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The Five Points [Paperback]

Rocco Dormarunno
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 16.10 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Book Description

Nov. 1 2001
Two gritty tales from gas lamp era New York.

The Five Points finished in the top five, out of over 7,000 entries, in the 1997 HarperCollins Best Seller Contest. The Five Points neighborhood of 19th Century New York City was undoubtedly the most crime-ridden, impoverished, and dangerous place of its day. While people tend to think of this era as a glossy, golden age, it was, unfortunately, a world of unparalleled corruption, intrigue, and violence. Dominated by thieves, murderers, swindlers, brothels, and gangs with such colorful names as The Dead Rabbits, The Whyos, and The Plug Uglies, the neighborhood had long been a symbol of urban misery and toughness. This work, through two stories, attempts to bring this world back to life. You will meet: Petey Daley, the shrewd and fierce leader of The Dead Rabbits; Police Superintendent Connery, an honest cop struggling with a dishonest system; and Rudy and Ted, two con artists who know just what to do. Whenever novels and Hollywood try to tackle 19th Century America, they always seem to focus on the wild, wild West. Welcome, everyone, to the wild, wild Lower East Side.


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Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars A Fresh Take on a Notorious Neighborhood April 30 2002
Format:Paperback
When viewed through R. Dormarunno's 19th century lens, life in 21st century NYC sure seems TAME! I liked these combined two separate (albeit related) novellas.
This volume will go on my shelf next to Caleb Carr's "The Alienist," Tyler Anbinder's "Five Points" and Herbert Asbury's "Gangs of New York." Next up for me is David Carlyon's new "Dan Rice" bio!
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2.0 out of 5 stars The Civil War Ended When?!? March 21 2008
Format:Paperback
I'm afraid I was less than impressed by this book. The writing is extremely amateurish, the editing, especially for punctuation, was poor, and the story lagged in too many places. But what really blew it for me is that, in the "Second Book (1860)," it states that the Civil War is over. Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't the Civil War START in 1861?
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.3 out of 5 stars  10 reviews
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Scary Feb. 15 2002
By Dana Rochele - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
There's a lot in these two novellas that seem too strange, too scary to believe that it really happened. But I had read two of Caleb Carr's fictional books on New York history and seen the History Channel's documentary on The Five Points, and it turns out that a lot of the horrible situations that this book covers is maybe only a little exaggerated. I liked the author's style; he's a little removed from the horrors but when things turn out well for some characters, he wants you to celebrate with him. There are some memorable scenes and sometimes it seems like the parts are better than the whole. Still, there's a reward at the end of each story that makes it all worthwhile. The book ends very abruptly. I think he [the author] is getting us ready for a follow-up. If there is one, I will buy it.
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One star away from a perfect rating Dec 26 2001
By "ryan114" - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
A few things kept me away from giving this story (actually two stories) a perfect rating. One: it was too short--I enjoyed the story-telling and most of the characters, and I wanted the book to go on more. Two, I needed more facts, more background. It took me a while to understand the relationship between the gangs, the police, and Tammany Hall. Once the connection was made clear, it made pretty good sense. I am a nitpicker though. I also notice no other titles in this author's bibliography so I'm assuming it's Mr. Doramunno's first book. In that case, it's a very good first novel.
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Hell on Earth Dec 15 2001
By "jerrox" - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I admit that I'm not much of a reader of historical fiction because authors kind of always make the past seem so much more superior to the present. THE FIVE POINTS is a very detached look at the poverty of a New York town in the 1800s. Although some of the characters seem two dimensional, the key characters come off as being very rounded out and intriguing. The pacing is fast most of the time, and very deliberate when it needs it. I really enjoyed this book and already lent it to two friends.
14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Fresh Take on a Notorious Neighborhood April 30 2002
By T. Morrow - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
When viewed through R. Dormarunno's 19th century lens, life in 21st century NYC sure seems TAME! I liked these combined two separate (albeit related) novellas.
This volume will go on my shelf next to Caleb Carr's "The Alienist," Tyler Anbinder's "Five Points" and Herbert Asbury's "Gangs of New York." Next up for me is David Carlyon's new "Dan Rice" bio!
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Just too short, but I enjoyed it April 3 2005
By danny d - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I picked up this book after reading Baker's "Paradise Alley". Both books were very good at capturing the dark world of New York's underworld of the 1800s. "The Five Points" was pretty good, but I only wish that it had been longer. The two stories are suspenseful--and I especially liked the ending of the second book called, "Wonderful Bastards". I saw on the Amazon list that there is a sequel. I think I will pick it up.
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