BADFELLAS is the fourth book by Tonino Benacquista to be translated into English and all four have been published by Bitter Lemon Press. Malavita has ratings and reviews. Jim said: An unusual story: basically an American Mafia family story set in France in a small rural town in N. Violent, pacy and saturated with black humour, Benacquista’s story explores what Badfellas. Front Cover. Tonino Benacquista. Bitter Lemon Press,

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Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Preview — Malavita by Tonino Benacquista.

Malavita Malavita 1 by Tonino Benacquista. Une famille apparemment comme les benacqiista, en somme. Mass Market PaperbackFoliopages. Published November 1st by Gallimard first published To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Malavitaplease sign up. Un autre lecteur a-t-il lu ce livre hilarant? See 1 question about Malavita….

Lists with This Book. This book is not yet featured on Benacquusta. Aug 08, Jim Fonseca rated it really liked it Shelves: The book is translated from the French. The story deteriorates into a Keystone Cops type plot as the main character and the FBI guys go through town killing the would-be assassins. So, a fun read, but what saved the novel for me is the well-developed portrayal of the individual characters of the four members of the family. The main character is unrepentant. Beautiful, innocent, helpful to everyone.

The high-school aged son wants to be just like his father but without he violence. He had dropped the criminal side of Mafia behavior and had benxcquista retained their way of getting things done.

At a neighborhood barbeque they sponsor, the son tells his mother: Steaming, boiled vegetables, grilled fish, fizzy water. View all 3 comments. Nov 20, Manny rated it really liked it Shelves: An entertaining story about a former Mob family that relocates to a small town in France. This isn’t Godfather-style idealization of the Mafia – the author spends some time talking about that – so what exactly is he doing? I wasn’t completely sure he knew either.

But I couldn’t put it down, an An entertaining story about a former Mob family that relocates to a small town in France. But I couldn’t put it down, and there are some hilarious sequences. Here’s how it begins. The family has just arrived in the sleepy little French village. The next day, the kids have to start in school, while Maggie, the mother, goes out to do some shopping.

Fred stays at home. So Maggie goes down to the local store, and can’t find peanut butter anywhere. In the end, she baddellas up and asks. The owner tells her in his inimitable French way that there’s not much call for it round here. Five minutes later, she hears two women in the next aisle chatting about that bloody American bitch looking for peanut butter, merdewho do these people think they are? Maggie, who prides herself on the efforts she’s made to learn French language and baxfellas, is hurt.


She slips some cotton-wool and lighter fluid into her bag, and casually torches the store on the way out. Delicious 17 year-old Belle is starting high school. Everyone thinks her name is ridiculous, but also very descriptive. A guy insists on driving her home, but takes a completely different route that ends up at the other side of town.

He stops the car. She asks what the hell is going on. He looks stupidly at her, and tries out some unsubtle moves. She sighs, picks up a tennis racket from the back seat, and breaks his nose with it. Bavfellas, while he’s rolling around in agony on the grass, she tells him sweetly that he’ll have to improve his lines, or he’ll never get anywhere with girls. She gets back into the car and drives home, leaving him there. The younger kid, Wayne, is also starting school.

At morning recess, the tough gang beat him up and take his lunch money. He spends the rest of the day discretely chatting to his new classmates and gathering information. He’s on the football team and is keen on her Pretty soon, he has a complete jigsaw.

Malavita by Tonino Benacquista

Then it’s just a question of setting up a few deals. At the end of the day, the tough gang are ambushed by three suitably incentivized members of the football team, who have to be restrained before they start breaking bones. Mom, daughter and son arrive home simultaneously.

Fred looks at them. He asks mechanically how their day’s been. And they answer in chorus, “Fine! I just discovered that this is also available in English translation, under the title Badfellas. They have taken a few liberties with the story, but I am pleased to say that the opening sequence was pretty much exactly as badtellas here. View all 12 comments. Cholong-sur-Avre in Normandy is the setting of this rather unconventional and darkly humorous tale.

The Blake family benacquisha into an old Norman brick-and-stone villa during the middle of the night. There’s Fred, the head of the clan, Maggie his wife, and two teenagers, Belle bdnacquista Warren. Just your typical American family relocating to the French countryside, right? Fred is actually Mafi Cholong-sur-Avre in Normandy is the setting of this rather unconventional and darkly humorous tale.

Fred is actually Mafioso Giovanni Manzoni from New Jersey, and he and his family are in the witness benacquistq program benacquist he tinino against against another crime boss, Mimino. Along with them are a team of FBI men, assigned to them for protection against anyone wanting to claim the huge bounty put on Manzoni’s head by Mimino.

All of they have to do is lay low, pretend to be a normal family and get on with their lives. But for someone like Fred, or for the rest of the family for that matter, being normal in any sense of the word is impossible. Benaquista’s characters are well drawn.

In this particular witness protection incarnation, Fred has decided to tout himself as an author writing about the landing at Normandy, while all the time writing his own memoirs about his life in organized crime. Fred is not a likable person at all and has no redeeming qualities, but he does have principles: Maggie is busy benacqusta volunteer work, but hangs out with the FBI team to get the latest on her neighbors, who are under constant surveillance by the feds.


Belle, the daughter, is one of those people who makes lemonade with the lemons life has handed her, and Warren has handled the witness protection situation by watching, learning and becoming the mini Godfather-figure of his school. There are some truly funny moments in this book, especially the story of how a school magazine traveled from France to Thailand to Los Angeles to New York and started benxcquista particularly nasty chain of events.

That whole little story within a story is laugh-out-loud funny. There’s also a great scene where by mistake a local cinema club gets sent the Scorsese film Goodfellas instead of the scheduled program of Some Came Running, the story of a WWII veteran who returns home.

However, As much as I liked this book, I did have a couple of niggling and minor issues with it. First, I kept waiting for the “crime fiction” part to begin, but it never materialized. I might have labeled badfellaz more of a “dark comedy” — there’s no central mystery plotline, very little crime and it’s really more of a look at the lives and fortunes of this Witness-Protected family while in exile and at times the people guarding them.

And this leads me to my second point: And how is that Fred’s nephew in the US is allowed to get a call from France when the family is virtually in lockdown? There are a couple of places like this where the storyline falters a bit, creating distractions that really annoyed me at times.

Tonino Benacquista

If you’re looking for a typical crime fiction novel, I wouldn’t start with this one, but the book is actually quite good overall badfsllas more of a fun read than a serious crime read. It has been nominated for this year’s International Dagger Award, and at the award’s website, the judges have noted that “Crime fiction that makes you chuckle is rare and this is an exceptional example of the species. And finally, as one cover blurb notes: Benaquista’s story explores what would happen if, say, the Badfelpas family were to move to Normandy This piece of Benacquista noir succeeds so well due to him getting that balance of black humour and vicious crime so right.

Giovanni Manzoni, a high ranking member of the New Jersey Mafia, who has turned state’s evidence against several key Mafia figures to avoid jail, is in witness protection, and along with his family, he moves to a small Normandy village with his new benacquistq. The character of Manzoni is a wonderful creation. After all of his time in the limelight he has a huge ego and cannot This piece of Benacquista noir succeeds so well due to him getting that balance of black humour and vicious crime so right.