The Godfather: The Lost Years Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
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4.2 out of 5
110 global ratings
Top reviews from India
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Reviewed in India on 7 June 2020
The quality of the cover was truly abysmal. The cover continued to peel asi continued reading the book. Several layers of cellotape had to be used to keep the cover from falling apart. At the end of it all, it looked like a vintage book picked up from a second hand store.
Top reviews from other countries
Just when I think I'm in, it pulllls me back out...Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 12 October 2021
According to my Kindle, I’m a third of the way through, and this is where I’m tuning out. Its very unlike me to give up reading a book; I can think of only one other example: Bad Pharma by Ben Goldacre which becomes a mire of medical statistics unlike Bad Science which I enjoyed. Normally, I’d see a book through to the bitter end even if an abridged version would have been better. Moby Dick, for example, has an awful lot of nineteenth century quackery about whales and the whaling business that is best left edited out for a modern audience, but it’s such a good story that you forgive it…. the first time around at least. The best thing I can say about this book is that it’s in the style of Mario Puzo… and that means it has the same problems as Puzo’s Godfather. Oh, sacrilege I know, but The Godfather had its problems. The tedium of Johnny Fontayne’s vocal warts, Jules Segal the dull Las Vegas doctor, Nino the mopy alcoholic you wanted to slap hard across the face as he whined his way to an early grave and, let’s not forget, a whole chapter dedicated to Lucy Mancini’s massive bucket. Oh yes, page after page of characters who were either wholly excised from the brilliant movie or reduced to mere bit parts, and for good reason. The biggest of them, Fontayne, is down to just three scenes in the film – singing at the wedding, crying at the wedding and given his orders of how to repay his debt when in Vegas. Even then, Fontayne is just a foil to get us to the horse’s head scene. Without that, maybe he too would have joined his mate Nino in passing through the shredder when the screenplay was written. After all, it’s nothing personal, just business and it’s the business end of the underworld we really want to read about, not a singer’s vocal problems, an moody alcoholic mandolin player, a woman whose smudger is so large it can only be satisfied by Sonny Corleone’s oversized schnitzel or her new boyfriend doctor who, quite literally and in excruciating detail, sews her mudflaps up a few notches and takes her for a ‘test drive’ in one cringing chapter that’ll put you right off your morning cornflakes. So, imagine how impressed I was to open this book and find yet more on Johnny flimmin’ Fontayne. Not only that, but who here was worried about what happened to Sonny Corleone’s twin daughters in the years following his demise? Anyone?? Crikey, I missed the fact he even had kids in Puzo’s book – I think I was aware of it, but I sure didn’t care. So, once again we have chapter after chapter of insignificant characters one simply doesn’t give a hoot about. Added to that is further detail, excruciating at times, on Kate and Michael’s relationship which was also a chore in Puzo’s book, although at least of some relevance. I find too the style of the writing here to be jarring with bad language used for the sake of it. Now, I use more foul utterances in my daily life than your average docker, I am an electrician employed on building sites after all, but when we’re talking of two characters having sex, there’s no need to use the ‘F’ word for nothing other than it just looking out of place. Similarly, in one scene, Fredo has relations with a woman who Johnny has sent up to his room as a ‘gift’. In this scene, the author refers to her ladyparts using the ‘C’ word. Why? Is it to remind the reader that the act Fredo is performing is cheap and meaningless and is not one of lovemaking? If so, I got that without it being shouted at me in this way. All the sex scenes come over as cringey like it’s your parents describing in detail how you were conceived including the foreplay. Picturing it as described almost gives you a nosebleed, especially when the author slips into a vernacular to... I dunno… sound cool? Edgy? Whatever. I got to 33% in, which is a fair old way, and the next chapter was yet another about one of Sonny’s tedious daughters at college about to get friendly with another student. Time to read chapter: “34 minutes” says my Kindle, and it knows my reading speed well enough. I wasn’t tired, yet I looked at the bedside clock and figured I could either spend 34 minutes grinding through it, skip to the next chapter and hope it didn’t matter in the long run or turn off the Kindle and steal the quilt off my snoring wife. I chose that last option. I just didn’t care for any more of it. I wasn’t invested enough in the machinations of the principal characters to sort any nugget of engaging story from the dross. This book misses the point. I could pick up a Barbara Cartland if I wanted airport lounge relationship storylines of throwaway characters. It’s like a new extended cut of Godfather 3 coming out with the studio saying “we need more Sophia Coppola as Mary Corleone! Add in deleted scenes of Sophia Coppola!” Heaven help us. I understand that even gangsters aren’t out murdering, strongarming and making powerplays all day, every day, but just because they’re married with kids and have to go grocery shopping every Saturday morning doesn’t mean I want to read all about that part of their lives. Who knows, maybe if I keep reading, there’s a satisfying payoff where Johnny Fontayne ends up sleeping with the fishes. I sure hope so. There has to be some reward for those with the patience to see it through.
2 people found this helpful
Absolutely worth readingReviewed in the United Kingdom on 16 November 2020
This book does not hurt the Godfather legacy at all. In some ways, Michael is better written here than he is in The Godfather. Personally I think the Fredo background stuff was some of the stronger moments in the book. Hagen's story was advanced nicely too. The Michael/ Kay dynamic was nicely written. In terms of new characters I'm still on the fence about Geraci, at the beginning of the book I thought he was a bit of a weak character but he grew on me as the book progressed. I liked the stuff about Sonny's daughters. The Shea stuff didn't do it for me. Just like in GF, I don't know why so much time is spent on Johnny Fontaine who is not an interesting character. Also like GF, the dialogue at times in this book is clunky and unrealistic but don't hold that against the author, if we're being honest there are times when it isn't great in GF too. The part where Michael is growing up is very well written, and the ending is one of the strong points in the book too (though not necessarily the Cuban stuff).
One person found this helpful
Very goodReviewed in the United Kingdom on 25 December 2021
This story starts quite slowly and the characters seem slightly flat. However, the more you read the characters fill out, I mean in relation to both new and old characters. This author must have a very devious mind, the amount of sub plots almost confuse but makes the latter part of the book an exciting read
Puzo was the only one who should have been allowed touch The Prestigious Godfather Novels.Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 23 March 2019
Didn't finish it. Was great to be brought back to the life of the Godfather, but it was always gonna be a hard one to follow up on the best novel of all time. Puzo was the original and his mind was the only mind to bring it back if he were still alive. The Fredo Corleone storyline was enough for me to pack it in.
3 people found this helpful
Catherine Mortimer d’Ath
Be careful! This is the same book as The Godfather Returns!Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 19 March 2022
Be careful! This is the same book as The Godfsther Returns!