The Camelot Conspiracy: A Novel of the Kennedys, Castro and the CIA

The Camelot Conspiracy: A Novel of the Kennedys, Castro and the CIA

by E. Duke Vincent
     
 

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It's 1960, the height of the Cold War, but for Dante Amato of the Chicago Mob, life is anything but cold. Charismatic and movie-star handsome, Dante has settled comfortably into his role as The Outfit's man in Hollywood and Vegas.
Dante's older brother, Aldo, a CIA agent, couldn't be more disapproving of his brother's life. Yet when Dante is ordered to meet with

Overview

It's 1960, the height of the Cold War, but for Dante Amato of the Chicago Mob, life is anything but cold. Charismatic and movie-star handsome, Dante has settled comfortably into his role as The Outfit's man in Hollywood and Vegas.
Dante's older brother, Aldo, a CIA agent, couldn't be more disapproving of his brother's life. Yet when Dante is ordered to meet with a beautiful Cuban go-between named Marissa del Valle, and then mob boss Sam Giancana summons him to Miami to discuss a U.S. Government commission to hit the Cuban dictator, Dante's first call is to his brother.
Is it a set-up? Or a chance for the mob to restart the flow of gambling and drug money from Havana? And what about Bobby Kennedy's war against The Mob? "Bobby Kennedy is a snake," says Jimmy Hoffa to Santo Trafficante. And how do you kill a snake? You cut off its head. " As this spellbinding thriller by E. Duke Vincent unfolds, a gripping story emerges, masterfully connecting the dots between the Kennedys, Castro, The Mob, the CIA . . . and the Grassy Knoll.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In an introductory note to his fourth novel, Vincent (Mafia Summer) gives credit to the theory that the Mafia was involved in planning JFK's assassination—and claims that he's identified the gunman on the legendary grassy knoll. Unfortunately, his narrative, which covers the three years from 1960 until the tragedy in Dallas, fails to grip. The lead characters—Dante Amato, a Chicago mobster, and his brother, Aldo, conveniently a CIA agent—amount to paper-thin clichés. Those conversant with the Eisenhower and Kennedy administrations' covert campaigns to overthrow Castro will find this fictionalized version, including a cursory three-page description of the Cuban missile crisis, a pale shadow of reality. Those who aren't won't emerge better educated about that period in American history. Other novels—Don DeLillo's Libra, James Ellroy's American Tabloid, Philip Kerr's The Shot—do a better job covering similar territory. (May)
Library Journal
When a 300-page novel about the Bay of Pigs disaster and JFK's assassination starts with a three-page list of names, you know name-dropping is more important than character development. Dante Amato represents the Mob, his brother Aldo the CIA, and Dante's love interest Marissa del Valle the exiled Cubans whose unholy friendship blasted America into the turbulent 1960s. This meticulous fictional history by TV producer (Beverly Hills, 90210) and author (The Strip) Vincent focuses on the details and misses the impact of Kennedy's assassination. Recommend only to conspiracy buffs.
Kirkus Reviews

From veteran TV writer and producer Vincent (Mafia Summer,2005, etc.), an action novel about the Kennedy assassination.

With a cast of Mafia dons, politicians, the CIA, the FBI and a snake's nest of anti- and pro-Castro Cubans,the novel piles conspiracy atop conspiracy. It's 1959, and communist Castro has overthrown Batista. Eisenhower plans an invasion by anti-Castro elements. JFK gives the go-ahead but ruins the plan by seeking "plausible deniability." Next come plots, schemes and covert missions to assassinate Castro: by the Mafia, which wants its Havana casinos back; by anti-Castro elements who want their country back; and by the CIA, which wants a Soviet ally overthrown. Vincent relates the story in dozens of short, one-scene chapters covering everything from the failed Bay of Pigs invasion to the Cuban Missile Crisis. His knowledge of mobsters and bureaucrats, and the ugly underbelly of glitzy places like Las Vegas and Miami, lends an air of believability. The protagonist is Dante Amato, war hero turnedmafiosowith a CIA agent brother. Amato makes two forays into Cuba attempting to kill Castro, one accompanied by the beautiful Cuban refuge Marissa del Valle, a Bryn Mawr graduate willing to bed Fidel if the assignation presents an opportunity to poison him. Vincent does a fine job of moving the bull's-eye from Castro to JFK, conjuring up the blood-lust resentment of mobster Sam Giancana, who delivered Chicago for the Kennedy campaign, only to be pursued even more fanatically by Robert Kennedy. Characterizations are generally superficial, with Dante realistically amoral rather than heroic, but the author makes intriguing use of historical characters, including E. Howard Hunt, CIA operative turned Watergate burglar.

Thrillers thrive on a conspiracy burning away like a fuse on a bomb. With this novel, Vincent strikes a fictional match and explodes the supposed cover-ups, machinations and disinformation surrounding the Kennedy assassination.

From the Publisher
"Thrillers thrive on a conspiracy burning away like a fuse on a bomb. With this novel, Vincent strikes a fictional match and explodes the supposed cover-ups, machinations and disinformation surrounding the Kennedy assassination." —Kirkus

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781590206393
Publisher:
The Overlook Press
Publication date:
04/28/2011
Pages:
336
Product dimensions:
9.04(w) x 6.32(h) x 1.20(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
"Thrillers thrive on a conspiracy burning away like a fuse on a bomb. With this novel, Vincent strikes a fictional match and explodes the supposed cover-ups, machinations and disinformation surrounding the Kennedy assassination." —-Kirkus

Meet the Author

E. Duke Vincent grew up in New York and New Jersey. An Emmy Award-winning TV writer and producer, he joined Aaron Spelling Productions in 1977. The Camelot Conspiracy is his fourth novel. He lives with his wife, actress Pamela Hensley, in Montecito, California.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
Montecito, California
Date of Birth:
April 30, 1932
Place of Birth:
Jersey City, New Jersey
Education:
B.A., Seton Hall University, 1954
Website:
http://www.edukevincent.com

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