Making Jack Falcone: An Undercover FBI Agent Takes Down a Mafia Family by Joaquin 'Jack' Garcia
|Making Jack Falcone: An Undercover FBI Agent Takes Down a Mafia Family by Joaquin 'Jack' Garcia|
|Reviewer: Sue Magee|
|Summary: The story of how a Cuban-American became sufficiently Italian to infiltrate the Mafia on a long-term basis. Easy reading and recommended.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 272||Date: August 2009|
|Publisher: Pocket Books|
Joaquin 'Jack' Garcia worked for the FBI. That might sound rather glamorous but Jack had a special claim to fame. He was one of those rare people who always worked undercover – not just for hours or days at a time but sometimes for years. In Making Jack Falcone he tells the story of how he came to infiltrate the Mafia in New York and was responsible for a string of arrests which crippled the organised crime families. If that doesn't sound impressive enough, then just consider that Jack Garcia was a Cuban-born American and he went undercover as an Italian amongst Italians.
With the help of Michael Levin Garcia tells of his childhood in Cuba and then in America and how he came to join the FBI. He's honest about the Bureau's strengths and weaknesses and occasionally quite vitriolic about its failing particularly when they were likely to put his life – or the life of another agent – in danger. He has the remarkable ability to give a balanced view of people despite their being on the opposite side of the law and to get on with them whilst never losing sight of the aims of the investigation.
The stress of the job was off the scale – Garcia is a big man who constantly struggled with his weight, but years of being under cover with the Mafia and eating the meals that they ate meant that he put on eighty pounds and at one point appeared to be heading for serious illness. The strain of working under cover with the Mafia was compounded by the fact that this wasn't the only case that he was working – sometimes he would be undercover in four or five different cases simultaneously, with different identities. Sometimes even he forgot who he was.
If you're at all interested in the American crime families and how they operate then this book is definitely worth reading. I can't think of many other sources which would have this type of access and have no reason to tell the story other than how it is. Occasionally in fiction the Mafia are portrayed as being rather bumbling and ineffectual – Garcia makes clear the money that they're extracting from the people of New York – and it's not peanuts.
I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to The Bookbag.
For another side to American law enforcement we can recommend Legacy of Ashes – the history of the CIA by Tim Weiner.
You can read more book reviews or buy Making Jack Falcone: An Undercover FBI Agent Takes Down a Mafia Family by Joaquin 'Jack' Garcia at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy Making Jack Falcone: An Undercover FBI Agent Takes Down a Mafia Family by Joaquin 'Jack' Garcia at Amazon.com.
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