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Old 10-17-2010, 05:07 PM   #1
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Ed McBain?

My sister has a bunch of these and has recommended them to me. Does this series have to be read in order, or can you read each one independently? My library has some later ones but not the first ones in the series.
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Old 10-18-2010, 11:09 AM   #2
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You do get more from it reading them in order, because the characters develop over time, but you certainly could just jump in - each is readable in isolation, too.

I'm assuming you're talking about his "87th Precinct" books?
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Old 10-18-2010, 01:03 PM   #3
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I, too, assume you mean the classic "87th Precinct" books, which inspired "Hill Street Blues," "NYPD Blue," and countless other television shows and novels.

In my view, there's no need to start at the beginning. They each stand on their own.

Happy reading.

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Old 10-18-2010, 01:29 PM   #4
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I have read most of the 87th Precinct novels and agree with Paul -- no need to read them in any particular order. Harry is right that if read in order you see the character development, but even reding them out of order, the characters are such that you can readily fit the development into the proper place.
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Old 10-18-2010, 01:56 PM   #5
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I've read many of the "87th Precinct" novels, and never in order. It is interesting to jump from one decade to the next (or previous) and see how the flavor and descriptions of Isola and it's citezens changes. I am currently reading "Doll" published in 1965. Lot's of thigh high boots and miniskirts.
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Old 10-18-2010, 05:37 PM   #6
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I LOVE the 87th Precinct books. I agree with Harry, you can certainly enjoy them in any order, but if you read them chronologically, the characters and a few plot-lines unfold in order. I hope you really like them.
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Old 10-18-2010, 06:00 PM   #7
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Thanks, that is the series. The library assortment seems pretty random. I'll get a few and if I like them I can always go back and read the earlier ones.
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Old 10-24-2010, 12:13 PM   #8
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Generally I have hopped around, but some of the later ones benefit from being read in order. There's a great one called Vespers for example that has a follow-up later in the series. Tricks is a good one for Halloween time.

I love any of them ones with the Deaf Man, the 87th's Moriarity. Let's Hear it for the Deaf Man is a good one as is Eight Black Horses.
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Old 12-22-2010, 06:29 AM   #9
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It's always been my intention to read them back-to-back in order. One day I might even get round to it! I also enjoy one of his little-known contemporaries, Jonathan Craig, who wrote a '6th Precinct' series. He's a little more of his time (even the titles sound dated). But he's a good writer. There's a little more on him here.
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