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Last Don (Mario Puzo's Mafia)

3.76 of 5 stars 3.76  ·  rating details  ·  9,076 ratings  ·  244 reviews
The Last Don is Mario Puzo at his finest, thrilling us with his greatest Mafia novel since The Godfather *a masterful saga of the last great American crime family and its powerful reach into Hollywood and Las Vegas.

*The New York Times Book Review

The Last Don is Domenico Clericuzio, a wise and
ebook, 0 pages
Published September 28th 2004 by Random House Publishing Group (first published January 1st 1986)
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Similar to The Godfather in many ways, it didn't seem to be as tight of a story, but it's been years since I last read it, so I can't say for certain. It wasn't bad, but I didn't like any of the characters as much nor was there as much violence. All in all, it was a west coast version mostly set few decades later, an imitation.

I did get a kick out of the writer character. Quite a bit of time is spent on Hollywood studios screwing everyone on contracts, especially the writers. Net points are drea
brian lee
really not sure why this wasn't made into a movie as well.

classic puzo, one of his best books. if you have any interest in the mafia, the godfather, the sopranos, etc, grab this book.
emily cryptic
Like most of the others who have reviewed this book, I thought it was much too long. My favorite review so far was simply "too many chapters." But Puzo's problem in this book extends beyond excessive chapters, or length; it's that he tried to write two different stories in one, with too many characters and too little tension. The story about the Clericuzio family is actually quite interesting and well crafted, but Puzo drags out the set-up for 300 pages, finally puts together some genuine plot m ...more
Jevron McCrory

This is Mario Puzo at his finest! The characters are beautifully well drawn, the pace is carefully controlled and the climax breath taking!

If only Coppola could turn this into a movie instead of that silly cheap TV cash in, we'd have Mafia GOLD on our hands! Cross De Lena, about the coolest character this side of Michael Corleone! Cooler in fact!
I didn't know what to expect when I started this book but I was pleasantly surprised. Just going by the reviews here on Goodreads it seems that people either really like this book or are really disappointed by it. I think the reason the responses are so polarized is that people are basing this book on the Godfather book and movie which is really unfair. Believe it or not, I have never read The Godfather nor have I seen the movie. That may or may not have played a factor in my appreciation of thi ...more
Luka Novak
Weak and long-winded. I understand that ever Puzo's book will be compared to Godfather and judged by its standard, but this book is weak even without that comaprisson.

The premise of the book is that Don Clericuzio wants to retire from mafia business and "go legit" and how he does that. In book's opening he announces this intention to the family, wishing that his children, and nephew will start legitimate businesses and their children reap the benefits.

So far so good but then the story splits in
Peter Molnar
"The Last Don" is Mario Puzo at his best, rich with timeless, meticulously constructed characters and twists and brutal turns that made his landmark novel "The Godfather" the masterwork that it is today. His creation of a more modernized Michael Corleone, Cross Domenica, walks the pages of this novel with all of the confident swagger of Sonny Corleone and the righteous indignation of Michael. The glaring difference here is that the Don of this novel, in comparison with Don Corleone, is not nearl ...more
Mario Puzo had some good ideas in this book, and I remember parts of it because they were very entertaining. But I have to agree with what some other readers have said. That it was slow and had too many unnecessary chapters. The characters are not really likeable but they're not meant to be. As someone wrote "It is a story of love, lust, loyalty, and betrayal. It reeks of cynicism and violence. It is about a world without integrity where everyone has a price. And it is written with such pace and ...more
Sudipto Saha
The points presented in the succeeding paragraphs limit this review to a mere comparison plotted out against two of Mario Puzo’s best books: The Sicilian and The Godfather.

Beginning with the positive aspects, this novel sees the same level of dexterity in the technique of storytelling as had been present in the aforementioned best two. Examples are seen in the likes of cliffhanging chapter ends and astute chapter beginnings. Alongside this, Mario Puzo provides deep insight into the main characte
After having The Notebook before I started The Last Don, I was hoping for a bit of mafia violence to change things up a bit. But it turns out although this is a really thick book hardly anyone dies. It’s mostly about Hollywood movie deals and Las Vegas casinos.

I had read and adored both The Godfather and The Sicilian for their characters, gripping storylines and the crafty way Mario Puzo reveals developments to you. Thus I thought in having almost all of his books on my shelf meant I had a gre
Puzo sets up great drama though this book had some real pacing problems. At some point, it felt like the book would go on for almost a hundred pages without really going anywhere. The racism was also hard to read but I've noticed that pattern with his characters from The Godfather though this time it felt more brutal. Also, there is a character from Fool's Die in here.
All in all, not a bad story. He's done better and I will read more but this wasn't a waste of time.
Michal Skrivan
Napjatá atmosféra uvnitř italské enklávy v newyorském Bronxu. Neúnavní hazardní hráči v kasinech lasvegaského hotelu Xanadu. Kolotoč peněz a sexu ve filmových studiích Hollywoodu...
Don Domenico Clericuzio, jehož rodinný zločinecký klan je právě na vrcholu moci, chce jednou provždy skoncovat s korupcí, podvody a vraždami.
Své největší rivaly, rodinu Santadiovu, vyvraždili Clericuziovi do posledního muže již před lety pečlivě naplánovanou operací. Jejich špatným svědomím zůstala jen Rose Marie Cler
Sep 04, 2007 Jen rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of mafia stories
Mario Puzo's masterpiece remains The Godfather, but this is still a fun read. The mafia is more contemporary, so it isn't as intense as the heyday, and there's also a lot about the movie industry, about which Puzo undoubtedly learned a lot when the Godfather movies were being made. This is one to read at the pool.
Alessandra Castellani
Fantastic account of how the world of movies really used to work and what is really behind the patinated world of top class actors (producers, writers, make up artists, ecc....) The mafia seems to be living within Hollywood's theathres rather than in a Nevada mansion!
Puzzo pinta un mundo de fantasía. Uno sabe que es de fantasía. Pero uno no puede dejar de soñar. La mujer bella (perfecta) el hombre varonil, el dinero a montones. Ah, los suspiros van y vienen, y la boca se hace agua. Buenísimo
The Last Don is an entertaining read. Nothing in it is going to particularly knock the reader off their feet but for the most part it is a well constructed story. I found it to be pretty typical compared to other books of his that I have read, the characters themselves are somewhat wooden and two dimensional but are augmented a fair amount by the immense texture and authenticity he is able to bring to the Italian American culture. As so much of the book is centered around the greediness of Holly ...more
Yolanda Chacon-riojas
Good read!!! Even wanted to name my son Cross because of this book.
this book was predictably awesome!!
Live Unit
I read this book immediately after The Godfather, I shouldn't have done that. Not only is this review skewered by my constant comparison to the Godfather, I couldn't help but trudge through this book with high expectations. None has been met.
The book dragged from the get-go, there were a few interesting parts, but those was far and in-between. Not only did I not enjoy it as much as I thought it would. It was highly predictable and suffice to say, annoying.
None of the characters were fleshed out
Jazmín Romero
Cuando recibí este libro como regalo, temí que no fuera a entenderlo bien ya que no había leído nada del autor antes y sólo tenía el antecedente de haber mirado las películas de la saga El Padrino, pero al comenzar la lectura me enganché de inmediato y lo terminé en pocos días. El autor nos muestra de una forma muy interesante y dinámica el funcionamiento del crimen organizado en una sociedad tan conservadora en apariencia como la de Estados Unidos, donde hasta el funcionario más intachable tien ...more
Audra Marvin
Just a few weeks ago I watched the Godfather movies for the first time. Since they're so old, and since so many Mafia & mobster movies have been made since then, I did not expect to enjoy them. To my surprise and my delight, though, I was riveted for all six hours and fifteen minutes. I mean, totally glued. I can't wait to watch them again. The story, the characters, the familiarity of things - knowing that all the other gangster movies I've seen have basically taken their cues from these or ...more
Ayame Sohma
The Last Yawn

Unfortunately, Mario Puzo's literary talents did not age like wine. While The Godfather, his magnum opus, was action-packed, riveting and filled with colourful characters that filled every chapter and every margin, The Last Don fails in everything The Godfather succeeded in doing.

While Puzo once again spends a majority of the novel detailing the lives and backgrounds of his protagonists, the villains get shafted, with a mere handful of paragraphs to flesh them out. This spills over
Mika Auramo
Mario Puzon romaani on suomennettu nimellä Viimeinen kummisetä. Kirja noudattelee aika pitkälti samanlaista asetelmaa: on Amerikkaan muuttanut siirtolainen, joka rakentaa rikollisen imperiumin ja joka haluaa vetäytyä eläkkeelle ja tehdä rikollisesta liiketoiminnasta laillista.

Vanhalla kummisedällä on neljä poikaa, joille hän on jakanut tehtävät kykyjen mukaan. Eniten on esillä Pippi de Lena, joka on läntisen Amerikan pomo ja ykköstappaja, muut veljekset toimivat idässä rakennus- ja ravintolabisn
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Siddhartha Ramachandran
Another Goodread. Thanks to Puzo's wonderful piece of work.

Found it very much on the lines of the godfather,but with a different zest altogether. The book gingers you up with its description of Vegas and its functioning. May or may not be real..but who cares? The story line is brilliant and the descriptions are microscopic.

A brilliant piece of work. Would suggest it to anyone who liked the Godfather.
Kate Millin
Don Domenico is a Don who wants his family to move away from their mafia roots to a more legal way of earning large amounts of money. He is working towards this but the family has to work through the results of a major war between their family and the Santadio family. The action takes place in New York, Las Vegas and Los Angeles with an excellent development of characters and an interesting plot development.
Muhammed Bhatti
Being a die-hard fan of the Godfather movies, this is actually the first Mario Puzo novel I've ever read and I must admit..I was absolutely fascinated! Set back and forth in Hollywood and Las Vegas, this phenomenal story has bigger than life characters and the theme is so exciting it will put the reader on the edge of their seat with every page; Highly recommended for all Mafia fans!
While not as mind blowing as The Godfather, The Last Don was still an incredible book! I loved the set up, the mystery, the Mafia intrigue, and the plot. I would agree with others who said it's too long; Puzo definitely could've cut out a lot of the movie business stuff and the background info on most characters. I absolutely loved Cross de Lena and many of the other characters were very memorable as well.
Actual rating: 3.5

Contemporary mafia, so obviously, it's a little less intense. The family had to be more careful and more creative with their crimes (I think the whole confirmation/communion thing was interesting) as they try to make their way into the 'legit' world.

I did enjoy it (let's face it, I will always enjoy Mafia stories) but I found some parts to be dragging. Sometimes a chapter feels like it would go on forever. Certain things got repetitive too. The emphasis on sex was too much (heh
I have not read the Godfather. I've only seen the movies. I must say, I expected more from Mario Puzo. Then again, not all of an author's books are equally magnificent.

Let me just give a very brief introduction to the novel. Don Clericuzio has plans for his Mafia family. He plans to bring them from focusing on illegal gains, like drugs, to legal gains, like gambling. This novel introduces us to the different factions of the family and a Mafia world splendidly described by Puzo. Puzo takes us exp
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Puzo was born in a poor family of Neapolitan immigrants living in the Hell's Kitchen neighborhood of New York. Many of his books draw heavily on this heritage. After graduating from the City College of New York, he joined the United States Army Air Forces in World War II. Due to his poor eyesight, the military did not let him undertake combat duties but made him a public relations officer statione ...more
More about Mario Puzo...
The Godfather The Sicilian Omerta The Family Fools Die

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“What is past is past. never go back. Not for excuses. Not for justification, not for happiness. You are what you are, the world is what it is.” 113 likes
“Power isn't everything ...its the only thing.” 67 likes
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