The Vespers Tapes

Albert Dibartolomeo, Author, Albert Debartolomeo, Author Walker & Company $22.95 (241p) ISBN 978-0-8027-1136-6
Dying of cancer, mob boss Carmine Tucci wants to record his memoirs and hires narrator Vincent Vespers, a South Philadelphia school teacher whose brother Frank is Tucci's right-hand man. Although he's reluctant, Vinnie agrees to help because of a big debt to his brother--Frank did time for a juvenile crime Vinnie committed. Once Tucci starts talking so do others, most notably Tucci's daughter, who tells him about the mysterious disappearance of her first love, a story that connects with Vincent's own experiences as he was growing up. The Tucci tapes become a hot item, especially for Tucci's iron-willed wife who wants to run the family after her husband dies; she vehemently (and violently) opposes her daughter's relationship with Vincent.. Against this tense, danger-filled background, Vincent's other siblings visit and dig into some difficult memories that connect their hardworking plumber father to the mob boss. Vinnie, a divorced, disconnected guy who lives alone in the South Philadelphia house of his childhood, is a refreshingly honest storyteller. DiBartolomeo's first novel is engaging and impressive. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1991
Release date: 01/01/1991
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