Cover image for Family blood : a novel
Family blood : a novel
Ritz, David.
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Publication Information:
New York, N.Y. : D.I. Fine, [1991]

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Author Notes

David Ritz has collaborated with Ray Charles, Marvin Gaye, B. B. King, Aretha Franklin, Etta James, Smokey Robinson, and Don Rickles. He co-wrote the song Sexual Healing with Marvin Gaye. He received the Gleason Music Book Award four times.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

Publisher's Weekly Review

Young New York City lawyer David Crossman is lured into the pop music biz by mysterious old Nathan Silver. We learn in flashbacks what takes David a while to understand: Nathan is his grandfather Bernie (ne Ruben ``the Gent'' Ginzburg), ex-hitman for Detroit mobster Pino Feldman in the '30s and '40s. Before ratting on Pino to the Feds, the Gent helped legendary jazz star Eve Silk get started. Their biracial affair is paralleled in David's liaison with rising songstress Rita Moses. David's lawyer-father Ralph, born Miltie Ginzburg, hides his roots as does his lover Margo Cunningham, nee Muriel Smith. In almost no time we're spun into a hectic tale of show-biz corruption and multigenerational vendettas. The book's frenetic pace--lit by the flashbacks, in which Gent Ginzburg, a great, sweet and savage character, steals the show--leads to a bloody, symmetrical ending. Novelist ( Barbells and Saxophones ), biographer (Ray Charles, Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson), songwriter (``Sexual Healing'') Ritz knows this milieu and depicts it with vastly entertaining skill. 50,000 first printing; $40,000 ad/promo; BOMC featured alternate. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

Three generations of criminals in two families battle coast to coast in this dazzling juggling act of past and present. Ruben, a hit man in the 1940s, has one passion--music. He'd rather produce records than kill, but the latter pays better. When Ruben testifies against his boss, the crime king of Detroit, he must go underground and forsake his former life. Ruben's son Ralph rejects his past and becomes a famous lawyer. Ralph's son David is also a lawyer, but like his grandfather, David has a feel and ear for music. All are drawn into a complex series of events dramatizing crime and corruption in the music industry. It's a hurricane of a novel, and the author ( Barbells and Saxophones, LJ 2/15/90; Blue Notes Under a Green Felt Hat, LJ 4/1/89) is successful in interweaving all of the scenes and characters. Ritz knows the music industry well; he co-wrote the song ``Sexual Healing'' with Marvin Gaye. Certain to be very popular. BOMC alternate.--Robert H. Donahugh, formerly with Youngstown & Mahoning Cty. P.L., Ohio (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

School Library Journal Review

YA-- David Crossman's only respite from the rat race of his father's law firm is his fabulous collection of '30s blues records. His long-lost grandfather, Nathan Silver, uses the records to renew contact with the young man and ultimately tells him the family's sordid history. Silver's past is the bloody one of a mob enforcer. His tales of the old days capture David's imagination, and he begins to take the old man's uncannily accurate advice. Silver uses his grandson to recapture the power and prestige of his youth, until his old boss, Pino Feldman, is paroled from prison. Feldman, through his own grandson, refuels the battle with Silver, the man who betrayed him. When the vicious maelstrom around him is at its height, the young Crossman establishes a relationship with his previously distant father. YAs will be riveted as he struggles to escape his grandfather's violent legacy and live his own life. --Phillip Clark, R. E. Lee High Sch . , Springfield, VA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.