“Who is your favorite mobster, Mrs. Bellomo?”
The question was recently posed at a luncheon where I was the keynote speaker. We were discussing mobsters in fiction. This was easy. After all, there is only one fictitious mobster that means anything to me. So I answered without hesitation. “Louie Morelli,” I said.
We were discussing mobsters in fiction.
My audience was expecting this. And they understood. Really, how can Louie not be my favorite mobster? I gave life to him.
The ladies seemed to appreciate this answer. They like Louie, too. In fact, some of them love Louie. It’s true on page and off. Women do love Louie. They love him because he’s a dark hero–an enigmatic mobster who employs violent and, occasionally, underhanded methods. The ladies don’t mind that he cheats on his long-suffering wife. They love Louie because he’s Louie—darkly handsome, filthy rich (not all of it come by honestly), and very powerful. Power is sexy. Louie is sexy.
Look at the comment from one of my female readers: “Louie is the kind of man we all wish we knew.”
True, Louie is a badass gangster, and he can be cruel, but he’s tender and sweet to those he loves, and he takes care of his women, rescues us from the big bad world for a few hours. He’s our protector.
It’s easy to love Louie because he exists on the pages of my novels: the ultimate bad boy. Operating from a code of honor and possessing a suave sophistication that’s a bit Bondish, as in James Bond, Louie has his share of male admirers, too. He’s a pretty cool cat. And he always gets the girl.
A lot of writers can’t do mobsters. Frequently, mobsters in fiction come off as corny caricatures of Hollywood psychos. Bad to the bone. As an author, I like to explore the nuances in human nature. Truthfully, I think I have a bit of an advantage because I’ve known a lot of Louie Morelli types. Just to be clear: That doesn’t mean I know their secrets. Or even care to know them. Fiction is much more interesting.
Fiction is much more interesting.
Anyway, as Louie’s creator, I’m totally prejudiced. Louie’s my favorite mobster. How about you? Do you have a favorite mobster?
Patricia Bellomo is the author of the Louie Morelli mafia romance series. Books include The Prince of Mafia Princes, Louie Morelli’s Daughter, Stella di Mare, and Louie Morelli’s Mistress. Books available at Amazon.com and Barnesandnoble.com. Also available in all e-book formats.