The Godfather – A literary masterpiece by Mario Puzo


Novel – The Godfather
Author – Mario Puzo
Publication date – 1969
Genre – Crime

“Behind every great fortune, there is a crime – Balzac”

“The Godfather” novel is unarguably the best crime novel till date that has stood the test of time and has been hailed as the great masterpiece in the world of literature. Written by Mario Puzo, “The Godfather” revolves around the mafia chief – Don Vito Corleone who passes on his empire’s responsibility to his younger son Michael. Through this novel, Mario Puzo gives you a glimpse in the dark world of crime where every dishonest job is done with honesty and how the kingpins of crime keep law and politicians in their pockets. Inspired by actual events and people during America in 1940’s, Godfather is the journey of a Sicilian boy named vito who moves to America and how the incidents turn him from a ordinary grocery keeper into a mafia kingpin who on one side is a public enemy for the law while on the other side he is the savior or godfather of the innocent, oppressed and poor.

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Fondly called as the ‘godfather’ in the arena of crime, Don Vito Corleone’s world turns upside down when he declines the offer to support illegal narcotics business and this is where other mafia groups come together to bring an end to the legacy of godfather. What rest follows is the series of massacre that leads to assassination attempt on don vito corloene and ruthless murder of his elder son – Sonny Corleone. This time Michael Corleone, the youngest son has to make his own destiny – either lead a happy life with his sweetheart or turn himself into a ruthless avenger and settle score with his adversaries who threaten to wipe out the existence of godfather. Michael ascends on the path of crime, turning himself into a dreadful vendetta for his foes and what price he pays to become the next godfather has been described very exceptionally by author Mario Puzo in his highly bestselling novel – The Godfather.


This novel was adapted for motion picture and was directed by Francis Ford Coppola. Released in 1972, this motion picture bagged several Oscars and was hailed as the best motion picture in world of cinema. Actor Marlon Brando portrayed the title role while Al Pacino played the role of Michael Corleone.

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No one could have justified the role of godfather with sheer magnificence as Marlon Brando did. He made this character larger than life with powerful performance. This novel became a great inspiration for several filmmakers to make gangster movies like scarface, goodfellas, once upon a time in America, American gangster , satya, dharmatma, company, sarkar and once upon a time in mumbai. Once you have completed reading “The Godfather”, then you should definitely read Hussain Zaidi’s book – Dongri to Dubai.


2 Replies to “The Godfather – A literary masterpiece by Mario Puzo”

  1. The Godfather is not just an ordinary tale of crime; it is also an everlasting portrait of a legacy of crime and murder and how it affects and destroys the idea of the American Dream and leads to a collapse of family and love and results only in solitude and despair for its main character- Michael Corleone.

    Francis Ford Coppola took that fantastic Mario Puzo novel and turned it into a rich brew of excellent storytelling. However, it should be noted that it is the powerhouse sequel- to the first film- which really nails the heart-breaking gloom at the crux of the story. While the first film is all about sinful excitement of crime and murder, it is the second that is about its devastating aftermath.

    A great write-up indeed and a very solid review of the book. Keep it up Prashant

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