“A useful reminder, especially for Mafia romanticizers, that we’re dealing with sociopathic knuckle scrapers who settle scores with casual brutality…Gleeson, a lawyer in private practice these days, is an able storyteller [and his book displays] keen insights and neat turns of phrase.”
—New York Times
“The Gotti Wars is the riveting story of Gleeson’s fight to bring Gotti to justice, which spanned years, brought him into the crosshairs of organized crime, and ultimately took down five major mob families. It’s an electrifying true crime story of the Mafia-smitten 80s and 90s, to be certain, but also a vivid memoir of Gleeson’s development as a lawyer, and an excavation of the celebrity culture that turned a murderer into a superstar. Suspenseful and multifaceted, The Gotti Wars can’t be missed.”
—Esquire, "The Best Nonfiction Books of 2022 (So Far)"
“In this exceptional debut, former federal prosecutor Gleeson chronicles his efforts to bring Gambino family crime boss John Gotti to justice…A must-read for anyone interested in organized crime.”
—Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
“Compelling…Gleeson has crafted this retelling as carefully as he prepped the two cases [against the mobster]. His description of the politics behind the scenes and his interactions with the likes of U.S. Attorney Rudy Giuliani and Attorney General Bill Barr are icing on the cake….Do we need yet another book on Gotti? Gleeson answers the question with a resounding yes.”
—Library Journal (starred review)
"A memoir from the federal prosecutor who took down the “Teflon Don” 30 years ago…Gleeson is a thorough writer…[The Gotti Wars] offers a realistic portrait of how big cases are pieced together."
“Spellbinding...tells us in electrifying detail how the good guys finally won, how justice triumphed over evil, and how Gleeson himself was transformed by his long war.”
—Nelson DeMille, New York Times bestselling author of The Gold Coast and Wild Fire
“Vivid, evocative, and genuinely suspenseful…An impressively detailed account of what it was like in the late 80’s and early 90’s to be chasing a flashy, dangerous mobster who had morphed into a pop culture icon…. John Gleeson is one of the most gifted prosecutors ever to match up against the Mafia. As I should have guessed, he is also an immensely gifted storyteller.”
—Mary Jo White, former Chair of the SEC, former US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, and former Acting US Attorney for the Eastern District of New York
“Unflinchingly honest…contains moments that are both frightening and funny. I covered the rise and fall of John Gotti for seven years—through three trials and a dozen murders. I thought I knew this story inside and out, but this book shows I was mistaken. As John Gleeson tells the full story of how he built his ironclad case, you’ll feel like you’re sitting in the room where it happened—with the same nerve-jangling anticipation of how it will all turn out.”
—John Miller, former co-anchor of 20/20 and, currently, Deputy Commissioner of Intelligence and Counterterrorism for the NYPD
“A unique unveiling of the prosecutorial strategy that vanquished the American Mafia's most exalted late 20th century gangster. As a bonus, Gleeson offers candid views of the skills and shortcomings of his main opponents: the Teflon Don's battery of mob lawyers. Perhaps from his former perch on the bench his next book should pinpoint the frailties of our creaky criminal-justice system.”
—Selwyn Raab, New York Times bestselling author of The Five Families
“John Gotti flashed an arrogance and audacity that became a gauntlet thrown down to law enforcement. To his credit, Gleeson shows, in this absolutely riveting memoir, that Hollywood’s image of a prosecutor who does it all by himself is pure fantasy. Ultimately, The Gotti Wars is a testament to the camaraderie that forms around any consequential prosecution. In these pages, you get to experience how touch and go it actually was.”
—Eric Holder, 82nd Attorney General of the United States
"Well-written…John Gleeson, who took the swagger away from John Gotti, shares his up-close and personal view of Gotti, his cronies, and the Mafia world he observed before, during, and after his two knock-down, drag-out trials against the late Dapper Don."
—Jerry Capeci, reporter-columnist at ganglandnews.com and coauthor of Mob Star: The Story of John Gotti and Murder Machine
“Absorbing, even inspiring…Epicenters of media attention, the courtrooms in which the fates of John Gotti and his co-defendants were decided became—over a period of months and ultimately years—scenes of magnificent legal combat…. Second chair in the first case and lead prosecutor in the second, John Gleeson had to continually improvise to thwart defendants who would resort to any ploy, legal or otherwise, to gain their freedom.”
—David N. Kelley, former United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York