Well, where should I begin. Having been a frequent visitor to the Las Vegas area for over 40 years now, I have frequently heard stories about how much better things were "when the boys ran the town". One of my best friends made in Vegas was John who worked as a mechanic at the Hilton and other notable casinos. When he first told me over dinner one night on his yacht on Lake Mead, I asked "what kind of cars did you work on?". He laughed, then explained to me how he used to hide in the ceiling above the casino floor observing gambling operations below. Whenever a gambler began winning too much or his methods were suspect, a "mechanic" was sent down to even the score. John's payment was a fixed hourly wage and half of whatever he could recover from a high roller. And, judging from his yacht and sending all his kids through college, he was paid quite well indeed.
This is the Vegas that was dominated by Mob interest in 'The Battle for Las Vegas".
The book is well written and holds your interest throughout, although a bit too often it lags when discussing minor characters or other related personalities. But it is at its best when detailing the crimes and lifestyle of certain criminal residents, especially Tony Spilotro and Frank Rosenthal. And don't forget Oscar Goodman, who I have met several times, and seems to be a good guy. Allen Glick reminds me of a city attorney for a city I worked for, and he apparently had similar morals and pitfalls as well. But, I didn't know Glick lived in La Jolla, a suburb of my home town San Diego.
If you haven'y yet watched the movie "Casino", you might do so before or after you read this book. From all accounts and reviews I have read, along worth talking to some older Vegas residents, the movie was pretty close to the way things actually were.
Well worth reading. Highly recommended.