Lucky Luciano by Tim Newark
The Real and the Fake Gangster

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For the first twenty-five years of his criminal career, Charles “Lucky” Luciano was a vicious mobster who rose to become the multimillionaire king of the New York underworld. For the next twenty-five years of his life, Luciano was a legend---but a fake master criminal without real power, his evil reputation manipulated and maintained by the government agents who had put him behind bars.

            Drawing on secret government documents from archives in the United States and Europe, this myth-busting biography tells the real story from Luciano’s early days as a top hit man for the Mob to his exploits running sex and narcotics empires. His criminal career abruptly ended with conviction and imprisonment, but his reputation was only enhanced by rumors that he was winning World War II for the Allies in Sicily and the Mediterranean. Now, for the first time, author Tim Newark exposes the truth about what Luciano really did do to help the Allies in the war.

            With his expulsion from the United States after the war ended, Luciano returned to Italy. He was reputed to have overseen a massive transatlantic narcotics network and became the arch-villain for international law enforcement agencies. But Newark reveals how Luciano really spent his twilight years.

            Lucky Luciano: The Real and the Fake Gangster turns accepted Mafia history on its head with an extraordinary story that has never been told before.


About Tim Newark

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TIM NEWARK is the author of Mafia Allies and the editor of Military Illustrated, and he has contributed book reviews to the Financial Times, Time Out, and the Daily Telegraph. He has worked as a scriptwriter and consultant for seven TV documentary series for the History Channel and BBC Worldwide. He lives in London. Learn more at
Published September 27, 2011 by Thomas Dunne Books. 319 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Crime, Travel. Non-fiction

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Born Salvatore Lucania in Sicily in 1897, Charles Luciano had been a made man since emerging from the worst tenements of the Lower East Side, writes BBC scriptwriter Newark (Mafia Allies: The True Story of America’s Secret Alliance with the Mob in World War II, 2007).

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He mainly attacks The Last Testament of Lucky Luciano, the biography said to be taken straight from Luciano's own words.

Jan 21 2011 | Read Full Review of Lucky Luciano: The Real and t...

BBC History Magazine

Using mafia links with the unions he helped protect the New York wharfs from Nazi agents.

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