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The Mad Ones

Crazy Joe Gallo and the Revolution at the Edge of the Underworld

Tom Folsom


List Price: 14.95*
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Other Editions of This Title:
Digital Audiobook (8/25/2009)
CD-Audio (8/26/2009)
Compact Disc (8/26/2009)
MP3 CD (8/26/2009)
Hardcover (5/1/2009)

June 2009 Indie Next List

“The '60s were a time of revolution and upheaval, and organized crime was not immune from social change. Tom Folsom tells of the Gallo brothers' quixotic challenge to crime's power structure and breathes life into a mostly forgotten New York society on the edge of a new world.”
— Bill Cusumano, Nicola's Books, Ann Arbor, MI
View the List


The Mad Ones chronicles the rise and fall of the Gallo brothers, a trio of reckless young gangsters whose revolution against New York City’s Mafia was inspired by Crazy Joe Gallo’s forays into Greenwich Village counterculture.

Crazy Joe, Kid Blast, and Larry Gallo are steeped in legend, from Bob Dylan’s eleven-minute ballad “Joey” to fictionalizations central to The Godfather trilogy and Jimmy Breslin’s The Gang That Couldn’t Shoot Straight. Called the toughest gang in the city by the NYPD, the Gallos hailed from the rough Red Hook neighborhood on the Brooklyn waterfront. As low-level Mafiosi, they were expected to serve their don quietly, but the brothers stood apart from typical gangsters with their hip style, fierce ambition, and Crazy Joe’s manic idealism.

Here, for the first time, is the complete story of the Gallos’ war against the powerful Cosa Nostra, an epic crime saga that culminates in Crazy Joe’s murder on the streets of Little Italy, where he was gunned down mid-bite into a forkful of spaghetti in 1972. The Mad Ones is a wildly satisfying entertainment and a significant work of cultural history.

Weinstein Books, 9781602861244, 256pp.

Publication Date: May 11, 2010

About the Author

Tom Folsom is a writer, director, and producer of television documentaries for A&E and Showtime, and the coauthor of Mr. Untouchable: The Rise, Fall and Resurrection of Heroin’s Teflon Don written with its subject, drug-kingpin Nicky Barnes. He lives in New York City.