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Murder Machine: A True Story of Murder, Madness, and the Mafia

4.1  ·  Rating Details ·  706 Ratings  ·  43 Reviews
Mustain and Capeci, reporters for the New York Daily News , here present a feature expose of Roy DeMeo, leader of a pack of especially gruesome hit men known as the Murder Machine. DeMeo's crew was so "scary," according to an FBI agent quoted here, that even then-Mafia don John Gotti was wary of them. By the FBI's estimate, the Murder Machine killed at least 200 people bef ...more
Paperback, 496 pages
Published July 1st 1993 by Penguin Group USA (first published 1992)
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May 30, 2013 Anthony rated it really liked it
Interesting story of an incredibly brutal crew from Brooklyn. Not sure how factual some of the information is on Roy and other core crew members due to a lot of the information was received from Dominick who was not a core member and was drunk/stoned most of the time. I also didn't believe Dominick as being the poor family member drawn into the life and escaped a hero by putting many people away to jail for life. Fact is he's a rat and when the going got tough he rolled on other members of his c ...more
Taylor Ahern
Mar 22, 2009 Taylor Ahern rated it it was amazing
"Murder Machine" is this extremely brutal and compelling read that is quite unforgettable in all of its gory, non-stop bloodletting as it superbly details the day-to-day life of this nasty and vicious organized crime group from the Canarsie section of Brooklyn (known as the Demeo crew!) that was comprised of drug-dealers, car thieves, porn peddlers, loansharks, scam artists and these savage, merciless assassins who, while led and encouraged by their intrepid leader, Roy Demeo, killed and chopped ...more
Jul 05, 2015 Dachokie rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime
Even Gotti Was Fearful …

Although cinematic portrayals of the Mafia have generated plenty of cringe-worthy moments, reading about the real-life deeds of Nino Gaggi’s murderous underlings makes the “Sopranos” appear like a series more suitable for Nickelodeon. MURDER MACHINE details the rise and fall of a Gambino-family crew that may have been responsible for up to 200 murders and how the legal system finally caught on to them.

While I thought this was going to be a book exclusively about the notor
May 20, 2017 Bobby24 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely brilliant book, always interesting and very well written. A book about true criminals and their life styles the type that are very rare. I am amazed that no film has ever been made about this, unlike the bullshit tales of the"Iceman" Richard Kuklinski, this is all truth
Liam Shave
Mar 10, 2017 Liam Shave rated it really liked it
Shelves: true-crime
This is a horror story about a gang in the Gambino Family. If you're curious, just look up Roy DeMeo and the Gemini crew and read about what they did. This was one of the most interesting stories I've read on the mafia. Not your usual gangster book, not even close.
"Murder Machine" is both the story of notorious mob hitman Roy DeMeo and Dominick Montiglio, the nephew of Anthony "Nino" Gaggi, Roy's boss. The information for this book seems to come primarily from Dominick, along with some of DeMeo's associates, and so it makes it somewhat suspect since neither DeMeo nor Gaggi were alive to speak for themselves. Gaggi is portrayed as something of a bully in his family, cutting Dominick's father out of his life at a very young age and then dominating Dominick ...more
Michael Monforte
Jan 17, 2016 Michael Monforte rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 31, 2011 Andrew rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, 2011
Having read a number of Mafia and organised crime books, I can honestly say that this is one of the most chilling and brutal accounts of the crimes committed within any criminal organisation which I have read about. It reads with the blood and gore filled pace of a Tarantino movie, with the only difference being that everything in the book actually took place.

It tells the tale of the crew headed by serial killer Roy DeMeo and the often mindless murders which it committed. The manner in which the
Jevron McCrory
Surprisingly, this didn't grab me at all.

I found myself backtracking, losing sight of names and dates, taking breaks from reading it for weeks at a time, skipping chunks of exposition.

Maybe I've been spoiled by far more dramatic true crime writers like Philip Carlo (who always seemed to guiltily glory in the bloody details) but I found the narrative, what there is of it, stilted and hard to engage with. Especially a fascinating repulsive character like Roy DeMeo, I figured I would be riveted. In
Feb 07, 2017 Brian rated it it was amazing
This book is well-researched, so I am inclined to believe the events contained within it happened as the authors assert. It is difficult at times to read the gruesome details of the actions of this faction of the Gambino crime family.
Definitely worth a read if you are a fan of true crime novels.
Kyle Jolly
Jul 08, 2009 Kyle Jolly rated it really liked it
The story of the Roy DeMeo crew of the Gambino crime family and their reign of terror in Canarsie,,operating out of the Gemini Lounge aka "Horror Hotel",,Feds estimate they murdered upwards of 200 people, some fellow gangsters, some criminals, and some completely innocent people at the wrong place and at he wrong time. This book details 20 or so murders they can actually prove the crew committed, and their grizzly method of dismembering victims, through 1st hand accounts.
Mar 15, 2012 Josh rated it it was amazing
I read murder machine, several years ago. All I gotta say is that its a highly recommended non-stop slaughter fest. Gene Mustain, and Jerry Capeci, describe in intricate detail the murders orchestrated by the Gambino Crime Family's DeMeo Crew hence the title of the book "Murder Machine". This book is a must read. But be warned the descriptions of the murders included in the book are detailed in such a way that will make you think as if your a participant in these murders.
Oct 23, 2011 Kelvin rated it really liked it
A truly grisly account of the Gambino family exploits told through the lens of surviving associate Dominic Montiglio. The book details some of the dealings of Roy DeMeo and his Brooklyn crew who were responsible for between 75 - 200 murders. This is a good book for anyone who loves true crime and Italian-American Costa Nostra.
Elizabeth  Lopez
Dec 15, 2009 Elizabeth Lopez rated it liked it
This book was an interesting insight to the mafia and how it runs. It was also interesting to find that family does not always look after each others back. I was also sadded by how much the young person got paid by his own uncle. What a shame to have all that money and not be able to enjoy in or be in hiding for the rest of their lives.
Feb 23, 2014 David rated it really liked it
Absolutely one of the best true crime books ever written. Americans, and consequently the world, are infatuated with their own nastiness as exemplified by our mobsters. Especially the Italian variety--our modern version of the Western outlaw--a nastiness self-indulged by our parents and grandparents and still some of us who are younger.
Jul 26, 2014 Nick rated it really liked it
A great book detailing the rise and fall of one of the most prolific Mafia crews in history centred around Roy DeMeo. It's widely though my that the crew were responsible for over 200 murders in a 10 year period. A must read for anyone interested in 'that life'. If you like this book I would also recommend Ice Man, the story of Richard Kuklinski.
T Singh
Mar 02, 2013 T Singh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Absolutely brilliant read providing a real insight to the workings of the Gaggi/DeMeo Crew. Abit slow at times however the depth and details provided on all those involved is a crucial part of the book and you forgive the slower parts when you soon get back to the action, murder and brutality! Definite recomendation for those interested in Mafia history or crime.
Feb 23, 2008 Andy rated it really liked it
This is one of the better NY Italian Mafia books I've ever read. Jerry Capeci has devoted his career to covering this beat, and his expertise on the subject matter is obvious in this book.

Murder Machine chronicles the incredibly brutal crew that followed Gambino capo Roy DeMeo from their rise to their fall. A must-read for anyone who finds the mob interesting.
Jul 21, 2008 Jamie rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Jamie by: MPA
amazing book! the inside life of the mafia and the notorious DeMeo crew. i would recommend this book to anyone who remotely enjoys mafia stories/movies and to anyone who doesn't have a weak stomach! enjoy!
Aug 02, 2011 Alyssa rated it liked it
Not super well written, but interesting subject matter. I had a hard time following all of the different "characters", but I put it down a lot. Never finished - was just too confusing trying to remember who everyone was and how they were related.
Peter Martin
Told in a straightforward, newspaper-style narrative, the book brings the real-life characters to life in a vivid manner. The (mostly) objective perspective lets actions speak louder than words, which makes the subject matter all the more nauseating and disturbing. Brutal.
Jun 30, 2013 Andres rated it liked it
In page 280, its barely getting to the good stuff. Not what i expected when i bought the book. I thought the book was gonna talk about mafia hits, murder, greed, how Demeo is portrayed as a stone cold killer, when in reality, all he did was complain.
Jul 29, 2009 Larry rated it it was amazing
Very good. Well researched. VERY gory! Definitely NOT for the faint-hearted or those with weak stomachs! Sort of a primer for those who play Mafia Wars. Though, this book shows you, in more detail than you could ever want that, sadly, Mafia Wars is not just a game.
Cody Liska
Jul 17, 2011 Cody Liska rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
A little slow in some areas, but I realized those areas were meant to fill in things like important back story. The skinny: the DeMeo crew was just a bunch of psychos that made Gotti look like a Hollywood starlet.
Feb 22, 2010 Walt rated it really liked it
Shelves: organized-crime
Longer than it needed to be. This is a fascinating look at a very bloody crew within the Gambino Crime Family. These people were much more brutal than the buys from Wiseguy, Donnie Brasco, and the Godfather. Mustain did an excellent job of describing their rise and fall.
Sep 09, 2015 Lupe rated it liked it
This was intense. Kudos to the reporters for all the facts. However, it was full of so much information that I got lost, at times. Although, I appreciated the epilogue. Overall, best for Mafia buffs.
May 05, 2016 Gary rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It was a page turner and hard to put down. Almost gave it 5 stars, except for the fact that parts of the book were hard for me to follow at times...and I'm not sure how factual it all was. But definitely a good historical read on organized crime primarily in the seventies.
Thom Dunn
[Read in 1993 and totally forgotten 2009. Browsing marginal notes helped bring back faint recollection.:]
David Carraturo
Dec 02, 2011 David Carraturo rated it it was amazing
One of the best non-fiction mafia books I have ever read. Well worth the read.
Oct 18, 2008 Nate rated it it was amazing
Shelves: crime
Brutal, horrific, the scariest mafia book I've ever read. Roy DeMeo assembled a whole crew of serial killers and until they turned on each other they were Brooklyn's fastest rising mob power.
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