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Publisher's Summary

Thirty-five years ago, Mario Puzo's great American tale, The Godfather, was published, and popular culture was indelibly changed. Now, in The Godfather Returns, acclaimed novelist Mark Winegardner continues the story, the years not covered in Puzo's best-selling book or in Francis Ford Coppola's classic films.

It is 1955. Michael Corleone has won a bloody victory in the war among New York's crime families. Now he wants to consolidate his power, save his marriage, and take his family into legitimate businesses. To do so, he must confront his most dangerous adversary yet, Nick Geraci, a former boxer who worked his way through law school as a Corleone street enforcer, and who is every bit as deadly and cunning as Michael. Their personal cold war will run from 1955 to 1962, exerting immense influence on the lives of America's most powerful criminals and their loved ones.

Sweeping from New York and Washington to Las Vegas and Cuba, The Godfather Returns is the spellbinding story of America's criminal underworld at mid-century and its intersection with the political, legal, and entertainment empires. Mark Winegardner brings an original voice and vision to Mario Puzo's mythic characters while creating several equally unforgettable characters of his own. The Godfather Returns stands on its own as a triumph in a tale about what we love, yearn for, and sometimes have reason to fear...family.

©2004 The Estate of Mario Puzo; (P)2004 Random House, Inc. Random House Audio, a division of Random House, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"The Godfather Returns is not only a real book by a real writer. It's also a real pleasure, a fine swirling epic: bitter, touching, funny, and true." (The New York Times Book Review)
"A phenomenally entertaining, psychologically rich saga that spans the entire Godfather years imagined in novel and film by Mario Puzo....A wholly absorbing novel that's written beautifully, with great skill and passion. Godfather fans will love this tale." (Publishers Weeekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 3.9 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    129
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    61
  • 2 Stars
    23
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    18

Performance

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    115
  • 4 Stars
    54
  • 3 Stars
    19
  • 2 Stars
    9
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    5

Story

  • 4.1 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    95
  • 4 Stars
    57
  • 3 Stars
    33
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    8
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  • Overall

Not as good as the Godfather, but close

This was a great sequeal to the Godfather. Although Mario Puzo didn't write it you can tell that the author spent alot of time and energy to continue the same kind of "voice".
The narrator did a great job.

If you are a fan of the Godfather you might like this.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Disappointed!

I couldn't wait to read this book. I found it drawn out and not very much going on, very wordy until the beginning of the last book of 3. Disappointing when compared to the Puzo stuff. Wanted it to be great and it wasn't.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Steve
  • Belleville, MI, USA
  • 06-24-05

Agonizingly lush

Stephen King says that the road to hell is paved with adverbs. GR is a good example of that principal in action. No detail is left to chance. Every scene is written in excruciating detail, all thoughts and motivations are explored ad nauseum in truly insipid dialogues. Every decriptive sentence (and there are so, so many) flatten out the characters just a little more. The mystery of the semi-hidden personal forces that drove the characters in the Godfather is completely stripped away. So earnestly are you asked to believe in these characters, spending the hours it takes to make it through the book is akin to spending several hours sparring with an aggressive telemarketer or your cousin who is trying to get you signed up with Amway.

In short, I didn't care for it much. Mario Puzo himself had a very sketchy time writing sequels (of a sort) to the Godfather. Mr. Weingartner certainly didn't succeed where he had trouble.

2 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Good but not excellent

The story kept going back and forth from one time to the other and getting very confusing. Not - it wasn't like the flashbacks to Vito's younger days - this was within a few years it bounced back-and-forth from present to future to past for a particular character, instead of steadily progressing on the same timeline of the book itself . Just too choppy.
& someone explain to me why in the movie & his book Michaels two kids goes from two sons to a son & a daughter ? Puzo & Coppola wrote the screen play for the movie ( GF II) , & this book written by Winegardner had to follow that basic storyline since Puzo was involved with the second movie. So , did Coppola make Puzo an offer HE couldn't refuse to get a daughter in there so Coppola could get his daughter Sofia into the next movie ? Seriously, I think it was her pathetic performance that caused the GF III to be such an unsuccessful movie.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Mary Ann
  • gainesville, FL, USA
  • 01-03-06

A Really Bad Book

Just let The Godfather die in peace.The trilogy was enough. You need a score card to remember the names of the players.Boring,trite and a waste of money.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • John
  • Ramsey, NJ, USA
  • 02-17-05

DISAPPOINTING!!!

Don't wast your time reading this...especially if you are a Godfather (movie or book) fan.

1 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Peter
  • LeverkusenGermany
  • 01-31-05

Booring

... better try Mario Puzo

0 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Don't bother

Tedious and boring.

0 of 6 people found this review helpful