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Beverly Hills Dead Hardcover – January 15, 2008


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Putnam Adult; First Edition edition (January 15, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1615594493
  • ISBN-13: 978-1615594498
  • ASIN: 0399154698
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.6 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (62 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,006,017 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In this tepid sequel to 2004's The Prince of Beverly Hills, bestseller Woods revisits the late 1940s but fails to realistically evoke the era of the HUAC hearings, Hollywood blacklists and the waning days of big studios and the star system. Demoted L.A. detective Rick Barron recently quit the force to head security for Centurion Studios and has now morphed into the studio's head of production. Using this new power at the studio, Rick is in charge of selecting leading actors and scouting settings for a gritty western written by famous playwright Sidney Brooks. Centurion is a worthy stand-in for the typical studio of the era, but the Hollywood blacklist story and the untimely disappearance of one of the stars is familiar territory, and Woods doesn't break any new ground. Longtime fans of Woods's Stone Barrington series are sure to enjoy certain aspects of the story, but newcomers are likely to be disappointed. (Jan.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

"Woods writes with smooth confidence as famous names add spice to a diverting summer read that simmers but never gets hard-boiled." -Kirkus Reviews on The Prince of Beverly Hills

--This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

More About the Author

Stuart Woods is the author of forty-four novels, including the New York Times-bestselling Stone Barrington series and Holly Barker series. The last twenty-eight of them have been New York Times best-sellers. He is an avid private pilot, flying his own jet on two book tours a year. His latest novel is Santa Fe Edge,to be published on September 21st. You may see his tour schedule and learn more about the author on his website, www.stuartwoods.com.

Customer Reviews

Woods always writes fast-paced books that are real page turners.
carrollk
Certainly not a challenging read but it does offer a peek at the horrible world of McCarthyism.
Diana S. Dawson
Finally, when there was some action, it was like something attached just to make the book end.
V. Bliss

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Don Cajone on January 23, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Mr. Woods has been a favorite author of mine for some time now. Unfortunately each new book lately is less and less. Almost getting like Patterson in that the amount of blank paper (half chapters, half pages, etc.) means the books are realistically only 1/2". Definately not novels!

The Beverly Hills Dead has finally left me dismayed with Mr. Woods. Hardly any action whatsoever. Even at halfway through the book nothing really happens.

I never thought I'd say it or see it but this latest of Mr. Woods was a waste of my money.

So - Mr. Woods, I will buy your next book and hope it brings back a good story as in the past. If not, you've lost a reader (and a buyer) from then on. Oh, and how about a book that has enough reading to last more than 1-2 days.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Garnett Walker on January 25, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It is a shame to read such "dribble" from the same author that wrote "White Cargo", Santa Fe Rules", "Palindrome" and "Chiefs".

Stuart Woods has been on a continuing downhill spiral in his recent books and with this one, he has finally hit the bottom. This is by far one of the worst books I have read in some time; quite a statement from someone that reads three books a week.

Perhaps Mr. Woods should start concentrating on "quality" as opposed to his current fixation with "quantity".
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Jerry Saperstein HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 21, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Stuart Woods writes well. And that's the only compliment I can still pay him. His last two Stone Barrington novels were utter bores and "Beverly Hills Dead" is a fast, unexciting and ultimately dull read as well.

Rick Barron returns, quite improbably, as a movie director as well as production head for Centurion Studios. Quite a ride for a busted detective only a few years before who witnessed a traffic accident involving the studio's biggest star - and covered up the truth.

It is now 1947 and, depending on the paragraph, Centurion Studios is either a small time operation or a big time studio able to put its movies into the prestigious Radio City Music Hall for Christmas, quite a feat.

Rick Barron had the potential of becoming a pretty good character. Woods, possibly in his haste to crank out one title after another, has reduced Barron to a cardboard cutout. The man is in total control, no crisis too big for him, no detail too small. He is married to Glenna Gleason, coincidentally the studio's big female star. They are building a beach house in Malibu and they visit the construction site. Glenna spots a "half-naked" construction worker, Vance Calder, who it turns out is a 19 year old naif actor from Britain. Poof! Vance becomes the star of "Bitter Creek", Centurion's next picture. Woods seems to become a bit confused or forgetful. Rick Barron and Eddie Harris, his boss, set the budget at a million dollars. At one point, this is referred to as the most expensive picture ever produced by Centurion . . . and it is cast with total, inexperienced unknowns! At the same time, Centurion spends money with abandon on a company owned DC-3 and another charter aircraft. Eddie Harris buys real estate with a freewheeling abandon.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Warren Meyer on January 31, 2008
Format: Kindle Edition
This is the Seinfeld version of a mystery novel - its a story about nothing. There is no mystery, no tension, no action, no adventure. No characters that are anything but cardboard cutouts. There are even mysteries that seem like they should be mysteries but go nowhere. Really disappointing.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By David Arp on January 28, 2008
Format: Hardcover
A very boring book. I was hoping Woods had recovered from his last forgettable diaster but I was wrong. Don't waste your time reading this book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Lydia on February 29, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Corny and trite. Simplistic, flat characters. Dreadful dialogue. The audio version is read terribly with fake, ridiculous accents. A total waste of time.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Barbara Ley on February 16, 2008
Format: Hardcover
My husband and I absolutely loved "Prince of Beverly Hills" so, when we found out a sequel was coming,
we pre-ordered it and waited impatiently for it to arrive. And, while "Prince of Beverly Hills" was a bit atypical
for Stuart Woods, that was part of its charm. We admit to a positive bias to stories about Old Hollywood and the studio system that created legendary stars like Clark Gable, Bette Davis and Jean Harlow. So, a continuation of that story, sounded like a great idea to us. However, having said that, we must admit that "Beverly Hills Dead" is no "Prince of Beverly Hills." Some of the problem comes from the different periods the books are set in. There is no way the post war Red Scare period can begin to compare dramatically with pre World War II. And, Vance Caulder is no Clete Barrow in the charisma department, for sure. Still, revisting characters like Rick Barron, Glenna Gleason and Eddie Harris (my favorite character in both books) was fun. However, the book was terribly "episodic" and did not flow or hold together very well. Dilemnas are introduced (Sid Brooks' blacklisting, the potential that Glenna Gleason's career might be ruined, the mob threat regarding the Extras Union) and then either dropped or too neatly resolved. No matter what happens, "Good Guys" Rick and Eddie of Centurion Studios are willing to step in with money or influence and smooth over every bump. How much more interesting it would have been if they were conflicted about being involved with Sid Brooks or Rick's career as a studio boss was threatened because his actress-wife was suspected of being a member of The Party? The Vance/Susie romance is tepid, at best, though the twist at the end at least provided a minor surprise.

Finally, I hated The Epilogue.
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