"[The] riveting account of Lucas’ rise and fall is reason enough to pick up the book, but Jacobson’s other stories, spanning 30 years of NYC history, offer gripping reading as well. Whether covering the high life or lowlifes, Jacobson boasts a novelistic eye and muscular prose in the tradition of urban chroniclers like Joseph Mitchell, A.J. Liebling, and Pete Hamill. A-" Josh Rottenberg, Entertainment Weekly
And Other Tales of New York
978-0-8021-4336-5 • $14.00 • Paperback • Oct. 2007
In the 1970s, Frank Lucas was the king of the Harlem drug trade, bringing in more than a million dollars a day. There were so many heroin addicts buying from him on 116th Street that he claimed the Transit Authority had to change the bus routes to avoid them. He lived a glamorous life, hobnobbing with athletes, musicians, and politicians, but Lucas was also a ruthless gangster. He was notorious for using coffins of dead GIs to smuggle heroin into the United States and before his fall, when he was sentenced to seventy years in prison, he played a major role in the near death of New York City. In American Gangster, Mark Jacobson's captivating account of the life of Frank Lucas (the basis for the forthcoming major motion picture) joins other tales of New York City from the past thirty years. The collection features a number of Jacobson's most famous essays, as well as previous unpublished work and recent articles on 9/11 conspiracy theorists, America's #1 escort, and Harlem's own Charles Rangel, the new chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee. American Gangster is a vibrant, intoxicating, many-layered portrait of one of the most fascinating cities in the world, by one of the most acclaimed journalists of our time.