Thursday, May 5, 2011

Sons And Princes by James LePore

Chris Massi is in a bad patch.  He has spent his life trying to avoid his father's world.  His father was a stone cold Mafia assassin; the local Don's hitman.  Chris tried to go the other way.  He grew up, married, had children and had a promising career as a U.S. Attorney.  But, forces from the past keep haunting him. 

The marriage didn't last, and Chris has been on his own.  He is worried about his teenage son, who seems to glory in the family's Mafia connections.  Chris's ex-wife is the daughter of the current Don, and this Don is looking for an heir to take over the operation.  His brother is a junkie, who scams and cons his way through life, skirting on the edges of the Family.  Chris has just been disbarred.  An old friend turned enemy has vowed to bring Chris down.  This man, Dolan, is a federal prosecutor.  He was Chris' best friend growing up until Joe Black Massi, Chris's father, gunned down Dolan's father.  He charged Chris on trumped up charges of stock fraud and when Chris was acquitted, managed to push through ethical charges against him that got him disbarred.

As bad as things are, they are about to get worse.  Chris gets caught up in a Mafia power struggle and his life is in danger from the men he knew all his life.  In addition, Dolan has decided that he will take out Chris; either legally through a trumped-up murder charge or by physically killing him.  Can Chris make his way through this maze of intrigue, betrayal and violence?

This book is recommended for readers who like noir crime stories.  It portrays the world of the Mafia, and the street life that surrounds the family's operations.  The conflict that sons feel toward strong fathers, loving and hating them simultaneously is explored.  There is plenty of action.  Fans of Mafia stories will not be disappointed; this one delivers.

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