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Vigilante (Shane Scully Novels) Hardcover – December 6, 2011

4.5 out of 5 stars 71 customer reviews
Book 11 of 11 in the Shane Scully Novels Series

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Editorial Reviews


“Cannell’s sturdy just-the-facts style and intimate knowledge of L.A. police venues and procedures unflinchingly ring true in a culture that assumes even homicide “isn’t about justice; it’s about Nielsen ratings.” —Publishers Weekly

“The late Cannell’s last Scully novel is a fitting ending to the series, reminding us why Cannell was a significant part of our entertainment culture on TV and in print for decades: he was a darn good storyteller. This well-plotted story shouldn’t be missed.” —Romantic Times

“In his valedictory case, LAPD Detective Shane Scully (The Prostitutes’ Ball, 2010, etc.) finds real danger in the dubious world of reality TV . . . Well plotted and smartly paced. Scully goes out a winner.” —Kirkus Reviews

From the Back Cover

"Cannell knows how to cut to the chase."

The New York Times

Lita Mendez has always been a thorn in the LAPD's side. An outspoken police critic and gang activist, she'd filed countless complaints against the department. So when she's found dead in her home, Detective Scully and his partner Hitchens fear the worst: that there's a killer in their ranks. And nowthat chilling possibility is about to become a reality…television show.

"Cannell's sturdy just-the-facts style and intimate knowledge of L.A. police procedures unflinchingly ring true." ―Publishers Weekly

Outside the crime scene, acamera crew has set up shop. Hosted by the charismatic Nixon Nash, "Vigilante TV" is dedicated to beating the cops at their own game: solving murders before they can. Scully knows that Nash will do anything in the name of self-promotion. But would he kill for killer ratings? Either way, Scully's not ready for his close-up. Not when the cameras are zooming in, his career is on the line, and the final credits are about to roll…

"In his valedictory case, LAPD Detective Shane Scully finds real danger in the dubious world of reality TV…Well plotted and smartly paced. Scully goes out a winner."

Kirkus Reviews

--This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

Product Details

  • Series: Shane Scully Novels (Book 11)
  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press (December 6, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312646119
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312646110
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.2 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (71 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,132,424 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I was so shocked when I heard that Stephen J Cannell had died. I felt like I had lost a member of my own family. I happened to be trolling the new release section on Amazon, and saw this book, Vigilante, was being released in December. I was thrilled! I immediately put in my advance order, and couldn't wait to read the final book in the Shane Scully series. In fact, when it arrived, I hesitated on reading it right away, as I wanted it to last a long time.

So, when I finally started reading Vigilante, I was a bit confused. It wasn't that long ago that I had read The Prostitute's Ball. Did I remember the characters ever behaving this way? Was this really the Shane Scully and his beautiful wife, Alexa, head of the homicide detective division, that I had grown to love and admire? What happened to them making love at least 2-3 times per book, and their meaningful collaborations? Where is their beloved son Chooch, who was barely a footnote in this entire book?

When did Shane start feeling like everyone had more than him? Why didn't he pet his cat more?! Since when was Shane concerned about his career when he was always like a stinger missile locked on a target?

I felt the plot for Vigilante could have been exciting, and a great finale of a great series, by an extraordinary writer. Instead, I felt a bit ripped off; like someone else either wrote this book, or finished this from an outline or draft. This has happened with several authors; Dick Francis, who handed over his empire to his son, Felix, and the Ludlum series, the Robert B Parker series, etc. and all of these books had an additional author name on them, the exception being the Parker series.

I lost count of the number of times Shane said "I think we're being set up".
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Format: Hardcover
VIGILANTE, the final book in the Shane Scully series due to the untimely passing of Stephen J. Cannell in 2010, has the distinction of presenting one of the best opening paragraphs and one of the best closing paragraphs you are likely to encounter in a crime novel this year. Both earn that accolade for entirely different reasons: the first paragraph will intrigue you, suck you in and keep you reading, while the final paragraph... well, it says it all, in just a few words.

Scully and his partner in law enforcement, Sumner "Hitch" Hitchens, are assigned to investigate a high-profile homicide. The deceased in question is Lita Mendez, a gang activist with ties to the notorious Evergreen crew. Mendez had been an impediment to effective law enforcement and a thorn in the side of the LAPD for years. Scully and Hitch do not lack for suspects when Mendez is found murdered in her apartment. Every man and woman in a blue uniform has a motive, not to mention a plethora of rival L.A. street gangs.

Scully and Hitch have a huge roadblock in their investigation, in the form of Nixon Nash. "Vigilante TV" is a hit reality show, and Nash is its host, solving crimes ahead of police departments while demonstrating the ineptitude of the investigating officers. Nash has embarrassed two police departments since his show has been on the air, and the LAPD is now in his sights. Scully isn't happy, especially when Nash offers him a position on the program, coupled with a threat that Scully will be unhappy and embarrassed, or worse, if he doesn't cooperate. There is something about Nash, and his apparent skill at investigation, that doesn't quite sit right. Is Nash that good, or that lucky?
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By A&D on December 12, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I had not read from this author before and I was just thrilled to find a new, good writer. I like police novels and especially the books like Connolly's books. This was also similar: good detective work, action, and surprises in plot.

Shane Scully is a fictional Detective III in the LAPD. Alexa and Scully live with Chooch Scully, who is Shane Scully's son.Shane Scully seems to be a tough cop who can bend the rules in order to get things done. Detective Scully and his partner Hitchens have a tough case ahead and they fear the worst: that there's a killer in blue, walking among the police ranks. Because the dead person is a woman who was not a popular person among the LAPD police. She was an activist and had made many complaints against the police forces. No wonder, no one was happy to be assigned to investigate her death.

I had not read the previous novels but this novel stands by itself, although knowing some background obviously makes the characters even more interesting if I had read the previous novels (and I probably will do so now). If you are looking for a great action novel then this is the right book for you!!!!
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Format: Hardcover
Over the years I have read several of the Shane Scully books written by Stephen J. Cannell and for the most part found them an enjoyable way to pass an evening. Cannell's latest and final Scully book, VIGILANTE, is no exception. Cannell, like his creations, was the ultimate example of taking life's lemons and making lemonade. He managed to write not only the successful Scully/Hitchens books but was also the creator and writer of some of my favorite TV shows ranging from The Rockford Files to The Commish-----accomplishing this even though he suffered from dyslexia.

VIGILANTE is a book that hooks you on page one and keeps you reading to the very last page. From the victim, an advocate for L.A. street gangs known for her hatred of the police to Nixon Nash the star of a hit reality VigilanteTV show, another police department detractor bent on selling himself as a folk hero who can solve the unsolvable, this book is not lacking colorful characters. Nash does not play nice and has already destroyed the careers of a couple of Atlanta cops. He seems to envision the same fate for Scully and "Hitch" if they do not cooperate with him. The fact of the matter is Nash's own background comes up as questionable when subjected to a little "Scully/Hitch scrutiny" and that definitely means trouble for our dynamic duo.

Cannell has taken this opportunity to give his readers not only an interesting group of suspects to examine he also provided a behind the scenes look at reality television programming including demonstrating how clever editing can be utilized to manipulate the facts being disseminated to the public. Kind of a case of "the facts are whatever we say they are - - and whatever we can persuade you to think they are".

Cannell devotees will appreciate this final endeavor and are sure to be intrigued by the how and who of the story's conclusion.
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