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 Entertaining Mafia reprise, written by the pseudonymous Girard while serving a seven-year prison sentence for racketeering. Like Girard, his hero Mickey Boy Messina is out on parole after servingin Mickey's casesix years. Prison has not dimmed Mickey's ardor to be a made man in the Mafia. But then the blood of his Sicilian fathers runs deep in Mickey, who does not know that he's the illegitimate son of top boss Don Vicenze Calabra. Don Vicenze himself has a dream: to condense the five Mafia families into two and make the ``blood of our fathers'' strong again. Unfortunately, this calls for much mayhem as big-time mafiosi and their underbosses, captains, soldiers and associates are shipped to the next world by way of a huge wave of assassinations and reprisals. Mickey Boy's problems are with his smart, sexy girlfriend Laurel and seem much like Michael Corleone's with Kay: Laurel doesn't want Mickey as long as he remains in the mob. She's eyeing Florida and a fresh start. Mickey's problems are doubled by his half-brother Little Vinnie Calabra, a slobbering wimp with delusions of grandeur, who knows that Don Vincenze is secretly grooming Mickey to be top boss, although Mickey doesn't know this, or that Vinnie's his half- brother. Vinniewho has the hots for Laurelhas made three failed his on Mickey; in fact, it was Vinnie who first noted a certain look-alike quality with Mickey and had him set up to take the fall for himself: Mickey did six years for Vinniebut also for Don Vicenze. Meanwhile, Mickey's widowed mother Connie is back in town and crossing paths with her old lover Don Vicenze, himself now a widower. As the lead flies, both Connie and Don Vincenze try to convince Laurel that life with her beloved Mickey will be okay because the Family is going legit and getting out of the rackets. This long first installmenta sequel is underwayends with Mickey assuming top spot. Strong storytelling that lacks the originality of The Godfather but has many writerly touches and a wonderful bloom of authenticity.

Pub Date: June 4th, 1991
ISBN: 0-671-72740-0
Page count: 416pp
Publisher: Pocket
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1st, 1991


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