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Eight Black Horses (87th Precinct #38)

3.91  ·  Rating details ·  1,028 Ratings  ·  49 Reviews
It all got terribly confusing when the Deaf Man put in an appearance.... ...and the criminal mastermind is making his presence known by the dead bodies that are turning up around Isola. Then there are the notes -- with cryptic patterns including eight black horses dancing across a page -- that look like they mean nothing. But Detectives Kling, Carella, and Meyer know that ...more
ebook, 320 pages
Published June 19th 2003 by Pocket Books (first published 1985)
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Daniel Higgins Ed McBain [Even Hunter] always wrote his own books.
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James Thane
When a beautiful young woman is found naked and shot to death in the park across the street from the 87th Precinct station house, the Detectives of the 87th assume that this is just another tragic homicide and begin their investigation by attempting to identify the victim. Shortly thereafter, though, the detectives receive a communication from their old adversary, the Deaf Man, and the murder takes on a whole new significance.

Twice before, the Deaf Man has orchestrated elaborate criminal plots w
Feb 05, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’ve read a lot of Ed McBain and since the special Kindle sale a while back that offered some 40 of his titles for .99 each, I know have a lot more to read. Not in any order.

I have often wondered about McBain’s (nee Evan Hunter) sexual experience. If you’ve read Candyland, for example, his familiarity with massage parlors struck me as coming from personal experience. Then again, his portrayal of police procedures seem quite real, also. Nevertheless, the Deaf Man’s libidic (probably not a word, b
David Highton
Sep 25, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was not really looking forward to another story involving the Deaf Man, the bank-robbing nemesis of the 87th, but in the end it was a good yarn, linking all the various components of his two plots
Sep 09, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-detective
The Deaf Man is back, and is sending messages to the 87th Street Precinct, starting with a dead, nude blonde in the park across the street from the station house. As always he is plotting a sensational theft and revenge on the detectives who always seem to foil his plans. Once again, through some luck and some clumsiness, major calamity is avoided.
Dec 21, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is another cop title from the late Ed McBain's long-running fine 87th Precinct series. I'd a few hiccups with EBH. One female character acts like a nympho willing to do any ditzy thing for a sex fix. Uh-huh. At one point the arch-nemesis Deaf Man leaves a crime scene, and the cops don't think to "dust for prints". That's CSI 101, guys. But an enjoyable read nonetheless. The twists are nicely laid in, and the dialogue is razor sharp. Deaf Man taunting the cops is wickedly done. If you're in ...more
Jun 16, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
While I love writing these reviews, summarizing the books is a real challenge for me. I want to give enough to make my followers pick up the book without giving so much that it detracts from their reading experience. So I sometimes quote the small summaries from the catalog of the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped. I'll do that here, but be sure to read on:

"The criminal mastermind, the Deaf Man, returns to create mayhem and murder for the policemen of the 87th pre
Nov 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
12 days of Christmas

This book is my favorite one of the series so far. Once I got into the book, I couldn't put it down. In the beginning, I was trying to figure out what the numbers were, since they're not in order. As the story progressed, I kind of figured out that part. But the question remained - why? Well I'm not telling........
Oct 15, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
I'm not so fond of McBain's "Deaf Man" novels. What can I say? I'm sure he had fun writing them, though. That shows.
Aileen Bernadette Urquhart
Another really good read. The Deaf Man is back! Foiled again.
Stephen F. Johnson
Another great Ed McBain. These books never get old. I think this one was updated time-wise from when he originally wrote it. Very nice plot and ending. These sound so real you think that his fictional city is a real one. And the characters are just as real, except maybe for the deaf man.
Bruce Humbert
Another very good chapter in the 87th Precinct story. Middle of the pack
Nov 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Good read

I enjoyed this book it's always a good read from Ed McBain, good series of books. What else is there to say.
May 26, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Solid as a rock.

As per usual with McBain everyone gets a fair crack of the whip. His take on female characters leaves something to be desired though.
Jun 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I listened to this one at bedtime. The boys at the 87 manage to thwart the deaf man once more.
Barbara Zeidl
Mar 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It is always interesting when the Deaf Man shows up. Another good one!
Lukasz Pruski
Jan 04, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
"Sixteen horses were still alive when the two patrolmen got there. They were not actually screaming. Just white-eyed with terror and - one of the patrolmen described it as 'keening,' but he was Irish."

Eight Black Horses is the seventh installment in my selective re-read of Ed McBain's magnum opus, and the 38th entry in the "87th Precinct" series. This is one of McBain’s "Deaf Man novels" that feature an arch-villain and a criminal mastermind who in addition to committing crimes for financial gai
Nigel Bird
Sep 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
‘Naomi was lying on the bed with a bullet hole between her eyes. The pillow under her head was very red.’

I enjoyed my first venture into the 87th Precinct a while ago, but felt there were too many voices for my liking.

Eight Black Horses was my second visit. I knew from the opening line (‘The lady was extraordinarily naked’) that I was going to love this one. What made this book so much more of a pleasure was that there was only one main thread to follow, the curious fascination of The Deaf Man w
Tony Gleeson
If you've waded through my reviews you know I love Ed McBain's 87th Precinct series and have read maybe half of them. The "Deaf Man" installments for some reason are NOT among my favorites, as they may well be for other McBainophiles... well, okay, "Fuzz" is a goodie, but the others I haven't cared for. This one involves a very complex and convoluted plot by the Deaf Man to really stick it to his nemeses of the 87th once and for all. McBain had no qualms about throwing lots of frank sexual situa ...more
Jun 27, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I feel like I would have enjoyed this Xmas-themed entry into the 87th Precinct series a bit more if I hadn't been reading it on the sun-drenched July beach. Poor, poor pitiful me, right? Seriously, though, I think there is a bit of a correlation between the enjoyment of a book, and similarities between the circumstances under which you are reading said book and the contents of said book. If I'm reading a book about Halloween, I would prefer to read it around Halloween. The same is true for movie ...more
Jun 07, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, police, series
Arch-enemy of the 87th precinct, "The Deaf Man" is back! Sending Detective Steve Carella cut-out pictures of police supplies and paraphernalia accounting for the 12 Days of Christmas and foreshadowing some heinous crime (or crimes) to be committed. If only our heroes can figure out the clues in time to save the day! I particularly enjoy the stories with the Deaf Man; he is such a brilliant and creative criminal, much too smart for me. It's a pleasure to see the detectives go head to head with hi ...more
Feb 14, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The 87th Precinct stories of Ed McBain are the literary equal to an AC/DC album. You know what you're going to get, but the fun is reading(or listening) to it. This time around Det. Carella and the boys take on The Deaf Man once again. This time their nemesis sends them a christmas list full of what is to come. Certainly one of the more darker tales from this series and character development is a non-issue. However, it's still an entertaining read.
This novel was up and down for me. I liked the sarcastic banter of the policemen, but this was too sporadic. On the other hand, I could have done without the detailed descriptions, for example, of a bomb placed in a police car.

Ed McBain is highly regarded, I guess, and this was my first book he wrote. He's certainly capable, but I don't see why the big fuss. Maybe he "mailed this one in"?
Sep 30, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
i automatically give ed mc bain's books five stars because i love the way that he writes, and the group of characters who make up the 87th precinct. this a another deaf man tale so you know that the bad guy is going to come up with some interesting twists to his larceny. in this one he pretends to be steve carella, not the actor, but a police detective.
Jul 10, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Quick read

Good story, suspenseful. The sex was gratuitous and completely unnecessary. I' all continue reading 87th Precinct stories, but will continue to skim over or ignore the foolishness.
Apr 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow, can Ed McBain write! I do so enjoy his novels about the 87th precinct and it's cast of colorful cops. Despite the fact these are old books, the pacing, the plots, the dialogue all make for some really enjoyable reading-- at least for me. This was a fun ride!
Tyler Cole
Apr 27, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, suspense
This was a good Ed McBain read. The story stayed consistent and on plot as opposed to other stories composed by this author. There was plenty of suspense and wonderful narration. My attention and interest was held right to the very end.
Nov 25, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Formulaic but a good quick read, almost like watching a television show. The ending left me wondering if it was a TV show with the villain part of the on going cast. It was the first Ed McBain I have read so I will probably read a few more.
Fredrick Danysh
Jun 19, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Deaf Man returns to the 87th Precinct and is up to his usual tricks. He sends the station pictures of police equipment to torment them including eight black horses. The squad takes on their nemisis.
Red Heaven
On the heels of one of his best, comes one of the worst of the 87th series. It's hard to believe a Deaf Man book can possibly be a dud, but it is. For whatever reason I got so far and totally lost interest.
Oct 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Deaf Man returns! Brilliant book. Another cracker from McBain
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"Ed McBain" is one of the pen names of American author and screenwriter Salvatore Albert Lombino (1926 – 2005), who legally adopted the name Evan Hunter in 1952. While successful and well known as Evan Hunter, he was even better known as Ed McBain, a name he used for most of his crime fiction, beginning in 1956.

He also used the pen names John Abbott, Curt Cannon, Hunt Collins, Ezra Hannon, Dean Hu
More about Ed McBain

Other books in the series

87th Precinct (1 - 10 of 55 books)
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