Chin: The Life and Crimes of Mafia Boss Vincent Gigante [EPUB]

Chin: The Life and Crimes of Mafia Boss Vincent Gigante [EPUB]
Chin: The Life and Crimes of Mafia Boss Vincent Gigante by Larry McShane
2016 | EPUB | 1.13MB

This is the story of Vincent Louis Gigante, the Genovese Family crime overlord who ruled a sprawling criminal empire for a quarter century with an iron--and deadly--fist. Vinnie "Chin" Gigante displayed signs of insanity that stunned the public, stymied the police and the FBI, and secured his power for decades. Was he really crazy? Or crazy like a fox?

Vincent "Chin" Gigante

He started out as a professional boxer--until he found his true calling as a ruthless contract killer. His doting mother's pet name for the boy evolved into his famous alias, "Chin," a nickname that struck fear throughout organized crime as he routinely ordered the murders of mobsters who violated the Mafia code--including a contract put out on Gambino family boss John Gotti.

Vincent Gigante was hand-picked by Vito Genovese to run the Genovese Family when Vito was sent to prison. Chin raked in more than $100 million for the Genovese family, all while evading federal investigators. At the height of his power, he controlled an underworld empire of close to three hundred made men, extending from New York's Little Italy to the docks of Miami to the streets of Philadelphia--making the Genovese Family the most powerful in the U.S.

And yet Vincent "Chin" Gigante was, to all outside appearances, certifiably crazy.

A serial psychiatric hospital outpatient, he wandered the streets of Greenwich Village in a ratty bathrobe and slippers, sometimes adding a floppy cap to complete the ensemble. He urinated in public, played pinochle in storefronts, and hid a second family from his wife. On twenty-two occasions, he admitted himself to a mental hospital--evading criminal prosecution while insuring his continued reign as "The Oddfather." It took nearly thirty years of endless psychiatric evaluations by a parade of puzzled doctors for federal authorities to finally bring him down.

This is an American Mafia story unlike any other--a strange and shocking account of one man's rise to power that's as every bit as colorful and bizarre as the man himself.

Sober Stick Figure: A Memoir [EPUB]

Sober Stick Figure: A Memoir [EPUB]
Sober Stick Figure: A Memoir by Amber Tozer
2016 | EPUB | 60.54MB

Sober Stick Figure is a memoir from stand-up comedian Amber Tozer, chronicling her life as an alcoholic and her eventual recovery— starting with her first drink at the age of seven—all told with the help of childlike stick figures. Amber writes and illustrates the crazy and harsh truths of being raised by alcoholics, becoming one herself, stagnating in denial for years, and finally getting sober.

As a teenager, Amber is an overachieving student athlete who copes with her family's alcoholic tragedies by focusing on her achievements. It quickly takes a funny and dark turn when she starts to experiment with booze and ignores the warning signs of alcoholism. Through blackouts, cringe-worthy embarrassments, and pounding hangovers, she convinces herself that she “just likes to party.” She leaves her hometown of Pueblo, Colorado to follow her dreams, and ends up in New York City, spending lots of time binge drinking, passing out on trains, and telling jokes on stage. She then moves to Los Angeles, thinking sunshine and show business will save her. Eventually hitting rock bottom, she has a moment of clarity, and knows she has to stop drinking. It's now been seven years since that last drink, and she's ready to tell her story. Sober Stick Figure is adventurous, hilarious, sad, sweet, tragic—and ultimately inspiring.

The Heroic Gangster: The Story of Monk Eastman, from the Streets of New York to the Battlefields of Europe and Back [EPUB]

The Heroic Gangster: The Story of Monk Eastman, from the Streets of New York to the Battlefields of Europe and Back [EPUB]
The Heroic Gangster: The Story of Monk Eastman, from the Streets of New York to the Battlefields of Europe and Back by Neil Hanson
2013 | EPUB | 4,6MB

An intimate biography as well as an epic history, Monk Eastman vividly recounts the life and times of old New York’s most infamous gangster-cum-soldier as he made his way from the sooty streets and dingy saloons of the Lower East Side to the battlefields of the Western Front.

Born in 1873 to a respectable New York family, Monk was running wild in Manhattan’s rough Lower East Side by the age of eighteen. He found work as a bouncer—when the saloon owner first turned him down because he had two bouncers already, Monk beat them both up and was promptly hired in their place. He soon developed a loyal following of immigrant toughs, and by 1900, he was the most feared gang leader in lower Manhattan, protected by corrupt politicians and crooked cops, and commanding an army of two thousand pickpockets, thieves, prostitutes, and thugs.

But changing neighborhood demographics and shifting political fortunes colluded against Monk: after a pitched battle with Pinkerton detectives, he was sent to Sing Sing on a ten-year sentence, and his territory quickly slipped from his grasp. In 1917, no longer safe from the law—or from rival gangs—Monk joined the New York National Guard. As a gangster, he’d been the equivalent of a general; as an enlisted man, Monk was just another private.

After several months of combat training, Monk’s division of Brooklyn recruits was thrown headlong into the bitter trench warfare in Europe. His experience in gangland combat served him well: he was repeatedly cited by his superiors for his bravery and he received a hero’s welcome back in New York and an offical pardon from the governor. But Monk’s gangland past was not so easily erased and caught up with him in the end.

In Neil Hanson’s able hands, Monk’s unique and compelling story becomes an emblem of a time of upheaval—for New York and for the nation.

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