NOTICE: Citizendium is still being set up on its newer server, treat as a beta for now; please see here for more.
Citizendium - a community developing a quality comprehensive compendium of knowledge, online and free. Click here to join and contribute—free
CZ thanks our previous donors. Donate here. Treasurer's Financial Report -- Thanks to our content contributors. --

Difference between revisions of "Prizzi's Money"

From Citizendium, the Citizens' Compendium
Jump to: navigation, search
(began the article, using Prizzi's Glory as the template)
(Real-life names in the book: correct the name of the real Keifetz)
(12 intermediate revisions by the same user not shown)
Line 2: Line 2:
 
{{TOC|right}}
 
{{TOC|right}}
  
'''Prizzi's Money''' is a satirical, semi-humorous crime novel by [[Richard Condon]] published in 1994.  It is the last of four novels featuring the Prizzis, a powerful family of Mafiosi in New York City. In all four novels the main protagonist is a top member of the family named Charlie Partanna.  
+
'''Prizzi's Money''' is a satirical, semi-humorous crime novel by [[Richard Condon]] published in 1994.  It is the last of four novels featuring the Prizzis, a powerful family of Mafiosi in New York City. It was also the last of 28 books that Condon wrote over a 36-year career. In all four Prizzi novels the main protagonist is a top member of the family named Charley Partanna.  
  
 
==Plot summary==
 
==Plot summary==
 
+
Charley is 36 as this book opens,
  
 
==Condon's style==
 
==Condon's style==
Line 13: Line 13:
 
In Prizzi's Honor, Condon's normal exuberance was somewhat curbed by choosing to narrate the events through the viewpoints of its various semi-literate gangsters, which limited the scope of his imagery. In Money, however, he returns to being his usual [[Omniscient narrator|omniscient narrator]], giving the reader:
 
In Prizzi's Honor, Condon's normal exuberance was somewhat curbed by choosing to narrate the events through the viewpoints of its various semi-literate gangsters, which limited the scope of his imagery. In Money, however, he returns to being his usual [[Omniscient narrator|omniscient narrator]], giving the reader:
  
<blockquote>xxxx<ref>''[[Prizzi's Glory]]'', by Richard Condon, E.P. Dutton, New York, 1988, page 4</ref></blockquote>
+
<blockquote>Vincent had a totally closed face, like a bank vault shut impenetrably by a system of time locks. Somewhere, hidden deep within his past, there was a boyish openness that had not been seen by anyone for over sixty years because, through carelessness, the combination to the shut vault of his expressiveness had been lost, somewhere in his preternatural resentment of everything that moved.<ref>''[[Prizzi's Money]]'', by Richard Condon, Crown Publishers, Inc., New York, 1994, page 41</ref></blockquote>
  
<blockquote>yyyy<ref>''[[Prizzi's Glory]]'', by Richard Condon, E.P. Dutton, New York, 1988, page 9</ref></blockquote>
+
<blockquote>He was a smallish man with a jockey's hump at the top of his spine, coffee-colored skin, and a nose not quite as large or as colorful as a keel-billed toucan's.<ref>''[[Prizzi's Money]]'', by Richard Condon, Crown Publishers, Inc., New York, 1994, page 42</ref></blockquote>
  
<blockquote>zzzz<ref>''[[Prizzi's Glory]]'', by Richard Condon, E.P. Dutton, New York, 1988, page 110</ref></blockquote>
+
<blockquote>Charley Partanna... was a large, muscular man with a voice like grinding taxicab gears. In fact, if taxis wore clothes they would resemble Charley.<ref>''[[Prizzi's Money]]'', by Richard Condon, Crown Publishers, Inc., New York, 1994, page 43</ref></blockquote>
  
 
==Real-life names in the book==
 
==Real-life names in the book==
All of Condon's books have, to an unknown degree, the names of real people in them as characters, generally very minor or peripheral. The most common, which appears in most of his books, is some variation of Franklin M. Heller. The real-life Heller was a television director in New York City in the 1950s, '60s, and 70s, who initially lived on [[Long Island]] and then moved to a house on Rockrimmon Road in [[Stamford, Connecticut]].<ref>[http://www.dga.org/news/mag_archives/v22-4/frank_heller.htm ''Remembrance of Frank Heller,'' by Ira Skutch, at]</ref> In this book he is
+
All of Condon's books have, to an unknown degree, the names of real people in them as characters, generally very minor or peripheral. The most common, which appears in most of his books, is some variation of Franklin M. Heller. The real-life Heller was a television director in New York City in the 1950s, '60s, and 70s, who initially lived on [[Long Island]] and then moved to a house on Rockrimmon Road in [[Stamford, Connecticut]].<ref>[http://www.dga.org/news/mag_archives/v22-4/frank_heller.htm ''Remembrance of Frank Heller,'' by Ira Skutch, at]</ref> In this book there are brief mentions of a Wall Street law firm of O'Connell, Heller & Melvin.  
 
+
[[A.H. Weiler]], a film critic for ''The New York Times'', was another friend of Condon's who in this book is Dr. Abe Weiler,
+
 
+
In a number of books a character named Keifetz appears, named apparently for Robert Keifetz, a New York City author who wrote a novel about a major league baseball player called '''The Sensation'''—that novel was dedicated to Condon. In this book he
+
 
+
==''The Keener's Manual''==
+
 
+
Beginning with his first book, ''The Oldest Confession'', Condon frequently prefaced his novels with excerpts of verse from a so-called ''Keener's Manual''; these epigraphs foreshadowed the theme of the book or, in several instances, gave the book its title. ''[[The Keener's Manual]]'', however, was a fictional invention by Condon and does not actually exist. A "keen" is a "lamentation for the dead uttered in a loud wailing voice or sometimes in a wordless cry" <ref>''Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, Eleventh Edition'', Merriam-Webster, Inc., Springfield, Massachusetts, 2004, ISBN 0-87779-807-9</ref> and a "keener" is a professional mourner, usually a woman in Ireland, who "utters the keen... at a wake or funeral." <ref>''Webster's New International Dictionary of the English Language, Second Edition, Unabridged'', G. & C. Merriam Co., Publishers, Springfield, Massachusetts, 1943</ref>
+
  
Five of Condon's first six books derived their titles from the fictional manual, the only exception being his most famous book, ''The Manchurian Candidate''. The epigraph in ''The Manchurian Candidate'', however, "I am you and you are me /and what have we done to each other?" is a recurring theme in earlier Condon's books: in various forms it also appears as dialog in both ''The Oldest Confession'' and ''Some Angry Angel''. Among other epigraphs, the last line of "The riches I bring you /Crowding and shoving, /Are the envy of princes: /A talent for loving." is the title of Condon's fourth novel. His fifth and sixth novels, ''An Infinity of Mirrors'' and ''Any God Will Do'', also derive their titles from excerpts of the manual.
+
[[A.H. Weiler]], a film critic for ''The New York Times'', was another friend of Condon's who in this book is mentioned several times as Doctor Abraham Weiler, "the most renowned plastic surgeon of the day".
  
Years later, Condon's 1988 novel [[Prizzi's Glory]] also had an epigraph from the manual, the first one in at least a dozen books.
+
In a number of books a character named Keifetz appears, named apparently for Norman Keifetz, a New York City author who wrote a novel about a major league baseball player called '''The Sensation'''—that novel was dedicated to Condon. In this book he is referred to as Wambly Keifetz of the Bahama Beaver Bonnet Company.
  
 
==Reception==
 
==Reception==

Revision as of 20:32, 11 February 2020

This article is developing and not approved.
Main Article
Talk
Related Articles  [?]
Bibliography  [?]
External Links  [?]
Citable Version  [?]
 
This editable Main Article is under development and not meant to be cited; by editing it you can help to improve it towards a future approved, citable version. These unapproved articles are subject to a disclaimer.

Prizzi's Money is a satirical, semi-humorous crime novel by Richard Condon published in 1994. It is the last of four novels featuring the Prizzis, a powerful family of Mafiosi in New York City. It was also the last of 28 books that Condon wrote over a 36-year career. In all four Prizzi novels the main protagonist is a top member of the family named Charley Partanna.

Plot summary

Charley is 36 as this book opens,

Condon's style

Condon attacked his targets, usually gangsters, financiers, and politicians, wholeheartedly and with a uniquely original style and wit that make almost any paragraph from one of his books instantly recognizable. Reviewing one of his works in the International Herald Tribune, the well-known playwright George Axelrod (The Seven-Year Itch, Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter), who had collaborated with Condon on the screenplay for the film adaptation of The Manchurian Candidate, wrote:

"The arrival of a new novel by Richard Condon is like an invitation to a party.... the sheer gusto of the prose, the madness of his similes, the lunacy of his metaphors, his infectious, almost child-like joy in composing complex sentences that go bang at the end in the manner of exploding cigars is both exhilarating and as exhausting as any good party ought to be."

In Prizzi's Honor, Condon's normal exuberance was somewhat curbed by choosing to narrate the events through the viewpoints of its various semi-literate gangsters, which limited the scope of his imagery. In Money, however, he returns to being his usual omniscient narrator, giving the reader:

Vincent had a totally closed face, like a bank vault shut impenetrably by a system of time locks. Somewhere, hidden deep within his past, there was a boyish openness that had not been seen by anyone for over sixty years because, through carelessness, the combination to the shut vault of his expressiveness had been lost, somewhere in his preternatural resentment of everything that moved.[1]
He was a smallish man with a jockey's hump at the top of his spine, coffee-colored skin, and a nose not quite as large or as colorful as a keel-billed toucan's.[2]
Charley Partanna... was a large, muscular man with a voice like grinding taxicab gears. In fact, if taxis wore clothes they would resemble Charley.[3]

Real-life names in the book

All of Condon's books have, to an unknown degree, the names of real people in them as characters, generally very minor or peripheral. The most common, which appears in most of his books, is some variation of Franklin M. Heller. The real-life Heller was a television director in New York City in the 1950s, '60s, and 70s, who initially lived on Long Island and then moved to a house on Rockrimmon Road in Stamford, Connecticut.[4] In this book there are brief mentions of a Wall Street law firm of O'Connell, Heller & Melvin.

A.H. Weiler, a film critic for The New York Times, was another friend of Condon's who in this book is mentioned several times as Doctor Abraham Weiler, "the most renowned plastic surgeon of the day".

In a number of books a character named Keifetz appears, named apparently for Norman Keifetz, a New York City author who wrote a novel about a major league baseball player called The Sensation—that novel was dedicated to Condon. In this book he is referred to as Wambly Keifetz of the Bahama Beaver Bonnet Company.

Reception

Publishers Weekly loved it:

xxx[5]

Kirkus Review had mixed feelings about it:

xxx[6]

The New York Times, definitely liked it:

xxxx[7]

External links

  1. Prizzi's Money, by Richard Condon, Crown Publishers, Inc., New York, 1994, page 41
  2. Prizzi's Money, by Richard Condon, Crown Publishers, Inc., New York, 1994, page 42
  3. Prizzi's Money, by Richard Condon, Crown Publishers, Inc., New York, 1994, page 43
  4. Remembrance of Frank Heller, by Ira Skutch, at
  5. Publishers Weekly, 1 September 1988
  6. Kirkus Review, 23 September 1988
  7. The New York Times, 9 October 1988