Book Description

From Publishers Weekly Fans of mob turncoat Henry Hill based on Nicholas Pileggi's Wiseguy (an account of Hill's life) and the popular film adaptation Goodfellas will be forced to dramatically re-evaluate him after reading this gripping memoir by his children?who were only a passing blip in those earlier versions. Their warts-and-all portrayal of the immense disruption to their lives caused by their father's criminal recidivism is often heartbreaking. At a young age, they were exposed to family friends like Jimmy 'the Gent' Burke, whom they knew as Uncle Jimmy, unaware he was a brutal truck hijacker. When investigators on the 1980 multimillion-dollar Lufthansa heist obtained Hill's cooperation as a witness, the children were given an hour to pick through their possessions to select what they could take with them into their new life in the witness protection program. Gregg and Gina often give overlapping perspectives of the same events, as they struggle to adjust, without the benefit of any guidance, and to craft plausible backstories for their new classmates and neighbors. Gregg's story is especially moving as he traces his personal evolution from model student to an adolescent forced to protect his mother from his father. The grimness is leavened with humor, and the many readers who will be rooting for these innocent victims will be heartened by their capacity to transcend a truly awful upbringing. B&w photos. Copyright ? Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. Read more From Booklist While Martin Scorsese's almost-lovable wiseguy Henry Hill led a life of unbroken adventure with the Mob--finding haven in the federal witness protection program when he informed on his colleagues--it was hard to know just who, besides Hill's crime victims, was paying the tab. In this wrenching but involving account, we find out: his children. Hill's son and daughter pick up the story pretty much where Scorsese's Goodfellas left off: the family packing their belongings into Hefty bags and hustling to safe houses in the Hamptons, then Omaha, then rural Kentucky, then finally Redmond, Washington. 'Our lives weren't just falling apart,' explains son Gregg, 'they'd been vaporized, liquidated, erased.' And their father only made things worse, resuming his criminalizing but also carelessly exposing the family to the mobsters trying to kill them. Miraculously, son and daughter here seem to have outrun the horror of their childhood, so far. Alan MooresCopyright ? American Library Association. All rights reserved Read more See all Editorial Reviews