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Five Families: The Rise, Decline, and…
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Five Families: The Rise, Decline, and Resurgence of America's Most… (2005 original; edició 2016)

de Selwyn Raab (Autor)

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400748,375 (3.72)1
For half a century, the American Mafia outwitted, outmaneuvered, and outgunned the FBI and other police agencies, wreaking unparalleled damages to America's social fabric and business enterprises while emerging as the nation's most formidable crime empire. The vanguard of this criminal juggernaut is still led by the Mafia's most potent and largest borgatas: New York's Five Families. Five Families is the vivid story of the rise and fall of New York's premier dons from Lucky Luciano to Paul Castellano to John Gotti and more. This definitive history brings the reader right up to the possible resurgence of the Mafia as the FBI and local law-enforcement agencies turn their attention to homeland security and away from organized crime.… (més)
Membre:nasmithsonian
Títol:Five Families: The Rise, Decline, and Resurgence of America's Most Powerful Mafia Empires
Autors:Selwyn Raab (Autor)
Informació:A Thomas Dunne Book for St. Martin's Griffin (2016), Edition: Reprint, 816 pages
Col·leccions:La teva biblioteca
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Etiquetes:No n'hi ha cap

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Five Families: The Rise, Decline, and Resurgence of America's Most Powerful Mafia Empires de Selwyn Raab (2005)

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Es mostren 1-5 de 7 (següent | mostra-les totes)
Quick impressions: Overall, not a bad book. It just tries to do way too much in one volume. Also, since some of the mob family stories can overlap, you do get some repetition. In addition, the narrative is not always linear, so you may end up going back and forth in the history. Still, for what it tries to do, be a comprehensive history of all five Mafia families in NYC, it is pretty good. It does have some interesting parts but overall very dense and to be honest a bit too long. I was glad I got this as an audiobook, which I think makes it a bit easier to read. I think I would have preferred to just read smaller individual books on each family, but as I said, this was OK.

(Full review in my blog later) ( )
  bloodravenlib | Aug 17, 2020 |
Letto fino agli anni 80, poi il mio interesse è calato.
La prima metà di questo libro racconta la nascita dell’organizzazione criminale chimata Cosa Nostra grazie al genio di Lucky Luciano, che con le sue regole ferree è diventata la piaga degli Stati Uniti dagli anni venti agli anni ottanta, quando le forze dell’ordine hanno iniziato a prendere sul serio il fenomeno. Si raccontano anche gli albori siciliani che somigliano al banditismo sardo e di altri paesi vessati da continue conquiste. Una nascita che potrebbe definirsi nobile che poi è degenerata.
C’era scetticismo, non si credeva fosse possibile che esistesse una tale organizzazione. Solo in pochi tentarono di far aprire gli occhi ai piani alti, dove troneggiava Edgar J. Hoover, sordo alle richieste di intervento. Preferendo gli arresti facili, i risultati certi, a indagini lunghe e senza sicurezza di risultati. Impegnandosi a fondo e impiegando le preziose risorse contro una minaccia peggiore (secondo loro): I Comunisti!
A quanto dice Raab, l’FBI fino agli anni ottanta era praticamente una barzelletta. Con Task Force che non avevano nulla da fare e impegnavano il tempo a far cruciverba.

Tra intercettazioni, folklore e aneddoti Raab ridimensiona Al Capone e ci spiega chi erano i veri pezzi grossi. I padri delle cinque Famiglie di New York.

Affascinante leggerlo dopo aver seguito tre stagioni del telefilm della HBO: “Boardwalk Empire”, dove compaiono molti dei personaggi citati, romanzati, tra i quali spiccano i giovani Luciano e Capone — qui agli inizi di carriera — ma anche Joe Masseria, protagonista della guerra dei castellamaresi. Guerra che causò l’ascesa al potere di Luciano e in seguito la nascita della cupola, che servì a metter fine alle guerre tra borgate.
Interessanti anche i risvolti storici della nascita del crimine organizzato siciliano in Italia che a quanto pare si deve ancora a Luciano, che esiliato in Sicilia insegnò alle cosche locali quel sistema che poi avrebbe funzionato per anni, dove il gruppo centrale del potere: la commissione, rimane intoccabile grazie a una gestione oculata delle sostituzioni degli uomini venuti a mancare per svariati motivi, rendendo difficile — se non impossibile — distruggere l'organizzazione dalle fondamenta. Una vera organizzazione “politica” del potere criminale.



( )
  Atticus06 | Jun 9, 2020 |
Started out great and has plenty of good information, but just gets seriously bogged down in the details and feels very repetitive and quite a drag. Couldn’t even finish it, I just got bored of it. ( )
  nova_mjohnson | Dec 21, 2019 |
The history of the mafia was interesting, but I stopped reading when it turned into conspiracy theory central. ( )
  erinster | Mar 29, 2013 |
Bonnano, Gambino, Colombo, Genovese and Lucchese. The Five Families.

They have infected public consciousness through media and academia – often being presented in a positive light. Investigative reporter Selwyn Raab covered organized crime for the New York Times for 25 years. His 2005 tome Five Families: The Rise, Decline, and Resurgence of America’s Most Powerful Mafia Empires chronicles the elusive and secretive American Mafia’s history in New York City. Raab brilliantly weaves his first drafts of Mafia history with other contemporary media accounts, FBI and court transcripts, interviews and secondary sources to form a cogent, well-written and gripping account that takes the reader inside the five powerful New York City borgatas.

The result of Raab’s tapestry is a raw, uncompromising and sometimes disturbing comprehensive history of the New York Cosa Nostra. The work refuses to sugarcoat the truth about the mob: “In real life, no mafiosi are good guys.”

Much of Five Families draws on materials related to years of post-Hoover FBI investigations, wiretaps and debriefing interviews with mobsters turned witnesses. Raab relates harrowing tales of secret nighttime FBI break-ins and buggings of popular mob hangouts. He expertly intertwines FBI wiretap transcripts and interviews to provide a full accounting of the FBI work during the 1980s and 1990s. While much of the text relies on FBI material, Raab convincingly brings the reader into the world of Cosa Nostra. Early on he compellingly narrates the ceremony surrounding mobster Tony Accetturo’s ascension to the status of “soldier” – a “made man”.

The book spends little time discussing what organized crime historian Howard Abadinsky calls “alluring myths about the Mafia”. At the same time it demonstrates just how culturally ingrained these myths are through adulatory remarks from FBI agents concerning certain individual mobsters. Raab does specifically mention The Godfather films, Prizzi’s Honor, Analyze This, The Gang That Couldn’t Shoot Straight, and Bugsy as portraying “mobsters as high-living, lovable rogues”. He also singles out The Sopranos as “a prototype of show business’s vicarious flirtation with the Mafia.” By and large he uses the short segment dedicated to popular portrayals of the mob to bolster his over-arching emphasis of the cancerous nature of the American Mafia.

Perhaps the most intriguing aspect of Five Families is found within one word of its subtitle, “resurgence”. Raab describes a shift in FBI priorities after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Following two decades of ingenious investigation and prosecution the Justice Department had the mob in its death throes. Coming into the new century the American Cosa Nostra was widely considered decapitated, in disarray, and a shadow of its former self. 9/11 changed the game and Raab shows considerable evidence that the Mafia is adapting, as it always has, and, indeed, thriving as the FBI pulls its boot back from the mob’s throat.

Five Families is a history book and as a history book it excels. Leaving social commentary, for the most part, to others, Raab takes the reader from the mob’s beginnings in Sicily to the mean streets of 1930s New York City and the rise of Lucky Luciano. He comprehensively covers the rise and fall of the important dons following on in Luciano’s tradition. John Gotti, Vito Genovese, Carlo Gambino, Joe Massino, “Chin” Gigante and the bloody reign of “Gaspipe” Casso over the Lucchese are vividly depicted through Raab’s experienced pen. Combining meticulous research with professional experience Raab shatters the mythos surrounding Cosa Nostra and sears the reality of the Mafia into the permanence of the written word.
  IvoShandor | Mar 11, 2011 |
Es mostren 1-5 de 7 (següent | mostra-les totes)
''Five Families'' is the finest Mafia history we're likely to see for a good long while.
 

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For half a century, the American Mafia outwitted, outmaneuvered, and outgunned the FBI and other police agencies, wreaking unparalleled damages to America's social fabric and business enterprises while emerging as the nation's most formidable crime empire. The vanguard of this criminal juggernaut is still led by the Mafia's most potent and largest borgatas: New York's Five Families. Five Families is the vivid story of the rise and fall of New York's premier dons from Lucky Luciano to Paul Castellano to John Gotti and more. This definitive history brings the reader right up to the possible resurgence of the Mafia as the FBI and local law-enforcement agencies turn their attention to homeland security and away from organized crime.

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