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Final Justice (Badge of Honor) Hardcover – January 27, 2003
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That there's an Establishment in any big city cop shop is no surprise, but the pols, police, press, and prosecutors who hang out together in W.E.B. Griffin's Philadelphia are so tightly connected that there's hardly any room to breathe in this Badge of Honor thriller. While a couple of minor characters from outside this old-boys network make a few cursory appearances, plus the obligatory perp, it's mostly an inside story about golden boy Matt Payne, Main Line scion and third generation cop who's just been promoted to Homicide, and his mentors, friends, and family. The perp is a clever psychopath who rapes and murders his way across country while he's buying and selling exotic cars. Griffin fills in the story with plenty of carefully detailed department procedures in this newest in one of his many bestselling series (Honor Bound, Men at War, Brotherhood of War, The Corps). Justice triumphs and, of course, there's plenty of hero worship and not a flawed cop on the force, which won't surprise or displease the author's legion of true blue fans. --Jane Adams
From Publishers Weekly
If God is truly in the details, then Griffin must be the pope of police procedurals. Want to know what paragraph of the Pennsylvania Criminal Code you violate if you use a flashing blue light attached to your car to get through traffic? Or what the chances are of a patrolman or detective passing the Philadelphia Police Department's exam for promotion to sergeant? Or what happens to the badge worn on the chest of an officer killed in action, after the funeral? All of this-and much, much more-is revealed in the eighth data-heavy entry in Griffin's Badge of Honor series (The Murderers, The Investigators, etc.). What's even more amazing is that all these factoids don't slow down the story's considerable momentum for a minute. Nor do they keep Griffin's gritty cops from convincing us of their individuality. Matt Payne, a detective with the Philadelphia police force, has just been promoted and transferred to Homicide. The cases he gets during his first few days at the post are a rich mix of mayhem entangling all strata of Philadelphia society: an apparently simple shooting in a fast food outlet that turns out to be almost unsolvable; a savage rape and murder with some serious anti-cop political overtones; an extradition case involving a fugitive murderer from France; and, for comic relief, the supervision of a visiting movie star who wants to make his police pictures more authentic. What holds it all together is Griffin's infectious respect for and fascination with police work.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Top customer reviews
Unfortunately, Final Justice is less well-conceived than the previous novels in the series. And, it had a different feel, like it written by a different author. The usually fascinating characters were flat and somehow not completely in character. Coughlin didn't feel like Coughlin. Washington didn't feel like Washington and was uncharacteristically a bit of a blowhard. Matt can be a smartass sometimes, but here, he is uncharacteristically a jerk (distinctly a bastard in the way he treats a female detective colleague for much of the novel). And Micky is now an overblown caricature of himself, but everybody likes him (except his boss). Quaire, a name which previously came up only incidentally in the series, is now Matt's boss and called on to make small decisions that drive small parts of the story. Yet, he remains a cipher.
Also, many threads that early-on seem to be headed somewhere end up not going anywhere. The double murder at the restaurant, a plot device that consumed major plot development time, ends up being resolved in the last few pages as a mere mention that had nothing to do with the main characters.
And, the story seems to have ended in the middle. Weirdly, Matt ends up in France on an unlikely sabbatical with Micky O'Hara. And as improbable as that seems, while they are there, as luck would have it, a murdering fugitive who escaped the US and now lives in a small town in France is handed over to Matt to bring back to the US. The End.
What? Yes. The end. I checked my Kindle a couple of times to see if I had made a mistake tapping the screen.
Here I am criticizing the author of possibly my all-time favorite novel series. The accolades I heap on the series are well-justified. But, the criticism of this installment is also justified. I still love the series and will probably read it again.
I have read all prior released Griffin novels. He hit home runs in most of those earlier ones. He never took the bat off his shoulder in this one and was called out on three straight called strikes. Griffin has never liked to draw out the endings of any novel, but this time the conclusion was so abbreviated as to lack excitement for his readers.
I am left to wonder how much of this novel was written by W.E.B. the "master story teller" and how much was written by his son.
I'll buy W.E.B.'s next issued novel, but if it is like Final Justice, then it will be the "final" W.E.B. Griffin book I purchase.
If it is a series then the reader should be notified in book #1 - and reference made in the later series books. This might also increase sales...
Clive Cussler has series novels - but when he refers to prior books of the series he simply states that something happened in a prior novel.
Either way I have the full collections of both Griffin and Cussler on my Kindle.
Most recent customer reviews
Griffin is always super fun for a summer read, or anytime.