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They insist they are just a group of friends, yet they funnel millions of dollars through tax-free corporations. They claim to disdain politics, but congressmen of both parties describe them as the most influential religious organization in Washington. They say they are not Christians, but simply believers.

Behind the scenes at every National Prayer Breakfast since 1953 has been the Family, an elite network dedicated to a religion of power for the powerful. Their goal is "Jesus plus nothing." Their method is backroom diplomacy. The Family is the startling story of how their faith—part free-market fundamentalism, part imperial ambition—has come to be interwoven with the affairs of nations around the world.

Published: HarperCollins on
ISBN: 9780061801815
List price: $10.99
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this was the last book mario puzo wrote. it was a book that was excellently done. you could really feel the presence of the time. i haven't gotten the borgia history down and so this was quite interesting. i realize it's labled as fiction but so is the sicilian (which was based on a real person) and so i kindof figure this is probably the same sort of thing. he will be missed but i'm so happy i got to read this and it was finished.more
A day without BLASPHEMY and SACRILEGE is a lot like a day without sunshine.more
This book had the makings of something special. The Borgias are an original mob family. Instead of owning a territory or even a city...they owned nations and religions. In the hands of Puzo? WOW!I don't know at which point Puzo stopped writing and Carol Gino picked up. I can only guess that Puzo didn't get very far and/or the editors made a terrible mess of what was left. The story has absolutely no depth, and the characters have even less. The story, if one can call this narrative a 'story', is more of an outline than anything else I can describe. One can almost imagine the bullet points preceding each paragraph. I desperately wanted the early overview chapters to be a foundation upon which a masterful "Godfather"-like story would rest. Instead, I became desperate to put the book down. And so I did.Quite simply, this book is unreadable.more
I've just read this book. I found it interesting, although some roles could have more depth. It seems accurate with the Alexander VII's known history. In the afterword written by Carol Gino, we found out that the book was written in a 20 years span. Perhaps that was the reason for a certain lack of unity in the book. After all, The Family is worth reading, in my opinion.more
While this book was somewhat interesting, it was written with such a detached point of view and such matter-of-fact prose that it was difficult to become involved in the book. This book is not nearly as good as some of his other works.more
Warning: If you are strictly devote to the Roman Catholic Church this book is most likely not your cup of tea. I picked up this gem in the "Friends of the Library" section of my local library. Having never read any of Puzo's work I decided to give this book a try. The back panel of this paperback contained the following passage as its only description. "We are family," Alexander told his children. "And the loyalty of the family must come before everything and everyone else. For if we honor that commitment, we will never be vanquished-but if we falter in that loyalty, we will all be condemned." Again knowing little of Puzo outside of his works on world renowned titles such as The Godfather and The Last Don I figured this book was another in the line of Italian Mob stories. Man was I off, by a couple of centuries no less.This story has none to do with a modern day crime family and all to do with a 15th century semi-ficticious Popes' reign. Although originally feeling baited and switched (more to my lack of research than the authors intentional misdirection) I was drawn into this story. I have not traditionlly been one to care for any story written before or about time periods prior to the 18th century. But I must say that Puzo's style drew me in quite quickly. Additionally, The Family was Puzo's last work as it was completed by his longtime girlfriend Carol Gino. I must say I cannot decipher the point where Puzo left off and Gino took over. As it turns out The Family was written over a 20 year period of time. Per my Catholic Faith warning at the heading of this review, this book is not for the unwillingly challenged faithful. This book is the story of an extremely sinful pope who uses his power more to benefit himself and his family (yes I said family, I will let you work that one out) than to that of the Mother Church to which he was appointed the vicar of Christ. Although the pages within contain acts of the utmost mortal sins committed by Pope Alexander VI, it is probably not all that far from the reality of the leaders of the church in that day. But without a doubt if this book were on any previewed reading list of the Vatican, it would certainly be reported back to the masses as a morally objectable piece of literature.If you are able to see past religious sanctioned murder, insest, treachery, and deciet, then you are in for a well written story. If not then it is my hope, that my review has prevented you from reading this treacherous work of heresy and has therefore saved you from eternal damnation.more
This book is written to show us the beginings of the true Italian Crime family, of course they are Spanish. The Borgias are the essence of getting and keeping power for the family. I feel that the book was much longer than required. But this is probably to be expected, since Mr. puzzo was not able to finish his work. You can tell the author loved this period of time. He is trying to show us that Pope Alexander was not only the 1st Don but the greatest.The book contains 4 main story lines and several secondary tales as well. The Borgia Pope and his 4 children take center stage, and the quest to unite Italy is the book's theme. The battles that span most of Italy and even the Island of Elba should read at the pace of military battles and the campaign they entail. This would be my favorite part, but the battles are mostly just briefly mentioned and this is most evident when Cesare conquers Elba in a matter of a few hours and a handful of pages in the book. Though I understand that this is not a Military history book.Though not not my favorite book, it is worth reading. Espically if interested in that period and to see just how corrupt the church was at that time. I am glad that Carol Gino took on the task to complete this work.more
One of the most infamous women of the Renaissance, Lucretia Borgia seems to have a wealth of rumors surrounding her. This book examines the Borgia clan (papa the Pope, the caniving sons who seem ill-suited to their stations, and Lucretia-the beautiful pawn in her father's political games). Puzo does a wonderful job describing the culture, the time, and the thoughts that governed the Church and Europe in those times.more
Many of the reviews for this book are either incorrectly linked or their authors mistook this book for the well-known Mario Puzo book of the same name.

This "The Family" is written by Jeff Sharlet and its subject is a modern fundamentalist Christian organization.more
Read all 10 reviews

Reviews

this was the last book mario puzo wrote. it was a book that was excellently done. you could really feel the presence of the time. i haven't gotten the borgia history down and so this was quite interesting. i realize it's labled as fiction but so is the sicilian (which was based on a real person) and so i kindof figure this is probably the same sort of thing. he will be missed but i'm so happy i got to read this and it was finished.more
A day without BLASPHEMY and SACRILEGE is a lot like a day without sunshine.more
This book had the makings of something special. The Borgias are an original mob family. Instead of owning a territory or even a city...they owned nations and religions. In the hands of Puzo? WOW!I don't know at which point Puzo stopped writing and Carol Gino picked up. I can only guess that Puzo didn't get very far and/or the editors made a terrible mess of what was left. The story has absolutely no depth, and the characters have even less. The story, if one can call this narrative a 'story', is more of an outline than anything else I can describe. One can almost imagine the bullet points preceding each paragraph. I desperately wanted the early overview chapters to be a foundation upon which a masterful "Godfather"-like story would rest. Instead, I became desperate to put the book down. And so I did.Quite simply, this book is unreadable.more
I've just read this book. I found it interesting, although some roles could have more depth. It seems accurate with the Alexander VII's known history. In the afterword written by Carol Gino, we found out that the book was written in a 20 years span. Perhaps that was the reason for a certain lack of unity in the book. After all, The Family is worth reading, in my opinion.more
While this book was somewhat interesting, it was written with such a detached point of view and such matter-of-fact prose that it was difficult to become involved in the book. This book is not nearly as good as some of his other works.more
Warning: If you are strictly devote to the Roman Catholic Church this book is most likely not your cup of tea. I picked up this gem in the "Friends of the Library" section of my local library. Having never read any of Puzo's work I decided to give this book a try. The back panel of this paperback contained the following passage as its only description. "We are family," Alexander told his children. "And the loyalty of the family must come before everything and everyone else. For if we honor that commitment, we will never be vanquished-but if we falter in that loyalty, we will all be condemned." Again knowing little of Puzo outside of his works on world renowned titles such as The Godfather and The Last Don I figured this book was another in the line of Italian Mob stories. Man was I off, by a couple of centuries no less.This story has none to do with a modern day crime family and all to do with a 15th century semi-ficticious Popes' reign. Although originally feeling baited and switched (more to my lack of research than the authors intentional misdirection) I was drawn into this story. I have not traditionlly been one to care for any story written before or about time periods prior to the 18th century. But I must say that Puzo's style drew me in quite quickly. Additionally, The Family was Puzo's last work as it was completed by his longtime girlfriend Carol Gino. I must say I cannot decipher the point where Puzo left off and Gino took over. As it turns out The Family was written over a 20 year period of time. Per my Catholic Faith warning at the heading of this review, this book is not for the unwillingly challenged faithful. This book is the story of an extremely sinful pope who uses his power more to benefit himself and his family (yes I said family, I will let you work that one out) than to that of the Mother Church to which he was appointed the vicar of Christ. Although the pages within contain acts of the utmost mortal sins committed by Pope Alexander VI, it is probably not all that far from the reality of the leaders of the church in that day. But without a doubt if this book were on any previewed reading list of the Vatican, it would certainly be reported back to the masses as a morally objectable piece of literature.If you are able to see past religious sanctioned murder, insest, treachery, and deciet, then you are in for a well written story. If not then it is my hope, that my review has prevented you from reading this treacherous work of heresy and has therefore saved you from eternal damnation.more
This book is written to show us the beginings of the true Italian Crime family, of course they are Spanish. The Borgias are the essence of getting and keeping power for the family. I feel that the book was much longer than required. But this is probably to be expected, since Mr. puzzo was not able to finish his work. You can tell the author loved this period of time. He is trying to show us that Pope Alexander was not only the 1st Don but the greatest.The book contains 4 main story lines and several secondary tales as well. The Borgia Pope and his 4 children take center stage, and the quest to unite Italy is the book's theme. The battles that span most of Italy and even the Island of Elba should read at the pace of military battles and the campaign they entail. This would be my favorite part, but the battles are mostly just briefly mentioned and this is most evident when Cesare conquers Elba in a matter of a few hours and a handful of pages in the book. Though I understand that this is not a Military history book.Though not not my favorite book, it is worth reading. Espically if interested in that period and to see just how corrupt the church was at that time. I am glad that Carol Gino took on the task to complete this work.more
One of the most infamous women of the Renaissance, Lucretia Borgia seems to have a wealth of rumors surrounding her. This book examines the Borgia clan (papa the Pope, the caniving sons who seem ill-suited to their stations, and Lucretia-the beautiful pawn in her father's political games). Puzo does a wonderful job describing the culture, the time, and the thoughts that governed the Church and Europe in those times.more
Many of the reviews for this book are either incorrectly linked or their authors mistook this book for the well-known Mario Puzo book of the same name.

This "The Family" is written by Jeff Sharlet and its subject is a modern fundamentalist Christian organization.more
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