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Mischief has the Deaf Man as its main character and what a main character he is. Is there a smarter character, hero or villain, in crime fiction than the Deaf Man? No way. (Is he McBain's DARK alter ego, as Hope and Carella are his "good" alter ego?) As per usual, bad things are happening in the big bad city. But the Deaf Man creates special problems for the 87th. He provides (and harrasses) Carella and his mates with clues etc. to his upcoming nefarious action, which will take place on a grand scale. But the best part of this story concerns a black rap band and its leader--no p.c. condescension in his treatment of the band, the rock concert of which they are to be a major act and their plot action, just honest, good and accurate writing about our "in trouble" society and about the individuals whose stories actually make this society come to life. A killing near the end of the story takes your breath away and gives much "haunting" food for thought. Much mischief in the city. Cops really are having trouble capturing and containing the bad guys. No plot spoilers here. Read the book. It is great.