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

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Genovese, Gambino, Bonnano, Colombo and Lucchese. For decades these Five Families ruled New York and built the American Mafia (or Cosa Nostra) into an underworld empire. Today, the Mafia is an endangered species, battered and beleaguered by aggressive investigators, incompetent leadership, betrayals and generational changes that produced violent and unreliable leaders and recruits. A twenty year assault against the five families in particular blossomed into the most successful law enforcement campaign of the last century.
Selwyn Raab's Five Families is the vivid story of the rise and fall of New York's premier dons from Lucky Luciano to Paul Castellano to John Gotti and more. The book also brings the reader right up to the possible resurgence of the Mafia as the FBI and local law enforcement agencies turn their attention to homeland security and away from organized crime.


About Selwyn Raab

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SELWYN RAAB has been a reporter for the Metro Section of the New York Times since 1974. He is also the author of Justice in the Back Room and Mob Lawyer. He lives in New York.
Published May 13, 2014 by Thomas Dunne Books. 809 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Literature & Fiction, Education & Reference. Non-fiction

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After 9/11, most police units assigned to track the families were put on antiterrorism duty, “official logic having determined that the mob, a terminally ill enemy, required less attention.” But the Mafia has played possum before, Raab concludes, and it will return.

Jun 15 2005 | Read Full Review of Five Families: The Rise, Decl...

The New York Times

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A colorful history of the Mafia's biggest families by Selwyn Raab, who has spent decades chronicling New York's not-so-wiseguys.

Sep 11 2005 | Read Full Review of Five Families: The Rise, Decl...

AV Club

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A former New York Times crime reporter chronicles the rise and (seeming) fall of America's biggest organized crime organizations.

Sep 28 2005 | Read Full Review of Five Families: The Rise, Decl...

Entertainment Weekly

After briefly attending to the Mafia's roots in Sicily and the high points of its Prohibition heyday, Selwyn Raab in Five Families gets down to a thorough, often familiar, occasionally enlightening chronicle of the rise of New York's five Mafia families and the grinding police work that ensued.

Sep 09 2005 | Read Full Review of Five Families: The Rise, Decl...

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