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This review is from: The Ice Man: Confessions of a Mafia Contract Killer (Paperback)
This book follows the rise and fall of Richard Kulkinski nicknamed the "Ice Man", who claims to have killed over 200 people during 30 years of violence in which he claims to be intimately inolved in the killing of Jimmy Hoffa.
From the very outset, this book sets out to shock and is definitely a harrowing, yet somehow absorbing true life account of a psychopath who suffered immeasureably during his childhood at the hands of abusive parents, something which no doubt deepend his psychosis and shaped him into the monster he became.
Philip Carlo talks of Rich's callous attitude and detatchment toward emotion, how he has no feeling or concept of human suffering. The insight into the mind of a man who feels nothing and thinks nothing of killing someone who merely cuts him up or throws him the finger, who can descend into a mindless rage at whim, inflicting brutal beatings on his wife makes this a chilling, disturbing tale.
But as absorbing as this book is, there is somewhat a feel of deja vu when reading. Philip Carlo often hammers the point home regarding Rich's remorselessnes over and over again. The pleasure Richard got from torturing his victims, of devising new and grisly ways to make his "marks" suffer - the way he liked to be up close and personal and see the life fade from their eyes. Philip Carlo obviously wants us to truly understand how monsterous this man was - but the point is made too often, and becomes actually quite tiresome. Philip's accounts, gathered from over two hundred hours of interviewing and the way the killings come about give us this distinct impression in any case, so there really wasn't a need to reiterate the point as often as it was.
Barbara, for example feels trapped by her husband, feeling she had to stand up for herself, because it was the only power she had left - she could not leave him, she knew he would find her, kill her, kill them all, her children, her family. I really felt for Barbara throughout this book and completely sympathise with why she would have found it so hard to break free.
In essence, this is a well written, put together account of a man who certainly earned his name. Its definitely worth reading - but be warned, this book is extemely grisly and does not pull its punches. It is a harrowing, distrubing look into the twisted mind of a psychopath of monumental proportions.