The Mensch by Leopold Borstinski

Today it is over to Mandie who has. ablog tour review of The Mensch, the final book in Leopold Borstinski’s Alex Cohen series. With thanks to the author for the advance copy of the book and to Zoe-Lee O’Farrell of Zooloos Book Tours for the tour invite. Here’s what the book is about:

Source: Advance Reader Copy
Release Date: 12 August 2022

About the Book

How can a crooked man ever go straight?

Jewish gangster, Alex Cohen settles down in Florida surrounded by his wife and family. But his past life in the criminal underworld stalks his every move and when a bullet whizzes past his ear, he must decide whether to run or fight.

In his desire to go straight, Alex inserts himself in the East Coast porn film industry, only to find that the tentacles of the mob are clasped tight around his life. With the Feds using new laws to hunt down mob bosses, and rats in his own organization all too ready to testify against him, Alex must clean house before the authorities throw him in jail or the mob kills him to stop him ratting them out.

The seventh book in the Alex Cohen series is an historical thriller novel, which reveals the dying embers of Jewish organized crime in America. Leopold Borstinski’s crime fiction shines a light on the death of the old-style mob in an explosive finale.

Mandie’s Thoughts

This is the seventh and final instalment in the Alex Cohen series and I can honestly say I have thoroughly enjoyed reading every single book and getting to know Alex from his lowly start right to his later years when he finally contemplates slowing down and handing over the reins to his businesses and leading a quieter more legitimate lifestyle.

Alex isn’t getting any younger and with his family and close associates encouraging him to take a step back and consider retirement he starts to look for other things that will keep his hand in business but will also keep him on the right side of the law. On the surface he is making all the right noises but at the same time he is reluctant to take that final step as he knows that he is potentially stepping away from guaranteed money and financial (if not actual) security. 

You certainly get the sense that Alex is slowly losing the fear factor that he once wielded and the people he could once rely on are finding reasons not to help him. His attempts to find legitimate investments see him get involved in the porn industry which may not be the sound choice that he was looking for. He does still have some loyal people that he can turn to but even they are chomping at the bit to take over the businesses they have been caretaking for many years. 

At times it is probably only Alex’s stubborn streak that keeps him alive and one step ahead of those that clearly want him out of the picture once and for all. You would think that with all the things he just couldn’t like but there is something about his loyalty to friends and especially family that sees you time after time hoping that he will survive whatever is thrown at him and that he comes out on top if not unscathed. He has always lived by the mantra “you live together, you love together but you die alone” and I think that this has often guided the choices he makes as if the inevitability of this makes him value his life less. 

For me this book ties up everything that has gone on in the past and is a fitting end to the series with a few little surprises along the way. As to whether his mantra comes to pass, well you will just have to read the book to find out. I never actually thought I would enjoy a series about mobs and gangs but I am glad that I took the chance of reading book 1 and am actually going to miss Alex Cohen.

About the Author

Leopold Borstinski is an independent author whose past careers have included financial journalism, business management of financial software companies, consulting and product sales and marketing, as well as teaching.

There is nothing he likes better so he does as much nothing as he possibly can. He has travelled extensively in Europe and the US and has visited Asia on several occasions. Leopold holds a Philosophy degree and tries not to drop it too often.

He lives near London and is married with one wife, one child and no pets.

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