After his release he returned to his family in Miami a much diminished man, living quietly until the ravages of his neurosyphilis took their final toll. The detail can bog the reader down. The upside of his illness? From a National Book Award-winning biographer, the first complete life of legendary gangster Al Capone to be produced with the cooperation of his family, who provided the author with exclusive access to personal testimony and archival documents. I really like the audio format for nonfiction, and I think the narrator - Rob Shapiro, did a wonderful job, especially impressive with the Italian pronunciation that's one of those things that could've really annoyed me had it been done badly. All in all, a very interesting read and extremely well written by Deirdre Bair who is an expert in writing biographies.
This biography of Al Capone differs from others in that it's focus is more on him and his family and their relationships to each other. Capone had the benefit of learning the rackets and how to manage illicit businesses — especially numbers, extortion and stolen property — from successful older criminals, such as Frankie Yale and Johnny Torrio. His mother-in-law thought of Al as a charming and attentive husband and father and a man who always took care of his family financially. It rises above the genre. In 1925, during the height of Prohibition, Capone's multi-million-dollar Chicago bootlegging, prostitution, and gambling operation dominated the organized-crime scene. Still, the narrative is dry and meandering and offers little new material or insights.
It rises above the genre. I got this book from Netgalley. Most interesting, was learning about his wife and son, his mother, sister, and brothers. Bair is a wise and often iconoclastic guide through Capone mythology. None of them knew him. The true flesh-and-blood man behind the legend has long remained a mystery. She also shows you a sm This is a book with a lot of personal information about the man and the family of Al Capone.
It describes Al's parents, and how they came to the United States to find a better life for their family. Al was born among 7 other brothers and sisters that would all impact him later in life. She uses the wide variety of sources to present contradictions and sources of tension. But the good news is no one is all bad. But I was unfamiliar with her writing prior to this, so this volume was a very welcome discovery. He sought acceptance in higher social circles, given his financial success, but he was unsuccessful, despite many large parties and charitable contributions. She weaves a narrative that presents a complicated man, not a simple evil monster, but a family man and, yes, also someone who did commit and order a lot of evil things.
Al Capone's open casket Courtesy of Nan A. I really like the audio format for nonfiction, and I think the narrator - Rob Shapiro, did a wonderful job, especially impressive with the The low rating has more to do with my personal taste and interest than the book's quality, I think it's well worth reading if the subject matter interests you. Bair's endnotes reinforce this message, showing sources but also additional conflicting information and sometimes insight into why Bair went with a particular narrative. After all, he was only head of the Mob or the Outfit, as it's called in the book for six years. Where other Capone books dwell on his life of crime, this one branches off to deal with the aspect of his dealings with family,parents,brothers,sisters wife,child etc.
The author says she has talked with Capone descendants at the beginning, but does not reveal until the end that she has closely collaborated with Capone's granddaughters in crafting the writing and message of this book. Being loving and caring towards his family and his fellow men, on the other hand being capable of cold murder. It would have benefited by aggressive editing which would have sharpened the narrative and reduced the length considerably. Born in 1899 in Brooklyn, New York, to poor, Italian immigrant parents, Al Capone went on to become the most infamous gangster in American history. He escaped violent death several times, only to die ultimately from syphilis — cramming a great deal of organized crime activity enhanced by the Prohibition era into a short period of dominance in Chicago.
Al looked up to him, so he followed the same example, dropping out after sixth grade. Al and his brothers all left school early and engaged in local criminal activity to make money, despite the hard work of their parents to the contrary. Al was born among 7 other brothers and sisters that would all impact him later in life. Interesting account of his life but the story got bogged down at times from too much detail. By the age of 9 he was already known in the neighborhood for the many fights he won and he became part of a group of Italian boys that thought of themselves as a gang and called themselves the South Brooklyn Rippers. Working for Johnny Torrio and Frankie Yale would help Al provide for them and he was sent to work for the Chicago Outfit. Capone was fiercely devoted to his mother, writes Bair, calling her on a daily basis while he began a career as a mobster.
Al was loyal and supported his extended family in Chicago for years. Rising from humble Brooklyn roots, Capone went on to become the most infamous gangster in American history. Of course he was famously sent to jail for income tax evasion, but I didn't know that before he was sent to Alcatraz, he spent two years in a prison in Atlanta. Many of them are riveting! From a National Book Award-winning biographer, the first complete life of legendary gangster Al Capone to be produced with the cooperation of his family, who provided the author with exclusive access to personal testimony and archival documents. His competition with rival gangs was brutally violent, a long-running war that crested with the shocking St. They first ended up in New York, where Gabriele, Al's father, tried to work many jobs, when he eventually settled on opening up a barber shop.
Newspaper accounts and biographies and family stories are often flawed; sometimes it's impossible to determine what actually happened, so that the only option is to note that all sources are contradictory on a subject. I also posted it to my Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Google Plus pages. Al Capone: His Life, Legacy, and Legend by Deirdre Bair, is a fascinating biography of the famous or perhaps notorious gangster. The book starts overseas in Italy. This biography is best when the author provides underreported historical detail. From a National Book Award-winning biographer, the first complete life of legendary gangster Al Capone to be produced with the cooperation of his family Bair interviewed relatives and second- and third-generation Capone family members to try and build a picture that challenged the criminal Capone of popular imagination. This is shown throughout the book, when it shows some of the horrible conditions that the people around Capone were in, with deaths happening every day, and some of the very dangerous conditions that people worked in.