Fixed: How Goodfellas Bought Boston College Basketball

David Porter, Author Taylor Trade Publishing $24.95 (272p) ISBN 978-0-87833-192-5
Big-time mobsters, All-American athletes and high-powered lawyers are but a few of the intriguing characters who appear in Porter's well-researched, action-packed account of the 1978-1979 Boston College point-shaving scandal. Porter, a veteran sportswriter and columnist, traces the scandal from its creation in the summer of 1978 through the trials of the players and mobsters in 1981; particularly fascinating is his exploration of how the scam affected the players mentally and the relationship between them and the gangsters. His journalistic style is detailed but never slow, fair to all sides but not soft. He admits when his information is unclear, but still manages to present a coherent examination of the events. Porter also expertly portrays his primary characters, who include Jim Sweeny, an Academic All-American and a Naismith award winner who is described by the gangsters as ""the perfect front,"" and ex-mobster-turned-star government witness Henry Hill, the man who wrote Wiseguy, the book that the movie Goodfellas was based on. Porter devotes the first part of the book to the planning and execution of the scheme to shave points; there he recounts the history of Boston College basketball and the program's situation at the time of the scandal. He then examines the '78-'79 season game by game, showing how the sinister plan unfolded. The second part of the book, which relates the details of the investigation and the trials of the case in 1981, is even more absorbing than the first. (Mar.) Forecast: College basketball fans and readers of crime booksDespecially those involving the underworldDwill revel in the mix of exciting drama and exacting detail, and will be drawn to the provocative cover, reminiscent of the jackets on Mario Puzo's books.
Reviewed on: 02/28/2000
Release date: 02/01/2000
Genre: Nonfiction
Open Ebook - 272 pages - 978-1-4616-0087-9
Paperback - 272 pages - 978-0-87833-146-8
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