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St. Nick

4.07  ·  Rating Details ·  832 Ratings  ·  100 Reviews
When Santa Claus is a cop, you better watch out.

It’s not looking like a very merry Christmas for San Diego cop Nick Pappas. Suspended from his job, alienated from his family, and persecuted by the press, he’s sorely tempted to turn his gun on himself. Except for his first name, he couldn’t possibly have less in common with jolly old St. Nicholas. But when a local mall deci

Kindle Edition, 281 pages
Published November 5th 2013 by Thomas & Mercer
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(showing 1-30)
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Dec 22, 2014 Kim rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kindle, 2014, net-galley
I absolutely loved this one- had everything. A cop story, romance and sentimental Christmas stories. Nick is suspended from the police force pending an investigation and estranged from his family- he is finding life hard. His old partner persuades him to take on a couple of days undercover looking for muggers targetting a local shopping mall. The only problem is - he's undercover as Santa Claus!

The Chief Elf is determined to spread Christmas cheer and gets him involved in some other Santa duties
Dec 25, 2014 Banner rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, fiction
This was the perfect Christmas book for me. Just the right amount of skepticism mixed in to make it fun.
The mystery was more like a subplot to the greater story of Nick's survival of a tragic episode that happened in the line of duty (he's a cop).

There were defiantly some tear jerking moments, but overall a inspiring Christmas story.
Dec 18, 2013 John rated it it was ok
The premise is great: A suicidal cop on suspension accepts a security job at a local shopping mall, only to learn that he's expected to work undercover as the mall's Santa. What we have here is the potential for another BAD SANTA, or a fun Schwarzenegger-esque comedy like JINGLE ALL THE WAY or KINDERGARTEN COP.
Instead, Russell decides to go the TOUCHED BY AN ANGEL route. Nothing really wrong with that; it's just not my bag. ST. NICK tries so hard to be uplifting that it quickly got on my nerves.
Ken Kuhlken
Dec 30, 2013 Ken Kuhlken rated it it was amazing
A disclaimer: Alan is my good friend.

Still, I mean to write honest thoughts about St. Nick.

Having spent most of 2013 downgrading my view of the goodness in human nature, I opened St. Nick ion a skeptical frame of mind. And when characters performed acts of kindness, I hesitated before accepting them as authentic, even in a fictional sense.

But as the story moved along, and more and more characters, major and walk-on, responded to others and events in loving ways, the armor shielding my heart op
This was my second reading of this book and I loved it just as much the second time around. I think it is a wonderful, feel good book without being too maudlin or sappy. In fact it has just enough skepticism to make it feel real and believable. I really enjoyed seeing Nick transform from being a man at the end of his rope to someone who could make such a difference in so many people's lives. Definitely a 5 star read that I recommend. It will keep you laughing and crying at the same time.

I received this book as a digital ARC from the publisher through Net Galley in return for an honest review.

The idea of having a cop as Santa Claus is somewhat original but the story itself lacks of suspense.

The reader can feel the author's sense of humor and the Christmas' joy comes up during the narrative.

A quite enjoyable reading for a free afternoon.
Mar 30, 2016 Aimie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: crime
St. Nick is a beautiful tale with everything you could want from a good Christmas read. I loved all the characters, they were relatable and believable. This is my first experience with this author and I'm hoping he has more stories with these characters. If not I'm looking forward to see what other books he has or has planned. :)
Karen Patterson
Dec 16, 2014 Karen Patterson rated it it was ok
The story starts out very briefly as a “bad” Santa type theme which had me thinking it was going to be gritty but have a feel good message too. Well, I was mistaken as it quickly turned into a Hallmark movie - very saccharin sweet, predictable and clichéd. However, if you love those types of books and movies than you will appreciate it a whole lot more than I did.

Andrew Ostrega
Oct 10, 2014 Andrew Ostrega rated it it was amazing
Touching and heart warming

this is a great heart warming book to read on the holidays..u will find yourself reading this book in one night...truely a great book...will read more by him
Dalton Weller
Feb 01, 2014 Dalton Weller rated it it was amazing

Recommended to everyone. some extremely happy and sad times that keeps you reading. definitely one of the better stories I have read
Winter Sophia Rose
Jan 01, 2015 Winter Sophia Rose rated it it was amazing
Heart Touching, Intriguing & Funny! I Loved It!
Dec 04, 2016 Julie rated it really liked it
Shelves: holiday
Always looking for a light and interested holiday read. I could not put this book down, if I wasn't hooked into one storyline I was hooked into another. Interesting read, absolutely. The main character really evolved in an organic way, not forced or contrived. A light read? Um...sometimes. I laughed, I cried, it evoked a lot of emotion.

Well written and well told tale. I wouldn't have read it if it were staged another way, i.e. not in a holiday format or not a fun type of mystery...but I'm so gla
Nov 30, 2016 Anima rated it really liked it
Shelves: adventure
A delightful read! A cop with a past destined for greatness, makes children's Christmas dreams comes true. The characters were fun, real, magical and special. I'm only sorry it took me forever to finally read it. I received a copy through Netgalley ages ago and have voluntarily written my review.
Donald Hoffman
Dec 21, 2014 Donald Hoffman rated it it was amazing
I sit here on December 21st, 2014, the Sunday before Christmas. In the past few weeks, I have read and reviewed several Christmas themed books. All of them were somewhat magical, as befitting the genre. All of them dealt with different parts of holiday legends; Claus, Elves, Jack Frost, Magical Snowmen, the DEA, and the realization of hopes and dreams. I figured I had reached my quota of Christmas stories for the year and I could now safely return to military fiction, thrillers, mysteries, and a ...more
Susan McIntyre
Sep 26, 2016 Susan McIntyre rated it really liked it
Alan Russell is fun to read. As others have said he writes well. I also enjoy characters with wit.
Mar 18, 2015 Daniel rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
This review originally published in Looking For a Good Book. Rated 4.25 of 5

What do you do if you're a cop who's been suspended, your family will have nothing to do with you, the press hound you and treat you as a villain, and it's almost Christmas and you're thinking of eating a bullet? Become a mall Santa, of course.

Police officer Nick Pappas is currently suspended following an on-the-job shooting incident. While sitting around his home, wallowing in pity, Nick gets a call from a former partne
David Williams
Jan 07, 2015 David Williams rated it it was amazing
Nick Pappas is a cop who is trying to hold his life together as he waits to see if he will be able to keep his job. As he sits alone on Thanksgiving morning he gets a call from his old partner. His parter runs security at a local shopping mall and they have a problem with muggers. He offers Nick a job to help tracking down the muggers. It isn’t until Nick gets to work that he discovers that he is actually going to be working undercover. As Santa Claus. Now he has to deal with crying children, ...more
Dec 16, 2014 Bobbie rated it it was amazing
St. Nick is great adult Christmas story about a cop named Nick. The story begins with Nick in a dark place, he's suspended from duty, divorced and somewhat separated from his kids, depressed and keeps his gun on his kitchen table. His retired ex-partner is running a mall security office and gives him a call asking for help. Nick grudgingly says OK he'll help, but when he goes to the security office he finds out his buddy wants him to be the mall Santa while helping find the culprits they're ...more
A Reader's Heaven
(I received a free copy of this book from Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.)

When Santa Claus is a cop, you better watch out.

It’s not looking like a very merry Christmas for San Diego cop Nick Pappas. Suspended from his job, alienated from his family, and persecuted by the press, he’s sorely tempted to turn his gun on himself. Except for his first name, he couldn’t possibly have less in common with jolly old St. Nicholas. But when a local mall decides it needs a secret Santa to help co
P.e. lolo
Jan 25, 2015 P.e. lolo rated it really liked it
This is a story about Nick Pappas, who is on leave from the San Diego, police dep. Because of a shooting he was involved in. He is in a bad mood because it is the one job he liked to do and now it is Christmas also on top of everything else. He gets a call from an ex-partner who retired and is now head of security at the mall and talks Nick into coming down to his office for a talk. After a while he realizes that they want him to be the malls Santa Claus, and the perky elf who always seems happy ...more
Cathy Ryan
This is the best kind of Christmas story and I don’t think it matters what time of year it’s read. The season works it’s magic on Nick without being overly slushy and the message is one of hope, as well as love, humour and loss, with a touch of romance. It’s very moving and what could be better for a Christmas tale.

I had thought Mr Russell must have done some research even before I read his account of events leading up to publication, but didn’t realise the extent and involvement of his research
Dec 29, 2015 Rebask rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
This was a fabulous book. So very different from the other book of author, Alan Russell, that I read, titled "Shame"

Mr. Russel HOOKED me in when I read Shame, made a believer out of me of his talents, which are extraordinary, I now see. This book is a mystery, like "Shame" was, but that is as far as the likeness goes.

This is a FEEL GOOD book, to me at least, a book of redemption of a lost soul. A "FEEL GOOD" book, a book that left me wanting to read MORE
Bec Booton (Bec's Books)
Dec 29, 2014 Bec Booton (Bec's Books) rated it really liked it
Shelves: 4-stars, reviewed
I read this book during the Christmas holidays and I really enjoyed it. I felt like reading a holiday themed book even though it was Boxing Day. I had the afternoon to just sit back and read which I haven’t done in a while. I felt like this book was a great choice because it flowed well and had a fast paced story line. This is probably due to the fact that it was originally released as a Kindle Serial.

I loved the fact that Nick was a grumpy old cop who had to dress up like Santa because it was s
Jun 27, 2015 Karen rated it liked it
I'm not a big lover of mysteries and series that bring out a new book every Christmas. For one thing, it is hardly very Christmas to talk about murders. I like Russell's writing. He has a good sense of humor which you rarely see. This was a sweet story really. Nick Pappas, kind of a bad mood cop, who is in trouble with his place of work for some reason. In the meantime, he is asked by a friend to help with a problem in his mall. Apparently some robbers/thugs have been attacking shoppers on their ...more
Jamie Canaves
Dec 27, 2014 Jamie Canaves rated it liked it
Shelves: egalley-arcs
I would relate St. Nick to a made for TV movie filled with heart where a suicidal scrooge character gets swept up by the spirit of Christmas. There are three plots running together: undercover Santa working at the mall trying to catch muggers, finding a mysterious little girl behind a letter to Santa, and a sick little boy in the hospital who wants Santa to bring snow. While I wish one of the final scenes that is built up throughout the book was “shown” more than quickly “told” and probably ...more
Jan 08, 2015 Shannon rated it it was amazing
I have read and enjoyed other books by Alan Russell and this one did not disappoint. This has an original plot that was well written. The story of Nick, down in the dumps at the beginning of the holiday season. He has a lot on his plate and isn't in the holiday spirit. A favor for a friend turns into something good for his friend and himself. A new beginning of sorts for him. There is heartache along with the happiness, but that is real life. The characters are real and believable, flaws and ...more
Jan 13, 2015 Maria rated it it was amazing
Nick Pappas has a big dilemma in his life, to eat the sugar or to eat the pistol.
But when an old partner from his previous years in the police asks for his help, he will have to postpone his dilemma and become Saint Nick.
Nick will not just will have to discover the burglars of the shopping mall he is working in, he will have to make true some Christmas wishes... and all in just 24 days!
I can only say good things about this book, Alan Russell has written a cop book with dark humour, a big soul an
Jul 30, 2014 Jamie rated it really liked it
Nick Papas life is crap. He's suspended from the force, hasn't seen his kids in years, and he really has nothing to live for. His old friend Walt calls him up and says he needs help at the local mall. People have been getting robbed, and they don't have a budget for security. He wants Nick to go be a Santa, but also be eyes and ears.

I really enjoyed this book. It was predictable, and it wrapped up in a tight little bow, so to speak. To me, it was awesome because the characters seemed like real p
Katie Casey
Dec 14, 2013 Katie Casey rated it it was amazing
This was my first experience with a Kindle Serial - I got it within the first week of release and then had to wait a week between episodes. It was kind of a fun way to read a story. I think if you get it now, you would just get them all at once, but I'm not sure.

Anyway, the story itself was just fun. A cop is under review for an incident and does not have his badge or his sense of self-worth. His ex-partner turned mall security plans for him to be an undercover Santa at his mall to catch some th
Eileen Dilbeck
Jan 15, 2015 Eileen Dilbeck rated it liked it
Shelves: e-book, 2015-reads
I'm not sure what caught my attention but I decided St. Nick was a book I would read. Before I started reading this I did NO research whatsoever. I didn't look at reviews, I didn't pull up a synopsis- nothing. So I was surprised when I finished how much I liked it.
I was seriously boo-hooing and glad nobody was around to see me crying- cause it was "ugly crying". Yes parts were sad but the overall feeling of this book was good will and happiness.
Pick it up- you may just be surprised yourself.
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In 1990 Walker & Company published Alan Russell's first book, "No Sign of Murder," which received positive reviews, including a standalone rave from The New York Times. The work was followed up by "The Forest Prime Evil" and comedic mysteries "The Hotel Detective" and "The Fat Innkeeper," which won him The Lefty award, given to the
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