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Matthew Scudder

This page lists novels and short story collections that feature the private investigator Matthew Scudder.

The cover images are, when possible, the first US edition and a recent paperback edition.


This page is divided into two sections.

- novels and story collections
- omnibus editions

 

Matthew Scudder: Novels and short story collections

The Sins of the Fathers

Lawrence Block

Dell

1976

A Matthew Scudder novel.

"A pretty young girl is butchered in her Greenwich Village apartment. The prime suspect, a minister's son, is found dead in his jail cell. As far as the NYPD is concerned, the case is closed. But ex-cop Matt Scudder, is persuaded to look into the case by the dead girl's father. And suddenly he's up to his neck in sleaze and corruption, phoney religious cults and murderous lust. In New York's underbelly, the children have no choice but to pay the price for their parent's most unspeakable sins."
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In the Midst of Death

Lawrence Block

Dell

1976

A Matthew Scudder novel.

"When hard-drinking ex-cop Matt Scudder is roped into an NYPD internal investigation, one detective ends up in the slammer on a murder charge. Jerry seems as clean as the world would like him to be, but Scudder isn't too sure. After all, Jerry was only too keen to dish the dirt on his former colleagues as a way of saving his own skin... The third novel in the explosive Matt Scudder series from a master of the crime thriller genre."
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Time to Murder and Create

Lawrence Block

Dell

1977

A Matthew Scudder novel.

"The Spinner is dead, bashed on the head and left to rot in a river. There are three suspects. Henry Prager has paid enough for the sins of his daughter, and begs Scudder not to destroy his shaky business or the fragile girl's reformed life. Beverly Etheridge cheerfully admitted all the sex acts Scudder had seen in the photos and she promises to show him a few more. Theodore Huysendahl offers Scudder enough money to choke even a blackmailer's greed, a proposition no sane man would turn down. Scudder's code of honour demands that one of them will pay."
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A Stab in the Dark

Lawrence Block

Arbor House

1981

A Matthew Scudder novel.

"Nine long years have passed since the killer last struck. Nine years since eight helpless young women were hideously slaughtered by an ice-pick wielding maniac. Now hard-drinking ex-cop and unlicensed investigator Matt Scudder has been hired to bring the murderer to justice at last. Relentlessly, Scudder follows an aging trail of blood towards a psychopath either long gone, long dead or very patiently awaiting the chance to kill again."
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Eight Million Ways to Die

Lawrence Block

Arbor House

1982

A Matthew Scudder novel.

"Staying alive is never easy; not for the prostitute who is slashed to ribbons, nor for the pimp named Chance who is betting his life that the broken down investigator Matt Scudder can find her killer."
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When the Sacred Ginmill Closes

Lawrence Block

Arbor House

1986

A Matthew Scudder novel.

"Scudder is a witness to a heist in an illegal drinking den, and the owners would like him to find the culprits, while another witness wants him to investigate the murder of his wife."
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Out on the Cutting Edge

Lawrence Block

William Morrow

1989

A Matthew Scudder novel.

"Matthew Scudder understands the futility of his search for a longtime missing Midwestern innocent who wanted to be an actress in the vast meat-grinder called New York City. But her frantic father heard that Scudder is the best - and now the ex-cop-turned-P.I. is scouring the hell called Hell's Kitchen looking for anything that might resemble a lead. And in this neighborhood of the lost, he's finding love - and death - in the worst possible places."
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A Ticket to the Boneyard

Lawrence Block

William Morrow

1990

A Matthew Scudder novel.

"The streets of New York are never safe, but the release of James Leo Motley, a psychopath who went down swearing revenge on PI Matt Scudder, means death is out there. No one is safe: friends, lovers, or just those unfortunate enough to share the Scudder name. Soon the streets are littered with the dying and Matt begins to question his new found sobriety."
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A Dance at the Slaughterhouse

Lawrence Block

William Morrow

1991

A Matthew Scudder novel.

"To Matt Scudder, no one can rise above the law. But when the ex-cop is privately hired to investigate the murder of a beautiful pregnant woman, he finds himself pushed to the limits of his beliefs. With every step he takes, Scudder discovers darker and more depraved secrets. Human trafficking, snuff films, murderous fetishes: the light of humanity seems all but extinguished. In the seedy underworld of New York City, nothing is sacred and anything can be bought."
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A Walk Among the Tombstones

Lawrence Block

William Morrow

1992

A Matthew Scudder novel.

"Big-time dope dealer Kenan Khoury is a wealthy man. One fine spring morning his wife Francine is kidnapped and a ransom is demanded. Kenan pays and his wife is duly returned to him-in - small pieces in the boot of an abandoned car. PI Matt Scudder is left to speculate on the motives of a very unusual kidnapper. And soon he is on the trail of a pair of ruthlessly sadistic psychopaths whose cruel games have only just begun."
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The Devil Knows You're Dead

Lawrence Block

William Morrow

1993

A Matthew Scudder novel.

"A deranged derelict, a crazed Vietnam vet, has been arrested for gunning down successful young lawyer Glenn Holtzmann at a corner phone booth on Eleventh Avenue -- and the suspect's brother wants p.i. Matthew Scudder to prove the madman innocent. But Scudder's curiosity and dedication are leading him to dark, unexplored places in his own heart...and to passions and secrets that could destroy everything be loves."
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A Long Line of Dead Men

Lawrence Block

William Morrow

1994

A Matthew Scudder novel.

"In Manhattan thirty-one men have been meeting annually for years. Their private club meets only to record the passage of time and give toast to the joys of life. But suddenly they are dying at an alarming rate and one of their number begins to suspect that something more than bad luck is at work. For private eye Matt Scudder, the case is one of the most baffling he's faced. Can the deaths really be a bizarre series of suicides and violent accidents? Or is there is a pattern behind the random play of tragedy? Is there a murderer at work and can he be stopped before the victims run out?"
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Even the Wicked

Lawrence Block

William Morrow

1997

A Matthew Scudder novel.

"Matt Scudder is drawn into the case of a serial killer targeting criminals who the law cannot touch. The Will of the People, egged on by a vitriolic newspaper columnist, kills a sex offender, a mobster and a racist cult leader, despite their seemingly impenetrable security. Then Scudder gets a call from a hot-shot attorney, the recipient of the Will's latest letter."
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Everybody Dies

Lawrence Block

William Morrow

1998

A Matthew Scudder novel.

"Matt Scudder is well and truly off the booze, but he still spends time with some of his old drinking pals including Mick Ballou - an Irish American who operates more often than not on the wrong side of the law. Mick is worried - a garage full of bourbon has been ripped off and two of his henchman killed in cold blood. Somebody is muscling in on Micks patch and he wants Scudder to look into it. Matt reluctantly agrees to take a look but won't promise a result. On the way home he is attacked by somebody wants him off Mick's case. The following weekend Matt's mentor from AA is shot dead at point blank range when Scudder is in the men's room of the restaurant where the 2 had met for dinner - Matt knows it should have been him. Now the case is personal and no matter that he's warned off by his ex-colleagues in the NYPD and his wife Elaine, this is one he is going to see out to the end."
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Hope to Die

Lawrence Block

William Morrow

2001

A Matthew Scudder novel.

"Byrne and Susan Hollander stroll home from a concert on a fine summer's evening in New York. Some hours later, their daughter Kristin arrives home to discover her parents brutally killed and the house ransacked. She also finds she is now a very young millionaire. A few days later the police trace the two killers to an apartment in Coney Island, and both are dead. One killed the other before turning the gun on himself - at least that's the way it looks. So that's another case solved. But for Matt Scudder it's only the beginning. The more he looks into it, the more things look wrong to him. There's a murderer out there, and he's just getting started. Pitted in a deadly game of cat and mouse, Scudder is up against the most resourceful and diabolical killer of his career."
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All the Flowers Are Dying

Lawrence Block

William Morrow

2005

A Matthew Scudder novel.

"Matt Scudder - former cop and alcoholic - has had enough. He plans to wind up his investigations and concentrate on AA meetings and his lovely wife, Elaine. But he agrees to take one last case. Louise, a single woman, has finally met a man she likes, but she fears he's keeping something from her and so hires Matt to check him out. But before Matt can track down the real identity of Louise's lover, a horrific murder is committed - and the only forensic evidence links the killer to Elaine. Matt is convinced that the killer is an old foe of his, a man who terrorised and murdered his way through New York until Matt stood in his way."
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A Drop of the Hard Stuff

Lawrence Block

Mulholland Books

2011

A Matthew Scudder novel.

"Matt Scudder and Jack Ellery were at school together but never exactly friends. Twenty years later, when Scudder was a detective and Jack was standing on the other side of the one-way glass in a police line-up, it was clear their lives had taken very different paths. What they shared, however, was a battle with alcohol. Now Jack is on the ninth step of the AA program and it's time to make amends to the people he's wronged over the years because of his addiction. But when he ends up shot in the head, and it's clear that stirring up the past was not such a good idea, it's up to Scudder to find the killer."
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The Night and the Music

Lawrence Block

Telemachus Press

2011

Matthew Scudder short stories.

"Scudder has starred in short fiction as well, and itís all here, from a pair of late-70s novelettes (Out the Window and A Candle for the Bag Lady) through By the Dawnís Early Light (Edgar) and The Merciful Angel of Death (Shamus), all the way to One Last Night at Groganís, a moving and elegiac story never before published. It was short fiction that kept the series alive on the several occasions when the flow of novels was interrupted, and short stories that took Scudder down different paths and showed us unmapped portions of his world. Some of these stories appeared in such magazines as Alfred Hitchcock, Ellery Queen, and Playboy. The title vignette, The Night and the Music, was written for a NYC jazz festival program; another, Mick Ballou Looks at the Blank Screen, has appeared only as the text of a limited-edition broadside. And the final story, putting Matt and Elaine at a table with Mick and Kristin Ballou in a shuttered Hellís Kitchen saloon, has its first appearance in this volume."
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Matthew Scudder: Omnibus editions

The Matt Scudder Mysteries

Lawrence Block

Orion

1997

A Matthew Scudder omnibus.

Brings together the first three Matthew Scudder novels: Sins of the Fathers, In the Midst of Death, and Time to Murder and Create.

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The Matt Scudder Mysteries 2

Lawrence Block

Orion

1997

A Matthew Scudder omnibus.

Brings together three Matthew Scudder novels: A Stab in the Dark, Eight Million Ways to Die, and When the Sacred Ginmill Closes.

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Last updated February 2018