Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

Qty:1
  • List Price: $25.99
  • Save: $4.67 (18%)
FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books.
Only 8 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
Undercover Cop: How I Bro... has been added to your Cart
FREE Shipping on orders over $25.
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Ex-library book. The item shows wear from consistent use, but it remains in good condition and works perfectly. All pages and cover are intact (including the dust cover, if applicable). Spine may show signs of wear. Pages may include limited notes and highlighting.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 3 images

Undercover Cop: How I Brought Down the Real-Life Sopranos Hardcover – August 6, 2013

4.1 out of 5 stars 27 customer reviews

See all 3 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Price
New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
$21.32
$4.79 $0.01

Best Books of the Year So Far
Looking for something great to read? Browse our editors' picks for the Best Books of the Year So Far in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries, children's books, and much more.
$21.32 FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books. Only 8 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Frequently Bought Together

  • Undercover Cop: How I Brought Down the Real-Life Sopranos
  • +
  • Organized Crime in Our Times
Total price: $71.27
Buy the selected items together


Editorial Reviews

Review

“The book is a whirlwind of suspense, violence and moral ambiguity. The daily grind that reveals the inner workings, language and codes of the mafia are perhaps its most fascinating feature. It feels real, like The Sopranos, but it is both more thrilling and terrifying than any TV show could hope to be.” ―MrPorter.com

“Russell details his encounters with many notorious figures in New York's ‘Five Families' and provides a good sense of the nitty-gritty tradecraft involved in undercover investigations.” ―Kirkus Reviews

“Billed as a true-crime version of The Sopranos, the story of Russell's violent life as an undercover cop cum trusted associate of the Genovese crime clan in Newark, N.J., has more plot twists than the acclaimed TV series. In fact, Russell predates Tony Soprano and company by a longshot--he was the subject of an HBO documentary that aired in the late '80s, and his is a thrill-a-minute tale. Within the first 20 pages, Russell's taken a bullet to the head, fended off a would-be corpse robber, and stumbled out of an alley to find help. Soon after, he returns to the tough work of weaseling his way back into the arms of the Mafia. Written in a street-savvy style reminiscent of Elmore Leonard and Mario Puzo, the nail-biting narrative moves from one crisis to another as Mikey Ga-Ga--his nom de guerre--infiltrates a profitable crew while rubbing shoulders with capos and bosses, all under intense mob scrutiny. Russell's bravery and professionalism--along with some crucial surveillance--eventually led to the busts of more than 50 "wiseguys" and public officials. This tell-all page-turner is all the better for being true.” ―Publishers Weekly

“Nobody did undercover better than Mike Russell. His story is grittier than The Sopranos, more volatile than Goodfellas. A must read.” ―George Anastasia, author of The Last Gangster and The Goodfella Tapes

“Mike Russell is one tough cop. This book is a great read.” ―the late Henry Hill, subject of Wiseguy, the basis of Scorsese’s Goodfellas

“Wonderful details. A bizarre world depicted with such accuracy that several times it made me laugh out loud. A very good read.” ―Robert Daley, former Deputy Chief of Public Information (DCPI) of the NYPD, author of Prince of the City and Target Blue

“What a nail-biter! Forget the Sopranos, real-life or otherwise. If you're a fan of Donnie Brasco because it actually had a good guy -- the undercover cop -- then this book's for you. Some of Mike Russell's story is so pulse-pounding that the only reason I could read it was, he lived to write the book so it must've turned out okay. This is the story of a cop who really knows, co-written by an ex-cop who can really write. I couldn't put it down.” ―SJ Rozan, Edgar award winning author of Ghost Hero

About the Author

MIKE RUSSELL spent twenty years in law enforcement and is currently the president of Mob Cop Productions, making films and other media about what he knows best. He lives in Delray Beach, FL.

PATRICK W. PICCIARELLI, a Vietnam vet, spent twenty years in the NYPD and is a licensed private investigator and adjunct writing professor at Seton Hill University. The author of Jimmy the Wags, My Life in the NYPD, he regularly contributes to Hardboiled magazine, among others. He lives in Monessen, PA.

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

New York Times best sellers
Browse the New York Times best sellers in popular categories like Fiction, Nonfiction, Picture Books and more. See more

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 322 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books; First Edition edition (August 6, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1250005876
  • ISBN-13: 978-1250005878
  • Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 1.2 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #637,507 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
The NJ Star Ledger interviewed the NJ Trooper, retired State Police Captain Nick Oriolo, who "handled" Mike Russell and he noted that RUSSELL was never a NJ Trooper. Russell does boast about it on pages 3,54, and 86. The reporter also interviewed the Newark Police and they say that RUSSELL was never a Newark Police Officer. Then when interviewed by the reporter about that RUSSELL says."The titles were bouncing all over the place" .....What does that mean RUSSELL? You either were or were not a New Jersey Trooper or a Newark Police Officer. The Trooper also mentions that the book is 20% accurate. Why don't you write the Star Ledger and offer your version or rebuttal to the Trooper comments and the Reporters finding? Were you an informant? What happened to you when you left the East Orange Police Department? Did something happen there? Did you retire? Your Video says you were a Truck Driver before you began your operation, but the book says you were into your role looking for an in. What was it? Also why the countless number of discrepancies in both your video and book? I found this book to be pure fiction and very poorly written. Until RUSSELL answers all the inconsistencies that the NJ Star Ledger disclosed on this Amazon Page or even with the NJ Star Ledger, I would recommend you DON't buy this book and instead buy the many book about Brave Undercover police Officers and Agents that are out there that were properly vetted by their respected Agencies.
1 Comment 13 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Kindle Edition
I read this and found it interesting but throughout the book I felt a lot of it did not ring true. Upon further investigation, it appears this guy made up a lot of this including being a cop. A lot of it reminded me of the Iceman book, where this guy claimed to have killed all these people. He has all these stories of road rage people getting knocked off and walking up on rapists and killing them and it all rang totally false as does a lot of this book. He wanted to infiltrate the organization and luckily comes across two black guys mugging the main guy and he steps in and beats them up and now he's in. Sounded just like an Iceman fabrication. Just happens to be there when the guy he wants is getting mugged. Really?

He claims he was shot in the head, survived, then later showed up at the place of the guy who did the shooting and people barely say anything. "Did you learn your lesson" one guy asks. Really? No one wants to know how the hell he's alive after taking one in the back of the head. No one is surprised or amazed this guy survived? Just "did you learn your lesson? Have a nice day." Didn't ring true in any sense. Upon further review none of this happened and in fact, the guy he claimed shot him sued him and was settled out of court.

He's constantly talking about what a badass he is and how people were afraid of him and he fought semi-pro and all this other stuff and again, just seems suspect (upon further review I see some video of him and pictures and there's no way this guy fought semi-pro, amateur or anything else). A lot of the book was a little hard to follow because mobsters come in and out of the story briefly and it's hard to keep up with all the names.
Read more ›
Comment One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover
The Newark Star Ledger cites numerous false claims in the book and quotes a police official involved in the case as saying the story is "only about 20% true": [...]
2 Comments 11 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Amazing how undercover cops can infiltrate the ranks and live that lifestyle. This book gives one an incite as to the thought process of mob associates
This book would be a great read after reading Mob Boss( the life of Little Al D'Arco )
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover
minimal insight into organized crime in North Jersey> He could have gotten more information sitting at the counter of the Tick Tock diner on Rt 3, By the way its Pyskaty
Comment 8 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
By L. Lawlor on October 22, 2013
Format: Hardcover
This embellished non-fiction account of mob life only goes to show that a good sociopath can do a fairly good job of writing an interesting book. I would not by even buy a new car from this criminal. Nothing about this bird puts him in the category of "one of the good guys". Simply cannot believe a word he says.
1 Comment One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
By XY on October 15, 2013
Format: Hardcover
The book may have some details completely wrong (and other details merely 'embellished' to create a more engaging story), but most of the content rings true. No one denies that Russell successfully infiltrated the North Jersey mob in the early/mid '80s and helped convict an impressive number of gangsters at significant risk to himself.

The book is rather odd in that you won't find a single date mentioned anywhere in the book's 16 chapters (we finally encounter a date in the Epilogue - 1988, first showing of the HBO documentary - p. 296). Why were dates deliberately omitted from the text (surely this was not accidental)? Are the authors trying to fool us into thinking that the material is more recent (and thus possibly more relevant) than it actually is?
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
By sue on February 10, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
NJ is my home state, and I'm familiar with many of the places the author mentioned in the book. I even went to high school in North Caldwell, where one of the murders occurred.The author did a great job telling this story, which was next to impossible to put down.
Though I now live in another state, I can't help but wonder how many of my childhood friends were actually innocent members of a mafia-related family. Fortunately, as the author wrote, wives and children etc were off limits to all mob activities.
Get this book if you want a terrific page turner. Don't read it at night if you have to get up early in the morning.You won't get much sleep.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Undercover Cop: How I Brought Down the Real-Life Sopranos
Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more about Amazon Giveaway
This item: Undercover Cop: How I Brought Down the Real-Life Sopranos

Pages with Related Products. See and discover other items: crime books