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Brotherly Love

3.84 of 5 stars 3.84  ·  rating details  ·  324 ratings  ·  22 reviews
In Philadelphia city, 1961, a division of power exists between the Italian mobs and the predominantly Irish labour leaders. When the youngest daughter of union man Charley Flood is accidentally killed by one of the Mafia's cops it is the beginning of a suicidal chain of retaliation.
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Published March 6th 2007 by HarperAudio (first published 1991)
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This is a dark tale of two brothers (cousins, actually) who are born into Philadelphia mob life. One is reticent to participate in the lifestyle; the other relishes it. The story takes place over about 20 years, from the time when the boys are young until they've grown and have pretty much decided who they are going to be.

Dexter does a great job developing characters, as he did in Train. Though there's plenty of violence here, he's subtle and handles a complicated subject well. I thought the inc
The ironically named Brotherly Love is a cold, sparse and terrifying, an unrelenting plunge into a nightmare. There is Dexter’s scalpel sharp dissection of character and black humor along the way, but for the most part this the most relentless Dexter I have found yet. A tale of thirty or so years of two mob connected cousins in Philadelphia is told intimately, sparsely, and claustrophobic as opposed to sweeping. Brilliant narrative economy, dialogue, and character and I’m left with question of ...more
I would not normally be a fan of a book about boxers, but Dexter writes amazingly well, and drew me in despite my lack of interest in the subject. That said, I haven't felt the slightest desire to revisit it.
Ik heb al sinds jaar en dag een zwak voor het werk van door-en-door Amerikaanse verhalenvertellers, of het nu gaat om de kortverhalen van Raymond Carver en John Cheever of romans van ronkende namen als John Irving (alhoewel, die Until I Find You was eigenlijk toch een tegenvaller), Philip Roth en Richard Ford. Pete Dexter, in 1988 nog winnaar van de National Book Award met Paris Trout, is er ook zo een. Brotherly Love is op geen enkel vlak écht opvallend of vernieuwend, maar dat hoeft ook niet. ...more
brotherly love is the second book i've read by pete dexter. i have to say, i like this guy. brotherly love took place in philadelphia, over a 20 or 30 year period. it followed this boy from his early childhood to his early twenties. he was part of a mob family, watched his sister and father die, watched his uncle (who took over the family when the dad died) die, and watch his cousin become a total asshole because of the mob connections. there were lots of scenes that took place in philly locales ...more
I think I liked P. Trout better although I haven't looked at that book in a long time. I remember Dexter creating better tension in Trout, which Brotherly should have had more of. Also, something nagged at me over and over throughout the story, and that was Dexter's overuse of pronouns. When he's talking to him, I had a couple of episodes of, "Who the f are you talking about with all these "he's" and "hims". Also I can't remember Dexter's earlier prose, but in "Brotherly", there's a lot of actio ...more
Another story taken from the corners of Philadelphia that Dexter was so good at shining the light into. This one, like God's Pocket, taken from headlines that tell a little bit more about your neighbors, than you think you want to know.
Hard-working constuction families, turning to, and then into, corrupt Union officials. Deals with all levels of policians, mobsters, and every level of the big city strata.. we know these people, sort of...
Not just a Dexter fan, but a fan of descriptive, evoca
Fizzles somewhat at the end, but still one of the best books I've read in a while.
B George
What a dark yet satisfying novel. I found another favorite author. The characters are very well written and allow for their interaction in the story to forward their development rather than relying on the authors descriptions of them. The book was at times difficult to put down being as engrossing as it were. I look forward to reading everything else in the author's catalog. It is always a joy for me to find a book that has not just a great story but the writing is such that you don't care what ...more
Haven't read Dexter since college but I remembered enjoying Paris Trout in an easy-breezy-entertaining sort of way. Somewhat true about Brotherly Love, which was as easy and breezy as they come. Dexter is skilled, no doubt. Many small scenes in a few good sentences burst brightly for the imagination. My only issue for the book was that it became too light and insubstantial as though it was written primarily to be a movie. I would later learn Dexter has been very busy as a screenwriter too. Maybe ...more
Tom Birner
9/10. Can't get enough of this guy.
Janice Russell
First of all, if you're looking for a feel good heartwarming sort of book, stay away from Pete Dexter. This is not the kind of love you really expect from your brother. It is filled bullies and thugs, one of them an absolute psychopath. The protagonist, Peter, is a decent guy who has to deal with them. This is not the best Pete Dexter book I've read, but it was quite good nonetheless.
Race, class, family and the mafia play big roles in this tale of the city of brotherly love set in the early 60s. I would not be surprised at all if this were the inpiration for the fine HBO series, the Wire, and it is another great book by Dexter.
Pete Dexter is a former newspaper columnist and the author of some great novels...Deadwood, Paris Trout...this one is a really interesting portrait of Philadelphia and the world of crime and hard is a good crime novel.
This is a tight, intimate story of a family deeply entrenched in the Mob life from the 1960s to 1990s. The first few pages establish a feeling of tenseless that lasts throughout the novel.
Linda Campbell Franklin
Pete Dexter, author of Paris Trout, has a terrific book...I was hooked from page 3. He just jumps in and starts telling the story...that's what I like in a book.
insomnia is great for book reading, I recommend it highly for the constant reader, I also recommend highly anything by Pete Dexter. Great book
Pete Dexter writes about the darker side of human nature. He is a gifted storyteller who doesn't waste words.
i love a hometown philly boy who can write our stories... this one is inter-generational...
Timothy Riley
This is a dark novel of unions and gangsters set in the 60's, 70's in philadelphia.
Tight and vivid story set mostly in, yes, okay, the city of brotherly love.
Not my favorite Pete Dexter book. I did like the ending.
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Pete Dexter, b.1943, is the author of the National Book Award-winning novel Paris Trout and five other novels: God's Pocket, Deadwood, Brotherly Love, The Paperboy, and Train. He has been a columnist for the Philadelphia Daily News and the Sacramento Bee, and has contributed to many magazines, including Esquire, Sports Illustrated, and Playboy. His screenplays include Rush and Mulholland Falls. De ...more
More about Pete Dexter...
Paris Trout The Paperboy Deadwood Spooner Train

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