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Boulevard Hardcover – September 15, 2009


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Forge Books; First Edition edition (September 15, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0765322943
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765322944
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 6.3 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #880,893 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Like James Ellroy, Hollywood film developer Schwartz can make the reader squirm, as shown in his debut, a disturbing thriller whose hero is addicted to sex. When several sex murders quickly follow the murder of a prominent councilman's niece, LAPD robbery and homicide detective Hayden Glass, who himself goes to 12-step meetings for sex addicts, senses a connection. Enlisting the help of Kennedy Reynard, an ex-FBI profiler whose skill competes with her raw sexuality for the detective's attention, the pair realize that what links the murders is Glass himself. Despite a denouement that's a tad strained, Schwartz does a fine job of blurring the lines between sexuality and violence, the criminal world and the police world. (Sept.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

“Like James Ellroy, Hollywood film developer Schwartz can make the reader squirm, as shown in his debut…Schwartz does a fine job of blurring the lines between sexuality and violence, the criminal world and the police world”—Publishers Weekly

 

“[Schwartz] artfully builds tension and suspense into horror and finishes with a stunning Grand Guignol climax. Expect much more from this talented writer.”—Booklist

 

Boulevard is raw, twisted, and so hard-boiled it simmers from beginning to end.”--Robert Crais, New York Times bestselling author of the Elvis Cole novels

 “Relentless and unflinching, a shocking thriller that dares you to keep reading. Schwartz has created one of the most complex and tortured protagonists I've encountered in a long time. A powerful debut.”--Tess Gerritsen, New York Times bestselling author of The Keepsake

“A terrific police thriller.  It’s fast-paced and convincingly told.  The streets of L.A. have never been meaner or seamier.  Schwartz is gifted with clear vision and a knowing heart and a way with words.  Wonderful.” --T. Jefferson Parker, New York Times bestselling author of The Renegades

 

 


More About the Author

Los Angeles Times Bestselling Author Stephen Jay Schwartz spent a number of years as the Director of Development for film director Wolfgang Petersen (whose credits include Das Boot, In the Line of Fire, Air Force One, The Perfect Storm, Troy) where he worked with writers, producers and studio executives to develop screenplays for production. Among the film projects he helped developed are Air Force One, Outbreak, Red Corner, Bicentennial Man and Mighty Joe Young.

Stephen's own film work has exhibited at the AFI Los Angeles International Film Festival, the Directors Guild of America, The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, and the Walt Disney Studios in Burbank, California.

He also worked as a screenwriter and freelance "script doctor," developing concepts, treatments and feature films for independent film producers. His writing credits include Inside the Space Station, narrated by Liam Neeson and produced as a "Watch with the World" special for The Discovery Channel.

Boulevard, a very dark crime thriller set in present-day Los Angeles, is Stephen's first novel. His second novel is due out in Summer, 2010. In addition to writing novels, Stephen plans to direct feature films through his production company, Picaro Entertainment.

Stephen Jay Schwartz currently lives in Southern California with his wife and two young boys. Learn more about Stephen by visiting his website at stephenjayschwartz.com. Stephen also blogs regularly at the crime/thriller author blogsite www.murderati.com.

REVIEWS:

"Schwartz hasn't missed a trick in this gripping first novel. He begins with a knowing guided tour of LA's boulevards, i.e., "hooker strolls," as seen by the cop/customer, and he skillfully develops Hayden's flawed character, showing him to be decent, haunted, and sometimes loathsome. Most important, he artfully builds tension and suspense into horror and finishes with a stunning Grand Guignol climax. Expect much more from this talented writer."
--Booklist


Like James Ellroy, Hollywood film developer Schwartz can make the reader squirm, as shown in his debut, a disturbing thriller whose hero is addicted to sex. When several sex murders quickly follow the murder of a prominent councilman's niece, LAPD robbery and homicide detective Hayden Glass, who himself goes to 12-step meetings for sex addicts, senses a connection. Enlisting the help of Kennedy Reynard, an ex-FBI profiler whose skill competes with her raw sexuality for the detective's attention, the pair realize that what links the murders is Glass himself. Despite a denouement that's a tad strained, Schwartz does a fine job of blurring the lines between sexuality and violence, the criminal world and the police world. (Sept.)
--Publisher's Weekly


"Schwartz is skillful in rendering charcoal-sketch views of the darker corners of Sunset Boulevard, and he dazzles the reader with intermittent flashes of a poetic sensibility. . . .a book full of merit, by an author loaded with talent" -- Tom Nolan, Los Angeles Times


What Authors are saying about BOULEVARD:


"Boulevard is raw, twisted, and so hard-boiled
it simmers from beginning to end."
--Robert Crais, NY Times Bestselling Author of the Elvis Cole novels


"Boulevard is terrific. Fast-paced and convincingly told.
The streets of L.A. have never been meaner or seamier.
Stephen Jay Schwartz's clear vision and knowing heart
make him a gifted writer to watch."
--T. Jefferson Parker, NY Times Bestselling Author of The Renegades


"BOULEVARD is relentless and unflinching,
a shocking thriller that dares you to keep reading.
Schwartz has created one of the most complex and tortured protagonists I've encountered in a long time. A powerful debut."
--Tess Gerritsen, NY Times Bestselling Author of The Keepsake


"Tightly written and wildly original, you'll be thinking about this story long after you close the covers. Sex-addict Detective Hayden Glass is an unforgettable anti-hero you'll love and hate at the same time.
Stephen Jay Schwartz is going to give Michael Connelly's Harry Bosch a run for his money. BOULEVARD is just plain excellent."
--J.T. Ellison, bestselling author of The Judas Kiss


"A lurid nightmare tour through dark streets and dark minds. Stephen Jay Schwartz writes with the fevered intensity of early James Ellroy."
--Marcus Sakey, Strand Critics Award-winning author of Good People


"BOULEVARD is one of the most riveting debuts I have ever read. Stephen Schwartz has written a story that will enthrall you, haunt you, disturb you, and keep you thinking long after you've finished reading it.
Once you begin this book you won't be able to look away."
--Brett Battles, bestselling author of The Cleaner


"Dark and gritty, Schwartz's dicey debut is seriously twisted."
--Robert Ellis, bestselling author of City of Fire


"Stephen Jay Schwartz is a brave and gifted author, and Boulevard is an
electrifying journey into sinful delights and escalating evil.
Morally sound, addictive as a speed-ball, and rich with insight into
human frailty-this novel kept me awake and disturbed my dreams in all
the right ways. Lock your doors and read it."
--Christopher Ransom, International bestselling author of The Birthing House


"Boulevard is a mesmerizing read; Schwartz has drawn a swift, brutal, and compelling portrait of a nightmare underworld of Los Angeles and a protagonist tormented by his own sexual addiction as well as by a real human evil. Boulevard is one of the most compelling books on addiction I've ever read, wrapped up in a gripping thriller."
- Alexandra Sokoloff, bestselling author of The Unseen


Customer Reviews

Overall a good read and a very believable character.
Brian J. Rodriguez
I was tempted to put it down at several points, but was curious enough to keep going to the end, so that's not all bad.
J. Mueller
Non-stop action from the very beginning until the end.
C. Vieira

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By J. Mueller on April 15, 2011
Format: Hardcover
The protagonist is a sex addict cop, and a huge proportion of the book revolves around him and his addictive behaviours. Unfortunately, the way he approaches his addition is not very engaging, and it's difficult to like him. We don't see enough of any other character to like them much either. The female characters in the book are particularly hard to take...why do they have any interest in this guy? None of his relationships rang true, for me.

Some of the aspects of the murders he investigates are interesting, and as he starts to build the profile of the killer -- and the challenges of investigating a case he is so close to -- the book picks up some speed and interest.

Unfortunately, it always comes back to his sex addiction. Some of the other reviews have used adjectives like "steamy" for this book. This, for me, was a major problem. The author seems to be trying to walk a line between honestly addressing the painful life of the addict, and writing to titillate.

The finale goes more than a bit over the top. (Why do so many new authors think they have to try to out-do Hannibal Lecter?)

I also kept thinking that the author was writing with a screen-play in mind. Maybe I'm doing him a disservice, but I would have appreciated a little more character development and interaction, instead of what seemed like a set-up to sell a script to some studio.

I was tempted to put it down at several points, but was curious enough to keep going to the end, so that's not all bad. But the end certainly didn't satisfy.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Timothy Hallinan on October 5, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This may be Stephen Jay Schwartz's first book, but you'd never know it from the writing. Or the plotting. Or the characters. BOULEVARD is all adrenaline, a spiraling dance of doomed souls in the best tradition of LA noir. The streets here are so well-drawn you can almost see the heat shimmering off the asphalt and smell the exhaust as hookers, cops, and addicts of various kinds do their perpetual dance. Hayden Glass is a cop with a secret, a secret that not only endangers his search for a vicious serial predator, but also brings Glass to the jolting realization that he is somehow part of the predator's scenario. From the first scene to the dead-stop conclusion, Schwartz never lets up, and his story lifts a corner of the social fabric and peers beneath it to shine light on a part of the urban world that most of us, if we are lucky, will never be part of.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Lowly Scribe on October 12, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Just set aside a couple days of your life, right now, and buy this book. This truly is one you will not be able to stop reading. The deeply flawed, complex main character grabs your attention from the beginning and never lets go. It's an extremely dark and twisted ride, fearless in the willingness to face the shadow. By the ending, the reader is left breathless and exhausted, and unable to forget about the time shared on the Boulevard. Amazing debut.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Rachel Brady on June 1, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition
This one blew me away. I was hooked from the start, and then became irritated and grouchy when real-life interruptions got in the way of my read. That's a very good sign. :)

In Boulevard, Schwartz's debut thriller, we're introduced to a troubled protagonist, Hayden Glass, a dedicated and gifted robbery and homicide investigator plagued by a private demon, sex addiction. Slowly, we learn the many facets of Hayden's true self that have been lost to his addiction, but what really brought this character to life for me was the realistic "one step forward, two steps back" portrayal of his continued efforts to heal and recover.

As Hayden works a string of murder cases, he discovers that he is the link connecting them all. While other detectives in his division are headed down the wrong path, Hayden struggles to end a serial killing spree alone, without backing from his comrades or captain. He knows he is a common link to each crime, but can't come forward with full disclosure without essentially ending his career. Worse, he doesn't believe the men left to do the job have the capacity to do it right.

With tight prose, outstanding dialogue, and strong supporting characters, I enjoyed this novel as much for its impressive writing as for its fast-paced and gripping storyline. Highly recommended for thriller fans, readers of police procedurals, and those who like a dark, disturbing read that taps uncomfortable spots in the psyche. This one is definitely an emotional ride.

I'm standing by for the next in the Hayden Glass series, BEAT, coming in September, 2010.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By R. A. Barricklow VINE VOICE on November 8, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I feel I'am getting lucky. This is another book that is smashing to bits the mold of formula novels. No cardboard characterization here. It down and dirty with detective Hayden Glass, because when things get bad they go to wosre and then, he thinks...there will be an end. Thats the great thing about finding it worse each day because eventually there will be a bottom/then things can start looking up!
The dectective is drawn to counter the go along to get along corporate hiearchy. He hasn't risen to the rank of D3 by rearranging facts in a case to satisfy politicians(Cheney/Bush 101), and he isn't about to start ANYTIME!
The dectective is a sex addict and knows it. He is trying to fight it but his animal being isn't having it. He's having a psychological fight within himself that is going off balance. Hayden is trying to hold onto his sanity as he investigate another sex addict who is in WAY DEEPER than Glass/pulling him to the point of no return.
I miss my Penthouse Letters(my wife's advise). That said, Stephen Jay Schwartz can really sex up a page(s), the steam coming off the page(s) was just getting too much for me to see through!
The violence, sex, intrique, puzzle, tension, pressure - all build up to a climax that had me wondering about that ole truism: be carefull what you wish for/ Mine was - NO MORE Hollywood endings.
What you'll get is another trusim: a half glass (FULL/empty).
A very satisfying read at many levels. Another fresh new perspective that has me eager to snatch up his next work at first opportunity.

HIGHLY RECOOMMENDED !!!!!
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