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The Prince of Beverly Hills (Rick Barron, #1)
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The Prince of Beverly Hills

(Rick Barron #1)

3.86  ·  Rating details ·  3,029 ratings  ·  131 reviews
Rick Barron, a sharp, capable detective on the Beverly Hills force, finds himself demoted after a run-in with a superior officer, but he soon lands a job other cops only dream about: the security detail for Centurion Pictures, one of the hottest studios in the midst of Hollywood's golden age of the late 1930s. As the protector of the studio's interests, Barron looks after ...more
Paperback, 416 pages
Published April 5th 2005 by G.P. Putnam's Sons (first published October 14th 2004)
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Average rating 3.86  · 
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 ·  3,029 ratings  ·  131 reviews

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Mar 10, 2008 rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery
The period book opens with former Beverly Hills Police detective Rick Barron on the job after his demotion to beat cop. He witnesses a drunk driving accident involving movie star Clete Barrow. Despite the fact the other driver was killed, Barron decides to help Clete out with a cover-up. For this bit of damage control, Barron is rewarded with a dream job as head of security at the studio where Barrow is filming a blockbuster movie.

Okay, the story takes place in 1939 when drunk driving was not
W.  Frazier
Light, breezy, surface-like, this fictional murder-adventure-action entry takes the reader through early Hollywood, studio celebrities, and the mob during the 1930s and 1940s. Character Rick Barron leads the way in the first of a two-book series. Some of author Stuart Woods’ earlier work is noteworthy, however this entry is not. Like his later works, this one feels churned out, a check off his to-do list. The storyline has some interest, but the details are rushed and nothing much seems to ...more
Jun 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: thriller
Rick Barron overcomes the mob. While pulling traffic cop detail, Rick Barron witnesses a deadly car crash and rescues movie star Clete Barrow with quick thinking. He is rewarded by Centurion Studio's Eddie Harris with a new job Chief of Security. Rick quickly stumbles into a goombah roughing up starlets and crosses the mob trying to protect the girls. Chick Stampano, Luciano's bastard son, is out of control but under the protection of Bugsy Seigel. Rick soon suspects the murder of his ...more
Chris Adams
Jul 08, 2011 rated it did not like it
Woods' books are usually good for a quick, glossy get away. But this one, while slick, lacked enough substance to keep me engaged. Being set in 1939 Hollywood was intriguing, but really turned into more of a guided tour than a plot driven story. Not enough tension. Too little forward momentum. Even with low expectations, this one underwhelmed.
Jul 13, 2018 rated it did not like it
Preposterous plot, way too rosy of an ending.
Kim Galla
May 02, 2009 rated it really liked it
I liked the retro feel of this book, a lighthearted black noir cozy mystery. I wish Mr. Woods would continue this series.
Chris Norbury
Jul 13, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobooks
An enjoyable trip to the "fantasy world" of Hollywood movie-making in the late 1930s and early 1940s. Woods is a pro, talented and highly skilled. He spins a good plot line about a down-on-his-luck cop who helps out the right guy at the right time and gets put on the fast track to big bucks, romance, and the high life by doing an exemplary job working for a Hollywood executive.

Woods gives many big stars and mob characters cameo roles or slightly more, which is fun even if those interactions with
John Olson
Dec 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
Rick Barron and the gilded age. Foot cop turns into movie producers. Bugsy Siegel and some of the other mob and a twist on how Bugsy was exterminated. Enjoyable read.
Steph Winter
Mar 22, 2017 rated it it was ok
This is my first Stuart Woods book and the first in the Rick Barron series. Frankly, I'm not inclined to read any more by this author. Woods is too macho for me; it feels like he's writing from a man's perspective to a male audience (and I've been there, done that). Of course, he wraps everything up in a bow-tied happy ending which is important to some readers. The characters were okay, but both the characters and the story line were too predictable.
Trent Zelazny
Feb 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
Lotta fun. Crime in Hollywood in the 1930s. Really enjoyed this one.
Lisa Vale
Mar 15, 2012 rated it liked it
I expected this to be a West Coast version of Stone Barrington but was in for a surprise.....loved that he took it to another era....
This book has been on my TBR for quite awhile, long enough that I can't remember who recommended it to me. That's probably a good thing! It's certainly the only reason I finished it (my goal this year is to pair down the TBR).

Ugh. This whole book was a train wreck from beginning to end. The mc does have some good qualities, but loses his morals as soon as his own personal gain comes into play. The plot is extremely unrealistic (for example, effectively covering up for one star's mistakes gets
Amy Leigh
Oct 05, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: library
The book was very readable, and I enjoyed the setting of Hollywood in the 1930s. Rick Barron, a cop who was busted to a lower rank because of a romantic relationship, is a mix of good guy and opportunist. A traffic accident that he happens to witness leads him to the opportunity to become head of security at a movie studio.

In his new job, he encounters some of the biggest stars in Hollywood but also runs afoul of mobsters working for Bugsy Siegel. He deals with everyone according to his
Oct 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: epub
Rick Barron, a sharp, capable detective on the Beverly Hills force, finds himself demoted after a run-in with a superior officer, but he soon lands a job other cops only dream about: the security detail for Centurion Pictures, one of the hottest studios in the midst of Hollywood's golden age of the late 1930s. As the protector of the studio's interests, Barron looks after the elite of filmdom's stars - among them Clete Barrow, a British leading man with a penchant for parties, and Glenna ...more
Apr 26, 2018 rated it liked it
An enjoyable, fun read from Stuart Woods. This is a much different character than Stone Barrington, sort of an evil twin. Rick Barron does not seem to be troubled by morals and is willing to do his best even if that involves highly questionable activities. He lives the high life and his job allows him to associate with movie stars and gangsters.

The novel takes place in 1939, and Woods has a great time dropping names like Clark Gable, David Niven, Lana Turner, Bugsy Siegel, and Charlie (Lucky)
Nov 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
A look back at Hollywood in the 30's and 40's through the eyes of Detective Rick Barron. The book follows his career and his dealings with many of Hollywood's stars, the mob, and World War II, as he investigates a murder cover-up and a blackmail plot. The book is well researched on the information regarding the various stars that appear in the book. The book is an engrossing mystery, with a bit of historical fiction blended in. I enjoyed the book, and look forward to reading the second in the ...more
Feb 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
The Prince of Beverly Hills is an absorbing read. Set in pre-war Hollywood the story of Rick Barrons rise from street cop to Hollywood producer draws you in. There is an authenticity to the setting that is enhanced by the liberal name dropping and involvement of real movie stars and mobsters.
Good actors make it look easy, good writers make it read easy and Stuart Woods is a good writer. This book was a treat from start to finish.
Nov 25, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
There's no surprise that I wouldn't like this novel...I don't typically read these types of books. I picked it up from our resort's exchange pile as it was one of the only English ones available.

The plot was predictable and made me roll my eyes more than once. Luckily it was a quick and easy read which took me no time to get through.
Sep 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, crime
Excellent story featuring Rick Barron in L.A. Rick, a former police officer becomes head of security for a major studio. Join the ride as Rick works on solving problems for the studio involving their stars as well as being concerned for his own life. This story is set in the 1940's. Very entertaining story.
Dec 06, 2017 rated it liked it
Rick was a charming, talented, and lucky man who got a big break when he didn't follow the rules. Interesting story that is set in Hollywood around the time of the breakout of WWII. The mention of stars and Hollywood glamour at the time was fun. However, the overall story read like a memoir - then this happened and then this happened.
Feb 09, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rick Barron goes from being a detective, busted down to uniform, then his fortunes change with one incident. Now on the payroll for a big movie company, Rick is hobnobbing with movie stars. Lots of action, name dropping, mob involvement, and of course scandal.
Roger Strauss
Ah, the McNovel. Over one billion served. Not sure why people read Woods. I read it cause I like noir novels and this came up in a search. It was just a meh book. Since there’s nothing else good available in our library right now, I’m on to part 2 of this series.
Nov 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: series, fiction, mystery
I enjoyed this well crafted story. Rick is a likeable character.
Judy Green
Sep 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Nov 27, 2018 rated it liked it
Enjoyed the setting--Hollywood in the late 30's early 40's. Crime boss story.
Nov 21, 2017 rated it liked it
Fast read. Took me a while to get into it, though.
Apr 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
Audiobook performed by Guerin Barry
Aug 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Enjoyable guilty pleasure book.
May 15, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: california, cinema
This should probably be rated lower than three stars, but it kept me fully occupied on a five hour flight, so there you have it.
Jerry B
Jul 05, 2010 rated it really liked it
Interesting novel set in Hollywood in late 1930's !

The prolific Woods' previous 28 novels span both non-series mysteries and thrillers as well as his rather well known Will Lee (lawyer/politician), Stone Barrington (playboy private eye) and Holly Barker (Orchid Beach police chief) series stories. "Prince" is a total departure, featuring ex-cop, now Centurion film studios new head of security, Rick Barron, in a tale set in 1939. The movie studios are becoming big business in the heyday of Gable,
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Stuart Woods is the author the New York Times-bestselling Stone Barrington series and Holly Barker series. He is an avid private pilot, flying his own jet on book tours. You may see his tour schedule and learn more about the author on his website.

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