Button Man Author:Andrew Gross Morris, Sol, and Harry Rabinowitz grew up poor but happy in a tiny flat on the Lower East Side, until the death of their father thrust them into having to fend for themselves and support their large family. Morris apprenticed himself at twelve years old to a garment cutter in a clothing factory; Sol headed to college and became an accountant; an... more »d Harry, the youngest, fell in with a gang as a teenager and can’t escape. Morris steadily climbs through the ranks at the factory until he’s running the place and buys out the owner, and Sol comes to work with him. But Harry can’t be lured away from the glamour, the power, and the money that comes from working for mobster Louis Buchalter, an old bully from the neighborhood. And when Louis sets his sights on the unions that staff the garment makers’ factories, a fatal showdown is inevitable, and puts brother against brother.
This new novel is equal parts historical thriller, rich with the detail of a vibrant New York City in the 1920s and 1930s, and family saga, based in part on Andrew Gross’s family history, and will cement his reputation as today’s most atmospheric and original historical thriller writer.« less
The Button Man is an historical family saga set in the lower east side of New York City during the 20's and 30's. It's a story of the Rabishevsky brothers, (Morris, Sol and Harry) and how they learned a new trade to help support their family. They became garment workers but had to fight the Italian mob who forced them to pay high union fees and only buy their materials from certain vendors. Add to this the corrupt police and you have a plot that moves quickly and painfully for the Rabishevsky family. The characters are very realistic as the story is based on the author's grandfather's story and is essentially a good vs. evil tale that Andrew Gross is well adept at telling. I have read some of Gross' thrillers but I like his historical novels the best. This is one that will live in your memory long after you turn the last page. I would highly recommend it to those who like to read about New York and the Italian mob. I would like to thank NetGalley and St. Martin's Press for allowing me to read this book for an honest review.