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The Heckler (87th Precinct) [Kindle Edition]

Ed McBain
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)

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Book Description

With crooks to cuff and pimps to put behind bars, detectives Carella and Meyer of the 87th Precinct simply don’t have the time or patience to deal with a prank caller—even if he has phoned murder threats to two dozen local shop owners. What they fail to realize, however, is they aren’t dealing with a heckler who’s ringing round for kicks but rather a modern-day Moriarty known only as the Deaf Man—and these phone calls are just his first move in a calculated scheme to pull off the bank robbery of the decade. Further calls darken a lovely spring with suspicion and fear, before a brutal murder whips things into a frenzy, prompting Carella and Meyer to scour the town for clues to the Deaf Man’s identity. As the detectives grasp at a few tenuous threads of the larger plot, those targeted by the calls clamor for the cops to slam the case closed before more of them wind up stiffs. If they can find him in time, the 87th Precinct promises to shut down the Deaf Man for good.


Books In This Series (25 Books)
Complete Series


  • Product Description

    About the Author

    Ed McBain was one of the pen names of successful and prolific crime fiction author Evan Hunter (1926–2005). Debuting in 1956, the popular 87th Precinct series is one of the longest running crime series ever published, featuring more than 50 novels, and is hailed as "one of the great literary accomplishments of the last half-century." 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.

    Product details

    • Format: Kindle Edition
    • File Size: 6701 KB
    • Print Length: 226 pages
    • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1477805737
    • Publisher: Thomas & Mercer (19 Nov. 2013)
    • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
    • Language: English
    • ASIN: B00FT1N2U0
    • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
    • X-Ray:
    • Word Wise: Not Enabled
    • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
    • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #12,615 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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    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.

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    Customer Reviews

    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars Heckle Me Pink 17 Feb. 2014
    Format:Kindle Edition
    I've been a fan of Ed McBain for the longest time. He's one of the crime-writing greats. His novels are never deep, emotionally gruelling, sprawling, twisting, convoluted epics of emotion and love and death--which I usually like--but instead, they're mostly concise, fast-paced, funny, smart, twisty, crime procedurals; like CSI but with actual characters and snappy dialogue, rather than boring, generic cardboard cut-outs.

    Even his "bad" books are entertaining.

    The Heckler, thankfully, was one of his better efforts.

    Essentially, aside from the usual police procedural stuff, it's the story of "the deaf man", a sadistic logician/mathematician serial-killing ultra-thief super-squirmy recurring character (this is his first appearance, but he crops up in many of the later books in the series), who sets up an elaborate plot to steal two-million-plus dollars from a bank. That's the main section of the plot, and it links throughout the rest of the novel.

    As usual with McBain, this was a quick read--I think I read it in two or three days--and it has some great, humorous dialogue, which helps the plot move along swiftly. The characters aren't filled out as much as they are in other books, but it doesn't detract from the read. My only real issue, I guess, was the ending. It seemed a little abrupt and as if McBain just wanted to tie it up in a nice bow, finish it, and get it over with.

    It's not a standout book, but it's an enjoyable read; something to pass the time. Start at the beginning and work your way through the series.
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    4.0 out of 5 stars The Deaf Man cometh 30 July 2014
    Format:Kindle Edition
    'She came in like a lady, that April.'
    McBain follows the poetic line with a calm, hopeful beginning in this 12th visit to Isola. He brings an air of shy innocence to the intro chapter with the cool, pale personification of the early Spring month being a gentle lady that cheers the populace with her approach. But on with the mayhem.
    Carella is trying to solve the case of a close range shotgun killing - the victim stripped down to his socks. Meyer Meyer investigates a spate of threatening calls. It's good to see Frankie Hernandez getting a fairer crack of the whip than his first appearance.
    This one really is a corker, with a villain who towers above the usual brand of none to smart lawbreakers, a Moriarty figure, a master of probability and percentages, who flaunts his complex scheme, inspired by the Sherlock Holmes stories, one of which Detective Kling coincidentally reads in the squad room - "The Adventure of the Red-Headed League".
    McBain's writing is great here with so much going on from the absurdly intricate caper to the captivating collection of characters that doesn't end with just the regulars. Speaking of regulars - where's Cotton Hawes got to? Not that I'm missing him at all. From the gentle beginning, through the tangled investigation, true suspenseful tension and climactic finale I've got to say this was one of the best so far.
    My edition had a fascinating little afterword by McBain on the book and the series so far. Miss at your peril.
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    2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars a great 87th precint novel 15 Oct. 2013
    By Brian
    Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
    I am re reading all of the 87th precinct novels of ed mcbain and this does not let you down the normal guys of the 87th precinct are here and an enjoyable read
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    1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Sparkling and humourous dialogue from the master 21 Mar. 2014
    Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
    Why are some businessmen getting a series of threatening phone calls from a "heckler" to persuade them to vacate their premises by a certain date? Meyer Meyer and colleagues from the 37th precinct are persuaded to get involved. They uncover an ambitious plot to cause chaos in the cities emergency services. To what end? Read this story, be intrigued, chuckle many times and enjoy the exciting climax.
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    5.0 out of 5 stars Good crime series 5 Oct. 2014
    By tcmum
    Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
    I love the Ed McBain 87th precinct novels and bought 20 when tere was a 'special' kindle daily deal.
    It is great to follow the same characters in each book, they all take part in stories to a greater or lesser extent except Steve Carella who is a central pin but they all appear often.
    I am glad Ed McBain wasn't encouraged to kill him off early in the series.
    All the books are good thriller/cop stories/mysteries.
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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 The Heckler and Nocturne 1 July 2014
    Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
    Another quick read, very entertaining if you are into McBain.
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    3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing finish. 29 Jun. 2014
    Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
    It's a well written book with a very weaK ending.it kept me reading and then disappointed.i now feel that I should try another mc Bain book.
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