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When the Mob Ran Vegas: Stories of Money, Mayhem and Murder [Kindle Edition]

Steve Fischer
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (110 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Vegas like you’ve never seen, tales you’ve never heard – until now. Sizzling, behind-the-headline stories about the men, the Mob, movie stars, and missing money that made ‘50s and ‘60s Vegas such a hot spot in the Nevada desert.
Frank Sinatra, Jerry Lewis, Meyer Lansky, Marilyn Monroe, Howard Hughes, Buddy Hackett, Bugsy Siegel, Momo Giancana, and hundreds more Mobsters and movie stars.

Editorial Reviews


Benjamin Franklin Awards

Silver - AudioBook Nonfiction

Judge's comment: "Stroke of genius in audiobooks. The author reads like he's sitting down across from you at the table in the coffee shop. I loved it!" --Independent Book Publisher's Association

USA Book News Award

Winner - AudioBook Nonfiction --USA Book News

Book of the Year

Winner - AudioBook/Spoken Word CD --ForeWord Magazine

About the Author

What is it about Las Vegas that captivates us historians? Is it how the skim worked at the Stardust and how millions of dollars walked out the door uncounted? Or what really happened when Frank Sinatra threw a chair at the casino boss of the Sands? Did you ever hear the story about how some very bad Vegas guys rigged the gin rummy games at the Friars Club and took a bunch of famous people to the cleaners? Howard Hughes had some weird notions about the Silver Slipper and put his money where his paranoia was. It’s all Vegas, and it is fascinating history. Vegas in the ‘50s and ‘60s was indeed another world. Those were the days when small-time gamblers like me, in town with my wife for a weekend of shows and great food, could ride down the elevator at one of the Strip hotels with Lucille Ball, have an A table at the Versailles Room at the Riviera to see Rowan and Martin, with Edie Adams opening, and laugh until it hurt when Buddy Hackett played the old Congo Room at the Sahara. Behind the scenes, the Mob ran Vegas in those days. And stories abound. Through years of study and interviews and just talking to people from all strata of Las Vegas comes this book, a glimpse into the money, mayhem, and murders of early Vegas.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1090 KB
  • Print Length: 240 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Berkline Press (December 30, 2008)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B001OOLE7E
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #112,035 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars good info, odd structure September 29, 2006
As much as I enjoyed the stories and histories, I found the organization of the stories was lacking in clarity. Stories jumped from 1930s to th 1970s then back to the 1940s without a sense of continuity. Many times, I had to look back at other chapters to get a sense of what time I was reading about. Other then that disconnect, the stories were fascinating, the tone was clearly that of someone excited about the topic, and a breezy read. For someone that grew up in post-mob Vegas, it was an eye opening look at the city just before my time....
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A bit light on facts April 24, 2008
This book was recommended to me by a bookstore in Vegas. They didn't have it in stock so I purchased it from Amazon on my return to Australia.

While I found this book very informative and factual, it is rather repetitive at times and I found myself asking, "didn't I just read that?" It is apparent in some sections that the information is fairly scrambled and does not flow.

This book is more or less a summary of the days when the mob ran Vegas, as opposed to a detailed account of this era.

Of note, even though the book contains 240 pages, the font is somewhat larger than most books and can be read in a matter of hours.

Overall, I enjoyed reading this book and would recommend it to anyone who is after a brief run down on the mob and the days they ran Vegas.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic accounts of mob dealings December 1, 2009
Steve does a great job sharing some detailed secrets and lesser known exploits of bizarre mob behavior- including the seemingly innocent who partnered with them. I especially loved the coverage of Frank Sinatra (what an ego-maniac) and the Stardust story, which had some nice details that I hadn't heard before. Great and entertaining reading!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Wouldn't recommend March 24, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I found this book to be very dull, and not particularly well written. It has a few interesting stories, but also many of the stories are about the authors family trips to Vegas, seem to have no point other than that the author wanted to tell you about the time he saw Jerry Lewis (or whoever) in a coffee shop, and have little or nothing to do with the subject of the book. This is especially obvious to words the end, where it seems these stories were added as filler. It's also obvious the author is not a professional. The story jumps around a lot, is convoluted and confusing in parts, and often you find the exact same sentences, word for word in different parts of the book describing people or events, like they were copy & pasted to save time.

There are many other books about Vegas and the mafia that are much better. As an avid reader, who is especially interested in this subject, I can honestly say this is one of the worst books I've ever read on any subject. Don't waste your time or money on this one.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just the facts and more May 12, 2009
A few years back, Steve Fischer was selling his Vegas memories on Ebay. I found his auctions by accident but kept going back for more. He wouldn't only sell you things but tell you stories about the items. People started asking him to write a book and lucky for us he listened. Because I was in touch with Mr. Fischer, I was able to get a book through him and have it signed. I couldn't put it down. I read it in one long, very long, night. The stories are insightful, detailed but not to bogged down. This book tells you about the beginning of Vegas. The one of years gone by that shaped the one we visit today. The pictures are nice to have too. I found that I was able to follow the stories as they ran from the 1930's to the 80's. Yes there were times I had to go back and read a name or two again, but that's me and my comprehension of things. It was an exciting time that I would have loved to see, and through his story telling you are able to relive it without having been there. I live in Reno and understand the lure of the casino and it's money. I get asked all the time if the mob is still here in Nevada. Well to tell the truth I don't know. But I can say that they once were here and made their mark. The men who started Vegas were ruthless, mean, played hardball and didn't care who they killed to get to the top. Steve Fischer shows us a time in our history when the men of the mob weren't afraid to put it all out there and let it be known that you didn't mess with them. Some stories are funny, some are gruesome but all are entertaining. I LOANED this book to my mother who is a big fan of Vegas, and I haven't seen it since. I think she passed it around to her friends. I want it back because Mr. Fischer was kind enough to sign it for me and I want to read it again. Get this book, you won't be sorry you did.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Pretty good stories from an old guy who loves Vegas April 10, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
If you are looking for a well written account of the mob in Vegas by a professional writer, this isn't what you want. If you just want some casual memories from an enthusiastic Vegas lover, it's fun.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars When the Mob Ran Vegas January 30, 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
OK Book, helped by the fact that I am interested in Las Vegas gossip. Lots of interesting anecdotes experienced by the author. Good for a read on the flight to LV.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It was OK... January 14, 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A collection of stories from the mafia-ridden days of Las Vegas, told by a man who must have vacationed here during the tail end of it. Being a Las Vegas resident I was initially intrigued by this, and had to have it. I suppose I can sum it up like this: content good, delivery not so much. The stories are written in a very pedestrian style, with little proof reading done to catch typo's and grammar errors. The last chapter of the book digresses into the author's sentimentality over the loss of the Sands Hotel. But, amidst the landmines, there are actually some pretty neat stories about the way this town operated in the 40s, 50s & 60s. I love the old photos, and pics of the memorabilia. I wouldn't pay full price for this book, but if you find an affordable used copy I'd recommend it for a quick read
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Loved this book!!
Published 4 days ago by Crittermom
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book
Having lived in las Vegas all my life this book brought back great memories, such as the time I had just gotten of work as a blackjack dealer at the Las Vegas Hilton and in walked... Read more
Published 5 days ago by victor wakeman
1.0 out of 5 stars Awful
This is the most poorly written book I have ever read. I bought it on sale at Barnes and Noble and now I know why it was on clearance. Did this book have an editor? Read more
Published 8 days ago by lea rozniewski
5.0 out of 5 stars Would definitely recommend!
Such a great way in which to view the mob! An easy read!
Published 9 days ago by Elisabeth Tuebner
3.0 out of 5 stars or my reading skills are getting better. Pretty interesting stories...
It is a short book, or my reading skills are getting better. Pretty interesting stories but nothing to write home about.
Published 2 months ago by Michel Emerson Oliver
1.0 out of 5 stars Kindle on Android incomplete
The Kindle version on my Android Note 2 was missing content between pages which makes it unreadable.
Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars A different time!
Terrific book! My wife worked in Las Vegas 1954/56 and I knew some of the stories as she worked at the El Rancho Vegas.
Published 2 months ago by Ralph C.
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A good read and highlights the power of the Mafia.
Published 2 months ago by Graeme CRAWFORD
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
very good raed
Published 2 months ago by Lawrence Abrams
5.0 out of 5 stars Really enjoyable.
Still another story about the mob.
Published 3 months ago by Gail Shaw
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