Whether you grew up watching “Dragnet,” “The Untouchables” and “Kojak” or are a fan of “CSI Miami” and “The Wire,” you certainly recognize the police procedural on film. Oddly enough, the print versions of the mystery subgenre became popular after World War II as a result of films such as “Naked City” and “The Street With No Name,” which tried to depict authentic police work and were made with the cooperation of the boys in blue.
Librarian Nancy Pearl, the author of Book Lust and a regular commentator on NPR’s “Morning Edition” offers these recommendations for some classic police procedurals in print:
The Big Bad City by Ed McBain
Because of the Cats by Nicholas Freeling
The Choirboys by Joseph Wambaugh
The Blessing Way by Tony Hillerman
Until Proven Guilty by J.A. Jance