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A brilliant ‘Mafia’/‘Cosa Nostra’/‘Mob’ book by Selwyn Raab, absolutely brilliant, a journey from Sicily in the early 20th century, through Joe ‘The Boss’ Masseria, Salvatore Maranzano, the Castellammarese War and Charles ‘Lucky Luciano’, through the precursor to, and formation of, New York’s big five Borgatas/Mafia ‘Families’, the Bonnano, Colombo, Gambino, Genovese and Lucchese ‘Families’, their rise, their communal fall and the evidence of resurgence – as of the year of publication of the book, 2005 – first edition; seems that the latest edition was published in 2016. I’ll look into it, see if I need to buy it to get myself brought more up to date – well, 2016, up-to-date ish.

Raab has whetted my appetite. I do want to know the situation now, in 2020. 
The detail that Raab goes into in this book, it is staggering and it renders the book a triumph, it stands as testament to his talent as an investigative reporter/journalist, it confirms his status as one of the foremost authorities on the history of the Mafia.

What next for me in this genre?

I might read Joseph Bonnano’s autobiography, ‘A Man of Honor’, though I appreciate that Bonnano will have left some pertinent stuff out of the book!

I want to read more about the beginning, about the Castellammarese War, the battle between Masseria and Maranzano and the rise of Luciano. 

I’m also interested in reading more about Bonnano, not just his autobiography, Frank Costello of the Luciano/Genovese Families, Vincent ‘The Chin’ Gigante, of the Genovese Family, Joe Massino and Sal (Salvatore) Vitale of the Bonnano Family, Sammy ‘The Bull’ Gravano and John Gotti of the Gambino Family, and I might read about FBI undercover agent, Joe Pistone, aka Donnie Brasco, his undercover name when he infiltrated the Bonnano Family (no, I haven’t seen the film – yet).

I have SO enjoyed reading this book – I’m upset that I’ve finished it. I’ll check out the latest edition…

Thank you, Mr, Raab, for this book!!!

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