strong suit), it might have turned out something like Wambaugh's latest suspense story, Hollywood Hills....this series serves up something perhaps even more welcome as the drear days of winter settle in: an absurdist take on crime, as well as plotlines and sentences that perform buoyant loop-de-loops all over the page before making flawless landings."
Tom Nolan - Wall Street Journal
"If Los Angeles police detective-sergeant-turned-author Joseph Wambaugh didn't invent the modern cop novel, he's been one of its most prolific and successful practitioners.... Dark slapstick—with rimshot dialogue worthy of Jay Leno—often ensues when these police officers cross paths with eccentric Hollywood-dwellers. But there's nothing comical about the murder and mayhem lurking behind the palm trees.... Yet one way or another these enforcers of the law—like their author—continue to get the job done."
Robin Vidimos - The Denver Post
"Joseph Wambaugh's Hollywood series was supposed to be a trilogy. Good news for readers that he changed his mind. His take on the Hollywood cop shop is colorful...these characters fighting crime are not to be missed. Neither are the criminals they pursue.... And in addition to stupid criminals, there are some gut-wrenching, psychologically difficult criminal interludes that remind the reader that for all the stupid wrongdoers who find their reward, there are also innocent victims, and these victims take their own kind of toll. Wambaugh mixes the light and the dark in a unique way. Hollywood Hills is a keeper.... The book should be satisfying to those familiar with the series, and a tantalizing starting point for those who are not."
Paul Davis - Philadelphia Inquirer
"No writer describes the cop world's twin masks of comedy and tragedy as well as Joseph Wambaugh.... In Hollywood Hills, the fourth novel in a series that portrays the LAPD cops who work out of Hollywood Station, Wambaugh again offers dark humor, social satire, and police drama. His carefully drawn characters are colorful but utterly believable. The cops aren't super cops, but fairly ordinary, vulnerable, and imperfect human beings, which adds to their appeal.... Like Wambaugh's previous novels, Hollywood Hills is an entertaining and starkly realistic ride-along with the LAPD."
Marilyn Stasio - New York Times Book Review
"good news for fans of the Hollywood Station trilogy that was supposed to have ended with Hollywood Moon. Now here comes Hollywood Hills, extending another golden opportunity to ride with the uniformed crew at what must be the most colorful cop-shop under the sun.... Wambaugh salts the narrative with variously funny, sad and thoughtful anecdotes featuring a cast of characters we've come to treasure: handsome Hollywood Nate, the surfer cops Flotsam and Jetsam, and veterans like Viv Daley and Della Ravelle, burned by experience, but conscientiously training the next generation to face the fire."
Kirkus Reviews

Wambaugh's Hollywood trilogy (Hollywood Moon, 2009, etc.) sprouts a fourth volume, another offbeat mix of broadly satirical comedy and a cast of cops apparently waiting for a procedural that never kicks in.

Veteran Officer "Hollywood" Nate Weiss, the only member of the LAPD with a Screen Actors Guild card, hopes that meeting second-tier director/producer Rudy Ressler might be his big break. Rudy wants Hollywood Nate to keep an eye on the art-stocked home of the late meatpacking king Sammy Brueger while Rudy's off in Tuscany with his fiancée, Benny's widow Leona, who comes on to Hollywood Nate in a way that seems likely to seal the deal. Alas, the real action at the Brueger place has nothing to do with the movies. Beverly Hills art dealer Nigel Wickland, whom Leona invited out to inspect her security measures, has decided to steal two of Sammy's prize paintings and replace them with replicas. His plan requires him to embed an accomplice, ex-con caterer-turned-butler Raleigh L. Dibble, in Leona's household while she's away, ostensibly to tend her ancient brother-in-law Marty, but actually to provide Nigel access to the house. On the other side of the tracks, high-school dropout Jonas Claymore, too strung out on OxyContin to hold his job parking cars, schemes with his long-suffering housemate Megan Burke to improve his own standard of living by breaking into the homes of the wealthy. You'd never guess which home he picks, or when. The guardians of the law who've been invited to this Hiaasen-esque carnival of criminal losers seem like outsiders, and that may be just the point. Hollywood Nate, his old buddy Snuffy Salcedo, probationary Officer Britney Small, her Field Training Officer Della Ravelle, surfer cops Flotsam and Jetsam—all of them do precious little detection or investigation, but a couple of them discharge their service weapons to significant effect.

Though everything takes forever to happen, the laughs are authentic, and a couple of endearing heroes emerge. A middling entry in this waggish series.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781607889748
Publisher:
Hachette Audio
Publication date:
11/16/2010
Series:
Hollywood Station Series , #4
Edition description:
Unabridged, 10 CDs, 11 hrs.
Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 5.70(h) x 1.55(d)

Meet the Author

Joseph Wambaugh, a former LAPD detective sergeant, is the bestselling author of 19 prior works of fiction and nonfiction, including The Choirboys and The Onion Field. In 2004, he was named Grand Master by the Mystery Writers of America. He lives in southern California.

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Hollywood Hills (Hollywood Station Series #4) 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 47 reviews.
The_Reading_Reviewer More than 1 year ago
Every city has its story and is filled with every manner of character willing to tell you all about what makes them tick, the more personal the better. In Joseph Wambaugh's latest Hollywood Hills series he explores this theory and writes the story from every perspective possible in rapid fire succession. He starts with the police officer who wants to be a movie star, the struggling director that wants to be an Oscar winner, the drug addict trying to figure out how to get the money for the next score, an ex-con working a new angle, the art thief plotting his next idea, all the police officers on the beat dealing with all of this and still getting up the next day to do it all over again. There are so many people coming and going in this book and the chapters are fast reads and come at you from every point of view. You are interjected with thoughts, feelings and desperate acts that you at times feel you need to be writing the characters down just to keep up but just as you are saying "who is that guy" Mr. Wambaugh pulls everything together so that you know what this character is up to, thinking and figuring out their next move along with them. It is fascinating reading and everyone in this book completes it and without each of them it would not work as well which is something this author is the master of. Every person has a reason for being in the story and every reader will be mesmerized as they follow the plot of all these lives. As a fan of the police procedural book that Joseph Wambaugh writes this one stands out for me because he has taken the core characters and expanded them and pulled in new ones in such a way you can't put this book down until you figure out what is going to happen. I am thrilled to have read this and been able to hopefully sell a few copies with this review.
harstan More than 1 year ago
In the Hollywood Hills, movie director Rudy Ressler and his fiancée wealthy Widow Leona Brueger meet LAPD cop "Hollywood" Nate Weiss. Rudy thinks Hollywood as the right look for the screen while Leona thinks he has the right "meat" for her boy toy. They ask him to keep an eye on their estate while they are out of town, which he agrees to do. Former convict turned butler Raleigh Dibble works at the Ressler mansion where he plans to stay legit. Leona's sleazy snobby art dealer Nigel Wickland also watches the mansion, but has different plans for what is inside and for the butler he placed inside. However, his scheme runs into problems when drug addicted losers Jonas Claymore and Megan Burke intrude on his game. As the rest of the Hollywood Hills cops deal with an assortment of crazies like the notorious Wedgie Bandit, the Bling Ring break and enter teens and the Addams Family clones the Goths, cop Della Ravelle guides rookie officer Britney Small as to how to properly surf (with a nod to Flotsam and Jetsam) LAPD and the dangerous streets worked by the LAPD Hollywood Station. The fourth Hollywood Station police procedural (see Hollywood Moon and Hollywood Crows) is a wacky jocular thriller due to the clash between the cops and robbers. Fast-paced throughout, the main plot has several folks crashing and clashing at the Ressler mansion, but not all are after a master art theft. Readers will appreciate Joseph Wambaugh's wonderfully amusing entry; as the great author places all the insanity and lunacy inside serious criminal and police activities. This is another winner. Harriet Klausner
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is part four in the continuing series about the cops of Hollywood Station. If you liked the earlier books in the series, then you will like this one as well. Familiar characters, familiar locations and familiar narrative. Is it Wambaugh at his best? Probably not, but it is good Wambaugh continuing his series and that is not so bad.
nitzicat More than 1 year ago
I have been reading Wambaugh since the beginning. Still the best there is. I like the Hollywood station series and I hope he keeps it up. The Choirboys and the Onion Field are classic,read them if you havn't,and the Hollywood station series is keeping up the tradition.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really liked this book. I thought the integration of Hollywood Station cops throughout his series has been great. Of particular note: it seemed as if there was more of the supporting characters here and less of the main ones. The dodgy, tweaker motif seemed overused when compared to its use in other books of this series, but this is still a great read. Keep it up!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A brown and black K9 sits in front of the police department sitting at attention, his black ears pricked for the slightest sound...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hello?
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FrankTX More than 1 year ago
As always, Joseph Wambaugh has produced another great work. I have yet to be disappointed with anything he has written, the action is always there and forward moving. And it was easy reading on my Nook Simple.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Say it ain't so Joe! While I didn't deserve to expect "the Onion Fields" quality, I didn't expect to get the 'feel' that here comes another ghost writer, attaching crap to a famous name on the cover and title page. The first couple of chapters give the reader hope, but then, after the development of several diverse and potentially interesting characters, the writer merely uses those characters typical days to basically present a DIARY of their days after days, into a daze! Boring not just because of the contrast from those high expectations that the Waumbaugh name in itself promises, but boring because that is what it is.
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OB-at-OTR More than 1 year ago
As usual Wambaugh gives the reader an excellent bit of entertainment that becomes only richer with each new book in the series.
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Oscar Campbell More than 1 year ago
LA to the max! Love the characters sense of humor. Time to have a laugh at the expense of hollywood div. cops. Like dude!