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The Ice Man: Confessions of a Mafia Contract Killer
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The Ice Man: Confessions of a Mafia Contract Killer

4.09 of 5 stars 4.09  ·  rating details  ·  4,145 ratings  ·  447 reviews
There were times at home when Richard would have one of his outbursts and break things and then lock himself in his office. Merrick would ask him to please calm down, to “please relax, Daddy.” During these episodes, Richard would explain in a matter-of-fact way, “You know if . . . if I kill Mommy, if something happens and she dies, I’ll have to kill you all . . . I can’t l ...more
Hardcover, 432 pages
Published June 27th 2006 by St. Martin's Press
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33rd out of 409 books — 428 voters
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Ravis
This is probably the worst written book I've ever had the misfortune of reading. To start with there are only perhaps 50 pages of actual content in the book, rephrased so many times, over and over and over for 400+ pages that at some point you'll start to wish a real hitman would show up and put you out of your misery. Which brings us to whether any of this is true, and if so how much. There does not appear to have been any research done by the author. He just repeats the words of a criminal who ...more
Geoff
If you're into Mafia stories or just true crime stories in general then this is definetly a book you should check out. This book tells the story of Richard Kuklinksi who was perhaps one of the most disturbed individuals who ever lived. This man started out as a serial killer but then he crossed paths with guys who were in the Mafia. Since he had previously been killing just for his own personal enjoyment, the Mafia guys started offering him contracts to kill and he began to make his living from ...more
Cole Naisibtt
Apr 25, 2009 Cole Naisibtt rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone that likes true crime
This book was poorly written. However, I couldn't put it down. The man it is written about is incredibly interesting. This makes for good light reading. I just wish the author would have taken the time to read the crap he was scratching down on the pages. It was irritating to read the same thing over and over again. I don't know if he ever read it after he finished typing it. He likes to tell you the same thing five or six times over throughout the book. I almost thought a couple of times that I ...more
Cookie*420
I could not get enough of this sick character. Great story as disturbing as it is to think it all really happened, and he lived just a few towns away. Most serial killers get sensationalized after they're caught. Richard needs no building up, he was pure evil from the start. A must read.
Lisa
May 06, 2012 Lisa rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Lisa by: My entire family raving about it
I got chills, they're multiplying....Nope, nothing to do with Danny Zuko but Richard Kuklinski (aka The Iceman) greased a hell of a lot of people, and this is a riveting, chilling account of his life and crimes.

Having had a truly horrific childhood that did away with whatever humanity he had to start with, Richard was already a killer by the age of 13. Discovering a fearsome talent for murder he was already killing for sport by the time he was tapped to carry out contracts for various Mob famili
...more
RNOCEAN
Carlo (The Night Stalker) has written another captivating true-crime book. This one tells the spine-chilling story of Richard Kuklinski, a.k.a. "the Ice Man" because he liked to freeze his victims to throw off forensic investigators. Born into an abusive family, Kuklinski claimed to have killed for the first time at age 14. After a run-in with the Gambino family, he became a hit man for the mob, managing to live the double life of a professional assassin and devoted family man. The author spent ...more
Fritz Schneider
My experience reading this book was the same as my experience reading A Million Little Pieces: amazement at first, turning slowly to mild disbelief, then later outrage at having had my time wasted. There's no way that half of what's in this book is true, and I'm not the only one to think this: see extensive debunking references in negative reviews on amazon.

No doubt Kulkinski was a bad dude, but he's also a bad liar. I'm not sure what part of this story pushed me into total disbelief, but perhap
...more
The Yaus
Ever since I saw the HBO documentary on Richard Kluklinski I wanted to read the book. With plans to attend Clinical PhD programs in psychology naturally I was drawn to find out what could make such a monster like Richard tick. I read this book years later almost forgetting what was mentioned in the aforementioned documentary. Because of this I was unable to realize the inaccuracies of information that was being told in the book. Don't get me wrong, the book is extremely entertaining and offers g ...more
Grace
3.5/5 stars. An entertaining, decent true crime book. Definitely interesting and worth a read for anyone who has a morbid curiosity for serial killers and suchlike.
After reading this book, I went straight on youtube to find the HBO documentaries which were mentioned and found myself irritated at some of the glaring contradictions (in the book it was written that he committed his first murder at the age of 13 with a piece of wood, in the documentary it was 18 in a bar with a pool cue for one).. I
...more
Monica
Prob the scariest book I've ever read! I have to close all my blinds at night now and almost had to put it down a few times because of all the gruesome accounts of the murders. I still cant believe this book is based on fact and not fiction, its so disturbing. Not for the faint of heart but a fascinating account of a psychopath who was victim to an awful/violent childhood, i couldnt help but feel bad for this man. If you're into murder mysteries/crime novels this is definitely not one to miss!
Bianka Armendariz
Richard is a normal everyday guy. As a child, he was always made fun of, bullied, and was never truely loved. As his life went on, he began to realize he can get his revenge on all the people that hurt him as a child. He began to go crazy and became a very known mafia killer. He was married and had kids of his own, but he killed all the boys. Every man that ever hurt him or says anything rude, he would go after them and kill them. He said himself in the book that he would never try to hurt any w ...more
Graham
Another book club book. A brutal story tracking the life of a serial killer/mafia hitman. I thought the story of his childhood provided a good foundation for his later behaviour. A brutal, abusive father followed by harsh corporal punishment at a Catholic school at the hands of nuns and priests really set the tone.

I think the story told by Richard Kuklinski to Philip Carlo tried in some ways tried to ameliorate his 'career choice'. I acknowledge he had a terrible childhood and early teenage life
...more
Douglas Brown
The material of this book kept me reading as I was fascinated with the evil of Richard Kuklinski, though the writing nearly turned me away on many occasions. If everything written is true, (which a lot of it didn't seem up to snuff) it is a riveting story of one of the scariest men in history. But the book is twice as long as it needs to be because the author rehashes the same material over and over. By half way through, I had read that Richard was the nicest guy in the world and also the meanes ...more
Rishi Prakash
Great book about one of the most notoriously unknown killers of all time!

Richard Kuklinski was a very interesting man to say the least, his family life, his secret life of murder and his long list of petty crimes and schemes! He had been in staying in a locality for his life and no one ever got a clue about his double life including his wife.

When you finish "The Ice Man", you'll feel as if you know the guy. The book starts off talking about Richard's horrible childhood and how/when he committe
...more
Rick Boyer
This is a great book... equal parts fascinating, and horrifying. It tells the story of Richard Kuklinski, the most prolific Mafia hit-man of all time. But Kuklinski didn't confine his murders and mayhem to his mob work... he was a very busy serial killer in his own right. No one knows for sure how many people Kuklinski killed... but the total could be well over 200. He would kill anyone, anytime, anywhere, for any reason. He was one of the most cunning and dangerous people that ever walked the e ...more
Patrick
Did you like the "Hunger Games?"

If you liked "The Hunger Games" but was hoping that the main character was a grown Polish-American psychopath instead of a teenage angst-ridden girl, then this just might be the book for you. Yes, as in The Hunger Games, there is plenty of killing to go around, much, much, more and in many more creative (and did I mention real) ways. But unlike The Running Man Hunger Games, this book does not allow you to be sickened by the television audience and a voyeuristic
...more
Mikael
Apart from a perhaps unhealthy obsession with Jack the Ripper, “true crime” is not a literary genre I have delved deeply into. The main reasons for this are that the books are generally quite tacky, and that most criminals are singularly uninteresting people. Richard Kuklinski, known as the Ice Man, is an exception to this latter rule.

He was a sometimes lovely, sometimes psychotically abusive husband and father, who also happened to be a serial killer. Things start to get interesting when we fin
...more
Melissa Bailor
This was one of the most interesting books I've read in a long time. I could not put it down.

Carlo shows us the real Richard and then let's us choose how we see him.

Richard had my sides, a wonderful work ethic, a torn family man with a hair trigger and I'm sure Park Dietz gained much insight into human behavior from Richard.

This is true life, this is how it done. Carlo does not sugar coat any part of Richard.

As I read the book I was able to see the same eyes without a soul that Carlo did.

Richar
...more
Braulio Delgado
This book is a bunch of BS written by a guy who did no fact finding. It is about a guy who wanted to seem bigger than he really was. He was a porn dealer, ran a small time home invasion crew and killed some associates. Most of the book is lies told by one man with a creative imagination. I read the book before seeing any of the HBO specials. The entire time, I was thinking... There is no freaking way.

After reading the book I listened to the actual interviews. It seems like he was baited in to g
...more
Adrian

This book is about a guy named Richard Kuklinski who was a contract killer for the mafia. When he was young other kids were always picking him on, his dad was an abusive alcoholic that beat his older brother to death, and gave Richard beating everyday. One day he got sick of being bulled and started hitting his bully with a wooden stick but he beat him to death accidently. When grew up he had a family but no education so all he could do were things like robbing trucks and killing for money.
The m
...more
Kate
This book has to be one of the most intriguing biographies of a convicted criminal that I have read to date. However, the book itself is not particularly well written and if the author had has a less meaty subject to write about, I doubt I would have felt so compelled to read the book so quickly. On several occasions the author seemed to be repeating himself, as if he'd thought of a good phrase and was determined to get as much mileage out of it as possible. With so much material and great detai ...more
Racheltd
Mar 28, 2011 Racheltd rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: mafia men
Recommended to Racheltd by: Lorrie
the ice man is a sick psycho serial killer. the first of the book was grabbing...this man living this double life...a screwed up childhood...but near the middle i was kind of bored...it got to where he killed so many people that i forgot they were people...cold hearted like the iceman. and yes like most serial killers he became sloppy and well got caught.
the moral lines are schewed. he was totally against killing women and children ...but yet he was okay with killing a stranger for cutting him
...more
William Thomas
The book often repeats itself and is far longer and more drawn out than it should be, but could have been an epic of monster proportions if a btter writer had touched it. The only reason it gets three stars is because of the content and what this man has done with his life, before he was incarcerated, a 47 year killing spree that came to a much deserved end. This man bound people and fed them to rats. je killed a man with one punch, breaking his neck. He flew to brazil to kill a couple of drug l ...more
Mike
I think a lot of this book is one big made up story. Obviously Richard Kuklinski is a total nut job who has murdered a lot of people. He claims to have been one of the shooters in the Paul Castallono murder but Sammy the Bull named all the shooters he hired in court and Richard wasen't one of them. Richard also states that he killed Roy Demeo but Anthony Casso stated in his book that he hired two people from Demeos crew to do the job. I think Richard Kuklinski has trouble knowing what is real an ...more
Benji Binks
I find the subject matter of this book inexplicably fascinating and picked this book up finally after having watched the HBO special about 20 or so times. I think the information is really interesting, but I found myself turned off frequently by the author's writing style. He repeats phrases constantly, trying desperately to turn a biography into a more creative narrative and I found it kind of annoying. So between the large quantities of information - which I appreciate - and the somewhat irkso ...more
Hugo Rodrigues
Uma história de violência, brutalidade de um dos maiores assassinos por contrato de todo o mundo, onde assassinou de varias formas engenhosas mais de 250 pessoas, desde chefes da máfia, a pessoas que simplesmente lhe levantavam o dedo do meio, é incrível como só no final da carreira deste psicopata o começaram a ligar a crimes... É preciso ter estômago para ler este livro fantástico, as descrições são horríveis, desde matar pessoas alimentando as vivas a ratos, a mutilações e torturas. Um livro ...more
Andrew
A travesty of a book. I say this as a fan of true crime, one who is used to having to suspend belief when reading the tales of various hoods and their glamorised account of their lives of crime, content in the knowledge there is a grain of truth running through their tales and that I will be entertained for the duration. This book is terribly researched, if at all by the author. It takes everything the 'Iceman' says as fact; pure and utter fiction and I wish I could claim back the few wasted hou ...more
L.A. Witt
Fascinating look into the mind of a prolific serial killer, and an interesting look at life in the Mafia during the 1970s/1980s.

The only thing that keeps this one from being a 5-star was some issues I had with the writing. There are some sentence structures that are weird, repetitive, or both, and they were *really* distracting at times. Still, it's a solid read, and I definitely recommend it.
Jesse Bedell
Rife with inaccuracy. The Ice Man was a bullshitter. Case in point: He did not kill Roy Demeo. He was killed by his own crew at the behest of John Gotti and Frank Decicco. Anthony Casso should get some "credit" as well. Interesting concept for a book, but I wish the author had done some research. You obviously can't take a psychopath's word.
David Gibson
Absolute fiction. It is obvious that Kuklinski told Philip Carlo a bunch of fake stories about his criminal life and Philip Carlo wrote this book as though everything was true.

Kuklinski happens to run into situations where pedophiles are committing their crimes. Kuklinski is constantly whacking out these random pedophile criminals he meets.

Kuklinski goes into a hotel and there is a man in an elevator that Kuklinski can tell just by looking at him, that he is a fellow mafia killer.

Kuklinski ties
...more
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