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The Viking Funeral (2002)

The Viking Funeral (2002)

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3.8 of 5 Votes: 3
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0312983433 (ISBN13: 9780312983437)
st. martin's paperbacks

About book The Viking Funeral (2002)

Reading this many books in a row by a single author has advantages and disadvantages. The good is that I really get in touch with (and stay close to) the continuing characters. The downside is that you also get really in touch with the author's little hitches. His overuse of the same clichés and tired, worn out descriptions. It gets pretty old. And I feel like I'm writing the same report for every Cannell book now: good read, kept me entertained, but nothing spectacular.So why do I continue to read them? Is it because I like the guy? Because I've met him? Surely there are better things I could be reading out there. I don't know. All I can say is that they are indeed enjoyable. They're certainly not a waste of time. I wouldn't play that game. Just good, slightly-above-average novels with huge storylines and pretty good characters. So on to the book report:This one is about Shane Scully's insertion into a secret deep-cover op known as The Vikings - a small, secret, deep-cover op within the LAPD. He sees his old best friend driving down the highway one day - two years after he attended the guy's funeral. So he starts looking into how and why he's still alive. It leads him into some dangerous and wild adventures - of course. It's pretty good, and gets into a lot of second-level storyline that you can learn a lot from. I'd never heard of the parallel market until this book. It's a huge global, tax-evading scandal by a bunch of large corporations who have giant political pull.I'm getting the stories confused in my head now, so I can't remember which ones I liked better than others. This wasn't my favorite though, I know that. It was just kind of average. So unless you're a Cannell fan like me, or you want to read all the Shane Scully books, you can probably skip this one.

I had seen this author's books before, but never picked one up. I was reading "Echo Park" by Michael Connelly - and he specifically mentions Stephen Cannell as part of the plot. I thought that was pretty interesting - obviously Connelly was giving a literary shout out to Cannell.So I picked up "Viking Funeral". Very good book - very brutal. The LAPD must cringe whenever a book comes out that paints them in such an unflattering light (see LA Rex). Cannell is a former screen writer for lots of famous detective tv shows and he's an excellent writer with a real gift for dialogue.I was frustrated to find out that "Viking Funeral" is the second book in the series - "Tin Collectors" is the first and is referred to repeatedly in "Viking". Why can't publishers make it easier to determine what book comes where in the series?????? I had to check copyright dates to get the order straight. That was a major complaint of customers when I worked in a bookstore... just because other books by the author are listed in a particular order, doesn't mean they were written in that order. Help us out, ok????Anywho - I will keep reading this Shane Scully series. Off to start "Tin Collectors" right now.....

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For three years, Shane Skully has been mourning the death of best friend and fellow cop, Jody Dean. He's trying to move forward, but his career's been affected. Imagine his shock when, on his way to work, he spots Jody driving the car in the adjoining lane. Their eyes meet, and recognition is telegraphed, but Jody takes off and Shane loses him. Shane refuses to rest until he finds him again, and what he finds will land him in a nightmare that will probably destroy him.The Viking Funeral propels its readers through a breakneck tour of the high stakes world of drug trafficking, smuggling, and money laundering. More likely to appeal to men rather than women, it pulses with menace, danger, and violence. Skully is a tough, straightforward kind of character, one who is trying to allow his softer side to see the light of day. The plot contains a few incredible moments, but it holds together well enough. A word of warning - there are several gruesome scenes that are not for the squeamish.

I'm not sure what to say about this book, other than it kept making me think of the movie "Predator". In that movie, Ahnald , Jesse Ventura and a group of tough-guy commandos go into the jungle on a mission only to be taken apart by an alien. There are no aliens in this book, but much of the action revolves around a group of tough guy types called the Vikings. Like the "Predator" gang, most of the characters are cartoonish and hard to take seriously.That being said, the book gets off to a great start with Shane Scully depressed about a friend's suicide, only to see the friend driving on the freeway a few days later. That starts a chain of very entertaining events that make up the plot of the book. Alexa and Chooch are back, although Chooch gets sent off to football camp and doesn't figure much in the plot. After many twists and turns it all ends with a mano a mano showdown. The book reads more like a wild cartoon than a real cop novel, and if you take it in that spirit, you will enjoy this one. Stephen J. Cannell writes with a real exuberance, and seems to be in command of a fun and twisting plot. The book is filled with evil villains, plot twists and sexy women, much like a good Schwarzenegger movie. If you liked the Terminator movies, True Lies, etc., you will enjoy this book.If, on the other hand, you are looking for realism, try Michael Connelly, for forensics, Patricia Cornwell and for grit, George Pelecanos. You won't find any of the above in the Viking Funeral. If you like cartoons, this one is a pretty good one.

Similar to other Cannell novels. Great beginning, grabs your attention. Lots of action. Some character development, which is never allowed to come to complete fruition (Shane Scully has to deal with the fact that he did something horrible, but it turns out okay). The book loses steam near the end, as the plot becomes overly and (arguably) unnecessarily complicated with an abruupt resolution. Characters are decent but could have been developed more (ie character described by single phrase/identity-steroid user, we were close because we played little league together--repeated over and over). Also the plot requires accepting Shane's close relationship with a character who has no redeeming qualities, you keep asking yourself--he only realized this guy was evil now??Overall okay, but not great.

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