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Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets | [David Simon]

Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets

A highly acclaimed journalistic masterpiece and true crime classic, Homicide illustrates a year in the life of the detectives of the Homicide Unit in the city of Baltimore. David Simon, a reporter for the Baltimore Sun, spent 4 tears on the police beat before taking a leave of absence to write this book.
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Publisher's Summary

A highly acclaimed journalistic masterpiece and true crime classic, Homicide illustrates a year in the life of the detectives of the Homicide Unit in the city of Baltimore. David Simon, a reporter for the Baltimore Sun, spent 4 tears on the police beat before taking a leave of absence to write this book. By persuading the Baltimore Police Department to allow him unlimited access to the city's homicide unit for a full year, Simon shadowed one shift of detectives as they traveled from interrogations to autopsies, from crime scenes to hospital emergency rooms.

Baltimore recorded 234 murders during that year, and the homicide unit investigated dozens of those murders. Homicide, a harrowing, sometimes brutal, and always fascinating look at the dozens of murders investigated by these detectives, is the book that sparked the critically acclaimed television series.

©1997 David Simon; (P)1997 Bantam Doubleday Dell Audio Publishing, Bantam Doubleday Dell Audio Publishing, A Division of Random House, Inc.

What the Critics Say

  • Edgar Award Winner
    Anthony Award Winner

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (226 )
5 star
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3.9 (103 )
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3.9 (102 )
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Performance
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  •  
    David Rochester, NY, USA 02-10-05
    David Rochester, NY, USA 02-10-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
    ratings
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    "Better than the show"

    This book was a joy to listen to. Simon's writing goes far beyond the critically acclaimed television show, and highlights what it could have been. Diamond's narration is flawless. This is the best of the true crime genre I've come across. I laughed out loud and recoiled in horror at different points. This is a fascinating look inside the world of Baltimore homicide detectives.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Larry El Paso, TX, USA 01-10-04
    Larry El Paso, TX, USA 01-10-04
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "As real as it gets"

    Starkly shows life inside a police homicide unit. Brings a realization of how cheap life is to many people in our society. Great read for anyone wanting to know the inside story of the workings of a police department.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christina Medina, OH, USA 09-20-03
    Christina Medina, OH, USA 09-20-03
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    15
    15
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    "Spoils you for other mysteries"

    This book, and the show based on it, are such an unbeliveably realistic, complex, clever, and engaging way of telling a 'mystery story' that I can no longer enjoy pat mysteries where the killer reveals all at the end. This is a phenomenal book, and read superbly by the narrator.

    12 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Janaki Kuruppu Rockville, MD United States 11-03-11
    Janaki Kuruppu Rockville, MD United States 11-03-11 Listener Since 2005

    jkuruppu

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Darn!! Abridged..."

    I think I missed that this was an abridged version because I purchased it on my smartphone app - feeling very disappointed about that, as it certainly explains why there is a relatively few number of stories included (as I listened I kept thinking "How did they keep the TV series going so long with so little here to work with). The narrator is fantastic, however, and the writing style is great.

    I agree with another reviewer about the musical interludes - silly, and don't add to the listening experience at all.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chris los angeles, CA, USA 09-09-08
    Chris los angeles, CA, USA 09-09-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
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    1
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    "It's abridged!"

    I didn't realize it was abridged. Ok... my bad, but it was a bummer to realize that I have to buy it all over again to get the missing parts.

    The reader is good, but the generic "creepy" music that's piped in at the ends of the chapters is laughable. I think David Simon would scoff at that shiz.

    11 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ray Wyoming, MI, USA 02-07-03
    Ray Wyoming, MI, USA 02-07-03
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A great listen--"

    This is a superb book on tape. The book is about one year in the Baltimore homicide division. It follows a few detectives as they go about their job.

    The book is excellent, but the reader puts it over the top. He does a great job of imparting feeling to the characters and the story.

    11 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Patti Louisville, CO, USA 11-27-09
    Patti Louisville, CO, USA 11-27-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "David Simon is a Master"

    As an ardent fan of the show "Homcicide: Life on the Streets", I was fascinated to listen the story that started it all. The narrator, Reed Diamond, was also a character in the show "Homicide." This journalist-turned-author and screen writer has a crystal-clear understanding of the underside of Baltimore crime, politics and corruption. The best part: much of this book and its characters eventually became the fantastic TV series "The Wire," also written by Simon.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kindle Customer Walpole, MA, United States 01-04-14
    Kindle Customer Walpole, MA, United States 01-04-14 Member Since 2011

    I'm a bear that likes honey, climbing trees, stealing picnic baskets and listening to audiobooks.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great "Slice of LIfe" Crime Writing"
    Would you listen to Homicide again? Why?

    Yes, I really enjoyed the writing and the narration. Simon has an amazing way to bring the homicide detectives of Baltimore to life without inserting himself into the story.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Detective Donald Worden. A super smart, resourceful, honorable and world weary detective.


    Which character – as performed by Reed Diamond – was your favorite?

    Detective sergeant Terry McLarney. Diamond chose a great voice for this character.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Having watched Homicide and the Wire I was familiar with a lot of the subject matter in this book, but getting some of the firsthand details made it more real. It gives you a real appreciation for what homicide detectives have to go through each day.


    Any additional comments?

    To me, this is a great example of literary journalism used to tell a story in bold and vivid detail. The storytelling tricks used by Simon never seem too heavy handed, but give a lot of weight to the story. Highly recommended. {Just wish it wasn't abridged}

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    S. Guthrie 01-30-12
    S. Guthrie 01-30-12 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "It's ok"

    I couldn't get into this book. I tried a couple of times and it just didn't hold my attention

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susan Fairmont, West Virginia, United States 06-14-11
    Susan Fairmont, West Virginia, United States 06-14-11 Member Since 2010

    junk queen

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    "Great!"

    I listened to this book on the basis of other reviews. They are right! Homicide has a terrific reader, is well written, and is a blast to listen to. This is a fun, interesting listen that should make us all appreciate detectives and policemen even more.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-10 of 17 results PREVIOUS12NEXT
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  • John
    Crook, United Kingdom
    9/25/11
    Overall
    "short changed"

    the first part of this audiobook does not work. I've told audible and they haven't responded. It didn't work on my PC, it didn't work on my iPod and it didn't work on my iPad. after the usual audible description at the start, it skips to your next audiobook. the other parts worked fine, production seemed professional and well read, but I had no idea what was going on really as the first part didn't work. Please sort it out because I really wanted this book.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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