Gangsterland: Book summary and reviews of Gangsterland by Tod Goldberg

Gangsterland

by Tod Goldberg

Gangsterland by Tod Goldberg X
Gangsterland by Tod Goldberg
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  • Published in USA  Sep 2014
    464 pages
    Genre: Thrillers

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Book Summary

Sal Cupertine is a legendary hit man for the Chicago Mafia, known for his ability to get in and out of a crime without a trace. Until now, that is. His first-ever mistake forces Sal to botch an assassination, killing three undercover FBI agents in the process. This puts too much heat on Sal, and he knows this botched job will be his death sentence to the Mafia. So he agrees to their radical idea to save his own skin.

A few surgeries and some intensive training later, and Sal Cupertine is gone, disappeared into the identity of Rabbi David Cohen. Leading his growing congregation in Las Vegas, overseeing the population and the temple and the new cemetery, Rabbi Cohen feels his wicked past slipping away from him, surprising even himself as he spouts quotes from the Torah or the Old Testament. Yet, as it turns out, the Mafia isn't quite done with him yet. Soon the new cemetery is being used as both a money and body-laundering scheme for the Chicago family. And that rogue FBI agent on his trail, seeking vengeance for the murder of his three fellow agents, isn't going to let Sal fade so easily into the desert.

Gangsterland is the wickedly dark and funny new novel by a writer at the height of his power – a morality tale set in a desert landscape as ruthless and barren as those who inhabit it.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. Complex characters with understandable motivations distinguish this highly unusual crime novel from Goldberg (Living Dead Girl)." - Publishers Weekly

"Starred Review. Sal's transformation - and intermittent edification - into Rabbi Cohen is brilliantly rendered, and Goldberg's careening plot, cast of memorably dubious characters, and mordant portrait of Las Vegas make this one of the year's best hard-boiled crime novels." - Booklist

"Goldberg's careening plot, cast of memorably dubious characters, and mordant portrait of Las Vegas make this one of the year's best hard-boiled crime novels." - Booklist

"The Mafia plus the Torah makes for a darkly funny and suspenseful morality tale...[Goldberg] can spin a good yarn." - The Millions

"As sharp as a straight razor. But a lot more fun. Count me a huge fan." - Lee Child, New York Times bestselling author of Personal: A Jack Reacher Novel

"Gangsterland is rich with complex and meaty characters, but its greatest strength is that it never pulls a punch, never holds back, and never apologizes for life's absurdities. If this novel were a person, you could ask it for a bookie." - Brad Meltzer, bestselling author of The Fifth Assassin

"Tod Goldberg is a one-of-a-kind writer, and this is his best novel to date. Harrowing, funny, wise, and heretical,Gangsterland is everything a thriller should be." - T. Jefferson Parker, author of Full Measure

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Author Information

Tod Goldberg

Tod Goldberg is the author of several books of fiction, including the novels Living Dead Girl, a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, Fake Liar Cheat and the popular Burn Notice series, as well as two collections of short stories, Simplify and Other Resort Cities. His essays, nonfiction, and journalism have appeared widely, including, most recently, in Best American Essays 2013. His latest novel is Gangsterland.

Tod Goldberg holds an MFA in Creative Writing and Literature from Bennington College and lives in Indio, CA where he directs the Low Residency MFA program in Creative Writing & Writing for the Performing Arts at the University of California, Riverside.

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