Recent Reviews for Al W Moe
Vegas and the Mob (Book) - 5/27/2013 3:09:44 PM|
Once again Al Moe has hit it out of the park with Vegas and the Mob. I have to say that so far this one is my favorite, although his others are amazing too. Anyone looking for some easy to read history of Vegas will never go wrong with his books!
I absolutely love all of the "insider" peeks at what went on not all that long ago in Las Vegas and all of the references to celebrities are fantastic! As someone who loves Marilyn Monroe, I was more than a little shocked at how....friendly she was.
Al Moe's book have a way of giving you so much history, without making it seem as though you're back in high school history class, and I highly recommend his books! They are always a safe bet!
Vegas and the Mob (Book) - 5/16/2013 3:51:00 PM
This book is a must read. Once I started it I could not put it down. I have a thing for Capone and the mob so I had to read it. The book is well written and holds your attention from start to finish. The way Moe describes key players, and the day to day run of things you feel like your living it. The right amount of action. And Vegas is the perfect place for it all to unfold. I cant wait to read more of your books Al.
Vegas and the Mob (Book) - 5/6/2013 11:22:01 PM
True indeed, Al..."Meyer Lansky" is actually responsible for how most casinos around the world operate today. He's the guy who figured out how to set the odds (multiple decks and such) so the house always ends up winning big in the end. You might say he wrote the book. He actually put an end to out right cheating and rigged crooked games that were so prevalent at the time. "We don't need to cheat the customers..that only gets them mad and they don't come back.... Outright cheating is bad for business." But don't get me wrong,, they were all a bunch of murdering thieves...including " Mr. Lansky"
Nevada's Golden Age of Gambling (Book) - 10/26/2012 7:29:36 PM
Nevada's Golden Age of Gambling covers the gambling era of 1931-1981. This is my second time reading a book by this author and I am again impressed with all of the things I have learned. Just some highlights to whet the appetite: Mark Twain was a columnist at a newspaper in Virginia City. While I admit I love to read, I am ashamed to admit I am not a huge fan of the classics. Here in Connecticut, we even have one of Mark Twain's homes, yet I never knew the man was a regular old columnist prior to his Huck Finn days! The book also touched on the building of the Hoover Dam, which must have been awesome to witness during those times, as well as the real "beginnings" of the Las Vegas we hear about today.
There were references to mobster "Lucky" Luciano that I enjoyed since I attended middle and high school with a guy who claimed he was related to him....true??? Who knows, but it was kind of neat at the time. : )
I found it amazing that even in 1955, Liberace could command $50,000/week to be the opening act at the Riviera. That seems like a lot of money for those times, but I guess not if it helped get folks to gamble even more!
I really got a kick out of the part that talked about how Frank Sinatra was part owner of the Sands casino and when new owners took over, he was denied credit. When he argued with the casino manager, he wound up getting two of his front teeth knocked out, as well as a bloody nose! That scenario just doesn't go with the Old Blue Eyes that I picture in my head! The book later went on to discuss how Sinatra was heavily into the casino business until the state Gaming Commission met with him due to his partnership with Sam Giancana (who was permanently barred from ALL Nevada casinos). After the meeting Sinatra "decided to devote more of his time to the entertainment industry and divest himself completely" of his Nevada gaming involvement.
I also found it fascinating that in 1924, parcels of land around Lake Tahoe were sold for between $1-5/acre. Don't I wish I could've bought property there back then! There was also a reference to Lovelock, NV. While I have never had a chance to visit there, my aunt and her family lived there for several years before moving back East, and I look forward to mentioning the reference to her.
Another part worth mentioning(since I couldn't believe it when I read it) was regarding a poker game set up by Benny Binnion-mainly for his friends Nick "The Greek" Dandalos and Johnny Moss-both well known players from the 30's-60's, that went on every day for nearly FIVE MONTHS! Sometimes the action between the two would go on for 50 hours straight.....now as someone who is completely clueless about poker, that is amazing to me. And the fact that there was upwards of a half-million dollars on the table at all times.....wow. You'll have to read the book to see who won that amazing match up!
I also want to add that I really enjoyed the more personal references this book had from the author. Knowing that he partook in this story and was not just a spectator or researcher made it seem even better! And for anyone who has not had the pleasure of reading any of the other books by Al Moe, you can learn more about many of the men mentioned in this book, such as Nick Abelman, George Wingfield, James (Jim) McKay, Meyer Lansky and William (Bill) Graham to name a few in his book The Roots of Reno. Another book well done with even more fantastic pictures!
The Roots of Reno (Book) - 9/10/2012 8:02:58 PM
Very interesting story for anyone who enjoys history and old school gangsters. The main focus of the book revolves around four men: Nick Abelman, George Wingfield, Bill Graham and Jim McKay. It gives great detail about the things that went on in the early to mid 1900's and as a marvelous touch, includes photos of the characters involved. What I enjoyed the most were the references to people that many of us have heard of: Babyface Nelson, Al Capone, Ma Barker and gang as well as celebrities such as Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, J.F.K., Bobby Kennedy and even Marilyn Monroe. The references to the days preceding Marilyn Monroe's death were especially intriguing to me, as I have always been fascinated with what, exactly, lead up to her death...and who killed her. While the book does not speculate as to what really happened to her, the details it does give are great! I highly recommend this book, and thoroughly enjoyed reading it!