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9 Reviews
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BUY THIS BOOK
i've been reading about organised crime in the states and italy for quite a few years now and this is by far and away the best book i've come across on the subject of the american Mafia. it focuses on the Chicago "Outfit" from the days of prohibition and bootlegging through JFK, Hoover, Monroe, Sanatra up to the present day and it doesn't miss a thing - it can't do its...
Published on 6 Jun 2005

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting study of Capone's successors
While the New York mafia wasted their time and resources shooting each other and working out elaborate rituals, the Chicago outfit got on with the serious business of making money and extending influence - that is clear from this exhaustive study of organised crime in the Windy City.

What is interesting about this book is the mechanics of how gangsters like...
Published on 24 Oct 2006 by Kentspur


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BUY THIS BOOK, 6 Jun 2005
By A Customer
This review is from: The Outfit: The Role of Chicago's Underworld in the Shaping of Modern America (Hardcover)
i've been reading about organised crime in the states and italy for quite a few years now and this is by far and away the best book i've come across on the subject of the american Mafia. it focuses on the Chicago "Outfit" from the days of prohibition and bootlegging through JFK, Hoover, Monroe, Sanatra up to the present day and it doesn't miss a thing - it can't do its rammed with info, some of which is unbelievable! who would have thought, the greatest unsung legend of organised crime in the US came from .....Wales of all places! its pretty heavy going in some parts but you definately should BUY THIS BOOK!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely packed with information, 1 Mar 2008
By 
L. M. STOCKLEY "LMS" (Stoke-on-Trent, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This is the most thouroughly researched book on the 'Mob, Mafia organised crime' or whatever you qant to call it I have read. It's crammed with information from the very widest sources available, in fact the reference list at the end of the book numbers in the hundreds. The characters in the book are amazing and felt a twinge of sadness when I read of Curly Humphreys' death. Although it's quite an advanced book It was definitely worth reading and would recommend it to anyone interested in The Chicago Outfit as it provides an exhaustive account which means that it may be the only document you need on Al Capone's Heirs
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting study of Capone's successors, 24 Oct 2006
By 
Kentspur (Er...Kent) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
While the New York mafia wasted their time and resources shooting each other and working out elaborate rituals, the Chicago outfit got on with the serious business of making money and extending influence - that is clear from this exhaustive study of organised crime in the Windy City.

What is interesting about this book is the mechanics of how gangsters like Curly Humphreys make money from such seemingly unpromising areas as labour unions. What, in my opinion, is slightly less interesting is the re-hashing of a lot of Kennedys/Monroe/Sinatra type stuff as the book draws to a close. If all that was said was true, that the Outfit 'delivered' the 1960 election to JFK; that Marilyn Monroe was photographed having kinky sex with a Mafia Godfather (not a looker, I might add); that mafia kingpins were swimming about off Cuba on CIA instruction figuring out ways to bump off Castro, then the book has entered a realm that is beyond the telling of mafia stories. I don't know. Maybe it's all true, but it felt a bit National Enquirer to me.

I did like the almost off-hand way that the author dismisses the idea - oft-repeated in this type of book - that organised crime were responsible for the assasination of JFK. He points out, mundanely, that the Outfit bosses seemed as surprised as everyone else, as evidenced by their wire-taps.

Russo makes great play of how the Outfit was just 'the underworld' doing exactly the type of things that the more established world 'the upperworld' did anyway. How the 'robber barons' like JP Morgan broke all the laws, but got away with it because they weren't recent immigrants. Again I'm not sure. That sort of relativism is appealing, but not everyone in the police, judiciary and business world are corrupt. The mafia certainly are and that's one reason why they're good fun to read about. (After all upperworld leaders don't have their subordinates shot if they are attracting too much publicity.)

I guess I wanted a simpler, less grey area type of book, but this is very well-written, well-researched stuff.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Robber barons, 16 Jan 2014
An analytical, almost academic exploration of the parallels, and links between the mafia underworld and the 'upperworld' of corporate america.

The book tells the story of the Chicago mob up to the 21st century, and like all the best organised crime books, is meticulously researched and makes use of both documentary sources and interviews with participants and fellow travellers.

The focus on 'Curly' Humphreys clearly worked for well for the author, allowing him to make the best use of discussions with surviving relatives and so on.

Biographical colour is always interesting in these kinds of books, but for me it was the insights into the political and economic mechanics of organised crime that took the book from good to excellent. In this regard, criminologists and other scholars of organised crime (corporate and otherwise) will find the epilogue is particularly useful. The sections on Hollywood reminded me of Hollywood and the Mob: Movies, Mafia, Sex and Death, although that book is narrower in scope and on reading, is not as well edited as Russo's.

It's worth mentioning that The Outfit is well written in a tight, measured style, avoiding the 'pulpy' feel that sometimes comes with 'true crime' books.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Book, 8 Nov 2013
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This was purchased as a present for my son and he said that the book was brilliant and would recommend to all his friends
the fact that this was true and it took many many years to research and eventually publish
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book, 9 Oct 2011
I have read several books on the Chicago Outfit and this ranks as the best yet. Thoroughly researched and detailed account of the history of organized crime in the windy city especially the sections on the criminal genius Curly Humphreys and the man who brought decades of success to the Outfit - Joe 'batters' Accardo, not to mention the Big Man himself - Al Capone. Thoroughly recommended, a great read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars everything spot on, 28 July 2011
By 
RS13 (Manchester, England) - See all my reviews
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the book was in the condition it said it would be. arrived on time. happy with service. will do more business as and when need arises.
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5.0 out of 5 stars the outfit, 22 July 2011
The item arrived in a short space of time and was as described.
i would buy of this book seller again.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Exhaustive, 3 Feb 2005
By 
Mr. K. G. Robins (Beckenham, Kent United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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Thoroughly researched book and well worth a read even if you have read similar Mob related titles as this one also delves into the part that white collar crime plays. It did leave me with some questions though. Why did Al Capone suffer so badly in prison ?. Why was Joe Kennedy allowed to get away with double dealing the boys ?
How could Joe Kennedy not know that Mooney was fronting for Joe Accardo et al ? And how did the Kansas boys get away with not whacking Desi Arnez ?
Well paced although the time line jumps about a bit,with intriguing questions about the American populaces acceptance of scandal and fixing, although it goes on everywhere.
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