Cohen persuasively achieves his objective by recounting the stories he heard from his father, who grew up with his friends (including broadcaster Larry King) at the end of the gangster era in Brooklyn, finding heroes in men like "Kid Twist" Reles and Bugsy Goldstein. The intriguing tales Cohen heard, although slightly embellished over time, offer a rare glimpse into a world that can barely be related to today's generation of Jews living in America. These Jews went to prison for committing violent felonies, not white-collar crimes, and got the chair for it. Inspired by their stories, Cohen went on to conduct extensive research through old journals, police records, and court reports to uncover the real stories behind the tales he heard as a boy.
Cohen warmly discusses his father's fascination with these powerful, charismatic figures, and openly envies his experiences at a time before Jewish people lived under the debilitating shadow of the Holocaust. In addition, Cohen shows compassion for the need of his father's generation to look up to "someone who gives them the illusion of strength." --Jeremy Storey --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
I expected this book to be as good as "The Avengers" which was written by the same author. I didn't find the subject as appealing to me so perhaps it is only that I'm much... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Jimmie R. Berry
wonderful history that most Jews and non-Jews had no knowledge previously Great readPublished 3 months ago by clifford deitell
This book is a waste of money and space. Save your money and read the Godfather again.Published 3 months ago by Miss Knowitall.
Great read and my go-to gift for all the Tough Jews in my life. Colorful stories vividly told. One of the best gangster books and should be part of the library for anyone... Read morePublished 5 months ago by J. Khuzami
As a writer, Rich Cohen is, for me, one of the writers I read and say, "Man, I will never even be in the same ballpark as this guy. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Amy Newman Smith