Tuesday, November 16, 2021

Book Review - The Family; Naomi Krupitsky

The Family; Naomi Krupitsky
G.P. Putnam and Penguin Audio - 11/2021 - (9 hrs. 53 min.)
Narrator - Marin Ireland

Set in the late 1920s in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Red Hook,  The Family, tells the story of two best friends whose fathers, Joey and Carlos, were part of the Italian Mafia.  Sofia Colicchico and Antonia Russo were best friends from a very young age, their families even had Sunday dinners together. The girls knew their fathers worked together but what they did was a mystery.  When Antonia's father Carlos goes out one night and never returns, it is Joey who steps up and takes care of the fatherless Russo family.  As the girls grow, marry and become mothers their lives take a much different turn and fissures in their relationship begin to show but, they remain friends.  

What happens when someone wants out of the "family?"

I wasn't sure this book was going to be for me but, I found it to be a rather powerful coming of age story.  The husbands of Sofia and Antonia added much interest to the story as well (Antonia marries a Jew). I liked the time period: prohibition, the Great Depression and WWII.  I also enjoyed the background on how the Mafia and the protection aspect first came into play.  I  found some parts of the book to be a bit repetitive and I knew the ending would be somewhat shocking or surprising at the very least. I wasn't disappointed.  This book seems to have sequel potential as well.  The audio book was read by Marin Ireland who did an excellent job.  I think this debut is worth reading and was happy I tried it.

Rating - 4/5 stars

22 comments:

  1. I think I'd like that one, it sounds pretty interesting.

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  2. I haven't read many books set in the 1920s, but it's a great era in which to have a book set.

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  3. I usually avoid books about the Mafia and organized crime, but this one sounds interesting.

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    1. It wasn't bloody or gory, that violence or bad things happened on occasion was more understood by the reader IMO.

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  4. That's an intriguing story line. Like Jenclair, this is not the kind of thing I would normally read, but the time period and the characters you describe seem to give it possibilities for a good read.

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    1. I liked the time period and learning about the early background of Mafia.

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  5. I like the sound of this. Mafia-family stories that explore the effect of that group on family units is intriguing to me. That's the aspect of the whole Sopranos television series that kept me coming back to it year after year. Gotta take a look at this one.

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    1. We were addicted to the entire Sopranos series as well. There wasn't any real violence here, it was more implied.

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  6. The whole mafia thing is usually a big turn-off for me, so I probably won't be racing out to read this one. But I'm glad you enjoyed it. :)

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    1. I wasn't going to read it but in the end I was glad I did.

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  7. It sounds intriguing. Thank you for the review.

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    1. Different and I was happy I read it as I was thinking of passing.

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  8. I was curious about this book, so am glad to know you enjoyed it. If Marin Ireland narrates the audio, I'd probably listen.

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    1. Marin Ireland is awesome! A different kind of story; I liked the time period.

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  9. Oh this sounds fascinating! My grandfather lived in Brooklyn during this time (though he was Irish not Italian) so it would be interesting to get a peek into the world he lived in as a child. I like that this is more of a coming of age story then a mafia story. I will definitely look for this one and I probably would have passed it up. Great review!

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    1. Thanks Katherine - I almost passed on it as well but, was glad I listened to the audio.

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  10. Thank you for introducing me to books I wouldn't normally consider reading.

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  11. This sounds really good. I'll have to check it out.

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  12. Sounds like something I would like--I like the premise and the setting (time period and location) and it sounds like decent writer.

    Thanks for another book for the pile! Good review.

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  13. I don't think I've heard of this one before but I always enjoy a coming of age story!

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