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Black Widow: A Novel Hardcover – December 26, 2007


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury USA; First Edition edition (December 26, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1596913894
  • ISBN-13: 978-1596913899
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 1.2 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,557,489 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Unbelievable characters and implausible situations undermine Vincent's second novel, set seven years after the events in his debut, Mafia Summer (2005). Lt. Vinny Vesta—Hell's Kitchen gang leader turned maverick fighter pilot—is enjoying the summer of 1957 stationed at the Jacksonville Naval Air Station pursuing the three Fs: fun, flying and fornication. But his hedonistic existence is temporarily sidetracked when a fellow aviator is killed while practicing formation aerobatics over the Atlantic. Ordered to shepherd the remains to the deceased pilot's wife in California, Vesta is shocked when he encounters a redheaded femme fatale, Caitlin Pennington, who, instead of expressing grief for her recently deceased husband, invites Vesta into her bed. After a torrid affair, Vesta begins to feel the wrath of Pennington's overly protective father—the powerful lawyer for a Los Angeles mob boss—who will do anything to keep his daughter's budding Hollywood career on track. Featuring such real-life mob figures as Vito Genovese and Frank Costello in peripheral roles, Vincent's newest isn't so much a down-and-dirty gangland thriller as it is an unlikely love story with crime-fiction underpinnings. (Jan.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

“Vincent doesn’t seem interested in imitating earlier Mafia stories. This one finds it own little niche in the Mob genre.”—Booklist

“Breathless… Entertaining… Loaded with B-movie appeal… In this...adventure, Vincent brings back hero Vinny Vesta, but this time he's gotten his tough-guy protagonist out of New York City’s Hell’s Kitchen and into the Navy.”—Kirkus

Praise for Mafia Summer:

“With its pedigree, it just may be the perfect summer book.”—New York Post, “Required Reading”

“Influenced more by Billy Bathgate than by The Godfather…Sweet, affectionate, and bloody: a glance backward to a well-spent youth.”—Kirkus Reviews

More About the Author

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Customer Reviews

The action is fast.
Richard L. King
An exceptional blend of background, characters and action that fascinated me from cover to cover.
Thomas N. Warner
It doesn't happen, and there's nothing anywhere NEAR as interesting as that in this thing.
Brian Baker

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By James on January 29, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I loved Vincent's first book, Mafia Summer, and was thrilled to find out he wrote a sequel.

The setting this time is the late fifties, an era he captures perfectly.
Vincent's hero, Vinnie, has left Little Italy and the mob behind (or so he thinks) and is now a fighter pilot based in Jacksonville, Florida. The flying scenes feel completely authentic (not surprising since Vincent was a fighter pilot) but so do the scenes of drinking and womanizing. It must have been a wonderful time to be a Naval Aviator.

The Black Widow turns out to be a smart, beautiful actress named Caitlin who Vinnie falls hopelessly in love with. The scenes between the two of them are hot, filled with sex and well, more sex.

Caitlin's father is a rich, powerful, mob connected lawyer who hates Navy pilots and vows to break them up.

But Daddy is not the only one with mob connections. Vinnie grew up on the streets and still considered to be part of the Family.

And this is where the book gets really interesting; mixing actual Mafia history (like the birth of Las Vegas) with Vinnie fighting to keep the lady he loves.

I really liked this book. Vincent deftly mixes action, humor, romance and suspense in a fast, fun read.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Richard L. King on January 30, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This novel is terrific! I was so engaged in the story that after three Starbucks concoctions i was still not ready to close the hardback.

The story is incredibly detailed and revealing in regards to the shadowy history and impact of the mafia in a man's life. So captivating that it almost seems a true life experience, which it very well might be. Indeed, most authors say "you can only write about what you know."

The plot is sophisticated. The action is fast. And the sex is hammering. This book is a must for those who have endured the "testosterone challenged" stories overrated by so many book clubs.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Christopher A. Olstad on February 5, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Black Widow is more than an action adventure novel about a Navy Fighter Pilot. Although it's fresh and absorbing background propels us though Jacksonville, New York, Las Vegas, Hollywood and Havana, it's the fascinating love story between Lt. Vinny Vesta and Kat Pennington that makes the novel a winner. He is the son of a deceased Mafia father, (from Mafia Summer). She is the widow of a squadron-mate who was killed while flying on Vesta's wing and the daughter of a controlling Mafia lawyer who hates Vesta. The combination of elements makes it the best book I've read in a long time. Don't miss it!
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By Gene on September 9, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I loved Mafia Summer, but this book was over the top in the romance dept. Something that could be accomplished with saying that they met and had a great weekend, had a blow by blow account of their meeting and I really didn't care what they ate at the restaurants. It almost seemed like a different author wrote this book. I wouldn't recommend spending the money on this one.
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