87th Precinct Books

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87th Precinct is a police procedural novel series written by Evan Hunter under the pseudonym Ed McBain. The series novels have been adapted into movies and television on several occasions. This brilliant series is based on the work of a team of police detectives serving in the 87th Precinct in Isola a fictional city located in the New York City of Manhattan. Other fictionalized districts in the series mainly correlate the New York City’s other four boroughs, Majesta representing Queens, Calms Point serving Brooklyn, Bethtown substituting for Staten Island and Riverhead for the Bronx.

Order of 87th Precinct Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 Cop Hater ( By: Ed McBain) 1956 Description / Buy
2 The Mugger ( By: Ed McBain) 1956 Description / Buy
3 The Pusher ( By: Ed McBain) 1956 Description / Buy
4 The Con Man ( By: Ed McBain) 1957 Description / Buy
5 Killer's Choice ( By: Ed McBain) 1957 Description / Buy
6 Lady Killer ( By: Ed McBain) 1958 Description / Buy
7 Killer's Wedge ( By: Ed McBain) 1958 Description / Buy
8 Killer's Payoff ( By: Ed McBain) 1958 Description / Buy
9 King's Ransom ( By: Ed McBain) 1959 Description / Buy
10 'Til Death ( By: Ed McBain) 1959 Description / Buy
11 Give the Boys a Great Big Hand ( By: Ed McBain) 1960 Description / Buy
12 The Heckler ( By: Ed McBain) 1960 Description / Buy
13 See Them Die ( By: Ed McBain) 1960 Description / Buy
14 Lady, Lady, I Did It! ( By: Ed McBain) 1961 Description / Buy
15 The Empty Hours ( By: Ed McBain) 1962 Description / Buy
16 Like Love ( By: Ed McBain) 1962 Description / Buy
17 Ten Plus One ( By: Ed McBain) 1963 Description / Buy
18 Ax / Axe ( By: Ed McBain) 1963 Description / Buy
19 He Who Hesitates ( By: Ed McBain) 1965 Description / Buy
20 Doll ( By: Ed McBain) 1965 Description / Buy
21 Eighty Million Eyes ( By: Ed McBain) 1966 Description / Buy
22 Fuzz ( By: Ed McBain) 1968 Description / Buy
23 Shotgun ( By: Ed McBain) 1968 Description / Buy
24 Jigsaw ( By: Ed McBain) 1970 Description / Buy
25 Hail, Hail, the Gang's All Here! ( By: Ed McBain) 1971 Description / Buy
26 Sadie When She Died ( By: Ed McBain) 1972 Description / Buy
27 Let's Hear It for the Deaf Man ( By: Ed McBain) 1973 Description / Buy
28 Hail to the Chief ( By: Ed McBain) 1973 Description / Buy
29 Bread ( By: Ed McBain) 1974 Description / Buy
30 Blood Relatives ( By: Ed McBain) 1975 Description / Buy
31 So Long as You Both Shall Live ( By: Ed McBain) 1976 Description / Buy
32 Long Time No See ( By: Ed McBain) 1977 Description / Buy
33 Calypso ( By: Ed McBain) 1979 Description / Buy
34 Ghosts ( By: Ed McBain) 1980 Description / Buy
35 Heat ( By: Ed McBain) 1981 Description / Buy
36 McBain Brief ( By: Ed McBain) 1982 Description / Buy
37 Ice ( By: Ed McBain) 1983 Description / Buy
38 Lightning ( By: Ed McBain) 1984 Description / Buy
39 And All Through The House ( By: Ed McBain) 1984 Description / Buy
40 Eight Black Horses ( By: Ed McBain) 1985 Description / Buy
41 Poison ( By: Ed McBain) 1987 Description / Buy
42 Lullaby ( By: Ed McBain) 1989 Description / Buy
43 Vespers ( By: Ed McBain) 1989 Description / Buy
44 Tricks ( By: Ed McBain) 1989 Description / Buy
45 Widows ( By: Ed McBain) 1991 Description / Buy
46 Kiss ( By: Ed McBain) 1992 Description / Buy
47 Mischief ( By: Ed McBain) 1993 Description / Buy
48 Romance ( By: Ed McBain) 1995 Description / Buy
49 Nocturne ( By: Ed McBain) 1997 Description / Buy
50 The Big Bad City ( By: Ed McBain) 1998 Description / Buy
51 The Last Dance ( By: Ed McBain) 1999 Description / Buy
52 Money, Money, Money (By: Ed McBain) 2001 Description / Buy
53 Fat Ollie's Book (By: Ed McBain) 2002 Description / Buy
54 The Frumious Bandersnatch (By: Ed McBain) 2003 Description / Buy
55 Hark! (By: Ed McBain) 2004 Description / Buy
56 Fiddlers ( By: Ed McBain) 2005 Description / Buy
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According to an interview and articles published, the author admitted that the Television series Dragnet majorly influenced the series. Even though the series focuses on police detectives from the 87th Precinct, different detectives feature in various novels, and most of the series books feature an important role of the authors leading character, Detective Stephen Louis.

McBain began the publication of 87th Precinct series in 1956 when the first book in the series Cop Hater was published. The series ran for over 50 books with Fiddlers published in 2005 marking the last installment in the series.


Ed McBain prolific writing has won and also been nominated for various awards. For instance, The Last Spin was nominated for an Edgar Award for the Best Short Story while The Birds (1964) was an Edgar Award nominee for the Best Motion Picture category. In 1986, the author was awarded the Grand Master Award by the Mystery Writers of America. In 2002 McBain was nominated for an Edgar Award for the Best Novel, Money, Money, Money. In 1998, McBain became the first American to win the Diamond Dagger which was awarded by the British Crime Writers Association.


Several of McBain novels have been adapted for the big screen filming. The Blackboard Jungle was adapted into a 1955 film about teachers working in an inter-racial city school. The film was directed and adapted by Richard Brooks.

King’s Ransom was adapted into a 1963 police procedural film titled High and Low by Akira Kurosawa featuring Tatsuya Nakadai, Toshiro Mifune, and Kyoko Kagawa. Buddwing was adapted into a 1966 film Mister Buddwing starring James Garner and directed by Delbert Mann. The Last Summer was adapted into a 1969 coming-of-age film themed on adolescent sexuality. It was filmed at Fire Island and stars Barbara Hershey, Catherine Burns, Richard Thomas, and Bruce Davison.

Without Apparent Motive, a 1971 movie is an adaptation of Ed McBain novel, Ten Plus One, written by Jacques Lanzmann, Vincenzo Labella, and Philippe Labro. Lady, Lady I Did It (1961) was adapted into a 1981 mystery movie directed by Kon Ichikawa and featuring Toshiyuki Nagashima, Yukata Mizutani, and Rie Nakahara.


These are two best books in 87th Precinct series by Ed McBain, Cop Hater and Lady Lady I Did It.

Cop Hater: First published in 1956, the first novel in 87th Precinct series is a police procedural set in the fictional town of Isola, and it is about someone killing police detectives. Even though the story was written in 1956, the minorities and women receive better treatment in this book than many books published during the 1950’s. The lead character is Steve Carella who is engaged to a beautiful deaf mute called Teddy. This is something unexpected, but the author manages to make their relationship possible.

The novel takes place during a heat wave, and all the cops are scared to their nerves wondering which of them could be next.

Lady Lady, I Did It: The first thing detectives Bert Kling and Steve Carella saw was four bodies, all soaked in blood. Then Kling then discovered that one of them was Claire Townsend, his girlfriend and that is when the bookstore killings stopped being just another murder case to the cops of the 87th Precinct, for Kling was one of their own, and no one could get away with killing a policeman’s girl.


If you fancy reading 87th Precinct series, then you will also enjoy reading “Peanuts Coronet” Series by Charles M. Schulz. The series consists of eighty novels and began publication in 1959, and its last book in the series was published in 1992.

The “Peter McGarr” series by Bartholomew Gill is also an ideal series for you. The series features Peter McGarr, a police detective based in Ireland as the lead character. Publication began in 1976 when the debut novel The Death of an Irish Politician was published and ended in 2002 after sixteen novels.

What Is The Next Book in The 87th Precinct Series?

There doesn't seem to be an upcoming book in The 87th Precinct Series. The newest book is Fiddlers and was released on January, 1st 2005.


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