Vice City by Shami Stovall


Cover for Vice City


After twenty years as an enforcer for the Vice family mob, Nicholas Pierce shouldn’t bat an eye at seeing a guy get worked over and tossed in the river. But there’s something about the suspected police mole, Miles, that has Pierce second-guessing himself. The kid is just trying to look out for his brother any way he knows how, and the altruistic motive sparks an uncharacteristic act of mercy that involves Pierce taking Miles under his wing.

Miles wants to repay Pierce for saving his life. Pierce shouldn’t see him as anything but a convenient hookup… and he sure as hell shouldn’t get involved in Miles’s doomed quest to get his brother out of a rival street gang. He shouldn’t do a lot of things, but life on the streets isn’t about following the rules. Besides, he’s sick of being abused by the Vice family, especially Mr. Vice and his power-hungry goon of a son, who treats his underlings like playthings.

So Pierce does the absolute last thing he should do if he wants to keep breathing—he leaves the Vice family in the middle of a turf war.


Getting hit with a wrench hurts.

I know for a fact—I’ve had my jaw broken twice by thugs swinging them around—which is why I cringe every time Pete and Brisko land a blow. The crunch of bone and the wet splat of blood on the warehouse floor fill the otherwise silent atmosphere.

I light a cigarette and inhale, already disgusted with the spectacle. Perhaps I should’ve been paying more attention when they questioned the kid, but I don’t know what Pete and Brisko are looking for. I’m just here in case trouble finds us.

“So how long have you been workin’ for the cops?” Pete asks.

The kid shudders and keeps his head hung. Rivulets of blood stream from his mouth and lip, dripping onto his lap and staining his jeans. His shoulders bunch around his neck, but his hands are tied tight against the back of the chair. He doesn’t have much range of movement—even his feet are secured to the chair legs, keeping him vulnerable.

Brisko grabs a fistful of the kid’s black hair and jerks his head up. “Well? You want us to keep going or are you ready to talk?”

“I—” the kid says. “I… don’t….”

The blood in his mouth gets in the way of his speech. It doesn’t help that he’s trembling something fierce either. Those two idiots don’t know the first thing about interrogating a rat. You have to give them time to recover between beatings or else they stutter, or worse, seize up from shock. Then you won’t get any information out of them.

The kid fumbles with his words, and Pete backhands him, the wrench still curled in his fist. The extra weight slams the kid’s head back, busting the skin of his eye socket good. His disheveled hair covers most of his face—the blood causing it to cling to everything—but I can tell he’s black and blue.

Pete rubs his knuckles and snorts. “We got all night, kiddo. And there’s only two ways out. Either you tell us what we want to know and we put a bullet in your head, simple and quick…. Or you keep holding out on us, like the dirty rat you are, and we go to bustin’ up your organs rather than your bones. The way people scream…. You’ll regret holdin’ out on us. They all do.”

The kid doesn’t answer. I figured as much. He looks ready to die.

“Pete, Brisko,” I call out from the shadows. “Go out and watch the door. I’ll talk to him.”

Those two thugs take a moment to process my words, like English is their third language instead of their first. It’s clear they didn’t think I would get involved, but Pete gives me a one-sided smile.

“You gonna make him sing?” he asks. “The boss always says you’re the best.”

“I’ll get the information.”

“You got it. C’mon, Brisko.”

Brisko lumbers after Pete. I wait until they both exit the warehouse, giving the kid a moment to “recover” before I get to work. I take a long drag on my cigarette and exhale. I hate workin’ late—it’s almost dawn. Street work isn’t supposed to be my thing anymore, but I can’t sit by and watch Pete and Brisko’s Three Stooges routine without intervening. They would have killed the kid and gotten nothing from it.



  • “As a lover of noir and crime fiction, I highly recommend this first book in what will hopefully be a very long and satisfying series.” – The Novel Approach Review
  •  “I am a sucker for a hard hearted fella finding and fighting for love. Especially when help comes from so many unexpected sides.” – Jesse G Books
  • “This was a super intense, high energy story that kept me on the edge of my seat. I was definitely not ready to be finished with this world or these characters and can’t wait for the next installment.” – Love Bytes Reviews
  • “If you like super intense stories full of very realistic violence and brutality of all kinds, if you want to see how two men fight their pasts, fate, and cruel enemies to be free of others telling them what to do, and if you’re looking for a thrilling mystery that will keep you on the edge of your seat, then you will probably like this novel.” – Rainbow Book Reviews


Shami Stovall Author Picture


 S.A. Stovall grew up in California’s central valley with a single mother and little brother. Despite no one in her family having a degree higher than a GED, she put herself through college (earning a BA in History), and then continued on to law school where she obtained her Juris Doctorate.

As a child, Stovall’s favorite novel was Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell. The adventure on a deserted island opened her mind to ideas and realities she had never given thought before—and it was the moment Stovall realized that story telling (specifically fiction) became her passion. Anything that told a story, be it a movie, book, video game or comic, she had to experience. Now, as a professor and author, Stovall wants to add her voice to the myriad of stories in the world, and she hopes you enjoy.


This blog is part of a tour organized by the International Thriller Writer's Association FEARLESS BLOGGER tour. The Fearless Bloggers were created by Alison McMahan to help new thriller writers who were members of ITW promote their work. Blogs are written about new thrillers by thriller writers. All work is done on a volunteer basis. Other blogs in this tour include: