Start reading The Hit Man on your Kindle in under a minute. Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Enter a promotion code
or gift card

Try it free

Sample the beginning of this book for free

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Anybody can read Kindle books—even without a Kindle device—with the FREE Kindle app for smartphones, tablets and computers.
Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Image not available

To view this video download Flash Player


The Hit Man: A True Story of Murder, Redemption and the Melrose Diner [Kindle Edition]

Ralph Cipriano
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $12.99
Kindle Price: $7.99
You Save: $5.00 (38%)


Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition $7.99  
Paperback $11.39  
Big Spring Books
Editors' Picks in Spring Releases
Ready for some fresh reads? Browse our picks for Big Spring Books to please all kinds of readers.

Book Description

How a poor kid from South Philly became a Mafia hit man, survived three gunshots to the head to become a federally protected witness who brought down the Philly mob … and then reinvented himself as a wildly successful car salesman.

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Ralph Cipriano is a former newspaper reporter for the Albany Times Union, Los Angeles Times and Philadelphia Inquirer who now works as an author and freelance journalist. He’s won more than a dozen national and state journalism awards, including a 2010 Sigma Delta Chi Award for Excellence in Journalism and a 2011 finalist for the Gerald Loeb Awards. In a career that spans 36 years, he’s exposed corruption in local governments, police departments and Ivy League football, as well as lavish spending by the Philadelphia archdiocese of the Catholic Church.

Product Details

  • File Size: 792 KB
  • Print Length: 146 pages
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00737RGYQ
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #103,807 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
  •  Would you like to give feedback on images?

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars OMG! January 31, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
WOW - Picked this up and read it all in one day. I never would have suspected that this went on in this day and age and yet it's so believable. I love a good hard-knock story anyway, but I'll never look at my car salesman the same way again. It starts out pretty gritty, and I had to cover my eyes in a few places ;) , but in the end, you really end up rooting for the guy.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Buy it! February 5, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
South Philadelphia native Johnny Veasey was a 27-year-old recovering drug addict, on parole, newly recruited member of the mob and soon-to-be murderer. He also was a volunteer assistant scout leader of Troop 228 in South Philadelphia. This paradox is what draws you in and takes hold of you throughout this true story.

Ralph Cipriano and Dave Schratwieser's story about Veasey is disturbing and affirming as the story unfolds about the life of this poor boy growing up on the streets and neighborhoods of South Philadelphia with no real hope after a childhood filled with abuse and lack of parental guidance. The authors skillfully take the readers on this journey to a surprising end.

Once you start reading this story about "The Hitman" you won't be able...or stop.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Real life a better read than fiction February 2, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Great read. I was pulled in by the charming car salesman of the prologue. Then this book took me on an unbelievable ride. The depths he descended to made the idea of redemption seem - simply- impossible. But through beautiful storytelling- you see another person emerge and start to believe that it is absolutely possible. Loved it!
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Christmas Gift !!!!! January 20, 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I saw this Book on Amazon the Week before Christmas My Mom Loves to read anything on this subject. we grew up in South Philly and consider it to be the best Place for so many reasons.
I gave the Book to her on Christmas Morning and it was Done in Two Days she said it was one of Her Favorite Gifts

I will always search Amazon first for future Reading!!!!
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Exciting story, good writing, a little covered ground. November 12, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
At its essence, this is the story of the junkie turned Mafia hitman. John Veasey is a drug addicted bully bouncing between prison and manual labor jobs when he is asked by Frank Martines to help kill rival gang members. The request is an illustration of just how disorganized and decimated the Philadelphia mafia became after the Nicky Scarfo trials in the 80's(documented superbly in Blood and Honor by George Anastasia) and subsequent convictions in the early 90's based upon the testimony of Phil Leonneti and George Fresolone(who wrote Blood Oath, another sterling book). After Scarfo went to prison, John Stanfa brought in guys like Veasey to do his shooting. Veasey had no experience with the organization. Veasey easily transitions from small time hood to mafia hitman and quickly kills two rival gangsters and endears himself to his superiors. However, Veasey isn't cut out for being a killer, his conscience nags at him and his brother convinces him to become a confidential informant. Due to his personality and inability to grasp the nuances of being a "made man", he is marked for death and shot in the head by his superiors but survives to testify against them.

For anyone who has read prior stories on the Philadelphia Mafia or is interested in the makeup of modern mob hitmen in general, this book is informative and fun to read. The story is well written and exciting. It fits nicely into a group of books on the same subject and is really a bookend to George Anastasia's book, "The Goodfella Tapes" as this book covers much of the ground covered by Anastasia. I would have liked more additional information previously unknown about the Stanfa group before Veasey's testimony became public. This book essentially fleshes out Veasey's testimony and tells his version of events. That being said, its an excellent book which readers of the genre will thoroughly enjoy.
Was this review helpful to you?
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Hit Man with Nine Lives February 1, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed Cipriano's account of the unbelievable tale of John Veasey. This true story of the charismatic ex-mobster who helped bring down the Philadelphia mob is a story you can't put down.
Was this review helpful to you?
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars what a story. wow April 24, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Great story. Could not put this one down. Easy read, chock full of great tales from the underworld and Veasey's redemption. How does former agent out this guy and get away with it. Like to see the story the big screen. Cusack could play this guy. Where's Will Smith and his movie company on this, he's a Philly guy right. He could make this movie rock. Philly story, Philly producer, shoot this in Philly. Hope somebody picks this up. Well written story by Cipriano and Schratwieser. Look forward to more from these guys.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I heard about the book on Preston and Steve, and picked it up the same day. From the depths of drug addiction, the brutality of the Mafia, to successful car salesmen this account of Veasey's life reads like a Hollywood movie. I'm almost ashamed to find Veasey to be such a likeable and charismatic person despite the horrible crimes he has committed. The book is a well-written page turner, direct and to-the-point without any fluff. I recommend this book to anyone interested in organized crime, Philadelphia natives, and authors planning to write a biography in the near future. It's great to see such a quality book come out of Philadelphia. Very cool!
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Melrose Diner
.....great book, knowing its a true story you have passion for the person growing up with all the setbacks in his life. Most people take their good life for granite.
Published 2 months ago by dealertrademan
5.0 out of 5 stars The Hit Man: A True Story of Murder, Redemption and the Melrose
A very interesting book. Very thought provoking. It is hard to image living that kind of life. Well written and truly a book that cannot be put down.
Published 3 months ago by Francis Mazzeo
5.0 out of 5 stars none
Ues my son loved this book he read it in just a few days. Just a great book all around
Published 3 months ago by susan cudahy
5.0 out of 5 stars A page turner
I bought this for my Dad because he loves mafia books. Christmas he started reading and he finished in the evening. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Amazon for Most Everything
5.0 out of 5 stars Surreal
I am amazed at how this book sucked my attention right many emotions and living just minutes away...makes me feel like I lived during this part of some kind of history. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Lauren Abel
3.0 out of 5 stars A Mutt gets Made--you get ripped off
Just goes to show how far in disarray, the Philly Mob was after the disastrous Nicodemo Scarfo rein, when a "mutt" with zero Mob background, not a full blood Italian--zero Mob... Read more
Published 8 months ago by msculati
4.0 out of 5 stars True to Life
It was a real page turner. I remember reading about the Veasey brothers in the news. Having lived in South Philadelphia 'til I was seven years of age I was familiar with some of... Read more
Published 9 months ago by Irenecats
1.0 out of 5 stars Hit Me
Slow as syrup; I had to push myself to the end but maybe because I knew the conclusion. It read somewhat like a documentary lacking in personal detail.
Published 10 months ago by M. D. McDonough
4.0 out of 5 stars A wild life...
John-John Veasey is a dangerous man. When he sets his mind to something it almost always gets done. This includes tracking down rival mobsters for execution as well as changing his... Read more
Published 12 months ago by Michael Zilis
3.0 out of 5 stars Not good or bad
A little self serving and kind of glosses over murder... Murder is a terrible crime that shouldn't be tolerated by society.
Published 12 months ago by Tampa Mike
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?


Topic From this Discussion
The Hit Man
We also will have a Spanish version of the Hit Man available shortly.
Feb 7, 2012 by Ralph Cipriano |  See all 10 posts
Have something you'd like to share about this product?
Start a new discussion
First post:
Prompts for sign-in

Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions

Look for Similar Items by Category