Customer Reviews for

The Godfather

Average Rating 4.5
( 316 )
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5 Star

(260)

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(34)

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(9)

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(5)

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(8)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

10 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

one of the best mob stories ever told

i decided to read the godfather because it is one of my favorite movies of all time. now, after having read the book i see the whole story in a different light. mario puzo writes this book with such passion and detail, and writes about each charicter in depth no matter ...
i decided to read the godfather because it is one of my favorite movies of all time. now, after having read the book i see the whole story in a different light. mario puzo writes this book with such passion and detail, and writes about each charicter in depth no matter how small a part they play. i recomend this book for all godfather fanatics. i will leave you breathless no matter how many times you have seen the movie.

posted by theReaderAA on August 31, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

didn't really impress me

As a big fan of the Godfather movie(s) I jumped at the chance to borrow this book from a friend of mine. 'You will love all the things that weren't covered by the movie,' he promised, 'and when you watch the movie again, you will notice lots of little things you missed...
As a big fan of the Godfather movie(s) I jumped at the chance to borrow this book from a friend of mine. 'You will love all the things that weren't covered by the movie,' he promised, 'and when you watch the movie again, you will notice lots of little things you missed before.' Well, he was half right. The movie is a very accurate translation of the novel, so you will definitely feel deja vu at each turn of the page. Some of the scenes that were cut were used in the Godfather Part II (the young Vito Corleone's rise to power). Others were mercifully banished forever because they were tangiental to the plot (Johnny Fontaine's career as a movie producer) or were insufferably stupid (Lucy Mancini's medical 'issue'). I didn't feel like I gained a great deal of insight on the characters from reading this book, although some of the background material was helpful (Tom Hayden's thoughts, and Don Vito's philosphies especially). I admit that after reading the book, I noticed some subtleties in the movie that I missed in my many previous viewings (Michael's runny nose in Sicily). But let's face it, none of them were critical to my understanding of the movie's plot or the character's motivations. As a stand alone, if you have never seen the movie, don't bother with this book: like many bestsellers it is poorly written, with anemic characterizations and point-to-point prose. This one is for fans only.

posted by Anonymous on November 2, 2004

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  • Posted November 17, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Fans won't be disappointed

    I enjoyed this book very much, it has all the elements you'd expect from a Mafia book (I still think the movie was better). The structure had me wondering about the time line more than once.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 15, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A great classic read

    The Godfather is every bit the classic as the movie and one of the few where I like both the book and the film. In my opinion, this is the heart of all Mafia type novels and I think there can be nothing better than this book.

    The book starts off with an introduction on what kind of a person Don Corleone is. He oozes respect and class. The first few lines you read about him, you know that although he's the type of person you would turn to and someone you can trust, there's another side of him you wouldn't want to see and better off not knowing. Throughout the book you get mini stories in between the actual real plot. You get the inside-out of other characters and their background stories. It does aid the plot in some areas, in others, it's just a way of knowing some extra information - which still makes it a great read. Yes, you do get the classical Mafia wars that's an automatic requirement to make this a "mob novel" but it's done in such a way where it's classy and although it's unfortunate to happen to some characters in the novel, you're left thinking: "Well..you should have known better in the first place".

    The characters are rich and filled with life throughout the book. I think it's thanks to these "mini stories" you have throughout the novel and it gives the characters more "flesh" so to speak. I like how they're all connected somehow with the Corleone family either through family relations, friendship, or the "favour" being done so the debt is being repaid. There's not too many characters to make it confusing, and there's even a specific part in the book where Puzo takes the time to explain to the reader which Don is which and of which family he is leader of, also he explains the ranks of Mafia as well to help the reader understand. He does a great job with explaining carefully that you're not left lost or wondering who is who. It may feel like there's a lot of characters but there's really just a group of central characters that you have to focus on which makes it less confusing and a much enjoyable read.The plot is very well done. There are certain parts where the plot "takes a break" and it may bother some readers, it didn't bother me I actually enjoyed the mini stories and in some cases it helps you understand how a certain character's relationship with the Don came to be.

    Things that may bother some readers, some gory details, naturally this is a Mafia book so there will be blood. There are racial slurs and moments of misogyny and sexism. If you can read through that without bothering you, then this book will be a great read. I think it's a classic. The only real beef I have with this particular edition of the book is there are a lot of grammatical and spelling errors. I don't know why there's so many errors but it does get in the way of certain phrases and some spelling errors are so blatantly obvious.

    Overall a great Mafia read and although it's a whopping 500 plus page book I don't regret it. It's definitely worth the time. I like both the movies and the book and will probably put this book among my favorites.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 6, 2012

    Good

    I liked it al, even though this is not something Im very interested in.. 4/5

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 20, 2012

    I Also Recommend:

    Great story and if you enjoyed this then I highly recommend the

    Great story and if you enjoyed this then I highly recommend the book Gangster

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 23, 2014

    Nuffy

    Having watch the movies allows the reader to put a face to the people in the book. Also the books goes in depth regarding all the people no matter how small a role they had in the picture.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 11, 2013

    Great book

    Riviting ! Can't wait to reaad more

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 1, 2013

    Simpletouchglow

    Hey! Add me as nook friend! aberry1282@yahoo

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 6, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    A friend recently loaned me her copy of this book. I've seen the

    A friend recently loaned me her copy of this book. I've seen the movies, love them all, and, not surprisingly, enjoyed the book. As is often the case, a movie just can't compete with the level of detail and nuance that a full novel can provide.

    In this case, I couldn't help but connect my memories of the movies with the particulars of the novel. The faces, the accents, the atmosphere. The mythology of "The Godfather", for me, is completely tied to the movie and so my expectations were just a little off-kilter when reading the book.

    The story, in large part due to its familiarity, reads very quickly. The plot points are thick, though the conclusions rather abrupt - as abrupt as a bullet shot through a revolver. Puzo blends plot conclusions which their preceding detail, in a very stylistic way - Sonny's bullet-ridden body is brought to the funeral before we find out how he was hit during an ambush at a toll booth. The final scenes read very similar to Francis Ford Coppola's signature chop-cut conclusions to his "Godfather" films, and one gets some insight into the vision behind the visuals.

    This is a terrifically iconic work and I highly recommend the read to any fan of the films. This will only build on the mythology and intensity and depth of the individual characters.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 13, 2007

    A reviewer

    Having already seen the movie, I hadn't ever thought of reading the book until my father recommended it to me. And since he rarely reads fictional novels I decided to read Mario Puzo's book. Very quickly I noticed that the book includes elements from both Godfather I and II movies, e.g. the story of how ordinary Vito Corleone became a top mafia boss, the horse's head, etc. What I like about the book: The main characters (the Don, Michael, Sonny, Tom Hagen, the other mobsters) and their personal histories, the action, and the detailed descriptions of how they arrange security as part of their everyday lives. The way these people live is really fascinating. What I dislike about the book: The numerous side stories re: minor characters, e.g. the undertaker, the doctor, Corleone's daughter in Vegas, Fontane's family life, etc., that have little to do with the core storyline. I wish Puzo had concentrated more on the principal story. I didn't start reading the Godfather to learn the details of their rather mundane lives. All in all, a good - but not a great book - at least in my opinion. A factual history of the real Sicilian mafia can be found in Cosa Nostra by John Dickie.

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