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Mob Boss

The Life of Little Al D'arco, the Man Who Brought Down the Mafia
Narrated by: Michael Prichard
Length: 16 hrs and 17 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (140 ratings)

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Summary

Alfonso 'Little Al' D'Arco, the former acting boss of the Luchese crime family, was the highest-ranking mobster to ever turn government witness when he flipped in 1991.

His decision to flip prompted many others to make the same choice, including John Gotti's top aide, Salvatore "Sammy the Bull" Gravano, and his testimony sent more than fifty mobsters to prison. In Mob Boss, award-winning news reporters Jerry Capeci and Tom Robbins team up for this unparalleled account of D'Arco's life and the New York mob scene that he embraced for four decades.

Until the day he switched sides, D'Arco lived and breathed the old-school gangster lessons he learned growing up in Brooklyn and fine-tuned on the mean streets of Little Italy. But when he learned he was marked to be whacked, D'Arco quit the mob. His defection decimated his crime family and opened a window on mob secrets going back a hundred years.

After speaking with D'Arco, the authors reveal unprecedented insights, exposing shocking secrets, and troublesome truths about a city where a famous pizza parlor doubled as a Mafia center for multi-million-dollar heroin deals, where hit men carried out murders dressed as women, and where kidnapping a celebrity newsman's son was deemed appropriate revenge for the father's satirical novel.

Capeci and Robbins spent hundreds of hours in conversation with D'Arco, and exhausted many hours more fleshing out his stories in this riveting narrative that takes listeners behind the famous witness testimony for a comprehensive look at the Mafia in New York City.

©2013 Jerry Capeci and Tom Robbins (P)2013 Tantor

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Best mob book for a long time!

This audio book is the best I have heard so far! (And I own a lot) The writing is so in depth, it goes into details about the ins and outs of crimes and sometime legitimate business, it explains the thoughts and feelings of the mobster and intertwines with other mob books. I can't express how great this audio book is! The narrating is especially great! The narrator captures the mood perfectly and I was tempted to buy another book that he was narrating,...... But it wasn't about the mob! If you are interested in the Mafia then this book is a absolute must!!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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I wish there had been more.

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Not only can I unreservedly recommend it, if it wouldn't get me arrested I would even be grabbing strangers in the street and telling them about it. Well written and engaging from the first paragraph, it was let down only very slightly by the reader, who demonstrated a rather narrow range of accents and voices. Mostly that did not matter since all the characters were from the same background but when D'Arco had a (fortunately brief) meeting with a black gangster it did grate somewhat to hear him speaking the same twangy Brooklyn as the Mafiosos. Despite that, Prichard was a good choice for the storyteller. His somewhat flat intonation was a worthy match for a writing style which deflected any revulsion the listener might have about the violence of the criminal life so as to allow concentration on the matter-of-fact, bureaucratic way that crime was organised by D'Arco and his circle.

For the writing itself, "Mob Boss" is a biography of one man pursuing a Mafia career with the same stolid determination and contextual honesty as an accountant. It was a fascinating and well-constructed insight into a parallel universe, flowing from one incident to the next with the sort of apparent ease that comes only from a lot of very hard work.

In the introduction we are told that the book is based on hundreds of hours of interview tapes and written statements and I am sure that Capeci and Robbins both suffered many headaches carving that sprawling mountain of information into a coherent narrative. It was a massive piece of work and yet I should think that when they had finished it, they must have been--as I was--sorry to get to the end.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Must listen too

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Very well written and if you are intrigued by the mob life then you will enjoy this mans story.

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Great informative listen

loved this. Great to hear how all the big mob bosses and characters came into contact with each other. Interesting to hear how many turned away from omerta to give evidence against the families.

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A Wiseguy Bloodbath

The extraordinary true story of the bloodbath at the top of the Lucchese crime clan, as told from the perspective of a loyal senior lieutenant who becomes acting boss when his two superiors go on the run. The family is locked in a state of paranoia and bloody retribution as the two mob chieftains order a string of killings. Against this backdrop, traditional Mafia values and practices rapidly disintegrate, and a deadly new reign of terror begins. A gripping listen, and a window into the inner machinations of a formidable Mob machine - which unravelled in spectacular style. The narration is a tad lacklustre. But the story compensates for this slight let-down.

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First "mafia" book - HOOKED!

Excellent narrator; tone, accents and pace!
Found myself having longer gym sessions because I couldn't switch it off.
I even started to research the main 'characters' online - fascinating!

Figuring out who's who didn't take me long given the Italian surnames.

Passed this title many many times and decided to buy it. If you even think twice about it - do it!

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Amazing!

One of the best mob books I've ever had the pleasure of reading. Brilliantly written.

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First class

I'd rank this as just as good as "I heard you paint houses" and "the five families". I didn't want it to end.

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Great story

First audio book ever listened to but it was very good couldn't stop listening to it great respect for al Darco he did what he had to do he would of never of ratted had it not been for psychos vic and Gas

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"Superb"

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

100 percent-yes, Several reasons but mainly because its superb

What other book might you compare Mob Boss to, and why?

Five Families: The Rise, Decline, and Resurgence of America's Most Powerful Mafia Empires

Any additional comments?

The narration of the story was exhalant and well paced. He speaks like you would expect a mobster to speak which makes the book more enjoyable.

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  • Lisa
  • 01-12-13

Well written, accurate information, great narrator

If you could sum up Mob Boss in three words, what would they be?

Accurate, honest, in depth.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Mob Boss?

Al D'arco's memory is like an encyclopedia of the mob!

Have you listened to any of Michael Prichard’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Yes- as stellar as the rest

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

This book made me gasp at some points.

Any additional comments?

Highly recommended- I've listened to almost every mafia book on audible.com and this one definitely ranks up with the best.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • Philip
  • 01-03-17

Worst narrator ever

I cannot pay attention to this book because of how awful the narration is. It is so monotonous and mind numbing. I cannot tell you if this is a good book or not because I can't get past the awful, awful narrator.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Rory
  • 29-01-17

good read

very detailed description of activities as seen by little Al.
there were so many names that it was difficult to keep track of them all
but the author reminds you most times of each characters relationships.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Honest Reviewer
  • 16-12-16

Hands down the best mafia book on audible

Would you listen to Mob Boss again? Why?

already listened to it twice, and yes

What was one of the most memorable moments of Mob Boss?

i like the parts when the narrator, pretending to be d'arco, gets mad at gaspipe

Which scene was your favorite?

when d'arco yells at gaspipe for being so cheap about giving money to jail-bound guy

What’s the most interesting tidbit you’ve picked up from this book?

that gene gotti wasn't a bad guy

Any additional comments?

the narrator is good

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Robert
  • 14-03-15

slow in the beginning

stick with it the first few chapters are boring but it does get ready good the future along the story goes

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • JacobA
  • 12-07-19

So much detail

This book is power packed with details of crimes taken place by the mob. In some cases I felt I lost focus because it was a lot of the same thing. This guy killed this guy. That guy robbed that guy. This guy was arrested and so on and so on. I was waiting for more details about how things worked and how they got away with it. At the end of the book I started getting these details and the story started painting a clear picture for me. So I was not so hot on the book the first half but really enjoyed the second half.

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  • August
  • 07-06-19

Great Story, TERRIBLE NARRATOR

This is a great story, but the narrator is truly awful. he does not pronounce a single name or Italian phrase correctly in the entirety of the book, and in a book based on cosa nostra, knowing names, and who did what, is incredibly dissapointing. if you can get over the unbelievably bad narration however, it's hard to imagine a more complete breakdown of cosa nostra.

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  • k.k.
  • 06-08-18

Interesting

The readers voice is very fitting with what the book is about and helps to set the mood. This is the first book I've ever read about the mob so I found it incredibly interesting if not overwhelming at times. Definitely a good read!

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-07-18

Great story

Al D'arco is a scumbag criminal, but he tells a good story.
I dont believe all to be true, as he is a confessed liar, and there is at least two sides to a story, but it is very entertaining.

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  • Arthur F.
  • 21-01-18

it was really good!

it did not seem over-the-top and exaggerated like a lot of Mafia stories. The narrator can get a bit mundane at first and it did start out a bit slow but overall it was a very good read. One of the better Mafia stories. I think the best is Mafia Prince then second is the Sinatra Club and this is third. I personally prefer first-hand Stories versus a mob historian or a reporter writing the story. I would definitely recommend it to anyone who's interested in this genre.