A sub-genre of the mystery which features realistic depictions of official police investigations. They emphasize everything that the classic English Drawing Room mystery does not: teamwork, methodical pavement-pounding, lucky breaks, administrative hassles, and endless paperwork. Procedurals have a working-class, down-to-earth feel, full of irony, profanity, sick humor, and tragedy.

The first police procedural novel was Lawrence Treat's "V As In Victim" in 1945. Other well-known police procedurals include "The Mugger" by Ed McBain, "One Police Plaza" by William Caunitz, and "Prime Suspect 3" by Linda LaPlante. The police procedural has also thrived on television, with shows like "Dragnet", "NYPD Blue", and "Homicide: Life on the Street".

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