Cover Image: Inside the Montreal Mafia

Inside the Montreal Mafia

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Member Reviews

An okay splash of true crime which I enjoyed, but perhaps not as much as I had hoped to. Two journalists meet with a key Montreal Mafia man over a period of about five years until he was gunned down. Andrew Scoppa and his brother were leading players in Montreal’s criminal underworld. Both died violently.

Scoppa unburdens himself to the journos, documenting feuds, vendettas, and schisms in the organisation. Most of the book concerns the death of A, B, C etc arranged by X, Y and Z on this date, that date, at such and such a place. After a while the names become a blur and are indistinguishable from each other. Scoppa never actually confesses to playing a role in any of the killings. It’s more a kind of oral history of who did what to whom and when.

One thought struck me. Law enforcement could have diverted resources away from Organised Crime surveillance and monitoring and just left them alone to kill each other, until it was a case of last man standing. The organisation was riven by rifts, and jealousy, and disputes and a constant jostling for power. It seemed like they spent more time battling each other than they did making any money.

There’s talk of the importance of control of ‘the book’ which was the major revenue source – illegal sports betting. The profit margin and risk was a lot better and lesser than the danger and profit margins inherent in dealing drugs. Some of the margins Scoppa reported on for kilos of cocaine seemed really tight, even for a wholesaler. (Not that I've ever wholesaled drugs.)

I expected there to be some time spent discussing protection schemes and prostitution, but these topics never came up. Scoppa tried to use his journalistic contacts to try and glean police information and similarly the police tried to see if the journalists were feeding back to Scoppa, by planting false information to see if they were playing one off against the other. The journalists kept a straight bat.

The most interesting part of the book for me was the evolving relationships between various players in the underworld – the Hells Angels, the Rock Machine Motorcycle Club and the Italian families. There was an out and out war between the biker gangs for several years from the mid-90s to the early 00s which resulted in about 160 deaths. Incredible really. At various times the Hells Angels were in alliance with the families and worked for them, other times it seems as if the Angels were the ones on top.

Scoppa often seemed discontented with his life of crime, but never actually made the effort to give it up to try lead a normal life with his family, probably far away from Canada. Eventually he becomes another victim of the violence.

3 stars from 5

Read – (listened to) August, 2022
Published – 2022
Page count – 230 (7 hrs 39 mins)
Source – review copy from Net Galley
Format – Audible
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This would make a great 'fly on the wall documentry' with actors of course. Fascinating insight into the mafia although could also apply to any drug gang. The interviews and questions were perfunctory and instructive as they were meant, but i did like the little back stories and personal feelings. Well researched and impressive piece of work. Thank you #NetGalley for the audiobook to review.
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I love a good mafia story, and this one did not let me down. It is crazy to hear about organized crime and what goes on behind (and in front of) our eyes without us really knowing it.

I listened to this on audiobook, and the narrator was great. He really got into character and embodied what Andrew Scoppa was saying and his vocal mannerisms. The book was easy to follow along and was filled with discussions with a real Montreal Mafia member.

It gave me Richard Kuklinski vibes, if you know who that is and his story. 

If you love true & organized crime, then I highly recommend this book.

You never really know who you are passing on the street or standing behind in line at the coffee shop.
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Quite an eye opening account that gets one's mind racing. The content has been carefully presented which highlights the other side of the law. Although quite disturbing in places a thoroughly absorbing record.
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Whilst this was an interesting enough listen, it’s more of a history book than a true crime book in the writing style. There isn’t the suspense and drama you normally get with the latter. 

If you are into history and the subject matter, you will undoubtedly enjoy it. It’s clearly very well researched with lots of intriguing facts and anecdotes, but not necessarily what I personally was looking for.

The narrator was perfect for the book, setting the scene well and making it clear and easy to follow.
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This was a very interesting true crime inside view of the Rizzuto family as well as info on the Hell’s Angels.  Mobster Andrew Scoppa met with two journalist over a 5 year span and gave them very detailed behind them scene view of mob life.   Very entertaining and enlightening book
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I requested this one because it might be an upcoming title I would like to review on my Youtube Channel. However, after reading the first several chapters I have determined that this book does not suit my tastes. So I decided to DNF this one.
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When Felix Seguin was told he could get an audience with a big time mafia boss he was excited, but after meeting Andrew Scopa end eventually becoming his confidant with a bit more than Felix bargain for. Eventually it became so bad Andrew treated him like his go to guy in head Felix running to meet him at least three or four times a week and sometimes twice in one day. Eventually he would bring Eric Tebow into the fray into the mafia boss this was just one more person to impress and brag too. This book not only includes the killers confessions, but murders he talked about and all the murders can committed by family murders. Between the Hells angels the mafia that has two different factions call Brooke has gangs coming and going and although this book is just about the mafia it truly was interesting. If you love True Crime and want to hear it from the horses mouth will the The horses name is Andrew and it’s all in this book. This isn’t your average True Crime book but it’s True Crime still in all if you love the mafia and can keep up with the different factions and different killers then you should read this book. I lost track of who was killing hill but that’s just me. It was still a great book. Please forgive any mistakes as I am blind and dictate my review but all opinions are definitely my own. #NetGally,
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