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Cop Hater (Crime Essentials) by Ed McBain
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Cop Hater (Crime Essentials) (original 1956; edition 2003)

by Ed McBain

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5762117,182 (3.5)46
Member:AHS-Wolfy
Title:Cop Hater (Crime Essentials)
Authors:Ed McBain
Info:Orion (2003), Edition: New Ed, Paperback, 208 pages
Collections:Your library, To read
Rating:
Tags:Crime, 87th Precinct, TBR

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Cop Hater by Ed McBain (1956)

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Showing 1-5 of 20 (next | show all)
I've never been a fan of police procedurals. The majority of them tend to be more concerned with showing off the author's knowledge of obscure investigation technique trivia than telling any kind of cohesive, let alone down to earth, story. With this in mind, the only reason I offer for loving the 87th Precinct series, written by the man who practically invented the genre, is that he writes it better than anyone else. If you're sick and tired of the Law & Order clones, maybe you should take a step back and check out the series that defined the genre and has yet to be surpassed. And if you've never visited McBain's series, then there is no better place to start than the beginning.

Cop Hater is an able and worthy introduction to the world of the 87th Precinct's Homicide Division, walking the beat of its fictional city for over fifty years. Many book series suffer from weak openings and fluctuations in quality and style that often leave fans recommending later entries as a starting point for new readers. The 87th never felt any such growing pains, and Cop Hater still stands as strong as the 53 that soon followed.

Detective Carella, the anchor of the series, is introduced in this initial outing, along with other long-term cast members including his love interest and future wife Teddy, stoolie Danny the Gimp, Lt. Byrnes, hack journalist Savage, Bert Kling (still a patrolman before earning his detective's badge in The Mugger), angry bull Roger Havilland, and the diminutive but dangerous Hal Willis.

Cop Hater is one of McBain's more direct titles, and covers the plot simply. Someone is killing cops out of the 87th Precinct. A dead cop is always taken seriously by other cops, but things become personal for Carella when the third officer gunned down in cold bloody is his partner Bush, and even more so when newspaper reporter Savage turns his deaf girlfriend Teddy into a prospective target. With nothing more to go on than the killer's motive as a Cop Hater, the race is on to catch the killer before he kills anyone else that Carella cares for, or for that matter. Carella himself.

Many police procedural series try to over-the-top with spectacular crimes or completely outrageous twists and turns, and mind-numbingly technical procedure descriptions. This is territory that where the 87th Precinct never strays into. While McBain does take the time to explain how and why certain aspects of the job are undertaken, he does so not to flog the reader with facts, but to help them understand exactly what the bulls of the 87th are up against. The crimes and characters of the 87th are always believable, interesting, and never fail to ring with a truth and honesty that makes it seem as real as crime in your local papers. Cop Hater embodies this truth as much as any of the other books, despite being written over fifty years ago. The procedures may change over time, but the criminals are cops are still driven by the same beliefs. ( )
  smichaelwilson | Mar 24, 2016 |
The classic in the field and originator of all police procedurals.
Ed McBain's series is a classic and I was... meh. I'm not sure if it was because I didn't care for the case or 1950s NYC, but this story just didn't do much for me. Still, it was a Kindle Unlimited two day read so nothing lost. ( )
  skinglist | Feb 13, 2016 |
Very old fashioned police procedural, but not bad. ( )
  fhudnell | Dec 18, 2015 |
This first book in the 87th Precinct series is a landmark in the mystery genre. It was the first mystery in which the hero wasn't an individual cop but a whole precinct & it was also the first to be set in a realistic but fictional city. This series paved the way for many other novels and also TV shows such as Hill Street Blues, NYPD Blue and others.

Given that significance, I was a bit generous with my rating. The actual plot was engrossing but I was able to figure out the solution about 3/4 of the way through -- although if I had been reading it in 1956 I might not have! One feature I have not run across before was the images of police forms and documents -- that was cool!

Oh, and this Kindle edition had a hilarious typo, when in the autopsy report of the first victim says "Approximate weight 210 pounds; height 28.9 cm." (my underlining) This makes Michael Reardon about 11 inches tall!!! It is a strange typo too as it couldn't be 289 cm as that would make him over 8 feet tall! Either a humunculus or a giant it would seem - LOL! ( )
  leslie.98 | Sep 3, 2015 |
Mine is a 1989 edition by Books On Tape. Not abridged, read by Paul Shay who added absolutely NOTHING to the book. Actually, his voice just sucked. It wasn't a bad novel, although dated. That added to & subtracted from it, but more adds, IMO. I got a little tired of McBain explaining things that we've come to take for granted like fingerprints, but I guess some of the stuff wasn't common knowledge back when he wrote it. It really added to the atmosphere & tone, though.

The tone of the book is dogged. It's hot, damn hot. The city is cooking & on the edge when a cop is killed. The investigation starts & goes on. The cops are snatching at rags & being complete jerks about every thread they can find, but they keep trudging along. They don't have electronic data, just file cards, etc... No Internet, cell phones or anything. How did they solve anything? Sheer brute determination.

Unfortunately, when read in Shay's monotone, I wanted to scream after a while. It was too depressing & not going anywhere. I almost didn't continue, but heard the book was good. I'm glad I hung in there. It was. It might have even been worth another star if the reader hadn't made me want to cut my throat. So, I'll look for another by this author, if not by this reader. ( )
  jimmaclachlan | Aug 18, 2014 |
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This new edition of the very first 87th Precinct novel is dedicated to my dearest darling wife--Dragica Dimitrijevic-Hunter
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From the river bounding the city on the north, you saw only the magnificent skyline.
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Book description
From the publisher: Swift, silent, and deadly - someone is knocking off the 87th Precinct's finest, one by one. The how of the killings is obvious: three .45 shots from the dark add up to one, two, three very dead detectives. The why and the who are the Precinct's headaches now. When Detective Reardon is found dead, motive is a big question mark. But when his partner becomes victim number two, it looks like open-and-shut grudge killings. That is, until a third detective buys it. With one meager clue, Detective Steve Carella begins his grim search for the killer, a search that takes him into the city's underworld to a notorious brothel, to the apartment of a beautiful and dangerous widow, and finally to a .45 automatic aimed straight at his head...
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0671775472, Mass Market Paperback)

THE HEROES OF THE CITY'S STREETS BECOME THE HUNTED -- IN THIS CRIME FICTION CLASSIC

ED MCBAIN'S FIRST 87th PRECINCT NOVEL

Swift, silent, and deadly -- someone is knocking off the 87th Precinct's finest, one by one. The how of the killings is obvious: three .45 shots from the dark add up to one, two, three very dead detectives. The why and the who are the Precinct's headaches now.

When Detective Reardon is found dead, motive is a big question mark. But when his partner becomes victim number two, it looks like open-and-shut grudge killings. That is, until a third detective buys it.

With one meager clue, Detective Steve Carella begins his grim search for the killer, a search that takes him into the city's underworld to a notorious brothel, to the apartment of a beautiful and dangerous widow, and finally to a .45 automatic aimed straight at his head....

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:56 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

When Detective Reardon is found dead, motive is a big question mark. But when his partner becomes victim number two, it looks like open-and-shut grudge killings. That is, until a third detective is murdered. With one meagre clue, Detective Steve Carella begins his grim search for the killer.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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