Capone: The Life and World of Al Capone: The Life and Times of Al Capone Paperback – 18 Sep 2003
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Top Customer Reviews
Overall, a good read.
I liked the first part of the book a lot. This is the part devoted to the time of Al Capone, starting in his childhood, detailing the life of immigrants like his father, the very small word they were allowed to live in, the reasons why young men saw the gangs as the only way to get a living and to do something with their life... if they lived long enough, that it.
The way gangs were organized is detailed quite in depth, the Italians gangs, but also the others. The way gangs fought each other, the reason why they did it. It's like a little world on its own, with its own rules and its own heroes, and its own enemies. This part, detailing the history of the Five Pointers, where Capone started his life as an outlaw, was the more interesting for me.
I also like the part that followed. Capone arrives in Chicago as a young man and here he finds a world which is both the same, but also different from the underworld he knew in New York. A big chunk of the book is spent detailing how Chicago was divided into zones, how different ethnic gangs controlled different parts of the city, the alliances and the enmities. The bosses and their temperaments. The gangs were nearly always linked to ethnic communities and it was interesting to see what links and what bonds stood between these men and the communities they came from. It was a very complex relationship and it was very interesting reading about it.
Then the second part of the book tells Capone's life in particular... and my interest dropped.
Honestly, reading only this book, one will wonder what made Capone one of the better known men in America.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Good book. Meanders in places but fascinating overall. Recommended.
Want to see Chicago myself now! Very well researched Kobler is an engaging storyteller.