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The Big Bad City: Complete & Unabridged (87th Precinct) [Audiobook, Unabridged] [Audio Cassette]

Ed McBain , Franklyn Ajaye
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Jun 1999 87th Precinct
The Squadroom of the 87th Precinct is under even more pressure than usual. There's the Cookie Boy, a burglar with a taste for chocolate chip cookies and violence; and a murdered woman with breast implants, who turns out to be a nun. Detective Carella has problems of his own, too.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product details

  • Audio Cassette
  • Publisher: ISIS Audio Books; Unabridged edition (Jun 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0753105829
  • ISBN-13: 978-0753105825
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 7,280,828 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Ed McBain was one of the many pen names of the successful and prolific crime fiction author Evan Hunter (1926 - 2005). Born Salvatore Lambino in New York, McBain served aboard a destroyer in the US Navy during World War II and then earned a degree from Hunter College in English and Psychology. After a short stint teaching in a high school, McBain went to work for a literary agency in New York, working with authors such as Arthur C. Clarke and P.G. Wodehouse all the while working on his own writing on nights and weekends. He had his first breakthrough in 1954 with the novel The Blackboard Jungle, which was published under his newly legal name Evan Hunter and based on his time teaching in the Bronx.

Perhaps his most popular work, the 87th Precinct series (released mainly under the name Ed McBain) is one of the longest running crime series ever published, debuting in 1956 with Cop Hater and featuring over fifty novels. The series is set in a fictional locale called Isola and features a wide cast of detectives including the prevalent Detective Steve Carella.

McBain was also known as a screenwriter. Most famously he adapted a short story from Daphne Du Maurier into the screenplay for Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds (1963). In addition to writing for the silver screen, he wrote for many television series, including Columbo and the NBC series 87th Precinct (1961-1962), based on his popular novels.

McBain was awarded the Grand Master Award for lifetime achievement in 1986 by the Mystery Writers of America and was the first American to receive the Cartier Diamond Dagger award from the Crime Writers Association of Great Britain. He passed away in 2005 in his home in Connecticut after a battle with larynx cancer.

Product Description


"McBain in brilliant, exemplary form" —Literary Review

"The upper echelons of thriller writing" —Daily Express

"You are watching a virtuoso at work...McBain never puts a foot wrong" —Guardian --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Ed McBain is one of the most illustrious names in crime fiction and holder of the Mystery Writers of America's coveted Grand Master Award. He has written more than eighty works of fiction, including the heralded 87th Precinct series and the acclaimed Matthew Hope series. His real name is Evan Hunter and he lives in Connecticut. He was recently awarded the Diamond Dagger for lifetime achievment by the Crime Writers' Association --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
By Stephanie De Pue TOP 1000 REVIEWER
"The Big Bad City" (1999) is one in the long series of 87th Precinct mystery novels by Ed McBain. It's set in contemporary times, in "Isola," his take on the wonderful city of New York, and boasts a complex, multi-level plot that should please most mystery lovers.

McBain's cop, Detective Steve Carella, is involved in three cases at once. The Cookie Boy, so dubbed by the city's media, is a careful, professional thief, who leaves white boxes of home baked chocolate chip cookies on the pillows of his victims. But, this time, he has stumbled into an occupied apartment, with disastrous, murderous results. The body of a pretty girl has been found in the park: preliminary investigation reveals that she is a nun, Sister Mary Vincent, born Kate Cochran in Philadelphia, and possessor of breast implants. And Sonny Cole, convicted felon who killed Carella's father in the commission of a felony but was somehow found not guilty, is following Carella, planning to kill him, as he believes the detective will inevitably try to kill him in revenge. So McBain's juggling these three interesting plots, though it must be said, they are somewhat mannered and artificial. But he works them out, in a page turner that keeps driving forward.

McBain also did a superior job of rendering New York, its ambiance, its speech, its geography and harsh weather: he was certainly one of the best of the genre writers in this regard. I do get a bit distracted by his made-up names for streets, boroughs and bridges, don't know why he thought that necessary, but I can live with it. The author, who is deceased, was the only American to receive the Diamond Dagger, the British Crime Writers Association's highest award. He also held the Mystery Writers of America's Grand Master Award.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good police procedural 15 Jan 2012
We have three sub-plots here, all dealt with by members of the 87th precinct - the case of a murdered nun, a burglary which goes horribly wrong, and a criminal's plans to shoot a policeman who had him arrested for murder.

This is good police fiction, albeit without any complexity or twists and turns. I wasn't thrilled about the structuring which saw the threads run into each other without text breaks, potentially throwing the reader into confusion (or was this perhaps a Kindle formatting problem?). All stories also ended a little too quickly for me with everything wrapped up in a few pages.

That said, it wasn't hard to turn the pages here and despite not be overly challenged by the material, I did enjoy the easy writing style and plot elements. 3.5 stars.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One of McBains finest for years 2 Jan 2000
A superb piece of story-telling. McBain does his usual trick here of combining three stories into one main narrative. You can hardly spot the joins. His best novel for quite a while.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic McBain 8 Sep 1999
By A Customer
Ed McBain does what he does best - intermingles the crime, families, life & loves of the 87th Squadron. If you have read the others, like me, you remain part of the family, growing old with them, still in love with Teddy after all these years, still wanting to be part of it. It was like coming home!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Revisited 13 Sep 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I hadn't read a McBain 87th in years and years but this proved (as though there could be any doubt!) that they're ALL hugely enjoyable.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars 6 July 2014
By mikel
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Very good
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3.0 out of 5 stars 87th Precinct Novels 1 July 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Another 87th Precinct novel, quick read, enjoyable.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A real page turner 4 Jun 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
Have read many of his books and, like a very good meal, can"t wait to finish it, but then disappointed when you do!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Never been disappointed yet by this author
Published 14 days ago by Lynne Slator
5.0 out of 5 stars 87th. Precinct series.
Ed McBain is one of the best down to earth descriptive authors, with a total knowledge of police work, and also a perception of the ups and downs of police work; he is also able to... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Brumas
5.0 out of 5 stars Big Bad City
rated this book with 5 stars because it is a well written enjoyable read.
I would recommend it to all who like an interesting mystery story.
Published 3 months ago by Vinthumb
4.0 out of 5 stars Another in an enjoyable series
As always, an easy read with familiar characters whose lives and personalities are as important as the stories themselves. Enjoyable.
Published 5 months ago by jw
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
Another excellent 87th Precinct novel from Ed McBain. The characters always seem to come alive for me. More. More. More.
Published 6 months ago by Ms Kay Green
5.0 out of 5 stars Ed McBain the best
This was writing at it best fast paced clean lines and the people are real in the city could have been in any big city
Published 7 months ago by R Burns
5.0 out of 5 stars love it
another one for the 87th to sort out in their inimitable style, with the usual characters and their lives on show
Published 7 months ago by Eric Whitmore
4.0 out of 5 stars RANKIN
Ian Rankin back to his best. Always enjoy Rebus and this was no exception. couldn't wait to find out how it ended but disappointed when I'd finished it!
Published 7 months ago by Jean Ebo
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read
A fantastic insight to the criminal/police conflict. Does natural justice prevail at the end with the death of the "professional criminal?
Published 7 months ago by Just John
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