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Tanz im Schlachthof (Matthew Scudder #9)

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4.17  ·  Rating details ·  3,332 Ratings  ·  147 Reviews
The police can’t prove that socialite Richard Thurman arranged the rape, torture and murder of his beautiful, pregnant wife. The dead woman’s brother thinks Matt Scudder can.

During his ongoing battle with the bottle, ex-cop, ex-boozer Scudder left a little bit of his soul on every seedy corner of the Big Apple. But this case will drag him deeper into the mire than he’s eve
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Published (first published 1991)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Bill  Kerwin
May 21, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

In this ninth volume of the series, detective Matt Scudder not only confronts an evil as absolute as any he has yet encountered, but is also forced to accept he is powerless to bring this evil to justice by any means he has yet permitted himself to use. Scudder faces a moral dilemma, and the way he resolves it is both cathartic and unsettling.

A brother, convinced his wealthy sister has been murdered by her husband, hires Scudder to collect the evidence to prove it. When Scudder follows the husba
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Jeff
Oct 19, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: who-done-it
It goes against my OCD tendencies to read a book series out of order, but the Matt Scudder books aren’t easy to come by for me – so it was Eight Million Ways to Die (read about a million years ago), then The Sins of the Fathers and now this one – I read them as I get them. At least, I haven’t been reading the Dark Tower series out of order or the Game of Throne books.

I realize these are PI books and it isn’t that important to keep the order straight, jump in anywhere the water’s fine, but here
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Kemper
A few years ago I was talking to somebody in my cube at work, and the name of the small town I grew up in came up. A woman who worked in the cube across the aisle from mine looked up and said that since I was from that town, that I must know of this other smaller town that was nearby. I laughed and replied that my relatives made up 80% of the population of that town. She asked if I was related to X. He was my second cousin. She was his ex-wife. We had worked across from each other for a year wit ...more
Trudi

Picking this one up I was not prepared for such a trip into dark and depraved waters. This is more than Scudder has ever gone up against previously and definitely the strongest in the series since Eight Million Ways To Die. While we've moved along in years out of the 80's into the early 90's, New York City continues to be a seething trap of anger and violence and desperation with all those ways to die and Scudder has stumbled upon yet another one. This time, he didn't even go looking for it, not
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Dan Schwent
Matthew Scudder is hired to figure out if a TV anchor man killed his wife. But what does that have to do with a snuff film a friend of Matt's found disguised as the Dirty Dozen at a video store?

Scudder really stepped in it this time. The Stettners, and to a lesser extent Richard Thurman, the accused anchor, are perverts and psychopaths of the worst kind, the kind that prey on children. I thought James Leo Motely in the previous Scudder book was the worst villain Block could come up with but I w
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James Thane
A wealthy New York couple, Richard and Amanda Thurman, arrives home at their upscale apartment after a night on the town. Several hours later, Richard punches out 9-1-1 with a pipe tool between his teeth, and the police arrive to find him beaten and tied up in the neighbors' apartment immediately below his own. Amanda Thurman, who was pregnant with the couple's first child, has been raped, beaten and strangled to death.

Thurman tells detectives that two men who had burgled the neighbors' apartme
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Richard
Sep 07, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Lawrence Bock and his Matt Scudder books
*3.5 Stars*
“Sometimes it's a dog-eat-dog world and the rest of the time it's the other way around.”
This year I've realized that I'm not that big of a fan of standard detective series. They get too repetitive and frankly boring after a while. It nearly broke my heart when I realized that I was starting to feel the same way about this book in Lawrence Block's Scudder series, arguably the top of the detective pack. As I read, I started to notice the formula and the trends. Once again, Scudder
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Anthony Vacca
Feb 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014, punk-rock
A Dance at the Slaughterhouse may not have the most inspired name, but this 9th entry in Lawrence Block’s inimitable series of novels starring Matthew Scudder—a reformed alcoholic and an ex-dirty-cop who now makes a living as an unlicensed PI—stands as yet another beacon of excellence in a line-up of absurdly high quality mysteries that prove, again and again, the unique literary traits and themes that a well-written genre novel can reckon with unlike any other game in town, and does so in a man ...more
Tfitoby
Sep 09, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: black-as-night
Matt Scudder's finest outing to date. Potentially also the darkest and most brutal too. As Matt investigates the possibility that a husband murdered his wife he stumbles across a snuff film and all the hell that that entails. Block's descriptive passages are shocking and disturbing and the impact on his protagonist is equally as impressively written. The constant evolution of Scudder as a person is at the heart of all that is good about this series, the further away he gets from the booze the mo ...more
Brandon
Jan 06, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Matt Scudder is hired by the brother of a recently murdered woman. He's given the unfortunate task of investigating the husband who is believed by most to have had a hand in her demise. Shortly after taking the job, Matt finds himself drawn back into something that had impacted his life just a few months earlier.

Coming off the heels of the 8th Scudder novel in which Matt encounters his most dangerous adversary, Block created an impressive follow up. Block gives Scudder plenty to do here, hitting
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Mark
Sep 14, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of modern noir
Matthew Scudder is hired to investigate the death of Richard Thurmans wife which was considered suspicious by one of the investigating police officers and the brother of the deceased wife.

The story starts with a boxing match before we find out that is actually the way for Scudder to eyeball his "target". The Scudders stories so far all have in common the pedestrian pace in which you slowly find out what did happen.

As it happens Scudder also gets involved in another situation which involves a snu
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Josh
Oct 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The world is an unforgiving place and for Matt Scudder, it's the very bottom of humanities pecking order that helps him ply his trade. Wallowing in the pits of despair, reformed alcoholic and ex-cop Scudder gets knee deep in the criminal underworld of exploration, false promises, and broken dreams as he tries to solve a rape and murder of which the key suspect is the victim's husband. The case leads him down a dark rabbit hole that shines a light on the snuff film trade.

Lawrence Block doesn't d
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Ed
Dec 03, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is my second P.I. Matt Scudder book. First class hardboiled fare. Snuff films, Matt's meetings, boxing matches -- it's all in here. Mr. Block has to write some of the smoothest prose in fiction today. Great stuff.
Tim Niland
Dec 31, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012-reads
Unlicensed private investigator Matthew Scudder is approached by a fellow attendee at an AA meeting asking him to look at a videocassette he recently acquired. It turns out to have a brutal sado-masochistic snuff film. Scudder is shocked and appalled, but doesn't know what he can do, the killers were masked and their victim another disappeared child of the street. At the same time, he takes a case of a murdered woman in Manhattan. She was brutally raped and murdered while the husband was barely ...more
Michael
Matt Scudder is hired by the brother of a TV Anchor to see if the woman's husband either killed or had her killed.

The author certainly knows the New York territory and enlightens the reader of what is going on in the fight ring and in many of the gay bars in the New York Chelsea areas.

Matt uncovers a connection to "The Dirty Dozen" and spends time searching for an old time TV buff. He's an unlicensed PI and former cop. He's also a member of AA and asked by another member to find the killer of th
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Monica
Feb 24, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Stay tuned," I said. "Don't change the channel."

Why would anyone get to the 9th book in the Matthew Scudder series and not be eager and ready to read the 10th??

This one is all about nasty sex crimes against children, murder...and of course Matt as he ties it all together and then decides what he’s going to do about it. Love the returning appearance of many characters... Elaine...Joe Durkin...even Andy the dart player. And my personal favourite...Mick Ballou. Block is genius at reminding his rea
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Scott Cumming
Jan 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
For a long time my world of American crime literature consisted of Pelecanos, Lehane and Don Winslow and with UK bookshops not stocking a great deal of US stock apart from the most popular novelists it's taken me a long time to find other authors to join the aforementioned. There was also my aversion to long running detective series as I prejudicially and pretentiously thought they were all alike and of little consequence. How very wrong could I be!

I initially came across Lawrence Block through
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Ensiform
Dec 22, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, mystery
The ninth Matt Scudder novel, in which he’s hired to determine whether a socialite raped and killed his own wife. Scudder’s shadowing of the perp leads, through a possibly unlikely set of circumstances, to his discovery of a snuff-film and thrill-murder ring. The unbelievable way in which the two plots intersect is a minor flaw, as is the introduction of TJ, the cartoonish street-talking, street-wise Stereotypical Black Kid, who will become even sillier later. A small step down from the previous ...more
Eric_W
Jan 23, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's funny, this book started out as a boxing book and I almost dropped it right there. Then chapter two came along and I was hooked.

Prominent attorney Richard Thurman and his wife are brutally attacked following an evening out as they arrive home in their apartment. She is raped and beaten, he is robbed and knocked unconscious. Upon reviving, he discovers his hands are bound, mouth taped and his wife dead on the floor. He manages to knock over a lamp and his pipe-cleaning tool with which he pok
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James Fitzgerald
ONE OF THE BEST MATTHEW SCUDDER BOOKS
Lawrence block is a good writer and a master storyteller. in this book he is involved in two cases one where a husband might have been responsible for killing his pregnant wife and the other about two low life's who made a snuff film. I am impressed how Block pulls these two cases together. he is truly an artist. it is a book you will carry with you until you finished it.
Bill
Feb 04, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-suspense
Block's Matt Scudder series is about a NY ex-cop private investigater recovering alcoholic whose girlfriend is a high-priced prostitute. And you think you got troubles?
This novel I've singled out is probably smack-dab in the middle of the series, but it really doesn't matter. It's a gritty read about the snuff movie industry. Great writer here, folks.
I've read four or five from the Scudder series and they're all great reads.
Ewan
Jan 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was the first Scudder I read. I was skipping an exam (must have been about 1994/5), went to hide in the library for a bit, and picked this up. I'm not sure why, I wasn't a crime fiction reader at that point, mainly horror and fantasy. Something must have caught my eye though, and I'm very thankful years later that it did.
ElaineY
Jun 27, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
One star, not because the book's bad, but because I didn't have the nerve to continue. I hate stories with snuff film themes or even just scenes involving that extreme sexual perversion.
Mike
Mar 16, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First Line: Midway into the fifth round the kid in the blue trunks rocked his opponent with a solid left to the jaw.

A Dance At the Slaughterhouse is the ninth novel to feature Lawrence Block’s private detective, Matthew Scudder. Scudder, an unlicensed detective and currently sober alcoholic is hired to find out if (or how) a TV producer manged to stage the rape and murder of his own wife. Of course, as with most of the detective novels I’ve read so far, that really only describes the plot at the
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Mithun Prasad
Sep 16, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I honestly don’t know what took me so long to get acquainted with Lawrence Block's books. Having read just two of his books 'Eight Millions Ways to Die' and 'The Sins of the Fathers'. Having liked both of them; I dived into A Dance at the Slaughter house. Well I was instant fan of Lawrence Block writing, and had no apprehension regarding that, but could he able to deliver the same thrilling plot and story? I had my doubt, but I should have trusted him more.

Richard Thruman woke up from his uncons
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Piker7977
Jun 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-mystery
Matthew Scudder is investigating a widower whose wife's murder is shrouded in mysterious circumstance. The husband is a television boxing promoter with a perceived motive to kill his wife. Upon surveying the suspect at a boxing match, Scudder recognizes another gentleman in the audience. Where has he seen this man before? After a jarring recall, Scudder remembers watching footage of this man committing a heinous crime on videotape. To find out the name and identity of this creep, Scudder must hi ...more
Scott
Nov 17, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The ninth Lawrence Block mystery novel featuring his former New York City detective, turned private investigator Matthew Scudder. Scudder is a very interesting character. He is a recovering alcoholic who spends a large amount of his time in AA meetings, and has a slew of questionable friends and a prostitute for a girlfriend.

The story begins with Scudder being hired to investigate the murder of a woman whose husband is a television producer for a local cable sports channel. As Scudder begins to
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Steven Montano
Mar 07, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another terrific Matt Scudder novel.

Former alcoholic NYPD cop turned unlicensed PI Matt Scudder is a hell of a good character. Block rarely succumbs to well-worn cliches, and even on those occasions when you feel you're venturing into familiar territory it's hard to get over how real Scudder feels as a character. His world is one of darkness, shady deals and violence, but the man at the core of the story is what keeps these novels so fascinating.

This time around, Scudder is hired to prove a law
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Nikki
I'm not sure why I've never read any of Lawrence Block's books before, since his name has been familiar almost since I started reading mysteries. This is one of the Matt Scudder novels. Scudder is an unlicensed private eye, ex-cop, recovering alcoholic deep into the Program; his apparent best friend is a real hard guy who's into a lot of illegal activities and his girlfriend is a callgirl. Needless to say he lives in New York (where else?) I would almost say I enjoyed this book in spite of mysel ...more
Mohammed
When i read first half of this novel it was midlevel quality Scudder book but it ended being a real powerful story both emotionally, cerebrally. It dealt with deeper issues than you expect in crime books, Scudder had to deal in the end with morally questionable things that bothered me both emotionally and if it was right or wrong in my mind.

I had to think through what was discussed by the characters a few times when i finished the novel. I enjoyed that it left me something to think about afterw
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Lawrence Block has been writing crime, mystery, and suspense fiction for more than half a century. He has published in excess (oh, wretched excess!) of 100 books, and no end of short stories.

Born in Buffalo, N.Y., LB attended Antioch College, but left before completing his studies; school authorities advised him that they felt he’d be happier elsewhere, and he thought this was remarkably perceptiv
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More about Lawrence Block...

Other Books in the Series

Matthew Scudder (1 - 10 of 17 books)
  • The Sins of the Fathers (Matthew Scudder, #1)
  • Time to Murder and Create (Matthew Scudder, #2)
  • In the Midst of Death (Matthew Scudder, #3)
  • A Stab in the Dark (Matthew Scudder, #4)
  • Eight Million Ways to Die (Matthew Scudder, #5)
  • When the Sacred Ginmill Closes (Matthew Scudder, #6)
  • Out on the Cutting Edge (Matthew Scudder, #7)
  • A Ticket to the Boneyard (Matthew Scudder, #8)
  • A Walk Among the Tombstones (Matthew Scudder, #10)
  • The Devil Knows You're Dead (Matthew Scudder, #11)

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“Sometimes it's a dog-eat-dog world and the rest of the time it's the other way around.” 2 likes
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