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Publisher's Summary

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 collar some vicious muggers preying on its holiday shoppers, Nick’s persuaded to red-suit up so as to take the naughty punks down and avert a ho-ho homicide. For a chance to bust bad guys, Nick’s willing to deal with crying kids, pushy parents, and a chronically cheerful “elf” sidekick. But the biggest challenge for this cop-turned-Claus is one that would confound even the real Kris Kringle: Making a pair of next-to-impossible Christmas wishes come true for two children in need…before it’s too late.

©2013 Alan Russell (P)2013 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    707
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    414
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    168
  • 2 Stars
    43
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    29

Performance

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    352
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    131
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    37
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    17

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    48
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    23
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Wonder Christmas Cop Story

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, tired parents, and a way to overenthusiastic elf while keeping an eye out for the predators who are targeting the mall’s shoppers. While on the job Nick meets others who are performing as Santa. One of the other Santas, a college drama major, ropes Nick into a gig at a children’s hospital where Nick befriends a young boy with a terminal illness. At the same time he comes across a letter to Santa from a young girl who has not been able to celebrate Christmas. Now Nick finds himself trying to locate the young girl, bring comfort to a dying boy, and find a group of muggers. All of this while coming to grips with the incident that may still cost him his job. Along the way Nick begins to remember what Christmas is about. Now with the help of a reporter, a very odd elf, and many others Nick will juggle all of these cases and in the process try to regain his own life. Will the magic of Christmas prevail?

St. Nick is a well written, clever, fun book. It is a cop story and not a traditional mystery. The story does touch on a lot of heavy subjects such as childhood homelessness and childhood diseases. Even though the book seems to have something to say about several issues it never does so in an overbearing or heavy handed manner. I tend to be drawn to more hardcore mystery and tough cop novels so I was unsure about this book as I started. The writing and the characters won me over. The characters are very enjoyable and cleverly written. Alan Russell has a real knack for story telling and it comes through in this book. This is a wonderful, lighthearted, and uplifting novel. I thoroughly enjoyed Nick Pappas and the supporting cast. I look forward to reading about these characters again in future novels.

44 of 47 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

I tried my darnedest but couldn't finish

First let me state that there is nothing wrong with the writing or plot of this story if you are the type of person who loves Hallmark Xmas movies. It was a mistake picking this audio book for a road trip because the narrator ruined it for me. I was willing to look past the cheesy story and stick it out but the narrator doing voices for the female and children characters is cringe worthy and excruciating to listen to. A subtle change of pitch or tone is plenty for the listener to follow a change of character, there is no need to do silly voices like your are narrating a children's cartoon.

69 of 76 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A Really Good Story and a Great Listen!

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes. It is well-written, good pace of dialogue, heart-warming interactions between the characters and some romance. This author is new to me and this book makes me want to read his other books. There is some drama/danger almost completely without gore, which is refreshing!

Who was your favorite character and why?

The main character Nick was my favorite. He was struggling with his life. When put into the Santa Claus role, however, he rediscovered himself and his life purpose.

What about Patrick Lawlor’s performance did you like?

Patrick Lawlor is one of my favorite narrators and he did a great job with this book.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Yes, I laughed and I cried. The ending of the book is beautiful and...well you'll have to read or listen to it!

Any additional comments?

Thank you to author Alan Russell for a really good story. And to Patrick Lawlor for a great job with narration.

21 of 24 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

I couldn't stop crying...

Didn't think this would be a tear jerker. I stand to be corrected. Not too violent. Just enough performance to make you question what was around the next bend. If you've heard the other novels...you won't be disappointed.

13 of 15 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Charming, fun & predictable but that is its charm

Would you listen to St. Nick again? Why?

No. But it was a good book. It was funny with charming and well written characters. But once you know the story it is not one you want to listen to again.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Nick. He was believable as a character who is in a deep depression and who fights to stay in it because he feels so wronged by the world. He wants justification for his attitude.

Which scene was your favorite?

When Nick goes to the effort to make it snow at the hospital and the boy is too sick to enjoy it but other patients benefit.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Yes. Finding the little girl who wrote Santa Claus and started the whole crusade.

Any additional comments?

The writer is very good and I would read another book written by him

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

nice cozy holiday mystery with a sweet ending

really enjoyed it, particularly the supernatural twist and the end which was totally unexpected. Has everything I look for in a cozy mystery

19 of 23 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

wonderful story

This is only the third time I've given a book five staes. is it great literature, no but it is a beautifully written feel food story. I was drawn in from the very beginning. the characters were people you'd love to know in real life. I was kept listening hoping they,d find the little girl, that the sick boy would get better , that Nick would fins himseld. the narrator was perfwct. he brought the characters to life
I'd you want a book to listen to when life gets a little stressful, try this one.

17 of 21 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great for all readers

Something for everyone. Action, a little romance, overall touching and heartwarming, great story of redemption.

13 of 16 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Heather
  • Austin, TX, United States
  • 05-12-16

Really good

While I was somewhat skeptical that this would be overly sentimental, I was pleasantly surprised. It's about time we had another good Christmas story!

15 of 19 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Ho ho ho what a great holiday book!

This story has a unique holiday season flair. It was moving and left me with a sense of holiday hope.

11 of 15 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Andrew B.
  • 08-06-18

Well worth reading

Another brilliant story by Alan Russell. A typical Christmas story that is serious and also amusing.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • CRL
  • 11-19-16

A lovely warm feeling!

This was just the book to get into on a cold winter day.
Everything about it gave me a warm feeling I loved it and would love to read more in a series. It has all the potential to be a seasonal series.