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Murder Machine (Onyx True Crime)

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Format: Mass Market Paperback

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Book Overview

This description may be from another edition of this product. An account of the exploits of the DeMeo gang--the most deadly hit men in organized crime--describes how their Mafia higher-ups came to know them, use them for profit and pleasure, and fear them....

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

Non-stop Thrills (I'm serious).

Murder Machine is a book written in the brazen tradition of Wiseguys and the Westies. It provides readers with a snapshot of street life, magnifies it, and follows it up with a sea of rich description. The DeMeo Crew had to be the most vicious gang of killers in the history of the mob, and, despite being loosely associated with the Gambino Family, there wasn't much organized about their criminal nature. An arrest, an insult, a wrongly phrased statement, the mistake of being in the wrong place at the wrong time could result in one getting whacked by the likes of Harvey "Chris" Rosenberg, the Gemini twins, or Roy DeMeo himself. Books like these are important because if one refuses to study foul, corrupt men then they willfully choose not to know the truth about human nature. The dealings and interactions of this gang, as described by turncoat Dominick Montiglio, are juxtaposed with those of the Castellano pre-Gotti Gambino Family in these pages and the ensuing portrait of the mobsters is both revealing and entertaining. Indeed, the tale is so fast paced and action packed that you'll be surprised you finish it as quickly as you do.

The realism of the underbelly of the mob

This is a true story of the Brooklyn DeMeo gang who specialized in murder during the 1970s and 80s and how they were finally brought to justice. Some of the information came from Dominick Montiglio, a witness who testified against the mob. However, much of it is written from his point of view and somehow managed to deny his direct involvement with any of the murders, therefore making me wonder about every aspect of book's accuracy. It details his heroism in Vietnam, his marriage and family life, and includes photos of him as a two-year old at his birthday party as well as his 1965 high school graduation.There are no photos of course of the shocking and brutal murders which are described in gruesome detail throughout the book. The realism was what was so horrible, and opened my eyes to something that was going on right in my city which I was totally unaware of. I still shudder when I think of it.For the time I was reading the book, it was like a bright floodlight was shed on a part of New York City history which illuminated the criminal mob underbelly of the times. Its clear writing style pulled no punches. The book was meant to shock and it delivered on this promise and is certainly not for everybody. But for all those willing to explore this world from the safety your armchair, I certainly recommend it.

Best Mob Book Since The Valachi Papers

As a New York journalist, I had a passing acquaintance with the sinister reputation of the DeMeo Crew of Canarsie. Once I started Murder Machine, I couldn't put it down. It literally cost me sleep, both because I stayed up late reading and because I stayed up later cringing at this true story of uncontrolled murder and unimaginable butchery. This story is told in an absorbing narrative. The characters are introduced and fleshed out with layers of extraordinary detail, the result of insightful reporting. The Soporanos is a nice fairy tale, but this is the mob as it lives and breathes in real life. Read it and be afraid, very afraid. If you only can read one book about the mob in America, read this one.

One Of The Most Frightening Stories You'll Ever Read

I used to live 3 blocks away from a bar called the Gemini Lounge in the Flatlands section of Brooklyn. Little did I know that scenes of such ghastly brutality were taking place there such as body dismemberment, drug and child pornography dealing, etc. If truth is stranger then fiction, then real life horror stories are far worse then any fiction authors imagination. Roy DeMeo - one of the most brutal, (who had a "relationship" with the equally revolting Irish mobsters called the "Westies") conscienceless killers you will ever meet (hopefully only in print)- assembled a group of cretins from the Flatlands/Canarsie neighborhoods he frequented that is so frightening in that we know we must have passed such "ordinary" looking people many times on the street not having a clue as to their deadly business. It frightens me that a simple argument over a parking spot, or being the proverbial innocent bystander - can lead to such quick, brutal death. On a personal note, I once briefly met one of DeMeo's crew a thug named Joey Testa who is a major player in the book, and I am not surprosed to have read about him being a sadistic killer. This is really a book that is hard to put down and a perfect antidote (along with "Wiseguys" called "Goodfellas"in the movie) to those like Puzo who glamorize the mob. This book is a good companion book to T.J. English' book "The Westies" and you will recognize many of the hoods in both books.

Probably the most gruesome Mafia story ever told

Parts of this book were really gruesome and sickening, but after getting through those parts the story was very interesting. I bought this book because someone else wrote that it was the best Mafia book that they had ever read. I agree with that reviewer. I have lived in New York all my life (a few years in Canarsie and many in Ozone Park, while teaching in Howard Beach). I have always been surrounded by "that life" but I never realized the lengths these people went to to get rid of people that crossed them. Killing wasn't enough...they had to destroy and dismember the bodies as well. The one thing that I would like to know is how the authors got so detailed a story when most of the people involved were dead by the time this book was written, and I can't imagine that anyone with inside connections spoke to them. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone interested in the Mafia but keep in mind that parts of this story are degenerate.
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