February 21, 2018
Contract Pending by Al Marsiglia
Contract Pending: A New York Mafia Crime Family Novel is the first in the Frankie Fiore books written by Al Marsiglia.
Louie Marsiglia is a shoe repair shop owner in Brooklyn and his son, Frankie, works for him. Young and impressionable, Frankie Fiore is easily recruited by the local mob boss to do collections. Mentored by an experienced ‘made’ man, Frankie finds himself in the boss’s good side in just a short period of time. Soon, he and his new partner are given their own contracts as they continue to prove themselves capable of doing the job. Then, his partner takes it upon himself to ‘touch’ the boss’s money and Frank finds himself on the run leaving his family exposed and vulnerable.
This is an exciting crime thriller with a touch of romance. More than the life of a mobster, the book highlights family values focusing on the things people are willing to do for their family and for the people they care about. The romance part lightens up an otherwise violent story. The author creates well-developed characters taking time to supply sufficient backstories to make the characters relatable. There are many likable characters in this story including Louie Fiore and Peggy, but I find Biff, Frankie’s mentor, my favorite. He is tough, strict and reliable. But most importantly, compared with other mobsters he still has a sense of right and wrong.
However, since the Mafia has been used as subject of so many popular novels already like The Godfather by Mario Puzo and The Firm by John Grisham, some readers may find this book somehow cliché. Moreover, though I sincerely like the plot especially the ending, other readers may find it somehow predictable.
Still, I enjoyed reading the book and I recommend it to crime and thriller fans. Violent and gory scenes, however, may not be suitable for your readers.